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    • CommentAuthorcjard
    • CommentTimeJul 1st 2016 edited
     
    I know from time to time we give the UK regs a bit of a bashing for not leading to very efficient houses, but in discussion with a mate who is new building, I was reminded that the U values for walls are 0.16 and lower for roofs and floors. I'd quite forgotten this as I'm doing a conversion, and 0.3 was the value stuck in my mind..

    So given that insulation specs are pretty good, what is the lacklustre aspect that leads us to bash the regs? Air tightness? Matey is being forced, as a planning condition I believe, to install MVHR.. (I've told him he could challenge this if he felt like it, as I sincerely doubt local adopted policy says anything about ventilation) He's aware that a lack of decent air tightness will negate the point of installing it, so perhaps shortcomings are being addressed in other ways..
    • CommentAuthortony
    • CommentTimeJul 1st 2016 edited
     
    A) they are not very good, 0.1 would be better
    B) they don't do what it says on the tin, as built are generally desasterously worse
    C) there is no enforcement, nobody cares
    D) everyone treats them as maximunstandard and aims to sneak through, they are in fact minimum standards that should always be bettered.

    Re air tightness, we barely understand the meaning of the word and need to radically improve
    MVHR should be the norm.
    • CommentAuthorDarylP
    • CommentTimeJul 1st 2016
     
    @tony:

    A) yes, across the board, a lot easier to understand and follow for builders/contractors
    B) that is down to LABC and AIs not knowing / not caring, see the above
    C) where there is no encouragement to pick up bad site details, what do we expect? look at NHBC 'issues'
    D) yes, I have this conversation on a weekly basis with industry 'professionals'

    MVHR should be mandatory, as it is in parts of mainland Europe. It is 'refreshing' :cool: to see it in place

    What are the answers...? Education, fuel costs rising, attitude change, I wish I knew:sad:
  1.  
    It's not so much the regulations as enforcing them. If BC ensured houses were really built to regs. then people would be using less energy and living in more comfortable houses.
    • CommentAuthorDarylP
    • CommentTimeJul 1st 2016
     
    ... true....:bigsmile:
    But with LABC and AIs competing for work, there is a clear downward pressure on 'standards', making things 'difficult' for developers & contractors, so it can be no surprise that things slip....:shamed:
    • CommentAuthorgravelld
    • CommentTimeJul 1st 2016
     
    Those new figures are not the whole story - you can do this "flexing" thing now can't you where if you exceed on one score you can lower the others (to a maximum). E.g. fit 3G means you can have thinner walls.

    With regard the regs themselves, air tightness is definitely the big one. U=0.16 would be fine if we had sensible levels of air permeability and good ventilation.

    It gets worse when you consider the health impacts, especially if thermal bridging is not properly considered in Part L and you end up with mould growth etc.

    But tony's right, you also have to look at the wider picture, and that's one of very poor enforcement.
    • CommentAuthorDarylP
    • CommentTimeJul 1st 2016
     
    Thermal bridging 'can' be catered for in Part L, or left out of the equation, it is up to the designer.
    Why the proposed Accreditation Scheme for Thermal Bridging calcs was shelved.....? Who knows...?

    ATT is the easiest 'fix', as it presents the contractor/developer with 'in your face' results and demonstrates the failings that cannot be ignored.
    The downside is that UK occupants are not used to opening windows, leading to mould/health issues!
    Hence MVHR... :devil:
    • CommentAuthorringi
    • CommentTimeJul 1st 2016
     
    I just don’t think the UK building trade, and/or building methods are able to produce a home that keeps to Part L over the life of the building.

    Until for example a brick layer is legally banned from working on any building site due to leaving gaps between insulation, we will not get better results….
    • CommentAuthorringi
    • CommentTimeJul 1st 2016
     
    Maybe air tightness tests should be required on 100% of mass market new builds, both at built time and after 5 years with the developer fixing all problems found, as a public database of all failed tests at 5 years.

    Along with the property having to be heated with controlled portable electrical heaters for 48 hours and the power used compared with the standard and the mass market developer being required to knock down and rebuild any property that fails the test. Once again maybe this should be repeated after 5 years.

    However until tenants are willing to pay more rent for a low energy home and mortgage lenders are willing to lend more on low energy homes, there will be no market demand ……
    • CommentAuthorgravelld
    • CommentTimeJul 1st 2016
     
    Posted By: DarylPATT is the easiest 'fix', as it presents the contractor/developer with 'in your face' results and demonstrates the failings that cannot be ignored.
    The downside is that UK occupants are not used to opening windows, leading to mould/health issues!
    Hence MVHR...http:///newforum/extensions/Vanillacons/smilies/standard/devil.gif" alt=":devil:" title=":devil:" >
    That surely goes without saying - not fitting ventilation would be clown college.
    • CommentAuthorgravelld
    • CommentTimeJul 1st 2016
     
    Posted By: ringiMaybe air tightness tests should be required on 100% of mass market new builds, both at built time and after 5 years with the developer fixing all problems found, as a public database of all failed tests at 5 years.

