Specialist guidance to comply with new Building Regulations and London Plan policy.
Overheating analysis assesses the risk of a property overheating during summer months.
As buildings are made more thermally efficient, analysis is essential for both regulatory compliance and user comfort.
Assessment is now mandated for new homes – covering both residential and ‘residential in manner’ developments, such as care homes – under the new Approved Document O (AD-O) of the Building Regulations.
In London and Manchester, this must be demonstrated at planning stage using Dynamic Thermal Modelling (DTM). Elsewhere in England and Wales, a Simplified Method of assessment is available to demonstrate compliance.
Given the impact of overheating on wider design, cost and energy strategy considerations, we recommend completing overheating analysis at planning stage for all new developments.
Irrespective of location or development type, early assessment – starting with the Simplified Method and moving to DTM where necessary – grants greater visibility of associated costs and reduces risk overall.
Our experienced overheating modellers support developers to complete comprehensive assessments.
Overheating analysis is also a requirement in Scotland, as specific in Section 3 of the Technical Handbooks. We can also provide support to meet Scottish targets.
For developments in London and Manchester, overheating analysis using Dynamic Thermal Modelling (DTM) is essential ahead of planning.
Increasingly, early overheating analysis is also being completed by developers voluntarily, given overheating’s financial and environmental implications, using both the Simplified Method and DTM.
A number of local planning authorities (LPAs) outside of the major cities also adopt the same approach, requiring assessment at planning stage to go beyond the standard requirements of AD-O.
We recommend completing an overheating assessment at planning stage, irrespective of location or development type, to give you the most straightforward, cost-effective approach to ensuring compliance.
We take a coordinated approach to overheating assessments. Our overheating modellers, acoustic and air quality specialists, and energy strategy consultants all work closely to ensure solutions deliver thermal comfort without compromising noise reduction, air quality or energy efficiency measures.
Following the approach of London Plan policy, we work to the cooling hierarchy. We look at glazing sizes, external shading, louvres and reducing the g-value to limit solar gains, and identify where openings will allow areas to be naturally ventilated, before measures for a dwelling to be mechanically ventilated are required. Our modellers prioritise passive measures for removing excess heat, understanding where mechanical measures can impact acoustic and energy efficiency considerations.
New additions to the Building Regulations include the introduction of mandatory overheating assessments elsewhere across England and Wales. These apply to all new residential and residential in manner developments, under Approved Document O (Section 3 of the Technical Handbooks in Scotland). AD-O embraces the Simplified Method and DTM for compliance, and still applies to London and Manchester-based developments.
Please see our AD-O Overheating service for more detail.