John Warburton, BRE Windows and Doors Sector Manager
From October 2015 all accessible windows and doors installed in new properties in England must meet certain requirements to resist unauthorised access. These are detailed in the recently published Approved Document Q of the Building Regulations.
This means that windows and doors must be manufactured to a design that has been shown – by testing – to meet the security requirements of standards that are specified in Part Q. These include PAS 24, LPS 1175 and LPS 2081. Alternate guidelines are available for bespoke timber doorsets.
Most window and door suppliers will have at least part of their business in the new homes market. Whilst a number of suppliers will already have certificated their products to ensure that they meet any required standards, others will now need to consider their approach to the Part Q requirements.
There are a range of options. Some companies, particularly smaller PVC and aluminium product manufacturers, will be able rely on the existing system company test data to demonstrate Part Q compliance.
Others may need to conduct further tests, or may opt for full certification. We take the view that it is generally better to gain certification, because there can then be no further doubt or argument about the compliance of a product.
BRE Global operates certification schemes for all three of the Part Q cited standards listed above, and specialises in many other aspects of window and door performance. LPS 1175 and LPS 2081 are specifically security standards. They are operated by the Loss Prevention Certification Board (LPCB), which has been working with industry and government for more than 100 years to set the standards necessary to ensure that fire and security products and services work effectively. In that time the LPCB Mark has become an internationally recognised mark of trust.
LPS 2081 covers situations where it is considered that intruders will use stealth. That is, they will try not to make noise in order to avoid drawing attention to themselves from other people nearby. LPS 1175 on the other hand is aimed at situations were intruders are willing to make noise and so can use a far greater array of techniques to gain entry, such as breaking glass.
LPS 1175 therefore a generally sets a more severe standard than PAS 24 or LPS 2081. It is better suited to remote residences, or those that intruders are likely to believe will contain items that are sufficiently valuable to risk making noise when attempting to gain access to them. With their focus purely on security, LPS 1175 and in particular LPS 2081 can provide streamlined and cost effective options for demonstrating compliance with Part Q of the Building Regulations.
Whatever the best compliance route to take for individual suppliers, it is important for them to get on with ensuring that they are ready for when Part Q takes effect on 1 October 2015. In many cases the best first step will be seek advice from experts such as those at BRE.