    Along with the property having to be heated with controlled portable electrical heaters for 48 hours and the power used compared with the standard and the mass market developer being required to knock down and rebuild any property that fails the test. Once again maybe this should be repeated after 5 years.

    However until tenants are willing to pay more rent for a low energy home and mortgage lenders are willing to lend more on low energy homes, there will be no market demand ……
    Yep, straight after we complete exiting the EU on the "fewer regulations" ticket.
    • CommentAuthorringi
    • CommentTimeJul 1st 2016
     
    Posted By: gravelldYep, straight after we complete exiting the EU on the "fewer regulations" ticket.


    Two simple tests, without a requirement to submits lots of calcs and designs etc as there is now with Part L, could be considered as fewer regs.....
    •  
      CommentAuthorSteamyTea
    • CommentTimeJul 1st 2016
     
    When I looked at this a while back on the defunct eBuild forum, I found that our rgs where pretty much in line with the rest of the EU. So no real problem with the regs as such.
    Testing and guaranteeing them is a different matter and really down to building control or private inspectors to sort out.

    One way to improve the regulations would be to stop each element having a minimum value and say that the whole building must meet a minimum standard. Then the designers/builders/architects are do as they please to meet those regs (along with all the others).
    • CommentAuthorgravelld
    • CommentTimeJul 1st 2016 edited
     
    Posted By: ringi
    Posted By: gravelldYep, straight after we complete exiting the EU on the "fewer regulations" ticket.


    Two simple tests, without a requirement to submits lots of calcs and designs etc as there is now with Part L, could be considered as fewer regs.....
    Not in my view, because you have to consider the effect on the volume builders, and it's they that make the rules.

    It's cheaper for them to have identikit houses churned out of a computer with pre-designed thermal models which they can email to their SAP assessor and get a rating back without even leaving the office. Then have a mad panic when it's air test time on the 1/4 of houses that have to be tested, get a minimum wage bloke to tape a few holes up, sell the house, walk away, add it to the quarterly revenue.

    On the other hand, being liable for the future performance of the house is a massive burden - essentially a debt - and they would not like that at all. Those quarterly reports suddenly have something in parentheses...

    All my guesswork.
    • CommentAuthorringi
    • CommentTimeJul 1st 2016
     
    It would be another item for the NHBC warranty to cover, therefore NHBC would check the work is done to a descant standard, they are very good at risk control to stop claims.
    • CommentAuthortony
    • CommentTimeJul 1st 2016
     
    Yes but only on structure, the rest they fob off
    • CommentAuthorEd Davies
    • CommentTimeJul 1st 2016
     
    Posted By: ringi…and after 5 years with the developer fixing all problems found,…
    Difficult if the owner has made (or had made) any modifications. E.g, loft ladder, satellite dish, outside tap…
    • CommentAuthorringi
    • CommentTimeJul 1st 2016
     
    Enough owners don’t make modifications to scare the mass house builders into using an tightness solution that lasts….
    • CommentAuthortony
    • CommentTimeJul 1st 2016
     
    agreed, one day they will start becoming liable -- the sooner the better.
  2.  
    Training,training,training
  3.  
    Let's vote on whether training, training and training is more likely or less likely to work than whipping, fining and humiliating. I vote the later.
  4.  
    One without the other is useless
  5.  
    ''One without the other is useless''

    Do you mean that one has to be properly trained to whip, fine and humiliate?...

    Seriously, though, I imagine some builders could stand a few fines and a bit of humiliation, which the buying public probably won't hear about, before they 'up their game' with training to ensure that their standards are better in the future (that is, that they adhere to the Regs which, as some have hinted, are not that exciting anyway.

    Oh, and less seriously again, I have just noticed this one, which I cannot resist:

    '' NHBC would check the work is done to a descant standard''

    Is this what the law re-choirs?
  6.  
    Posted By: Nick Parsons''One without the other is useless''

    Do you mean that one has to be properly trained to whip, fine and humiliate?...

    Seriously, though, I imagine some builders could stand a few fines and a bit of humiliation, which the buying public probably won't hear about, before they 'up their game' with training to ensure that their standards are better in the future (that is, that they adhere to the Regs which, as some have hinted, are not that exciting anyway.

    Oh, and less seriously again, I have just noticed this one, which I cannot resist:

    '' NHBC would check the work is done to a descant standard''

    Is this what the law re-choirs?


    In my experience proper training and education from an early age can have a dramatic effect on peoples professionalism. For one thing it instills a certain pride in the training that has had to be under taken which tranlates into taking their work more seriously.
    There is a certain work culture on british building sites which is almost neanderthal like. But thats the British class system for you...
    •  
      CommentAuthorfostertom
    • CommentTimeJul 4th 2016
     
    Posted By: bot de pailleBut thats the British class system for you...
    You mean there's Boris-Neanderthals and Wayne-Neanderthals?

    Actually the Neanderthals were alot more civilised than the Sapiens brutes that out-competed them.
    •  
      CommentAuthorSteamyTea
    • CommentTimeJul 4th 2016
     
    Posted By: fostertomActually the Neanderthals were alot more civilised than the Sapiens brutes that out-competed them.
    Yes, and Devon is still full of them :wink:
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