Latest News

Approved Document changes for 2015

The Government has announced changes to Approved Documents G, H and M, along with a new Approved Document Q.

  • New 2015 version of Approved Document G
  • New 2015 version of Approved Document H
  • New 2015 version of Approved Document M Volume 1: Dwellings
  • New 2015 version of Approved Document M Volume 2: Buildings other than dwellings
  • New Approved Document Q: Security - Dwellings

These changes will come into effect on 1 October 2015.

Download current Approved Document G - 2015 editionApproved Document G - 2015 edition

PDF file: 487KB, 55 pages

Changes coming into effect in October 2015

The 2015 edition of Approved Document G (Sanitation, hot water safety and water efficiency) contains changes to the water efficiency requirements. In particular, it introduces an optional requirement of 110 litres/person/day where required by planning permission, and an alternative fittings-based approach to demonstrating compliance. It also includes the water-efficiency calculation methodology for new dwellings, approved by the Secretary of State. This edition incorporates previous amendments.

The changes reflect amendments to regulations 36 and 37 of the Building Regulations 2010 and regulation 20 of the Building (Approved Inspectors) Regulations 2010.

There has been no amendment to the requirements in Part G of Schedule 1 to the Building Regulations 2010.

The 2015 edition takes effect on 1 October 2015 for use in England. The 2010 edition, as amended, will continue to apply to work started before 1 October 2015 or work subject to a building notice or full plans application submitted before that date.

Download current Approved Document H - 2015 editionApproved Document H - 2015 edition

PDF file: 1.28MB, 64 pages

Changes coming into effect in October 2015

The 2015 edition of Approved Document H (Drainage and Waste Disposal) contains changes to guidance on waste disposal. It also incorporates previous amendments.

The 2015 edition takes effect on 1 October 2015 for use in England. The 2002 edition, as amended, will continue to apply to work started before 1 October 2015 or work subject to a building notice or full plans application submitted before that date.

There has been no amendment to the requirements in Part H of Schedule 1 to the Building Regulations 2010.

Download Approved Document M - Volume 1: Dwellings - 2015 editionApproved Document M - Volume 1: Dwellings - 2015 edition

PDF file: 1.78MB, 69 pages

2015 edition: Valid from 1 October 2015

Changes coming into effect in October 2015

This 2015 edition of Approved Document M (Access to and use of buildings) - Volume 1: Dwellings only covers dwellings and contains updated guidance. In particular, it introduces three categories of dwellings:

  • Category 1 - Visitable dwellings
  • Category 2 - Accessible and adaptable dwellings
  • Category 3 - Wheelchair user dwellings
  • Categories 2 and 3 apply only where required by planning permission.

Part M in Schedule 1 to the Building Regulations has been amended.

Download Approved Document M - Volume 2: Buildings other than dwellingsApproved Document M - Volume 2: Buildings other than dwellings - 2015 edition

PDF file: 1.89MB, 74 pages

2015 edition: Valid from 1 October 2015

Changes coming into effect in October 2015

This 2015 edition of 'Approved Document M: Access to and use of buildings - Volume 2: Buildings other than dwellings' only covers buildings other than dwellings.

It incorporates previous amendments but there have been no technical changes.

Part M in Schedule 1 to the Building Regulations has been amended but these mainly affect dwellings.

Approved Document QApproved Document Q

PDF file: 233KB, 20 pages

2015 edition: Valid from 1 October 2015

This approved document takes effect on 1 October 2015

It does not apply to work started before 1 October 2015, or work subject to a building notice or full plans application submitted before that date provided the work is started on site before 1 October 2016.

It applies only in relation to new dwellings and provides that reasonable provision must be made to resist unauthorised access to any dwelling; and any part of a building from which access can be gained to a flat within the building.

The approved document sets out reasonable standards for doors and windows to resist physical attack by a casual or opportunist burglar by being both sufficiently robust and fitted with appropriate hardware.

Posted 2 September 2015


Changes to fixing of roof tiles

A new code of practice that details design standards, performance and installation of pitched roofs and vertical cladding using slates, tiles, shingles and shakes, as well as their associated components, has been published.

The new BS 5534 Code of Practice was published in August 2014 and will apply in full from February 2015 when the new standards will have to be followed.

Key Changes

  • Mortar alone cannot be used to fix ridges and hips. So, even if mortar is used, the ridges and hips must also be mechanically fixed.
  • Fixing requirements for roof tiles have been increased. All single lapped tiles on a roof will now have to be mechanically fixed and perimeter tiles must now have a minimum of two fixings.
  • There will now be a single test for the measurement of the wind uplift resistance of underlays, which all testing bodies will have to comply with.

Ridges and hips

Although dry fix systems are not compulsory it will have to be demonstrated how ridge tiles are effectively held in place when using mortar.

Fixing of roof tiles

This needs great care as there are a number of proprietary systems available, but beware as many of them are specific to particular makes of tiles. It will have to be demonstrated that the correct fixings and numbers for the type of tiles are used.

