What Happens if I Fail the Sound Test?

What Happens if I Fail the Sound Test?

If you fail the Part E sound testing, you will be required to carry out remedial works to ensure the development meets the relevant performance requirements of Approved Document E.

If you fail the sound test there is no reason to panic as APT Sound Testing can advise you on a cost effective solution to pass the testing. The original fees associated with the preliminary sound testing; do not cover the work involved in providing acoustic remedial design advice or repeat compliance sound testing.

Building Control may also request you test further examples of the construction elsewhere on the development, in order to restore confidence and/or highlight the extent of the problem; this is so they ascertain if the failure is an isolated problem or generic throughout the site.  In our experience several points of failure can occur within a project. Although, it less likely that a sound test failure will occur where robust construction and workmanship has been maintained, unfortunately noise flanking on walls and floors may still result in acoustic failure.

In our experience some of the most common mistakes during the construction phase are as follows:

Using lightweight blocks in the inner envelope construction as sound travels along the light block-work both vertically and horizontally from dwelling to dwelling.

Not incorporating a high quality resilient acoustic membrane on top of the floor to improve the impact performance of a floor.

Ensuring all penetration’s are fully sealed where they terminate through floors and they are adequately boxed with acoustic quilt and two layers of plasterboard.

Reducing the Risk of Sound Testing Failure
To reduce the chance of sound testing failure, it is imperative that flanking transmission is considered at the design stage and any construction detailing is specified to minimise any potential of noise flanking which will downgrade the acoustic performance. Good detailing at the design stage will minimise this effect and optimise the overall levels of acoustic privacy achieved. If designing for residential units, design advice on flanking details must be followed to maximise the possibility of achieving the specified acoustic performance. It is imperative that the design advice is followed, otherwise the site sound insulation values may not meet the performance criteria required and subsequent expensive remedial treatment may be required.

How Much Will My Sound Test Cost?
This depends upon the size of the development and the number of tests involved. APT Sound Testing will provide a free quotation and informative checklist to help you prepare for the testing within 24 hours of your enquiry. Our quote will include for the sound testing and the report with no hidden extras.

What are Robust Details?
From the 1st July 2004, Robust Details may be used to eliminate the need for end of build pre-completion testing. Robust Details are high performance constructions that are capable of providing consistently good sound insulation but do require that the design is registered with, and approved by, Robust Details Ltd.  The specific details in the RDL handbook must be followed explicitly and each plot formally ‘registered’ with RDL before building commences. Robust Details registration cannot be used in conversion projects and so pre-completion testing must be undertaken in these circumstances.

As the specific details in the Robust Details scheme may not allow for flexibility in the design of a development or may not prove cost effective, pre-completion sound testing may still prove a more suitable and effective route to demonstrate compliance with Part E of Building Regulations.

Acoustic Credits for BREEAM
Under BREEAM Hea 05 and Pol 05 it is possible to get credits for acoustic performance. Pre-completion sound testing can be used to verify performance and achieve BREEAM credits. APT Sound Testing  can advise you as to the requirements of BREEAM.

Contact APT Sound Testing
If you would like more information in regards to sound testing or acoustic design, please follow our blog at: http://soundtestinguk.blogspot.co.uk/, or contact us on 0777 5623464 or visit our website at: www.aptsoundtesting.co.uk  

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