Month: May 2020

Sound Insulation Testing in London

Sound Insulation Testing in London

Sound Insulation Testing in London
London is a massive city containing over 9 million people density and high rise apartments. With many living in this overcrowded environment it is essential that noise transference between adjoining properties in kept to a minimum for the occupant’s wellbeing. One way of ascertaining that a building is in compliance with Building Regulations Part E for the prevention of noise transference, is to undertake Sound Insulation Testing in London.

We have undertaken thousands of sound insulation tests throughout London and the South East on all types of projects from simple flat conversions to large developments containing hundreds of flats. We also undertake Sound Insulation Testing where a lease holder dispute has arisen, i.e. where the buildings lease stipulates that wooden floors should not be used instead of carpets and as a result of the change of floor finish the noise levels have increased – especially the impact noise. We can also undertake sample sound testing to highlight the existing noise levels so a targeted acoustic design can be undertaken.

Sound Insulation Testing in London

Plate A – Tapping Machine for Impact Sound Testing

Currently we are also experiencing a rise in the amount of sound testing required to existing blocks of flats, such as existing council stock. This is hardly surprising as the amounts of noise complaints have more than doubled within the last 10 years due to residents experiencing excess noise between the dividing wall and floor partitions.  By utilising our extensive knowledge of different materials and construction we can forward a simple, explanative cost effective solution for wall and/or floor upgrade. Where our clients have followed our advice they have achieved a 100% success sound test pass rate, ensuring compliance with Part E of Building Regulations.

The Sound Testing procedure is fairly simple and our engineer will be happy to explain this on site. Essentially, for party walls there is one type of sound insulation test which is airborne sound test and for compartment floors there are two types of sound insulation tests which are airborne and impact sound insulation tests. The airborne sound insulation test is carried out by means of a loudspeaker emitting a steady source of noise on one side of the partition (wall or floor) to be measured. The corresponding sound level is measured on the other side of the partition. Impact sound insulation tests are carried out by means of a tapping machine placed on the floor sample to be measured and the noise measured in the room or space below

All our engineers carry out the sound test measurements in full accordance with the measurement procedures of BS EN ISO 140-4:1998[3] for field measurements with a single figure DnTw and LnTw in accordance with BS EN ISO 717.

Ongoing problems with airborne and structure borne sound are often associated with direct noise flanking transmission through floors and supporting walls and other associated structures. One common cause of noise flanking is often associated with the inclusion of lightweight blocks within the construction of the building envelope and/or blocked cavities. It all cases it is essential to establish if your problem is due to direct transmission, flanking transmission or a combination of both so that the most cost effective remedial treatment can be chosen.

Unwanted noise travelling along flanking paths will make the building structure vibrate which causes the sound to radiate into your room. One simple cost effective solution is to build another wall or ceiling in front of the original, but not connected to it (often called an independent wall or ceiling) so it provides isolation between materials.

One way to reduce the chance of flanking transmission is through careful consideration to the design at the start of the project.  Unfortunately, by simply specifying high performance wall and floor partitions it is no guarantee to adequate sound isolation and successful sound testing.

APT Sound Insulation Testing
We offer both preconstruction and post-construction design solutions if a project has failed the sound testing. We also offer onsite inspection services to ensure that the sound insulation elements are being installed as per manufactures guild-lines.

If you require pre-completion sound testing and/or you would like acoustic design advice on your project, please contact us now at info@aptsoundtesting.co.uk.

Infrared Thermography on Building Envelopes

Infrared Thermography on Building Envelopes

Infrared Thermography on Building Envelopes
Infrared thermography is diagnostic surveys you can undertake on building envelopes.

APT Sound Testing has been using thermography successfully to examine electrical systems and building envelopes for more than 15 years. What makes it such a versatile diagnostics solution is that it allows for non-destructive testing with a high rate of accuracy. It only takes a matter of hours to perform a thermography building inspection and identify all existing and potential problems with its envelope system and supply a detailed report to the customer.

