What we do
Air Leakage Testing Ltd provides UKAS accredited sound insultation testing for Part E compliance.
Our Sound Test Engineers are home-based and well-placed to cover Greater London and the City, Kent, Essex, Surrey, Sussex, Hampshire, Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire, we are able to test all over the UK.
Approved Document E of the Building Regulations requires party walls between dwelling houses, flats and other ‘rooms for residential purposes’ (e.g. hotels, care homes, student accommodation) to demonstrate a basic level of sound insulation. This applies to new builds and residences formed by material change of use (e.g. conversions of a house or office into flats).
Building contractors can demonstrate compliance by paying a licence fee for robust construction details and then a further fee for each time a wall is built using these design details or by conducting a pre-completion acoustic test of a sample of walls on site.
For every 10 units, 1 set of tests must be conducted:
The performance requirements are set at a level that should prohibit sounds at a ‘reasonable’ level being heard in a neighbouring unit i.e. you shouldn’t be able to hear conversations and TVs at a normal volume but if someone is having a party or a very loud argument this will still be audible.
How it works
Airborne tests involve creating noise of a known level (approximately 100dB) on one side of the party/separating wall/floor and measuring the volume on the other side to calculate the amount of noise that the wall or floor is insulating. Measurements are taken in multiple planes and positions, reverberation (echo) and background noise are taken into account. The result is expressed in decibels (dB) as DnTw with corrections for traffic noise (Ctr).
Impact testing is done using a tapping machine that simulates footfall on the uncovered floor surface. The level of noise is measured in the unit below and the result is expressed in dB as LnT.
New flats and houses must achieve greater than or equal to 45dB sound insulation for airborne tests and less than or equal to 62dB for impact tests.
Testing typically takes place very close to completion but before carpets or other flooring is laid.