How to prepare for the new building regulations

How to prepare for the new building regulations

With the new regulations announced and their introduction coming in June 2022, getting ahead of the game and prepared for these new regulations will be important for a variety of businesses.

What are the changes to the regulations?

Changes to Part L of the Building Regulations (Conservation of fuel and power) have broadly tightened the standards, with the U-values of elements being lowered, thus requiring higher levels of insulation and thermal performance than the current regulations.

The addition of Part O (Overheating) to the Building Regulations means that “reasonable provision must be made in respect of a dwelling, institution, or any other building containing one or more rooms for residential purposes, other than a room in a hotel to:

  1. Limit unwanted solar gains in summer
  2. Provide an adequate means to remove heat from the indoor environment

Part O has been added in order to protect the health and welfare of occupants of the building by reducing the occurrence of high indoor temperatures.

Part F (Ventilation) has also been updated, and there are now separate Approved Documents for dwellings and buildings other than dwellings. This is necessary, given that improving the energy efficiency of homes necessarily involves reducing their air permeability, which without proper ventilation and planning can result in overheating.

Who do these changes impact?

Whilst we do not intend to devise an exhaustive list of who these updated regulations will impact, we see that there are two areas that should be prepared for their introduction in June 2022, namely those manufacturing the products that go into the construction of buildings, and those who specify these products (i.e. architects, builders).

Product manufacturers

Manufacturers should be prepared for the new regulations to ensure that their product is still a viable choice when building to these regulations. For example, insulation manufacturers should determine the U-values that are achieved in common construction types and see if they will meet the minimum requirements of Part L. Manufacturers of building services need to ensure their products meet the required efficiencies and have the correct controls.

Manufacturers can go further than this by engaging with our product modelling service, which utilises our SAP 10 software to model to these future building regulations. Inputting your product into a range of different housing archetypes will help to identify how well your product performs in varied scenarios, as well as further informing product design.

Architects and builders

Large housebuilders that build based on common archetypes of homes should review these archetypes in the context of these new regulations. Addressing the most cost-effective way of changing (if necessary) the construction specifications and building services installed to comply with the updated regulations will allow for the building to progress smoother than if alterations are required after the fact.

Architects should also understand the implications these new regulations will have on any standard construction specifications they use, as well as cost changes these may cause. Understanding the requirements of the regulations, as well as how these interact in SAP will lead to the best results for architects, as compliance with three separate metrics as well as the U-value backstops is required, with these metrics being:

  • Target Emission Rate (TER)
  • Target Fabric Energy Efficiency (TFEE)
  • Target Primary Energy Rate (TPER)

Housebuilders and architects will also have to contend with the changes to Part F (Ventilation) and ensure they are compliant with the new Part O, which is particularly relevant for larger residential developments (i.e. blocks of flats) and those in ‘high risk’ locations, namely central and suburban London and some areas of central Manchester. Overheating risk assessment is often a requirement for larger developments, but will now be relevant for more buildings given their location and whether the simplified method or dynamic thermal modelling is required.

Conclusion

For those that the new building regulations will impact, spending some time investigating these changes and how they will impact of their individual business will be invaluable. Putting in some time now will ensure that, once the new regulations are in force, the business is ready to capitalise on any opportunities that may arise.


Interested in modelling your products against the new building regulations?

We can model your products in different building archetypes to see how they effect the energy ratings. This is an invaluable tool to demonstrate the energy performance of your products in homes built to future Building Regulations, which you can include in your company's marketing and PR activities to help win more business. Find out more about Product Modelling


Article published 21/12/21

Elmhurst Energy Services Ltd. 16, St Johns Business Park, Lutterworth, Leicestershire, LE17 4HB

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