Sound Testing Explained

The aim of the thermal analysis is to help quantify building sustainability and save ongoing building energy costs that are increasing year on year. The thermal imaging survey can help to identify damaged insulation, air leakage paths and HVAC & electrical failures which can lead to heat loss and/or building downtime.

Here at APT we try to be at the forefront of advanced predictive maintenance technologies. That means we have everything it takes to perform thermal imaging inspection latest high-resolution thermal imaging equipment. Its key applications include:

  • clear visualisation and reportage of energy losses
  • examination of thermal bridges in insulation;
  • analysis of HVAC systems
  • checking doors and windows for infiltration/exfiltration issues
  • detection of floor leaks and moisture build-ups
  • detection of flat roof leaks
  • identification of mould growth
  • assessment of the overall building condition

How you can benefit from thermography building inspections?

When used as part of preventative diagnostics, thermal building inspections can be used to detect energy losses in both commercial and industrial buildings as well as existing historical and cultural heritage sites.

You can also use thermographic inspections as part of your refurbishment and redevelopment projects because it allows you to analyse the performance of the existing structure that’s about to be renovated. You can then evaluate the performance of the building insulation etc. and the information can be used in the redesign of the building envelope.

If you’re a building contractors and/or consultant our services will be useful to you. Thermographic inspections for building diagnostics are now part of BREEAM certification requirements. Under the latest edition of the BREEAM Technical Manual (SD5076) it is possible to be awarded a BREEAM credit by conducting a thermographic survey of the building fabric. The BREEAM thermography survey is required to be completed in accordance with MAN 04 Commissioning and handover compliance notes CN3.3 and CN3.4.

Basically the BREEAM thermographic survey is required to confirm:

  • Continuity of insulation in accordance with the construction drawings
  • Avoidance of excessive thermal bridging
  • Avoidance of air leakage paths through the fabric (except through intentional openings)

Any defects identified via the post construction inspection are required to be rectified.

The BREEAM thermal survey needs be undertaken by a UKTA Approved Level 2 thermographic surveyor, all our engineers are trained to Level 2 & 3 so our reports will be acceptable to BREEAM.  

If you are looking commission a thermal imaging survey to secure a BREEAM credit and require estimation on the cost, please contact us on info@aptsoundtesting.co.uk for any questions and/or visit our website on www.aptsoundtesting.co.uk or download our thermal imaging checklist.

Thermographic Building Inspection’s

Thermographic Building Inspection’s

Using Thermographic Building Inspection’s to detect defects within building envelopes

How Do Thermography Inspections Work

Thermography measures surface temperatures of buildings by using infrared cameras. These instruments see light that is in the heat spectrum. Images on the video record the temperature variations of the building’s envelope, ranging from white – for warm regions, to black for cooler areas. The resulting thermal images help the thermography engineer to determine whether insulation is required within existing buildings and/or there is missing insulation in new build projects and it has been installed correctly.

Thermographic Building Inspection

A thermographic building inspection can be carried out to both the exterior and interior of buildings. The energy assessor usually decides which method would give the best results under the prevailing weather conditions. For instance for BREEAM, external thermal imaging inspections are more common. However, if it is windy on the day of the test it may be harder to detect temperature differences on the outside surface of the building; because of this difficulty, interior surveys can be more accurate because they benefit from reduced air movement.

Thermographic Building Inspection’s

Thermographic scans can also be used with blower doors used for air tightness testing. The blower door helps exaggerate air leaking through defects within the building envelope i.e. the floors, walls and roof. Air leakage paths will appear as black streaks in the infrared camera’s viewfinder. Here is some more information on using the powerful combination of air tightness testing and thermal imaging for BREEAM building inspections.

Thermal imaging uses specially designed still thermal imaging cameras to make images called thermograms that show surface heat variations, every single pixel on our high resolution cameras can pick up heat variation.  Thermal imaging has a number of applications, it can be used to detect abnormally hot electrical connections or components on electrical installations and on mechanical systems it can detect the heat created by excessive friction. Energy assessors use thermal imaging as a tool to help detect heat losses and air leakage in building envelopes so it is extremely useful for the construction industry.

