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Doors now rated for energy efficiency

Published:  12 September, 2011

UK: This month sees the launch of the Door Energy Ratings Scheme (DER) from the windows energy rating authority the British Fenestration Ratings Council (BFRC).

This will extend use of the renowned and respected BFRC energy rating label (similar to that found on fridges, freezers and other white goods) to all kinds of domestic doors – external pedestrian doors and French, folding and sliding glazed doors.

This represents the biggest extension of the BFRC scheme since 2006. In the UK 1.7 million doors are sold each year worth £772 million. Until now, homeowners were unable to easily assess the energy efficiency properties of the doors they were purchasing or able to quickly compare competing product. All of this changes with the launch of the BFRC DER scheme.

All kinds of external pedestrian doors – solid doors, partially glazed doors and fully glazed doors – will be included in the scheme. The simulations for the BFRC DER Scheme will allow every style to be included whether they are constructed of PVC-U, aluminium, timber or are a composite type door.

They will be rated ‘A’ to ‘G’. Solar gain will not be included in the rating process for external pedestrian doors, however, air leakage rates are taken into account.

An ‘E’ rating will equate to a U value of 1.8 allowed for in the Part L buildings regulations. An ‘A’ rating will reflect the standard of the best performing doors currently available. Doors rated ‘F’ & ‘G’ would not satisfy buildings regulations but have been included to cover product that is exempt such as those for listed buildings or other architecturally sensitive applications.

The most common types of fully glazed doors, with a glazed area of 60% or more – French, folding and sliding – are included in the scheme and will be rated on the scale of ‘A’ to ‘G’, though it is envisaged that most product will achieve a ‘C’ rating or more. The higher bands for these glazed products better reflect the inclusion of solar gain into the DER calculation as required by the System Assessment Procedure (SAP) 2009. In fact, the DER for these doors follows exactly the rating formula that currently pertains to BFRC window energy ratings.