The current industry generation is now well practiced at understanding the “A to G” ratings when using EPC’s under the EU Energy Performance Buildings Directive. The use of ratings and levels from white goods to energy of buildings is indelibly printed in our mind sets and normal thinking. However, a new set of classifications “A to F” are the basis of the Acoustic Classification of Dwellings. In effect the acoustic classification is providing guidance levels on “acoustic comfort” relative to all types of dwellings such as apartments, attached houses, and hotels.

ISO 19488:2018 Acoustic Classification of dwellings covers internal sound transfer between dwellings, break-in of sound via the façade, equipment sound, and the reverberation time of common areas. The entire building can be assessed or just one dwelling or even just one room. In some instances, not all of the measurements will be necessary and a dwelling can simply be assessed against a few of the criteria.

In common with the building regulations 10% of a development should be tested. This can be reduced to 5% if the work has been designed by an acoustic consultant to the appropriate standards and inspected through the build period.

The nett outcome is that the high-end builders will be able to measure their unique selling points in terms of the acoustic comfort they achieve for their clients. In most cases this will be significantly better than the minimum standard of the Building Regulations. This allows builders to differentiate their product from the just passed building regulation ones and also has immediate benefits for hotel operators as well.

PDA Ltd can conduct full or part surveys in accordance with ISO 19488:2018 and provide reports and certificates.

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