How Much Does a Cleanroom Cost?
When it comes to cleanrooms, cost is a nearly infinite variable. It all depends on what specifications your cleanroom needs to meet in order to suit your application. In order to get a more accurate cost estimate for your cleanroom, it’s important to communicate your needs with an expert manufacturer. They’ll have a better understanding of what your cleanroom will involve and what costs will be associated with it.
What Key Factors Affect the Cost of a Cleanroom?
Although cleanroom cost is difficult to estimate without talking to a manufacturer, there are some key factors you can look at to give you a general guideline: classification, size, type, and design complexity. Below, we’ll explore each of these factors and how they’ll affect cleanroom cost in more detail.
Depending on what your application requires, your cleanroom will need to meet a certain ISO classification. Generally speaking, the more stringent the classification, the more equipment and air exchanges you’ll need to ensure requirements are met — all of which, of course, adds up cost-wise. With all of that in mind, if classification were the only factor in determining cost, an ISO Class 8 cleanroom would cost considerably less than an ISO Class 4 cleanroom of the exact same size.
Your cleanroom will need space to house the machinery and equipment your application requires, and you’ll need to allocate room in your budget for that space as well. In regards to size, the bigger your cleanroom is, the more it’s likely to cost. A bigger cleanroom means more air to exchange, which adds up to more air filters, greater air conditioning costs, and additional cleaning measures. While a smaller cleanroom with more stringent requirements can still cost more than a larger cleanroom with more relaxed cleanliness requirements, in general, you can expect to pay more for larger cleanrooms.
The type of cleanroom you choose will also affect the amount you’ll pay. The type you need is heavily dependent on the ISO requirements your application requires. While some facilities have moderate cleanliness standards that can be accommodated by simple soft vinyl wall panels, more stringent applications, like semiconductor cleanrooms will need heavy-duty cleanroom wall panel systems. That difference in type of cleanroom will reflect in your end cost — performance materials demand a higher material cost. There’s also something to be said about the difference between modular cleanrooms and traditional stick-built ones. Modular cleanrooms are the most cost-effective choice all-around. They’re more affordable upfront, easy to maintain, and easy to reconfigure in the case that your needs change — providing the ultimate budget-friendly, long-term cleanroom solution.
Complexity of Cleanroom Design/Additional Features
The most affordable cleanrooms have simple layouts and no additional features or technologies. But for many applications, that isn’t possible. Many cleanrooms require additional equipment, furniture, static control, gowning rooms, passthrough chambers, and more — all resulting in additional costs. Each additional feature or design complexity will add to your overall cleanroom bill.
How Do I Know if My Cleanroom Project is Going to Be on the Low or High End of the Cost Spectrum?
With all of the above factors in mind, you can start to predict whether your cleanroom will be toward the higher or lower end of the cleanroom cost spectrum. Lower cost cleanrooms are those that are less complex. Even if you have a pretty large cleanroom, but it has very lenient classifications (closer to those of a basic controlled environment) and a simple design, it’s likely going to cost less than a mid-sized cleanroom that accommodates massive machinery or a stringent ISO classification. Higher cost cleanrooms are those built for more technical, sensitive applications, such as those found in the medical device, pharmaceutical, semiconductor, and aerospace industries. They require more stringent ISO classifications and more complex designs (in terms of both size and additional feature requirements). However, you can still save on the cost of a very complex cleanroom by choosing modular construction.
Get Your Cleanroom Project Started at Starrco
Want a more detailed cost estimate for your cleanroom project? Starrco can help. Our modular cleanroom experts take time to understand the needs of your application, then put together a quote that accurately reflects them. For more information, give us a call or request a free and fast quote today.