With a UK wide shortage of newly built houses, land that would once have been considered undesirable for residential development due to noise issues from roads, railway lines, HS2 routes or industrial areas is now being urbanised by house builders to satisfy demand.
Ensuring adequate and effective noise control for properties built in areas impacted by noise is imperative. According to a study published by the World Health Organisation (WHO), noise from road traffic is the second most harmful environmental stressor in Europe behind air pollution. The damaging effects of living with stress from noise range from critical health issues such as cardiovascular disease, cognitive impairment and hearing impairment, to quality of life, well-being and mental health.
One key area for noise control is via ventilation. This requires a balance between providing a significant amount of air into each habitable room to satisfy the high venting requirements of today’s highly insulated (airtight) houses, whilst minimising external noise infiltration by the levels determined in the noise report.
The most popular method of providing background ventilation in new build houses is via System 1 of The Building Regulations Approved Document F: Background ventilators and intermittent extract fans. Natural ventilation gives house builders flexibility with design and positioning of vents and it is an easy system to live with as the occupant has full control of how much fresh air is let into each room and there are zero operational and maintenance costs.
By providing key information on sound attenuated background ventilation within the noise report acoustic consultants can help the house builder navigate the complexities of how to achieve both requirements. Outlining the following simple yet robust 3 step plan will be an invaluable resource, guiding the house builder from report to commissioning easily and accurately.
3 step plan for house builders:
Step 1 – Acoustic Noise Report.
Use the noise report to assess the acoustic requirements for the site/properties.
Step 2 – Equivalent Area Calculations.
Calculate the total floor area of each property.
For System 1 a free online calculator is available at http://rts.vents.co.uk/blog/rytons-background-ventilation-calculator/
Step 3 – Product Selection.
Talk to an acoustic ventilation manufacturer for help selecting products that give a good acoustic attenuation to air flow balance.
Rytons Building Products Ltd has worked hand-in-hand with many house builders using this free 3 step acoustic evaluation service. House builders can ask Rytons for advice and support through one, or all, of the 3 steps to acoustic background ventilation. For enquiries and further information telephone Rytons on 01536 511874, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.vents.co.uk.
For effective ventilation with sound attenuation, Rytons Building Products has developed a range of Super Acoustic Controllable LookRyt AirCore Ventilators which are able to provide exceptional rates of equivalent area and soundproofing up to 50 dB Dn,e,w.* Easy to install through a 125mm diameter core drilled hole, this range of retro-fitted vents feature the latest in acoustic foam technology plus an internal panel with a revolutionary draught reducing design. The unique design of the internal panel gives a multi-directional air flow, allowing air to disperse evenly into the room to diffuse damaging moist air particles and other pollutants, whilst significantly reducing draughts. The face plate may also be wallpapered or painted in any colour to blend in with the room décor for a more discreet appearance.
After using Rytons Super Acoustic Controllable LookRyt AirCore on the Keble Field housing development in Fairford, Gloucestershire Alan Cruickshanks, Site Manager for Bovis Homes, shared this review “We used the product as there is an industrial building near the site that creates a noise issue and knew that the vent would provide an acoustic solution that window trickle vents would not be able to. The new houses are fully occupied and we know the vents are doing their job as we’ve had no feedback from the owners.”
* Independently tested by the BRE (Test Report 284908).