English Part L 2013 goes live

Part L Guide

Any projects in England started from yesterday, which have not submitted building notices prior to 6th April 2014, will now have to comply with the 2013 versions of the Approved Documents for Conservation of Fuel and Power (Part L).

New domestic builds submitted for approval will require the following information to be provided to the building control body before work commences:

  • A SAP Assessment showing compliance with the TFEE and TER (and achieving limiting values or better).
  • A detailed description of each element of the specification used to be included within the SAP.
  • Consideration of the technical, environmental and economic viability of high efficiency alternative systems.

The new ADL1A notional dwelling provides a new ‘deemed to satisfy’ route, so if the actual dwelling is constructed entirely to the notional dwelling specifications, it will meet the carbon dioxide and fabric energy efficiency targets and the limiting values.  Builders can either build to this specification and achieve the TER (carbon emissions target) and TFEE (fabric energy efficiency target), or they can vary the  specification – whilst ensuring that TER and TFEE performance is still achieved or bettered.

The reality however, is that unless using bridging details that are better than the reference values used to set the TER and TFEE targets, improvements elsewhere in the fabric are likely to be required.

For anyone that did manage to sneak in under the 2010 approvals, by submitting before the 6th April,  the 2010 regulations will continue to apply providing work commences on site for that application commences within the next twelve months.

Commencement might be considered as:

  • excavation for strip or trench foundations or for pad footings;
  • digging out and preparation of ground for raft foundations;
  • vibrofloatation (stone columns) piling, boring for piles or pile driving;
  • drainage work specific to the building(s) concerned.

Transitional provisions only require one plot on a site to commence to validate all of the plots on the application under the relevant Part L requirements.

If building in Wales, the 2010 version of the Approved Documents will remain current until the implementation of the Welsh Approved Documents from 31st July.

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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.

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