THE PATHOLOGY OF BUILDING DEFECTS; “A RESEARCH ON LATENT DEFECTS OF FLOOR FINISHES AT UoN A.D.D EDUCATIONAL BUILDING: CAUSES AND DESIGN STRATEGIES TO PREVENT THEM”

ABSTRACT
Building designers’ decisions affect long term quality and lifecycle cost of buildings. Designers’
decisions are usually latent in nature and hard to detect at the early stage of construction process.
This research looks at failure mechanisms that caused design-related latent defects and the design
parameters that could prevent these defects. Building survey carried out by the researcher in the
A.D.D educational building found out that the three most important design-related failure causes
are weather impact, impacts from occupants, and loads and moisture from the wet areas.
The design strategies that could successfully prevent triggering these defects include aligning
material performance against adverse weather conditions, preventing impact from occupants and
loads, preventing water leakage or seepage, improving specifications and improving design
clarity, details and layout. There are enormous standards and codes available internationally,
however, each is designed to overcome regional problems and therefore there is a need for
uniformity to enable designers to come up with equal design specifics.
This research confirms the need for designers to consolidate regional standards and codes to
develop in-house database using existing standards and codes, and lesson-learned from defects
gathered by property managers; and lastly is to apply this knowledge to eliminate latent defects
from future design. This research also confirms that such knowledge can be developed using
existing records of property managers.