No sooner were we getting used the details of Building Regulations Approved Document G than Part F comes along. Christian Taylor-Hamlin, Technical Director of the Bathroom Manufacturers Association looks at the new document as it applies to bathrooms.
The new Approved Document F concerns the ventilation requirements for buildings, replaces the 2006 edition and comes in to force on 1 October 2010. Changes to the legal requirements have been made and new technical guidance has been published.
The BMA welcomes the changes says Taylor Hamlin. The new regulations are an essential milestone towards reaching the Governments target of zero carbon homes by 2016. The hugely significant changes will drive the adoption of low carbon ventilation as a building industry standard.
As expected the document goes into some detail about the new legal requirements but, with reference to bathrooms, the clarification regarding mechanical and passive ventilation is most welcome.
The regs reiterate the need for ventilation in buildings where people are present. A key aim of the regulations is to limit the build-up of moisture which could lead to mould growth and pollutants which could be harmful.
The Commissioning and Compliance guide gives guidance on the installation, inspection, testing and commissioning of ventilation systems. Part F requires post-completion testing of ventilation equipment and the Guide has been introduced to ensure that ventilation not only delivers the required airflow, but does it efficiently and quietly. The guide includes sign off procedures and paperwork completion to ensure performance and efficiency are met.
Details of the flow rate of the installed system are given and the new increased stack diameter of 125mm for a passive stack is confirmed.
Part F is an important stage in the pursuit of zero carbon homes, says Taylor-Hamlin. With the drive to air-tight buildings the regulations clarify many points regarding the requirements for a properly ventilated bathroom.
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