Reverberation Noise in Common Areas 

Reverberation Noise in Common Areas 

Clients often ask us if they need to treat all the common parts within their block of flats to satisfy Requirement E3 (Reverberation in the common internal parts of buildings such as entrance lobby’s, corridors and stairwells.

Our usual answer to this is yes. The purpose of this Requirement is to protect residents from noise produced in reverberant common areas. The Requirement in Part E only applies to “corridors, stairwells, hallways, and entrance halls which give access to the flat or room for residential purposes”. To comply with this, it is recommended that absorbent treatment should normally be applied only to common areas onto which dwellings open directly. Sometimes this can be as easy as adding a resilient layer to the floor and/or adding an acoustic board to the ceiling.

Reverberation_Noise_in_Common_Areas

Often careful planning of apartment layouts can alleviate the need for extensive acoustic works, such as constructing the common areas of flats, such as corridors next to the common areas within the apartment block as long assuming normal usage of the common areas – more information on this can be found in paragraph 0.8 of Approved Document E (2003).

In all instances, planning an acoustically favourable dwelling from the design stage can help to reduce the number of noise problems that may occur even if your building passes the Sound Insulation Testing.

Also, if neighbours have varied working patterns, i.e. they work night shifts and arrive back in the early hours of the morning, allowing for sound absorption in common areas are particularly important.

We offer an acoustic design service, whether it’s accomplished during initial construction or during a refurbishment/renovation project. We also undertake UKAS accredited sound testing and noise surveys providing a ‘one stop’ solution for all your acoustic testing and design requirements throughout London and the South East.

If you would like more information in regards to our sound testing please follow our blog at: http://soundtestinguk.blogspot.co.uk or contact us at: info@aptsoundtesting.co.uk and 07775623464 or visit our website at: www.aptsoundtesting.co.uk

 

Sound Insulation Testing Questions and Answers

Sound Insulation Testing Questions and Answers

We often get asked similar questions in regards to Sound Insulation Testing. To try help our clients alleviate their fears, we have tried to answer the most common questions:

Q. Is my project ready for a sound insulation testing? All plots should be at least at second fix stage – for further details please refer to our sound testing checklist

Q. Will the sound insulation testing disrupt other site works? During the sound testing, high levels of noise are generated but in order to make accurate test measurements, relatively quiet conditions are needed. Anyone working in the testing area will have to leave temporarily and any noisy works in the vicinity of the test rooms will need to be halted.

Sound_Insulation_Testing

Q. How long will the sound testing take? The time taken for sound testing varies with the site conditions, but generally a set of test on houses and flats takes about one to two hours so it’s over fairly quickly.

Q. Do I need to inform my neighbours of the sound insulation testing? If the building under test is attached in any way to occupied properties then you will need to inform the neighbours. To comply with Part E we need to gain access to the neighbouring properties to undertake the sound test. You will need to ensure that access is provided to the neighbouring properties throughout the sound Insulation testing.

Q. Will all internal and external doors and windows need to be fully installed? Yes, all internal and external doors must be fitted and operable prior to the sound testing

Q. What if I only have 110 volt and not 240 volt on site? Unfortunately we cannot undertake the testing; we will need 240V to undertake the sound testing.

Q. Can you offer advice on how to pass the sound Insulation testing? Yes, we can offer an acoustic design advice service. If you send through the relevant drawings such as sections, plans etc. during the earlier stages of construction, we can look at your design to check if the design is robust enough to pass Part E and/or there are any junctions or details where ‘noise flanking’ may occur. You can then change your design to reduce the chance of a sound test failure.

Q. Do you have a check-list we can download to help us prepare for thesound insulation testing? Yes, we send out the corresponding checklists for sound and air testing, to help you prepare for the testing.

APT Sound Testing is UKAS accredited to undertake sound insulation testing. We offer a comprehensive, seamless service from initial design development, right through to the final sound testing to achieve building sign off.

