Incoming changes to Part L of the Building Regulations are likely to intensify testing demand in the run up to the December 31 deadline for UKCA certification.
The warning, from Element Materials Technology – one of the UK’s leading testing and certification service providers to the construction industry – comes in advance of scheduled changes to Part L, which take effect from 15 June.
As part of a shift towards lowering domestic CO2 production through the Future Building Standard, all new doors and windows entering the market from that date must meet new mandated U-values. However, any existing products currently on the market which meet the new mandated U-values must still achieve UKCA marking in order to be sold in the UK from 1 January 2023.
The requirement is likely to affect hundreds of products manufactured outside of the UK, even if they have achieved CE marking in the country of manufacture.
UKCA marking can only be issued by an approved body listed on the UK government’s database. As there are only a small number of approved bodies, manufacturers who have not yet started or completed the process could find themselves under pressure to secure laboratory space with just six months left until the UKCA marking requirements come into force.
Chris Bryan, Senior Test Engineer at Element Materials Technology – Wednesbury, comments: “On the surface, the changes to minimum U-values set out in the updates to Part L are straightforward. Indeed, a sizeable majority of products currently in circulation are already compliant.
“The real issue is that any product that has been CE-marked in another country – even if it meets the U-value requirements set out in the changes to Part L – will need to be re-tested in the UK to achieve UKCA marking to continue being sold here from the start of next year.”
Chris continues: “The realisation is really starting to take effect amongst the international fabrication community. We have already seen a surge in demand in recent weeks and only expect that to increase as we get closer to the UKCA deadline. I would strongly urge any fabricators who either manufacture overseas or are looking to meet the new requirements to book UKCA testing now to ensure a smooth transition.”