|Acoustic Testing Services
Sound Insulation Testing For Compliance with Part E
Does your development need to be Sound Tested?
Pre completion sound testing under part E has been a mandatory requirement
since July 2003. All new build properties and conversions which were built
after this date require 10% of each party wall/floor construction type
to be tested. Sound Testing is to be carried out between pairs of rooms
separated by party walls or floors, (however a greater percentage is required
if you complying with Eco homes Standard) In most cases the rooms to be
sound tested will be the two main habitable rooms which would be living
rooms and bedrooms. The sound test procedure involves setting up a noise
source in a room on one side of the party wall or floor and measuring
the noise on both sides of the partition.
At Air Pressure Testing Sound insulation testing is one of the most popular
parts of our business, we also undertake air testing to your projects
to comply with part L as well as part E. We can offer both Sound &
Air Testing in one easy package; this will reduce the cost and improve
onsite co-ordination, please click here for the Air & Sound Package.
Air Pressure Testing site testing is undertaken to a stringent internal
quality system following the guidance from ISO/IEC 17025:2005 ‘General
requirements for the competence of testing and calibration laboratories’.
The United Kingdom Building Regulations require that Pre-Completion Sound
Insulation Tests are undertaken on new dwellings and conversions, and
where Robust Details have not been used. The requirements are laid down
in Approved Document E, which came into effect on 1 July 2003, and by
Amendments which came into effect on 1 July 2004. Please click here to
download Approved Document E.
Pre-completion sound testing is generally carried out at the request of
the Building Control Officer. The guidance contained within Approved Document
E gives detailed recommendations for the partitions to be tested and for
the number of sound tests that should be carried out. We recommend that
the proposed sound testing is agreed in advance with the Building Control
Officer (or person requiring the sound test). If you are unsure of your
projects acoustic requirements please click here at; firstname.lastname@example.org
Airborne sound tests may also be required between horizontally and vertically
separated pairs of rooms. The sound tests are undertaken by using a sound
source, amplifier and loudspeaker to generate a high noise level in one
room (the source room). Noise measurements are then taken in both the
source and receiver rooms using a prescribed number of source and microphone
positions. The background levels in the receiver room are measured and
the reverberation time in the receiver room is also measured. From the
results, the airborne sound insulation (DnT,w + Ctr) is calculated and
compared to the requirements of Approved Document E.
Our sound test engineers carry all the latest test state of the art Norsonic
equipment, which are class one rating and all of our acoustic testing/sound
testing is completed to a strict quality controlled standard. We provide
full ISO complaint testing
Acoustic Testing or Pre Completion Testing
Sound Testing can take on many forms and can be at many stages within
a development. For most people sound testing is the Approved Document
E requirement for Pre Completion testing. Testing which is completed near
the end of a development to show that the performance of the party divides
meets the Building Regulations Approved Document E stipulated performance
The testing methods for airborne and impact sound insulation are in full
accordance with: the suggested methods presented in BS EN ISO 140-parts
4 and 7: 1998. The results of the tests were analysed in accordance with
BS EN ISO 717 parts 1 and 2: 1997.
We also undertake Sound Testing to assess the performance of office partitions,
acoustic performance of doors, and walls, and throughout the entertainment
industry such as pubs, nightclubs and concerts.
Sound Testing is a general term and therefore more detailed project specific
information is sometimes required. Each job is assessed based on its own
merits within isolation, and we will ensure we give you a proactive cost
We offer advice on basic remedial measures for failed sound tests following
discussion to the reason for failure, however this can be avoided if you
employ the Air Pressure Testing as your Acoustic consultant from the offset
Contact us now at; email@example.com to get your free quotation.
Please note with consultants nationwide, we can offer an extremely proactive
cost effective service.
F or vertically separated rooms, an Impact sound test may also be required.
This sound test is undertaken using a “tapping machine”, (as
above) which drops a series of weights onto the floor of the upper room.