If you would like more information in regards to sound testing please follow our blog at: http://soundtestinguk.blogspot.co.uk/, or contact us at: info@aptsoundtesting.co.uk or visit our website at: www.aptsoundtesting.co.uk

Improving Room Layouts can Reduce Noise Disturbance 

Improving Room Layouts can Reduce Noise Disturbance 

In all cases, the location and layout of rooms within dwellings will play an important role in relation to the levels of subsequent ambient or background noise that surrounds the occupants. In most cases much of noise is transmitted through the wall and floor partitions between habitable dwellings, such as flats and terrace houses.

Improving Room Layouts can Reduce Noise Disturbance 

Main ‘habitable’ rooms such as Kitchens or living rooms, which back onto bedrooms of the adjacent dwelling, are more likely to lead to noise complaints. Kitchen cupboards doors may transmit impact noise through to the bedroom next door through the dividing partition; this can lead to annoyance and frustration for the neighbour.

To reduce the chance of noise complaints, wherever possible hallways/corridors should be placed alongside the adjacent property to reduce the chance of noise transference and reduce the risk of sound testing failure. Failing this a kitchen should be places against a kitchen and bedrooms should back onto other bedrooms.

Improving Room Layouts can Reduce Noise Disturbance 

Planning a good acoustically favourable dwelling layout can help to reduce the number of noise problems that will occur even if your building passes the Part E Sound Insulation Testing.

If neighbours have varied working patterns, i.e. they work night shifts and arrive back in the early hours of the morning, i.e. the layout of the rooms use of rooms are particularly important.

APT Sound Testing can advise on all types of acoustic design, whether it’s accomplished during initial construction or during a refurbishment/renovation project. We also undertake UKAS accredited sound testing providing a ‘one stop’ solution for all your acoustic testing and design requirements throughout London and the South East.

If you would like more information in regards to sound testing please follow our blog at: http://soundtestinguk.blogspot.co.uk or contact us at: info@aptsoundtesting.co.uk and 07775623464 or visit our website at: www.aptsoundtesting.co.uk

Sound Flanking Pathways Identified During Sound Testing

Sound Flanking Pathways Identified During Sound Testing

Since Building Regulations Part E was introduced, we have literally undertaken thousands of sound tests throughout London and the South East; and as such we have built up considerable knowledge of typical sound flanking pathways. To help consultants and contractors we have comprised a list of the main Sound Flanking Pathways Identified During Sound Testing

  • Dividing Floor Partitions – Through Floor and Floor Joist Space (if insulation has not been installed or direct fixing to joists without a drop ceiling below the partition under test)
  • Dividing Ceiling Partitions – Above and Through the Ceiling Space (where an adequate acoustic break has not been carried on through the ceiling void)
  • Shared Structural Building Components – Floor Boards, Floor Joists, Continuous Drywall Partitions, Continuous Concrete Floors, and Cement Block Walls.
  • Through Structural Steel (structural steel beams are often a major cause of noise transmission as plasterboard is often fixed directly to the steel without sound breaks)
  • Plumbing Chases – Junctures between the Walls & Floor Slab Above or at the Exterior Wall Juncture (this should be filed with mortar etc. to add mass to this weakened areas.
  • Through Windows (if they are no double glazed or have secondary glazing as a minimum)
  • Fixtures & Outlets – Light Switches, Telephone Outlets, and Recessed Lighting Fixtures (if penetrations have been cut back to back with the opposite dwelling under test)
  • Structural Joints – Perimeter Joints at Wall & Floor, Through Wall & Ceiling Junctures (these should be filled with acoustic mastic.
  • Around the End of the Partition Through the Adjacent Wall (acoustic mastic should be used to seal this junction)

APT Sound Testing offer a ‘one stop’ design package for all types of acoustic design and sound testing in London, whether it’s accomplished during initial construction or during a refurbishment/renovation project.

A Typical Noise Flanking PathSound Flanking Pathways Identified During Sound Testing

We provide full UKAS accredited air and sound testing in London, so our clients can be sure that all testing is completed to a strict ISO quality controlled standard. Our engineers use the latest UKAS Calibrated Class 1 Acoustic Testing Equipment.

If you would like advice on your acoustic design service or sound testing in London, please contact us now at info@aptsoundtesting.co.uk or call us on 07775623464.

