BIM v/s CAD – What’s the difference?

If you have been spending quality time in the construction industry, then you would have certainly come across the terms computer-aided design (CAD) and building information modelling (BIM). In the recent years, BIM – a process of laying out the building systems such as electric works, plumbing, and HVAC systems – is gaining popularity and set the new industry standards. This model has become an indispensable tool for the construction professionals and architects, especially for commercial building.

The growing popularity of BIM files among leading architecture firms has made many building product manufacturers raise a question – can the CAD files be converted to BIM files? Well, the answer is no. This is because CAD and BIM file types differ in many ways. Though these two terms are interconnected, they head in different directions. As a construction manager, it is important for you to use BIM-focused software and avoid CAD. Here are the key differences between CAD and BIM that you need to know as a construction manager.

Both CAD and BIM are used for different purposes. CAD is typically used for creating the industrial design of mechanical and electrical assemblies. The CAD software is the good for engineers who work on projects that require multiple components and parts to fit into a larger assembly. In fact, to make it ideal for manufacturing, the CAD software users create 2D drawings and 3D models of these parts and assemblies. In the past, the construction industry used CAD quite a bit to create two-dimensional designs.

In this technologically advanced world and especially in the fast-paced building and construction industries, 2D CAD has currently become outdated and therefore, the software is dropped. File sharing, 3D visualization, and real-time model analysis features are now available through BIM.

BIM is used exclusively in the design and construction of commercial buildings like schools, airports and office towers. Its characteristics include helping the discovery of construction-related problems prior to breaking ground and it allows for virtual collision detection. Through BIM, architects, contractors, and engineers can work together towards designing and building a commercial building that uses same the computer model and database. This process assists construction manager in cutting down cost and also achieving energy and cost efficiency. In fact, before beginning a project, BIM allows the team to analyze and visualize the design. Besides, it also goes beyond a simple 3D model of a building by including functional systems such as HVAC and electrical, and aesthetics such as windows, flooring, and roofing.

In the recent times, the BIM is continuing to transform the entire workflow for the construction industry. Therefore, contractors are expected to provide BIM-compatible information when submitting proposals to building owners. BIM has now become an integral part of the construction industry and is very helpful in staying at the forefront of the market. BIM, unlike CAD, ensures to allow every player in the construction technology to collaborate and achieve a successful and efficient building, and also helps them share their resource, by uniting technology with the process.

Now that you know about BIM and CAD, it is your turn to make a wise choice for your construction company to stay ahead of others in the industry. To learn about the latest news in the construction industry, keep yourself logged in to A F Alber. We take the utmost pleasure in providing you with updated information.