Modular Cleanrooms: Total Cost Of Ownership Overview

Most conversations about building a cleanroom will begin with debating a traditional construction versus modular. And more often than not, organizations that choose a traditional build will do so because they believe that modular is more “expensive.”

Yes, it may be true that a modular cleanroom’s actual building components often cost more. However, if you look at the total cost of ownership of both models, you will most likely see that a modular cleanroom costs you less over the long term. Often, considerably less.

Today, we will examine the various ways that a modular build can actually cost less.

Faster Construction

You don’t have to wait very long to begin seeing measurable savings. Once designed, modular cleanrooms can typically be constructed 20-40% faster than cleanrooms built using traditional methods.

This means that, if you were to choose a traditional model, any perceived cost savings from going with traditional and less “expensive” materials could quickly be negated by a longer construction process.

A modular cleanroom is also going to offer far more flexibility if the facility needs to be moved or reconfigured. This is particularly valuable for facility managers facing shorter and shorter timeframes for production start-up.

Reliability and Predictability

It’s hard to put a dollar figure on those “surprises” that tend to blindside you during the production process, or shortly after a more traditional cleanroom is built. But if you’ve ever had to deal with them before, you have a good idea of how much time and money they can cost.

However, with a modular cleanroom, you know exactly what you are going to get. Every single piece is extremely consistent from one facility to the next.

Choosing a modular system is choosing a proven system— one that has been manufactured in a controlled environment. And, you get the intangible peace-of-mind of knowing that everything has already been validated through extensive real-world use.

More Control Over Temperature, Humidity & Pressure

Increasing your ability to maintain a critical environment has a direct impact on your bottom line. Quite simply, maintaining more control means you can increase your output/productivity, while keeping operating costs low.

Modular construction allows you to maintain constant control of the temperature, humidity and pressure inside your cleanroom. Utilizing modular construction (with non-hygroscopic components and tight-fitting panels) can assist in controlling humidity. At the same time, the tightness of the construction will assist in pressure control.

Customization and Scalability

If you’re looking to add components like doors, pass-throughs, or different elevations, you will most likely find that these things are more simple (and less expensive) to add to a modular cleanroom.

This is because accessories like windows that assemble flush into a wall are difficult to find in standard construction. However, these are standard components in our modular cleanrooms.

And more importantly, modular construction also means that these components can also be easily added as your operations scale up or change in any way.


Modular cleanrooms also offer considerable environmental advantages over traditional
construction, with modular cleanrooms often having recycle rates as high as 93% at end of life.

Almost all components (especially aluminum) can be manufactured with recycled content, extruded to reduce waste, re-configured and relocated.

We Are Trusted Cleanroom Specialists

Our company’s roots began in 1983 in commercial heating and air conditioning and evolved over the years combined with our expertise in temperature and humidity control which helped us find our calling in cleanrooms in the late 1990s.

Today, Environmental Systems Corporation designs critical environments and builds cleanrooms to ISO 14644 4, 5, 6, 7 & 8 Requirements.

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