Sound Insulation Testing London

Sound Insulation Testing London

Sound insulation testing is usually required on most London development/s between rooms or spaces that share a common area of separating wall and/or floor as stipulated in Building Regulations Part E for the passage of sound. The main aim of sound insulation testing is to ensure that minimum standards of sound resistance have not been compromised by poor workmanship and/or poor design.

The most common buildings that require sound Insulation testing are:

  1. Dwelling-houses, flats or rooms for residential purposes created by conversion of existing buildings or new build rooms for residential purposes.
  2. New build dwelling-houses and flats

You are normally required to undertake sound testing to each type of construction, i.e. if you have a mixture of brick, blockwork, timber and metal studwork walls all four types would need to be tested, followed by a 10% sample of the individual type of partition.

Sound Testing Houses in London
Sound Testing Houses In London

For example, if you have a project with 25 flats you would be required to do 3 x 6 pack of tests; each 6 pack contains 2 airborne wall, 2 airborne floor and 2 impact sound tests; however if any test failures occur, then the number of sound tests may need to increase on the development. When sound test failures occur, then the design and construction of the failed partitions will need to be revisited to try and evaluate the reasons for the failure; thereafter, agreement can be reached on how to rectify problem. We have carried our hundreds of acoustic design reviews, so we are well placed to help you overcome potential problems achieving compliance with Building Regulations Part E.

Our Typical Sound Testing Equipment

We use the latest UKAS calibrated Norsonic Equipment to undertake the required Sound Insulation testing. We also undertake UKAS accredited sound testing providing a ‘one stop’ solution for all your acoustic testing and design requirements throughout London and the South East.

If you would like more information in regards to sound testing please follow our blog at: http://soundtestinguk.blogspot.co.uk or contact us at: info@aptsoundtesting.co.uk and 07775623464 or visit our website at: www.aptsoundtesting.co.uk

Careful Acoustic Design Considerations

Careful Acoustic Design Considerations

Achieving good airborne and impact sound isolation requires careful acoustic design considerations. Two key areas that need to be addressed when improving a floor construction are the airborne aspect (TV noise, music and speech) is typically dealt with by applying ceiling treatments and mass and isolation to the building components. Impact sound (footfall) performance is increased by the used of resilience layers and isolation of components.

Sound Insulation Testing 

Firstly, we need to look at the airborne performance requirements which are 45dB for new build properties and 43dB for conversion developments, this applies both to party walls and floors between properties. This level is the difference between the source level and the receiver level during London sound tests.

To try and help our clients achieve compliance with Approved Document E, we offer the following 4 step acoustic design package:

  1. Site Survey Visits – to let us view the existing site construction. This allows us to check for potential problematic construction such as inclusion of lightweight blocks in the existing construction. It also lets us check that the installation teams are installing the acoustic materials as per manufacturer’s guidelines.
  2. Sample Sound Insulation Testing – of the existing construction. This offers an accurate overview of the acoustic performance of the existing partitions which enables us to offer a targeted acoustic design using the sound insulation performance of the existing construction.
  3. Acoustic Design Review – a full design review of the proposed developments party walls and floors.
  4. Pre-completion Sound Testing to satisfy Approved Document E.

APT Sound Testing can advise on all types of acoustic design, whether it’s accomplished during initial construction or during a refurbishment/renovation project. We also undertake UKAS accredited sound testing providing a ‘one stop’ solution for all your acoustic testing and design requirements throughout London and the South East.

If you would like more information in regards to Sound Testing in London please follow our blog at: http://soundtestinguk.blogspot.co.uk or contact us at: info@aptsoundtesting.co.uk and 07775623464 or visit our website at: www.aptsoundtesting.co.uk

Cleanroom Particulate Testing and Validation


Cleanroom Particulate Testing and Validation

To minimise particle contamination it is important to build separate environments, called cleanrooms that allow particle limits to be maintained at measurable and controllable levels. It is essential that cleanrooms are tested in-line with the relevant ISO standard to ensure they are working as designed.

Cleanroom Particulate Testing and Validation

Cleanroom Testing and Commissioning

A well designed cleanroom can achieve these great cleanliness levels by maximising laminar airflow and particle traps. Laminar airflow is air moving in one direction, which allows particles to be swept away from an area. Particle traps are areas where particles gather and escape laminar airflow. Careful cleanroom designs can minimise these areas to reduce particulate build up.

