Air Leakage Testing by JSD Air and Acoustic Testing

JSD AAT are the only company in Norfolk that is UKAS accredited, our engineers are registered on the Competent Person Scheme to TSL1 and TSL2 which mean we can provide air leakage tests for domestic dwellings as well as commercial buildings to meet the needs of the following UK Building Regulations:

  • 'L1A 2006 & 2010 - Conservation of fuel and power in new dwellings' and
  • 'L2A 2006 & 2010- Conservation of fuel and power in new buildings other than dwellings'

We are here to provide the information you need and to help your buildings achieve a pass for air permeability testing in accordance with the ATTMA test method.

What is air leakage testing?

Air leakage, air tightness and air permeability are all terms to describe the loss of air from inside a building to the outside or air being able to get inside a building, through cracks and gaps in the building.

For buildings in England and Wales, passing this air leakage test is a requirement from Part L of the Building Regulations, this regulation was brought in to ensure that new homes are energy efficient and not losing the benefits of having better insulation and more energy efficient heating systems with poor air tightness. Building Control will not provide a Completion Certificate unless the air leakage test has been passed. For 2010 regulations, for each dwelling type 3 or 50% of the type on the development must be tested, whichever is the lowest.

How is air leakage testing carried out?

As a UKAS accredited company JSD AAT have proven the robustness of their testing procedures and equipment. To carry out an air leakage test JSD AAT use specially designed and approved equipment.

The most suitable external door will be selected to fit the blower fan assembly, this measures the amount of air that flows into or out of a house while maintaining a set pressure difference between the inside and outside. A calibrated fan and metering equipment are used to measure airflow at a variety of pressure differences between 100Pa and 30Pa. This process achieves highly accurate, repeatable test results to meet the requirements of ATTMA TS1 and satisfy the current requirements of Building Regulations 2000 'Conservation of Fuel & Power' Part L1A (residential) and for commercial buildings of 500m², Part L2A (commercial), 2006 and 2010 Editions. JSD AAT own a air test fan much larger than most companies allowing them to test up to 50,000 m3 (cubic meters), this is used on commercial air leakage testing.

When can an air leakage test be done?

Air leakage testing can only be conducted when the building facades, external envelope and internal finishes are complete. As soon as the building gets to this stage our Technician will prepare and test the building at a time that fits into your schedule – normally between 8.00am and 5.30pm Monday to Friday, although alternative times can be arranged where required. The test doesn’t take more than 30 minutes and we try not to cause disruption to work onsite. However there are certain external factors that can affect the test, such as the wind speed so we take this into consideration before testing.

How to ensure the air leakage test is passed first time?

As a professional organisation, wherever possible JSD AAT try to work with our clients to ensure that their buildings pass the air permeability test first time. To assist you we can provide you with comprehensive pre-testing guidelines, which if followed will create the correct conditions to ensure the building does pass first time.

The building will be prepared for the test by our trained engineer but to help ensure your building passes the air permeability test, here is a list of considerations:

  • All surfaces (walls, floors, ceilings) should be complete with no voids or gaps
  • Windows & doors are installed, complete and closed
  • Window trickle vents are closed
  • Cornice & skirting boards are all in place and sealed to all edges
  • All light fittings, power/telephone/aerial sockets & switches are fitted

Make certain there are no gaps around:

  • Windows, sills, doors & frames
  • Pipes (waste & supply) - Kitchen, Utility, Bathroom, boiler room, radiators, airing cupboard & En-suites
  • Loft hatches
  • Extraction units
  • Ceiling & wall joints at the eaves
  • Electrical sockets & fittings - walls & ceilings
  • Air tightness can be significantly improved by applying a sealer coat to the otherwise porous block inner skin prior to bonding plasterboards

What if the building fails the air permeability test?

In the event your building fails to achieve a pass then we can provide smoke detection to quickly find any air leaks, for an additional fee. If the remedial work is minimal and can be completed within 2 hours after the failed test, it’s possible for our technician to re-test immediately at a reduced fee. Your pass certificate and full report will normally then be issued to you within 5 days.

Please fill out our enquiry form to request more information or a quotation on air leakage testing.