On 1st October 2015, Approved Document Q came about and now forms part of the Building Regulations. In this article, we explain everything about Approved Document Q and why it matters to anyone buying new windows and doors.
When it comes to buying new windows and doors, one of many reasons to replace old windows is better home security. Most modern windows and doors are secure products with great locks and strong handles. However, how do you know whether your windows and doors meet current standards?
Understanding Approved Document Q.
First of all, if you are not familiar with Building Regulations, these have a series of Approved Documents. They range from Document A to Document Q covering a broad range of Building Regulations. Furthermore, this document does not apply to existing dwellings and commercial buildings.
The purpose of these documents is ensuring old, and new houses have the best possible specifications throughout their refurbishment or construction. Every type of project regardless of size or complexity works with the relevant Building Regulations and associated Approved Documents. In the vast majority of cases signing off a Building Inspector signs off the project. Therefore, as a professional business, at Aspire Bifolds we always work to current Building Regulations.
Approved Document Q aims to highlight the importance of home security. Specifically, Document Q relates to doors and windows in new dwellings. New dwellings mean new extensions as well as brand new houses and apartments.
What is covered under Approved Document Q?
Document Q applies to windows and doors regarded as easily accessible. Examples include
- Front and back doors
- Ground floor windows
- Other windows easily accessible (including rooflights)
- Doors to individual dwellings in apartment buildings and those connecting to communal areas
It is important to clarify further ‘easily accessible’. Relevant are windows and doors where any part is accessed within 2m from the ground, a balcony or a flat roof.
Importantly, Document Q applies to those properties with planning permission applied for after 1st October 2015.
What do windows and doors need to comply with Document Q?
Document Q is not a security standard in its own right. It uses the existing PAS 24:2012 British Standard. PAS 24:2012 is a test for windows and doors subjected to timed and specific forms of attack. Examples include using implements to break into the door, physical force and other known methods of gaining entry through a window or a door.
If you are familiar with or have heard of, Secured by Design, PAS 24:2012 is connected. PAS 24:2012 is the standard with which windows and doors also meet Secured by Design. To achieve this standard, your doors and windows need:
- A multi-point locking system meeting specific British or European Standards
- A kitemarked product subject to the lock provided
- High-security door handles and lock cylinders
- Testing and certification to approved standards
Therefore, for window and doors, these require security glazing methods and accreditation to PAS24. For front doors, a high quality secure letterbox is needed as well. Finally, certified windows (with non-locking handles) and doors need laminated glass to class P1A.
What products meet Approved Document Q?
At Aspire Bifolds, we offer a broad range of windows and doors. Some of our products come from one system. Examples are our Origin bifolding doors, windows and entrance doors. Other products include our Schuco Sliding Doors or Bifolding doors.
The vast majority of our products meet the requirements of Approved Document Q. However it depends on the type of product. It also depends on the particular specification of your new windows and doors.
Many doors and windows companies market their products as PAS24 or Approved Document Q compliant. However, it is essential that you check the specification of products tested to these standards.
For example, some windows and doors meet the standards only with laminated glass or higher security cylinders than provided as standard. Importantly, some doors do not meet the standards when opening out. Some doors do not need to meet the standard if they only lock from the inside.
We therefore recommend that you check with us. We will give you the right advice on the security of your new windows and doors.
How our products meet Document Q.
Our most popular products include bifolding doors. For a bifold like our Origin range of sliding folding doors, a few simple upgrades ensure compliance. This includes:
- Changing your glass to P1A laminated glass.
- Door cylinder upgrades to at least a three star.
- The bifolds operate from the outside.
For Origin aluminium windows and many of our other brands, the standard product complies.
Sliding doors also mostly comply depending on use and location.
Finally, all our front doors comply with multi-point locks and high-security cylinders. Contact us if you have any questions about Approved Document Q for your new build home and new extension.