Hepa filters installed in the ceiling allow filtered air to pass down toward the floor. The floor tiles have small holes that allow the air to pass under the floor, where air-returns (air ducts) transport the air back to the ceiling filters. This filtration process can exchange the cleanroom’s entire volume of air more than thirty times per hour, resulting in the cleanest environment possible while minimising the movement of particles.

Clean room testing and certification guarantees that the facility has met the requirements for a statistically-valid maximum concentration of specified-size airborne particles.

Following our clean room testing and/or validation service, we present you with a clear, well-structured reportage that can be compiled, quality checked and issued to you while still on site, minimising the down time of your operations. We will also take time to explain the process and reportage to ensuring that you fully understand the testing process and your final results.

We will issue you with test certificates, as well as calibration certificates for all of the equipment used and we will also document any recommendations for improvements that could be made to make the clean room more efficient in regards to its operation.

We Have Your Clean Room Validation Testing Covered

I hope the above information was informative. If you would like some more information in regards to our cleanroom testing service please don’t hesitate to contact Darren directly on 07775623464.

APT Cleanroom Testing provides clients with a reliable and proactive clean room testing service. If you would like to know more about our particulate testing service and/or HEPA filter testing service to cleanrooms, please don’t hesitate to contact us at:  info@airpressuretesting.net

The Different Types of Particle Counters

The Different Types of Particle Counters

APT uses the latest Airborne Particulate Counters to undertake Particle Testing to Clean Rooms. Many people assume that’s the only type of Particle Counters; however, there are many varieties of particle counters. The primary differences depend upon the medium in which particles are suspended: air, liquid, gas, vacuum, or atmospheric/meteorological.

Airborne Particle Counters

Airborne particle counters measure air contamination in HEPA-filtered cleanrooms for disk drive assemblies, pharmaceutical manufacturers, small test benches, rocket launch facilities, and hundreds of different controlled air applications. WE use this type of Particle Counter during our clean room testing.

Liquid Particle Counters

Liquid particle counters measure contamination in a wide range of fluids including drinking water, injectable drugs, transmission fluids, and hydrofluoric acids. Some liquid particle counters require an accessory called a Sampler. A sampler communicates with the particle counter, automatically extracts a precise volume of liquid, and, programmed with the counter’s specific delivery rate, dispenses the liquid to the particle counter. Some liquid counters directly connect into plumbing lines or use pressurized gases to eliminate bubbles in chemicals.

Gas Particle Counters

Gas particle counters measure contamination suspended in gases. These gases may be either inert or volatile, and either dry (anhydrous) or contain trace water vapours. Usually, the gas particle counter’s design provides contamination measurements at pressures ranging from 40 – 150 psig.

Vacuum Particle Counters

Vacuum particle counters fill a niche market where processes occur under negative pressures (vacuum), which offer unique challenges. Particles do not exhibit predictable movement in vacuum, so specialized particle counters must depend upon a particle’s momentum for detection.

Atmospheric/Meteorological Particle Counters

One of the original particle counter applications, atmospheric (or meteorological) particle counters examine atmospheric contamination like pollution or provide detailed weather studies. These instruments measure water droplets, ice crystals, condensation nuclei, or contamination drift from oil fires and volcanic eruptions.

APT has your Clean Room Validation Testing Covered

I hope the above information was informative. If you would like some more information in regards to our cleanroom testing service please don’t hesitate to contact Darren directly on 07775623464.

APT Cleanroom Testing provides clients with a reliable and proactive clean room testing service. If you would like to know more about our particulate testing service and/or HEPA filter testing service to cleanrooms, please don’t hesitate to contact us at:  info@airpressuretesting.net

Our Testing Process for Clean Rooms

Our Testing Process for Clean Rooms

We undertake the testing and commissioning of cleanrooms in accordance with international standards and customer quality specifications. Cleanroom test protocols and report documentation can be customised to customer specifications.