Roofing underlays

They are prone to stretching and ‘ballooning’ under wind load. This can cause the tiles to have greater wind loads applied to them than their design permits. The new standard for underlays will test against this issue. To ensure this the underlay will have to have been tested to the new standard and clearly identified as being suitable for the site location and batten gauge in question.

Posted 31 October 2014


Approved Document L 2013 changes

The Government has announced changes to Part L of the Building Regulations which include:

These changes will come into effect on 1 October 2015.

  • New 2013 version of Approved Document L1A
  • New 2013 version of Approved Document L2A
  • Amendments to the 2010 versions of Approved Document L1B and L2B
  • A new 2013 version of the Domestic Building Services Compliance Guide
  • A new 2013 version of the Non-Domestic Building Services Compliance Guide

These changes will come into effect on 6 April 2014.

Copies of the documents can be downloaded below:

Approved Document L1A - 2013 editionApproved Document L1A - Conservation of fuel and power in new dwellings

PDF file: 1.74Mb, 43 pages

The main changes in the 2013 edition of Approved Document L1A are:

  • A new requirement, regulation 26A, has been introduced that requires new dwellings to achieve or better a fabric energy efficiency target in addition to the carbon dioxide target.
  • The national dwelling used to determine carbon dioxide and fabric energy efficiency targets is the same size and shape as the actual dwelling, constructed to a concurrent specification. The Part L 2013 specifications have been strengthened to deliver 6% carbon dioxide savings across the new homes building mix relative to Part L 2010.
  • A summary of the Part L 2013 notional dwelling is published in Table 4 in this Approved Document with the full detail in SAP 2012 Appendix R. If the actual dwelling is constructed entirely to the notional dwelling specifications it will meet the carbon dioxide and fabric energy efficiency targets and the limiting values for individual fabric elements and building services. Developers are however free to vary the specification, provided the same overall level of carbon dioxide emissions and fabric energy efficiency performance is achieved or bettered.
  • The document consolidates the amendments made in December 2012 requiring the feasibility of high-efficiency alternative systems to be taken into account before construction commences.
  • The guidance for insulation of circulation pipes within communal spaces is given greater prominence.
  • The document is in a new style format and an index has been introduced.

Approved Document L2A - 2013 editionApproved Document L2A - Conservation of fuel and power in new buildings other than dwellings

PDF file: 1.75Mb, 46 pages

The main changes in Approved Document L2A are:

  • The national building used to determine carbon dioxide targets is the same size and shape as the actual building, constructed to a concurrent specification. The Part L 2013 specifications have been strengthened to deliver 9% carbon dioxide savings across the new non-domestic building mix relative to Part L 2010.
  • A wider set of notional buildings has now been defined for top-lit, side-lit (heated only) and side-lit (heated and cooled) buildings. The notional building air permeability has been further sub-divided by size.
  • A summary of the Part L 2013 notional buildings is published in Table 5 in this Approved Document with the full detail in the National Calculation Modelling (NCM) Guide. If the actual building is constructed entirely to the notional building specifications it will meet the carbon dioxide targets and the limiting fabric and building services parameters. Developers are however free to vary the specification, provided the same overall level of carbon dioxide emissions is achieved or bettered.
  • The document consolidates the amendments made in December 2012 requiring the feasibility of high-efficiency alternative systems to be taken into account before construction commences.
  • The document is in a new style format and an index has been introduced.

Domestic Building Services Compliance Guide: 2013 editionAmendments to the 2010 versions of Approved Document L1B and L2B

PDF file: 125Kb, 14 pages

The 2013 Amendments to Approved Documents L1B and L2B 2010 Editions for work to existing dwellings and existing buildings other than dwellings, is to be read in conjunction with current Approved Document L1B and L2B and 2013 Amendments to Approved Documents. So as to take account of a recast of the European Energy Performance of Buildings Directive.

It is anticipated that a consolidated version of Approved Documents L1B and L2B 2010 Edition including all amendments will be published prior to 6 April 2014.


Domestic Building Services Compliance Guide: 2013 editionDomestic Building Services Compliance Guide: 2013 edition

PDF file: 572Kb, 90 pages

This guide is referred to in the 2013 edition of Approved Document L1A and the 2010 edition of Approved Document L1B (as amended in 2013) for dwellings as a source of guidance on complying with Building Regulations requirements for space heating and hot water systems, mechanical ventilation, comfort cooling, fixed internal and external lighting and renewable energy systems.


Non-Domestic Building Services Compliance Guide: 2013 EditionNon-Domestic Building Services Compliance Guide: 2013 Edition

PDF file: 540Kb, 76 pages

This guide is referred to in the 2013 edition of Approved Document L2A and the 2010 edition of Approved Document L2B (as amended in 2013) for non-domestic buildings as a source of guidance on complying with Building Regulations requirements for space heating and hot water systems, mechanical ventilation, comfort cooling, fixed internal lighting and renewable energy systems.

Posted 2 January 2014