3 things you need to know about Part L 2013

Tearing up L plate after passing driving test

So, we’ve passed the test and Part L was finally released (somewhat later than expected) on 15th November. The changes come into effect from 6 April 2014, but there are 3 things you also need to know.

Included in the Part L changes there are:

  • new 2013 versions of Approved Document L1A and L2A
  • amendments to the 2010 versions of Approved Document L1B and L2B
  • new 2013 version of the Domestic Building Services Compliance Guides
  • new 2013 version of the Non-Domestic Building Services Compliance Guides

There aren’t any real surprises, most of the changes I detailed in previous posts on the notional dwelling and on part L details. In addition to those changes, generally speaking it’s a bit easier to read and understand (a clearer format), although probably still more complicated than it really needs to be. There are 3 other things you need to know about:

  1. On top of the Target Fabric Energy Efficiency and Dwelling Fabric Energy Efficiency addition, an option for multiple dwelling compliance has been included for buildings incorporating multiple dwellings, or for terraces. Similar to multiple dwelling compliance for TER/DER,  this allows some dwellings that would not themselves comply, to pass as part of a block of dwellings via a simple floor area weighted approach, taking into account other dwellings that they are attached to, that have gone further than the minimum required.
  2. Sections in the document on ‘Providing Information’ and ‘Reporting Evidence of Compliance’, make it clearer that an EPC by itself does not demonstrate compliance, but must be accompanied by  documentation provided by the builder to Building Control to show that the dwelling meets the required targets (along with specifically how this was achieved). Design stage submissions are needed before work starts (at least 1 day) and  As-built compliance evidence is required after work ends (within 5 days).
  3. There is a new Regulation (25a) included in the document requiring builders to have documentation demonstrating that they have considered the technical, environmental and economic viability of high efficiency alternative systems i.e. renewables, cogeneration, district heating and cooling, heat pumps etc, which effectively means production of an additional assessment in some cases (where they weren’t already being considered), to show that this has consideration has taken place.

I would have liked to have seen a more meaningful step forwards in the targets, to pave the way forward to the low carbon houses that we were supposed to be building from 2016.

The fabric energy efficiency requirement is at least a positive step forward, but overall I can’t help feeling a little underwhelmed – especially with no improvements made to targets for existing buildings. It all just seems like a missed opportunity.

It is available to download from the Planning Portal on the following link: http://www.planningportal.gov.uk/buildingregulations/approveddocuments/partl/changes

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Jon Ducker is a qualified energy assessor working for Kingspan Insulation Ltd. He has an extensive knowledge of energy efficiency, renewable energy systems and sustainability in buildings with an expert knowledge of the relevant sections of buildings regulations and standards and their interactions with SAP. He provides authoritative advice regarding energy assessments for a wide range of public and private sector clients.

0 comments on “3 things you need to know about Part L 2013
  1. Hi Jon
    could you tell me what the size of a cavity will be with new regs I hear that most new builds will have to have a 150mm cavity as apposed to 100mm?



  2. Hi Jon,

    I’m trying to achieve the required U-value for an extension on an existing property, however as I’m planning to have a brick wall finish (to the internal surface) and therefore no plasterboard, how could this be achieved? Would I need to increase the thickness of the installation? If so which would be the best to use.



    • Hi Simon, thanks for your message. Sounds like a nice finish to the extension – and don’t worry – it can be done! Our technical team would need to know the build-up of your construction eg brick-cavity-brick or brick-cavity-rendered block etc. The best place to start is with our Kooltherm K8 Cavity Board product (http://www.kingspaninsulation.co.uk/k8)
      If you’d like to have a chat about your construction if it is any different then please call our technical line on 01544 387 382.

      Hope it goes well.

  3. I am converting a garage to a room. it has standard brick cavity wall with no internal insulation. Which product is required for dry lining to meet the regulations?

  4. Hi Jon, Can you recommend an insulation to apply to the rear of an attic access door for a house in Scotland. The attic was insulated with an 85mm K15 board a few years ago but this thickness does not permit me to include it as part of the building envelope insulation and so therefore the door must be insulated to external door standard. The attic has sarking boards, felt, battens, counter battens and concrete tile. Thanks.

    • Hi Ralph,

      The Kooltherm K7 board would be fine to use here, assuming your attic door is a hatch or similar. You will find that any thickness of this will make a difference, however if you are wanting to meet a certain standard (and it sounds like you are) then you will need to provide us with a little more information. Feel free to come back to us, or you might be best places to contact our Technical Department directly. Hope this helps in the meantime.

  5. Hi Jon,
    i am currently in the process of converting a traditional dressed stone church into a three bedroom home. Within the nave I have constructed 2 bedrooms which essentially is a 10.7m x 4m wall attached to 7.2 x 4m concrete block construction with a party wall dividing into 2 rooms with a shared ensuite between. These walls are tied into the external walls of the church , which are solid stone in excess of 600mm. The concrete block walls are all internal. One room consists of 2 internal walls and 2 external walls as it is in the corner. The other room has 3 internal walls and the 4th is the back wall of the church itself. I intend dry lining the concrete block walls. The floor will be concrete slab with underfloor heating. The ceiling has 9×2 joists.
    What products would you recommend for insulation?

  6. If i build a timber extention with 4×2
    90mm kingspan inbetween
    K17 internally
    With a 50mm insulated render board ext .

    Would the build be warm

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