Our most popular types of cleanroom testing include:

  • Room pressurisation monitoring
  • Non-viable particulate monitoring
  • HEPA filter integrity testing
  • Airflow volume/velocity profiling
  • Room air exchange rates
  • Temperature and humidity monitoring

To ensure that your clean room environment is working effectively a number of factors relating to the air supply coming from your ventilation need to be tested. These tests apply to every type of clean room, whether used for the manufacture of pharmaceutical products, sterile and aseptic or food production.

We also need to test the flow of the air to ensure that it is moving from clean to less clean areas, minimising the movement of any contaminated air into your clean area, and also to ensure there are no areas of the room with high concentrations of pollutants.

Clean Room Testing and Commissioning

In order to carry out these tests, for every clean room we are working in, we will measure and check:

  1. Air Tightness Testing – to check your room envelope is air tight and not leaking.
  2. Air Supply and Extract Quantities – If your air supply is unidirectional we will measure and record the air velocity.
  3. Differential Pressure – Here we will be testing to ensure that the air in your clean room always moves from clean to less clean areas.
  4. Filter Installation Leak Testing – Your ventilation system’s high efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter can be tested to ensure their integrity.
  5. Containment Leak Testing – We will check the construction of your clean room to ensure that no airborne contamination can occur via leaks from higher pressure work areas adjacent to it.
  6. Air Movement Control – Studying the movement of the air within your clean room we will check that there is sufficient air movement to dilute or remove pollutants, preventing any contamination build-up.
  7. Room Recovery – Reviewing the effectiveness of airflow we will measure how quickly a clean room recovers to its normal operating cleanliness following a release of particulate contaminant.
  8. Airborne particles and microbial concentrations – Finally, we will carry out measurements to ensure that the concentration of particles and micro-organisms is compliant with the specification set out for your clean room.
  9. Temperature, Relative Humidity – We may also need to carry out tests on temperature, relative humidity, and the heating and cooling capabilities of the room, as well as noise, lighting and vibration levels.

If you have a clean room that requires particulate monitoring or any of the above testing then please get in touch with us as soon as possible as we should be able to offer you an expedient solution for your cleanroom testing and cleanroom certification.

We can also offer maintenance programmes to ensure your cleanroom is in compliance with the corresponding ISO standards– it’s why we place such emphasis on the process of ‘expert intervention’.

Please contact us at: info@airpressuretesting.net  or phone Darren directly on: 07775623464.

Airborne Particulate Testing on Clean Rooms

Airborne Particulate Testing on Clean Rooms

In January 2016, ISO introduced an update to standards ISO 14644-1:2015 – Classification of air cleanliness by particle concentration and ISO 14644-2:2015 and monitoring to provide evidence of cleanroom performance related to air cleanliness by particle concentration.

It is essential that your undertake clean room particle testing to prove it complies with ISO 14644-1:2015 – Classification of air cleanliness by particle concentration. This ensures that your cleanroom continues to perform efficiently and enhance your ongoing business process,

Within ISO 14644-2:2015 – Monitoring to provide evidence of cleanroom performance related to air cleanliness by particle concentration; recommends customers to complete risk assessments and monitoring plans to determine the frequency of testing and validation to their individual cleanroom processes.

Clean room Certification guarantees that the facility has met the requirements for a statistically-valid maximum concentration of specified-size airborne particles.

Airborne Particulate Testing on Clean Rooms

Following our clean room testing and/or validation service, we present you with a clear, well-structured reportage that can be compiled, quality checked and issued to you while still on site, minimising the down time of your operations. We will also take time to explain the process and reportage to ensuring that you fully understand the testing process and your final results.

We will issue you with test certificates, as well as calibration certificates for all of the equipment used and we will also document any recommendations for improvements that could be made to make the clean room more efficient in regards to its operation.

APT Clean Room Testing provide trained clean room test engineers, offering comprehensive and proactive validation service to the requirements of all current ISO standards and guidelines.

APT has your Clean Room Validation Testing Covered

I hope the above information was informative. If you would like some more information in regards to our cleanroom testing service please don’t hesitate to contact Darren directly on 07775623464.

APT Cleanroom Testing provides clients with a reliable and proactive clean room testing service. If you would like to know more about our particulate testing service and/or HEPA filter testing service to cleanrooms, please don’t hesitate to contact us at:  info@airpressuretesting.net