Glazpart Shares Views from the Summit

Glazpart once again sponsored and participated in the Glazing Summit at Edgbaston Stadium, Birmingham on 12 October and yet again it proved to be an ideal platform for Glazpart to share views and concerns on the changing regulations currently impacting and set to impact the glass and glazing industry.

The Future Homes Standard is a set of rules that will come into effect from 2025 to ensure new homes produce over 30% less carbon emissions than the new homes being built to current Building Regulations.

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Following the June 2022 interim changes to Building Regulations, which impacted replacement and renovation (existing buildings), the legislative measures from the Future Homes Standard will see further changes in the regulations, particularly in the legislation around energy efficiency, security, ventilation and overheating for new build property.

As a leading designer and manufacturer of plastic glazing accessories including trickle vents, it was only fitting that Glazpart was invited to be a key contributor to the Glazing Summit’s first panel debate on the “Regulatory Minefield”.

Dean Bradley, Glazpart Sales Director was part of a panel of four experts on the “Regulatory Minefield” and commented, “It was great to take part in the panel discussion on the challenges the industry faces on existing and incoming regulations. I was pleased to share my concerns about the regulatory changes at this crucial time in the evolution of building regulations and environmental policy. In 18 months, the Future Homes Standard will be implemented and with the interim changes made to Building Regulations in June 2022 likely to continue, the industry needs to be thinking well in advance of any further changes to regulations.”

The Regulatory Minefield topics covered the probable changes to window u values (the heat transfer measurement used for assessing a window’s energy efficiency; the lower the U-Value, the better the insulation and energy efficiency.

The panel held the consensus that the U-Value for windows will in all likelihood shift from 1.6 w/m2 to 1.2 w/m2  for the replacement market and 0.8 w/mfor new build which will in all probability stipulate that triple glazing has to be installed (depending on the semantics of the final document).

Aligned to U-Values changing, window and door companies will also likely need to comply to meet the incoming regulations for security under Approved Document Q, which for new build will mean that for all accessible windows to comply they will have to have laminated (security) glass on the outer pane and potentially steel reinforcement in frames and sashes. This will present major challenges due to the weight of the windows. Companies will have to use upgraded hardware and adjust for the protection, transportation, storage, lifting and installation of the units.

As well as the obvious issues that many in the industry may have with the regulations, Dean Bradley raised the following concerns about companies complying in time.

“The industry needs to be ready for any changes and the challenges they will present. Companies should be gearing up to comply from day one of the implementation. In June 2022, when Approved Document F was enacted as an interim change to Building Regulations, very few companies in the industry were in position to comply with the new legislation. Within a few months, most of the more responsible companies were complying but it was fortunate Glazpart had stocks (about one million vents) of our Link Vent range pre-prepared to cope with the demand. Even now only about 70% of the industry are compliant with the Approved Document F regulations. For Future Homes, the industry needs to be ready to embrace, engage and comply with any changes that will impact them and not wait until the last minute.”

Following the Glazing Summit, Dean Bradley, summarised, “Once again it was a fantastic event and great to hear the attendance figures were the highest ever. We were pleased to share our views, concerns and knowledge in the panel debate and enjoyed the multiple opportunities to network with key players in the industry. Overall, it proved to be an enjoyable and productive day for the Glazpart team.”

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