What is a Robust Detail?

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    Sam O’Sullivan

    Robust Detail

    Robust Detail applies to sound installation standards, as outlined by Building Regulations Document E. This involves ensuring that cavity walls, and additions such as Dacatie Cavity Closers, have acceptable acoustic properties for new builds. Ideally, a cavity wall should be as resistant to sound as is possible.

    Robust Details Limited

    Robust Details (RD) Ltd formed as a company in December 2003. This happened in response to the house-building industry’s request for an alternative to pre-completion sound testing (PCT). RD Ltd assess and approve all Robust Details in order to satisfy the sound installation requirements of Building Regulations in England and Wales.  Scotland has also seen the launching of a Robust Details sound installation scheme.

    Basic Standards

    A Robust Detail is a separating wall or floor construction which has been assessed and approved by RD Ltd. Certain goals must be reached in order for each Robust Detail in a building to be approved. Firstly, it must be capable of consistently exceeding the relevant regulatory standards. Next, it must be practical to build on site. Finally, it must be reasonably tolerant to workmanship. Robust Details such as cavity closers are approved by the Robust Detail Scheme.

    Elements of the Robust Detail Scheme

    There are four main elements:

    1. Assessment and approval by RD Ltd.
    2. Publication in the Robust Detail Handbook.
    3. Registration or Certification of each building where Robust Details are going to be built.
    4. Performance management of each Robust Detail type. This includes sample testing and inspection and statistical analysis. Any necessary actions to improve performance are also looked at, along with feedback to industry and government.

    Consistent Standards

    For the scheme to work as intended, individual Robust Details must consistently perform to a high standard. Therefore particular attention must be given to the 4th element above in built dwellings. Special acoustic consultants monitor and report on Robust Details nationwide. If any falls below the requisite level, RD Ltd will remove it from the scheme. As a result, the robustness and credibility of the scheme is ensured over time. For any further information, visit http://www.robustdetails.com.

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