The noise level in the lower (receiver) room is measured for a prescribed
number of source and microphone locations. The background levels in the
receiver room are measured and the reverberation time in the receiver
room is also measured. From the results, the impact sound insulation (L’nT,w)
is calculated and compared to the requirements of Approved Document E.
We can undertake both acoustic airborne e,g speech, television etc, and
acoustic impact e.g footfall sound tests in accordance with the requirements
of Approved Document E of The Building Regulations and the relevant European
and International standards, as shown below;
• BS EN ISO 140-4:1998 - Acoustics - Measurement of Sound Insulation
in Buildings and of Building Elements. Part 4 Field Measurement of Airborne
Sound Insulation between Rooms.
• BS EN ISO 140-7:1998 - Acoustics - Measurement of Sound Insulation
in Buildings and of Building Elements. Part 7 Field Measurement of Impact
Sound Insulation of Floors.
• BS EN ISO 717-1:1997 - Acoustics - Rating of Sound Insulation
in Buildings and of Building Elements : Part 1. Airborne Sound Insulation.
• BS EN ISO 717-2:1997 - Acoustics - Rating of Sound Insulation
in Buildings and of Building Elements : Part 2. Impact Sound Insulation.
• Building Regulations Approved Document E 2003 Resistance to the
Passage of Sound.
We can also supply advice on remedial acoustic works, as required after
failed sound tests, we offer this at a reduced rate if we already have
an order with the company.
If noise nuisance is an issue we undertake an investigative look at the
sound insulation and overall construction between dwellings, as this is
usually one of the main causes of acoustic/sound test failure.
Sound Insulation Testing in line with Part E of the building Regulations
Changes to The Building Regulations have led to Acoustic testing/sound
insulation testing becoming mandatory throughout residential developments.
The only waiver to this is if you designer adopts Robust Detailing. As
such you may well have been requested to carry out sound insulation testing
by Building Control.
Air Pressure Testing’s sound insulation testing service is built
around customer satisfaction, specifically in terms of Speed, flexibility
and quality. This is ensured by having a team of highly trained test engineers
available at all times utilising the very latest sound testing equipment
at the forefront of technology. We can undertake Sound Testing out of
hours to ensure that your programme is not delayed whilst the works the
aforementioned works are undertaken. We also undertake Sound and Air Testing
in one comprehensive package to save you money and negate co-ordination
Why you should use APT for all your sound testing requirements
We can undertake check your design to checks to ensure you comply with
We can undertake surveys on your project to insure your subcontractors
constructing correctly, as this is one of the biggest reasons for Sound
• Sound Testing is arranged as soon as possible as we are aware
that quick turnaround time is crucial for our clients.
• We use our own equipment (not hired) so we can react within hours
of being contacted, to undertake your sound testing is not delayed
• We offer highly competitive prices Click here for a quote
• We use top quality instrumentation to ensure you get the best
What is Sound Testing (under part E) FAQ (frequently asked questions)
What is sound insulation
Sound insulation is the property of a wall or a floor to resist the passage
What is sound insulation testing
Sound Insulation Testing is a method of quantifying the sound insulation
performance of a wall or floor. Sound insulation testing can be carried
out on party walls, party floors or facades of any building. The methodology
For Air Tightness & Sound Insulation Testing is set out in various parts of BS EN ISO
140 and ratings in parts of BS EN ISO 717.
Why do I need sound insulation testing?
The largest single reason for disputes between neighbours is noise complaints.
Approved Document Part E - Resistance to the passage of sound of the Building
Regulations describes minimum standards to be achieved by newly built
domestic dwellings. Sound insulation testing is also required in schools,
hospitals and workplaces where noisy activities need to be separated from
The Building Regulations Approved Document Part E sets out minimum standards
for sound insulation performance to be achieved by party wall and party
floors. Building contractors may show compliance with Part E of the Building
Regulations by two methods. One method is to register plots to be built
with Robust Standard Details Limited and the other is to show as-built
performance by Pre-Completion Sound Testing.
What is Pre-Completion Sound Testing?
