Chapter 6: Control of Materials


Section 1: Material

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Control of materials involves field, district, the Construction Division (CST), and commercial and manufacturer’s laboratories. Post the District Sourcing Letter, which lists material suppliers (CIS Report CIS36), as soon as possible so that proper arrangements can be made for sampling and testing of the various materials. Instruct the contractor to order materials sufficiently in advance of related work to allow time for sampling and testing. In addition, instruct the contractor to identify the project and the contract item number on all material orders.

Accept only those materials that comply with the contract requirements. Maintain records of the test results that substantiate acceptance or rejection of the materials. Record both failing and passing tests with documentation of the disposition of the failing material (i.e., reworked, re-tested, disposed of, etc.).

Contract specifications identify which tests are used for each material. The sampling and control of materials are in the appropriate testing procedures and the Guide Schedule of Sampling and Testing. Apply tolerances specified in the contract in determining acceptance of the work.

Sample materials for testing at the locations and frequencies shown in the Guide Schedule. The test procedures do not generally specify sampling points. Establish locations to receive the samples when there are no established sites. Notify the contractor of the sampling points as soon as possible to provide opportunity to make corrections when the materials do not meet the contract requirements. Determine if stockpiled materials are acceptable prior to payment as material-on-hand.

Article 6.4 of the Standard Specifications states:

All materials used are subject to inspection or testing at any time during preparation or use. Material tested and approved at a supply source or staging area may be reinspected or tested before or during incorporation into work, and rejected it if it does not meet Contract requirements.

Ensure that the method and location of materials sampling is consistent and uniform. Retest previously accepted materials if the material shows visible changes, does not conform to specifications, or if further testing is required by the contract or Guide Schedule. The Material Inspection Guide contains additional information on sampling and testing responsibilities.

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Material Source Information

For all project materials, obtain accurate and complete material source information in accordance with Standard Specifications Item 6, “Control of Materials,” before granting approval to the source supplier. Ensure that all materials are sourced to their original location.

Materials used in the project must be free of any hazardous material. If materials delivered to the project are found to be contaminated, ensure the contractor removes and disposes of the material in accordance with Article 6.10, "Hazardous Materials." Be aware that some contaminated materials are easily identified by visual observation or smell, while others are not. In order to determine material quality when there are potential concerns regarding contamination, obtain full disclosure of the source of supply in accordance with Article 6.4, “Sampling, Testing, and Inspections,” which states:

If requested, provide a complete written statement of the origin, composition and manufacture of materials.

Do not allow materials containing recycled hazardous waste. Standard Specifications Article 1.58 defines hazardous materials or waste as:

Hazardous materials or waste include but are not limited to explosives, compressed gas, flammable liquids, flammable solids, combustible liquids, oxidizers, poisons, radioactive materials, corrosives, etiologic agents, and other material classified as hazardous by 40 CFR 261, or applicable state and federal regulations.

Non-hazardous recyclable material (NRMs) may be used if the NRM satisfies contract requirements and the environmental criteria specified in "DMS-11000, Evaluating and Using Nonhazardous Recyclable Materials Guidelines."Standard Specifications Article 1.83 defines NRMs as:

A material recovered or diverted from the nonhazardous waste stream for the purposes of reuse or recycling in the manufacture of products that may otherwise be produced using raw or virgin materials.

While NRMs are not hazardous by definition, they may be contaminated and could present a problem depending on their use. For this reason, identify such materials and ensure proper evaluation in accordance with DMS-11000. Specifically, DMS-11000 identifies the following materials with an established history of TxDOT use:

  • aluminum
  • compost
  • glass beads
  • ground granulated blast furnace slag
  • shredded brush
  • steel
  • tire rubber
  • ceramics, glass cullet, plastics, and crushed concrete from non-industrial sources
  • reclaimed asphalt pavement
  • fly and bottom ash from electrical utility plants and
  • department-owned materials

These established NRMs, as well as materials shown on the Material Producer List for NRMs at, may be accepted for use without documentation of environmental suitability. However, for wholly state or locally funded projects where retainage is withheld, contractors may use the CSTM-NRM-1 to document their use and qualify for reduced retainage.

Other NRMs require environmental evaluation and documentation, and must be reported on the CSTM-NRM-2. Contact the Environmental Affairs Division (ENV), Hazardous Materials Management Section or the General Services Division’s (GSD) Recycling Coordinator for additional information and guidance.

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Local Material Sources

Local material sources are secured for project use as either Required or Listed sources. Refer to the Right of Way Division (ROW) manuals for necessary procedures and forms to acquire an option on a material source.

When specified in the contract as “Required,” the contractor must use local material sources. The department assumes full responsibility for the quantity of acceptable material available from the required source. Provide another source if the required source cannot produce enough acceptable material.

Compensate the contractor for all additional costs to produce material from an alternate source. As appropriate, include the cost of dismantling, moving, and reassembling equipment, additional haul, and other additional costs associated with material production in the payment.

When specified in the contract as “Listed,” the contractor may use local material sources for which the department has secured options or easements on sources to allow access to the material source for testing and removal. Make test results for all listed sources available to prospective bidders. The contractor determines and assumes all responsibility for the availability of acceptable material at the listed sources. In lieu of using the listed source, the contractor may provide acceptable material from another source at his or her expense.

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Material Certification from the Contractor

Material certifications provided by the contractor from the manufacturer may be used as a basis for accepting certain materials (i.e., cement, lime, concrete admixtures, electrical cable, etc.). Detailed information must be included with this certification if required by the contract.

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Royalty Payments

Process royalty payments in accordance with contract requirements. The contractor may be required to negotiate royalty payments with the owner of a listed source.

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Use of Designated Materials

If specified in the contract, require that the contractor use state-owned material (i.e., material from a reclaimed asphalt pavement [ RAP] stockpile). Assume full responsibility for the quantity and quality of acceptable designated materials. If the designated material is unacceptable, compensate the contractor through a change order (CO) for any justifiable additional cost in securing acceptable material.

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Storage of Materials

Inspect material storage facilities to determine if the materials are stored in a manner that will prevent their deterioration. Covers, wooden platforms, hard clean surfaces or any combination may be required of the contractor. Reject any material that becomes unfit for use due to improper storage.

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Stockpiling Aggregates

The contractor is responsible for maintaining the quality of accepted stockpiled material. Re-sample and retest stockpiled materials that have been subject to incorrect or careless handling resulting in excessive degradation, segregation, or contamination. Reject all failing material. If required by the contract, conduct acceptance sampling from the windrow.

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Purchasing Excess Materials

Excess materials may be acquired from the contractor as follows:

  • Contractor suitably stores or stockpiles materials.
  • Materials meet contract requirements at the time the State takes ownership.
  • Change order (CO) is executed to cover the acquisition.
  • Payment is made to the contractor as stipulated in the CO with the next estimate.
  • Cost is charged to the district stock account if the materials are not used on the contract.

Accept only those materials that have potential department use unless contractually obligated to accept the material. Refer to "Receipt from Contract" in the Materials and Supply Management System (MSMS) Users’ Manual for more instructions on transactions involving materials.

NOTE: When purchased materials are not used on the federal-aid project, note the material cost as “non-participating” on the final estimate and/or the CO.

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