An Introduction to Sound Insulation Testing

An Introduction to Sound Insulation Testing

Introduction to Sound Insulation Testing

Sound insulation testing is a mandatory assessment according to Approved Document E, which evaluates the sound insulation efficacy of party walls and floors between dwellings. Typically conducted as properties near completion, the testing determines compliance with the minimum Building Regulation Part E standards for sound insulation.

The responsibility for arranging sound testing lies with the contractor, who must demonstrate to Building Control that the dividing partitions meet the requirements outlined in Approved Document E. This process is commonly known as Approved Document E (ADE) sound testing or pre-completion testing (PCT).

Sound Testing for Compliance with Approved Document E

Approved Document E, titled ‘Resistance to the passage of sound’, has been effective since July 1st, 2003, setting forth minimum sound insulation criteria for new and converted dwellings, encompassing various building types such as flats, houses, student accommodations, care homes, hotels, and schools.

This governmental document offers guidance to building contractors, architects, and developers involved in designing and converting residential buildings. It outlines the sound insulation standards for each building type and provides advice on acoustics, as well as details regarding construction procedures and materials that may impact sound test results.

Airborne and Impact Sound Testing

To meet the requirements of Part E, airborne sound testing for walls and floors typically necessitates achieving 45dB, while Impact Sound Testing for new builds requires reaching 62dB. However, in some cases, a higher target may be necessary to align with the Code for Sustainable Homes, often specified as +3, +5, or +8dB. For conversion properties, the targets are slightly lower at 43dB for airborne sound testing and 64dB for Impact Sound Testing.

Compliance with the Code for Sustainable Homes necessitates meticulous attention to acoustic design from the outset to mitigate the risk of sound testing failure.

Assistance in Achieving Compliance

Here at APT Sound Testing we provide specialist support in achieving these stringent design criteria and offer solutions if your building fails sound insulation testing, potentially saving time and costs. To book sound insulation testing or for more information, please contact us on 01525 303905 or visit our website

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