Pre-Completion Sound Testing is method of showing compliance with Approved
Document Part E of the Building Regulations by testing a construction
in-situ prior to handover. Air Pressure Testing Ltd offers competitively
priced sound insulation testing to both large and small building contractors
for any size of development.
What is a Robust Standard Detail?
A Robust Standard Detail is party wall or floor construction of proven
performance that is part of the Robust Standard Detail scheme. The Robust
Standard Detail scheme is provided by Robust Standard Detail Limited,
an organisation that oversees the registration, specification and construction
of party wall or floor constructions. Robust Standard Detail Limited produces
a handbook containing specifications and checklists for a restricted number
of proven constructions based on empirical data. Robust Standard Detail
Limited carries out visual inspections during construction of registered
plots and spot checks a sample following completion.
When are Pre-Completion Testing sound insulation tests carried
Sound insulation testing required for Pre-Completion Testing (PCT) with
respect to Building Regulations Approved Document Part E are carried out
when the construction of party walls and floors are largely complete.
Windows should be in place with any vents closeable. Internal and external
doors should be in place, along with skirting, cornicing and plug sockets
in place. Sound insulation testing on floors must be carried out before
any soft coverings are in place.
Sound insulation testing following noise complaints from residents can
be carried out at any time when suitable access can be arranged.
Airborne Sound Insulation is determined by the difference D in sound levels
between a source and receiver room. This is corrected for reverberation
DnT, and weighted to give a single number value for the Sound Insulation
DnT,w + Ctr.
Impact Sound Insulation
Is determined by measuring the sound level L, in the receiver room.
This is corrected for reverberation, L’nT, and weighted to give
a single number value for Sound Insulation L’nT,w.
Download an electronic copy of Approved Document E here
Sound Insulation Testing (the facts)
Airborne Sound Insulation
Airborne sound insulation is determined by the difference D in sound levels
between a source and receiver room.
This is corrected for reverberation DnT, and weighted to give a single
number value for the Sound
Insulation DnT,w+ Ctr.
The loudspeaker in the Source Room emits a loud noise over a range of
frequencies (pink noise).
The microphone in the Source and Receiving Room measures the sound pressure
level. Using specialist UKAS Calibrated equipment, our acoustician then
calculates the airborne sound insulation (DnT,w + Ctr).
Impact Sound Insulation
Impact sound insulation is determined by measuring the sound level L,
in the receiver room. This is corrected for reverberation, L'nT, and weighted
to give a single number value for Sound Insulation L'nT,w.
In the Source Room a tapping machine impacts repeatedly directly onto
the floor structure.
A microphone in the Receiving Room measures the sound pressure level and
the recorded level produces the Impact result (L’nT,w).
In order to comply with Approved Document E of the Building Regulations,
10% of plots used in each development for residential purposes should
be tested if robust detailing is not used.
Items to complete prior to our arrival on Site to undertake the Acoustic
The best time to carry out sound testing is towards the completion of
the project. In addition the optimum conditions are when the site is quiet.
If there is noise on the site from equipment and 'on going works' here
is an increased chance of a sound test failure. Housing developers and/or
site managers will have to nominate a day for sound testing and restrict
any noisy activity during the sound test/s. The following list provides
an indicative checklist for site managers for the requirements of the
plots and sites where testing may be carried out.
Site Preparation Checklist
A site is ready for testing when:
1. Windows are fully fitted with locks in place.
2. Window trickle vents are in place or temporarily blocked up for testing.
3. Room and front doors are in place and closeable.
4. All wall surfaces in rooms to be tested are complete (including sockets
and switches if applicable).
5. Floor and ceiling surface are complete.
6. Carpets or timber laminates have NOT been laid in rooms where floors
are to be tested (with the exception of bonded carpet).
7. Staff made aware that a quiet site environment is required during testing.
Please Note: If you have any questions about the preparation or the actual
test then please ring our office to discuss them or e-mail us at; firstname.lastname@example.org
Acoustic Testing - Further Information
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