Infrared scanning of the building envelope, allows energy assessors to check the effectiveness of insulation in a building’s construction. The resulting thermograms help auditors determine whether a building needs insulation and where in the building it should go. Because wet insulation conducts heat faster than dry insulation, thermographic scans of roofs can often detect roof leaks quickly and accurately. 

The Type of Thermal Imaging Camera We Use

We use the latest high resolution Flir cameras on all our thermal imaging surveys. Our cameras are incredibly accurate with a resolution of 640 x 440, which also produces a 2-dimensional thermal picture of an area showing heat leakage; obviously this quality doesn’t come cheap with some of our camera costing over £30k.  Lower quality thermal cameras, spot radiometers and thermal line scanners do not provide the necessary detail for a thermographic building inspection and are not sensitive enough to detect heat loss and/or meet the standard of BREEAM or Building Regulations Part L.

Thermographic Building Inspection’s

Preparing Your Building For a Thermographic Inspection

To prepare the building to provide an accurate thermographic survey, the project manager should take the following steps. Firstly, move all furniture away from exterior walls as well as moving any blinds and/or window furnishings. Secondly, ensure there is a temperature difference of at least 10°C between the inside and outside air temperatures. In the UK this can usually be achieved quite easily even in summer as we usually undertake the survey at 4am (before sunrise) to prevent solar loading to the building envelope. The internal heating will usually need to be turned on eight  hours before the test will be performed to facility the correct conditions to increase the chance of accurate reportage. To try and help our clients prepare for their thermal building inspection, please visit our thermal imaging checklist.

How we can help you with your Thermographic Building Inspection

We can carry out your thermographic building inspection for BREEAM and/or Part L compliance. We visit site to carry out the thermal survey once your building envelope is complete and heating is on. A thermographic survey involves imaging the buildings external envelope with a view to confirming:

  • Continuity of insulation is in accordance with the construction detail/drawings.
  • Avoidance of excessive thermal bridging.
  • Avoidance of air leakage paths through the build fabric.
  • Highlighting defects is mechanical and electrical installations.

If anomalies are identified during the thermographic building inspection, then our highly experienced thermography engineers will carry out an initial investigation as to the suspected root cause of the problem, we will highlight the issues within our thermography report and provide as advice to identify the remedial work required to attain compliance.

We hope this information has been helpful. If you require a Thermal imaging survey on your building, our professional and certified Level 2 thermographer’s will carry out your thermographic Inspection in compliance with all necessary standards and current regulations. All we need are a few details such as floor plans and elevation drawings and the building location to provide a quotation. We will also send across our informative checklist to help you prepare for the thermal survey.

For more information please contact us at info@aptsoundtesting.co.uk or visit our website at www.aptsoundtesting.co.uk

What is a Thermographic Building Inspection?

What is a Thermographic Building Inspection?

What is a Thermographic Building Inspection?

Thermographic building inspection refers to the non-destructive testing of parts, materials or systems through the imaging of the thermal patterns at the object’s surface. Infrared thermography  is a non-destructive, non-intrusive, noncontact mapping of thermal patterns or “thermograms”, on the surface of objects through the use of some kind of infrared detector.

We usually undertake active thermography, in which an an energy source is required to produce a thermal contrast between the feature of interest and the background, for example: a completed building with internal flaws such as missing insulation.

Thermographic Building Inspection

When compared with other classical non-destructive testing techniques such as radiographic testing and/or ultrasonic testing, thermographic inspections are nonintrusive and noncontact, allowing the detection of relatively shallow subsurface defects although thermal inspections of larger surfaces is possible.

Thermography is a type of photography which is based on infrared wavelengths (as opposed to visible wavelengths). Conventional photography relies on reflected energy from a light source, whether it’s artificial lighting or the sun, which is visible to our eyes. Thermal imaging relies on radiated energy in the infrared (IR) spectrum which cannot be seen by our eyes. All objects emit radiation energy within the IR spectrum and this IR radiation can and does vary depending on the temperature of that object.

