SAP calculations are an essential part of compliance with the Building Regulations for new build homes. Now that we've had a year of assessing projects against the new Part L 2021 we thought we would share some of the most frequently asked questions we get on SAP calculations.
Q. Can I still pass using a gas boiler?
A. Yes you can. Although from 2025 gas boilers will be phased out for new build, at the moment you can still install a gas boiler. However to pass the SAP calculation you will need to install other technologies alongside this such as solar panels and waste water heat recovery. Not every home will have a roof suitable for solar panels and a heat pump may be a more suitable option.
Q. What is the Primary Energy Rate ?
A. This new metric is a way of looking at the total amount of energy needed to supply the power used in the home, accounting for factors such as generation, transmission losses through the national grid and efficiency of the heating system. Technologies that perform well here are solar PV (local generation), and heat pumps (due to their high efficiency).
Q. How can I improve the EPC rating?
A. The EPC rating reflects the energy costs of a home and all elements of the specification will impact on the final EPC rating achieved. Some types of electric heating (such as panel heaters or electric boilers) can be more expensive to run than a gas fired boiler and this will be reflected in the EPC rating. Chosing a more efficient heating system such as an air source heat pump, or adding solar PV can both be effective ways to offset this, and improve the EPC rating.