What is Pre-Completion Sound Testing?

Pre-completion sound testing is a Part E requirement of the Building Regulations. It applies to new houses, flats and flat conversions as well as an existing buildings change of use into flats.

Building Regulations Part E places the onus on the owner or developer to demonstrate the required acoustic rating has been achieved and complies with the current Building Regulations for noise control through separating floors and walls.

The requirements of Part E state that at least 10% of all new dwellings should be receive Pre-completion sound testing. Sound testing applies to separating elements between dwellings only and not required between living spaces within dwellings, i.e internal partitions within the same unit. Also, corridors, stairwells and hallways do not require testing. Pre-completion sound testing has to be carried out by a test body with an appropriate third party accreditation, APT Sound Testing is UKAS accredited for sound testing.

APT Sound Testing can carry out a testing schedule for you to submit to Your local Building Control for their approval. Our plan will specify the dwelling units and different forms of construction to be tested. We like to get involved at an early stage to ensure the test process is properly carried out.

A copy of our sound test report containing the results, has to be passed to the local building control office before a completion certificate can be issued and the job signed off. Any failure in achieving these standards will require remedial works to be carried out to achieve compliance with Part E of Building Regulations. It will be necessary to re-test the works to check that the remedial works have been successful.

APT Sound Testing have a vast amount of knowledge in regards to possible noise flanking paths and can help advise on partition upgrades to help you development achieve building control sign off. Unfortunately, without a successful Pre-completion test certificate that complies with Part E, Building Control will not sign off the property as completed and this could prove a problem if the property is to be sold.

Types of Grouping

New dwellings such as houses, flats and rooms for residential purposes, should be considered as three separate groups for the purpose of sound testing. Different construction types within any of these groups should be recorded as a subgroup. Dwelling-houses, flats and rooms for residential purposes formed by material change of use should be grouped using the same principles.

Amount of Sound Testing Required

For Houses

Normally, one set of tests should comprise two individual airborne sound insulation tests. Where possible a separating wall between bedrooms of adjoined houses and a separating wall between adjoined living rooms should be tested. If the house is 3 storey and the construction of he dividing partition changes on the 2nd floor, I.e from masonry to timber then the top floor should also be tested where permissible.

For Flats

Normally, one set of tests for up to 10 units should be ok. This should comprise of six individual insulation tests for airborne and impact sound. Where possible a separating wall between bedrooms, a separating wall between living rooms, a separating floor between bedrooms and a separating floor between living rooms.

For Rooms for Residential Purposes

Rooms for residential purposes should have their separating walls and floors tested. All dissimilar properties should be sound tested, and on large sites at least one in ten for properties that are similar or the same. Remedial treatment will be required to separating walls and floors that fail a test, and they will need to be re-tested. A failure will mean that all similar constructions will need to be evaluated and the corresponding upgrades applied.

If you need more information in regards to sound testing, please contact us on info@aptsoundtesting.co.uk.