Infrared Thermography Surveys on Building Envelopes are incredibly useful as it provides the most rapid means to identify unintentional air leakage pathways in a building envelope.

The benefits of infrared thermography in this context are:

> Air leakage pathways within a completed construction can be identified and rectified prior to air permeability tests, reducing the risk of repeat testing being required.

> Depending upon the nature of the construction, even a building that meets or exceeds air tightness requirements may still be at risk of deterioration due to air leakage and subsequent condensation.

> Identifying where air leakage is occurring can be critical.
Air leakage pathways can often indicate rainwater ingress pathways adding to the potential benefits of an infrared survey.

> Air leakage pathways within a completed construction can be identified and rectified prior to air permeability tests, reducing the risk of repeat testing being required.

The Thermographic Building Inspection
Depending upon the nature of the construction, even a building that meets or exceeds air tightness requirements may still be at risk of deterioration due to air leakage and subsequent condensation. Identifying where air leakage is occurring can be critical.

Air leakage pathways can often indicate rainwater ingress pathways adding to the potential benefits of an infrared survey.

If you would like more information in regards to BREEAM Thermography Surveys in London, please contact us now at: info@aptthermography.net or call us direct at: 07775 623464

Infrared Thermography on Building Envelopes

Infrared Thermography on Building Envelopes

Infrared Thermography on Building Envelopes

Infrared thermography is diagnostic surveys you can undertake on building envelopes.

APT Sound Testing has been using thermography successfully to examine electrical systems and building envelopes for more than 15 years. What makes it such a versatile diagnostics solution is that it allows for non-destructive testing with a high rate of accuracy. It only takes a matter of hours to perform a thermography building inspection and identify all existing and potential problems with its envelope system and supply a detailed report to the customer.

The aim of the thermal analysis is to help quantify building sustainability and save ongoing building energy costs that are increasing year on year. The thermal imaging survey can help to identify damaged insulation, air leakage paths and HVAC & electrical failures which can lead to heat loss and/or building downtime.

Here at APT we try to be at the forefront of advanced predictive maintenance technologies. That means we have everything it takes to perform thermal imaging inspection latest high-resolution thermal imaging equipment. Its key applications include:

  • clear visualisation and reportage of energy losses
  • examination of thermal bridges in insulation;
  • analysis of HVAC systems
  • checking doors and windows for infiltration/exfiltration issues
  • detection of floor leaks and moisture build-ups
  • detection of flat roof leaks
  • identification of mould growth
  • assessment of the overall building condition

How you can benefit from thermography building inspections?

When used as part of preventative diagnostics, thermal building inspections can be used to detect energy losses in both commercial and industrial buildings as well as existing historical and cultural heritage sites.

You can also use thermographic inspections as part of your refurbishment and redevelopment projects because it allows you to analyse the performance of the existing structure that’s about to be renovated. You can then evaluate the performance of the building insulation etc. and the information can be used in the redesign of the building envelope.

If you’re a building contractors and/or consultant our services will be useful to you. Thermographic inspections for building diagnostics are now part of BREEAM certification requirements. Under the latest edition of the BREEAM Technical Manual (SD5076) it is possible to be awarded a BREEAM credit by conducting a thermographic survey of the building fabric. The BREEAM thermography survey is required to be completed in accordance with MAN 04 Commissioning and handover compliance notes CN3.3 and CN3.4.

Basically the BREEAM thermographic survey is required to confirm:

  • Continuity of insulation in accordance with the construction drawings
  • Avoidance of excessive thermal bridging
  • Avoidance of air leakage paths through the fabric (except through intentional openings)

Any defects identified via the post construction inspection are required to be rectified.

The BREEAM thermal survey needs be undertaken by a UKTA Approved Level 2 thermographic surveyor, all our engineers are trained to Level 2 & 3 so our reports will be acceptable to BREEAM.  

If you are looking commission a thermal imaging survey to secure a BREEAM credit and require estimation on the cost, please contact us on info@aptsoundtesting.co.uk for any questions and/or visit our website on www.aptsoundtesting.co.uk or download our thermal imaging checklist.