SANS 10400 – Building Regulations South Africa

SANS 10400 - HOW DO YOU ACHIEVE COMPLIANCE?

From the actual wording of regulation SANS 10400 is indeed guaranteed to achieve compliance regulations and requirements for energy efficiency in buildings. The first thing you need to do in order to comply with the energy regulations then you have to start with the SANS 10400 XA document which can easily be obtained from www.sabs.co.za for a small fee.  Under these regulations, there are three main conditions or routes that you can choose in order to achieve compliance.  These will need to be undertaken or certified by an architect or an energy consultant (If he's also a "competent person - energy efficiency"). These conditions/routes are:

  • The Performance route.
  • The Prescriptive route.
  • The Reference Building Route.

Of the three, the most common SANS 10400 XA compliance route is the prescriptive route. This is generally available for all persons, meaning that it will be used more often in houses and other residential buildings. What this rule requires is that a set of rules is followed when it comes to water heating, insulation or the installation of any sort of glazing. On the other hand, compliance via the performance route or the reference building route may be achieved by the use of rational design using a competent person. With that, it is therefore paramount to note that hotels are by chance the only residential buildings to which performance routes may be applicable as this may not be used in actual residential homes. So, after this, it is best to understand some of the best and rational designs to comply with.

WHICH OF THE THREE SANS 10400 XA METHODS SHOULD THEREFORE BE FOLLOWED?

To be able to answer these question, a number of things have to be taken into account. These are:

SANS 10400 - XA Energy Efficiency in Buildings

THE ENERGY RATIONAL DESIGN

This is basically a report which has been prepared by an architect or energy consultant The regulation requires that this person is registered as COMPETENT PERSON - ENERGY in accordance with the SANS 10400 XA Building Regulations.  This report is then submitted for approval along with the building plans. This report will contain the 

following:

  • All the credentials of the Competent Person - Energy
  • The method used for compliance.
  • Calculations of annual energy usage and performance of the various building materials used.
  • The preferred option when it comes to energy modelling software as well as its suitability in which case the energy efficiency modelling software has to be sanctioned by Agre’ment South Africa.
  • The overall results of the energy efficiency modelling process.
  • The overall opinion of the Competent Person - Energy in terms of the building compliance.

WHO IS RESPONSIBLE?

By law, the owner of the building is the person considered to be responsible for the compliance with SANS 10400 XA regulations. However, the owner may decide to appoint another professional to be in his/her place as a principal agent for the overall process. This may include the draughtsman, architects or designers who are well versed with the development of energy efficient buildings.  Before the building plans are submitted to the municipality, a decision must be made as to which route is used to comply with the SANS 10400 XA regulations. As such, if a Performance route or the Reference Building Route is chosen, then by default it is about time that the Competent Person - Energy is appointed (if they are the same as architect or designer).

WHAT DOES THE TERM COMPETENT PERSON (ENERGY EFFICIENCY) MEAN?

In a nutshell, the competent person is none other than the person who has the experience, skills and knowledge in some specific area so as to be able to make a determination in terms of the SANS 10400 XA regulations. However, in the specific contents, a Competent Person – Energy will be the skilled expert, either a mechanical engineer or architect who has at one time undertaken the appropriate course pertaining to the SANS 10400 XA regulations on Energy Usage in Buildings.

WHICH DOCUMENTATIONS HAVE TO BE CONSIDERED?

When building plans have been completed, then it is the role of the Appointed Person to inform the local authorities as well as the Building Control Officer on the compliance route that has been chosen. This he/she has to do by simply completing a set of four main documents/forms, starting from SANS 10400-form 1 all the way to SANS 10400-form 4. These are usually the standardized SABS forms which include a checklist that indicates on the client’s choice of compliance route – supposed to be submitted to the local authorities. This you may get from www.sabs.co.za. So, what are these SANS 10400 forms all about?

  •  SANS 10400 FORM 1: DECLARATION BY THE PERSON RESPONSIBLE FOR PREPARING APPLICATION FOR APPROVAL OF BUILDING ERECTION.
    This section mainly focuses on the role of the Appointed Person where the person has to be the one to make a declaration focusing on the means by which the SANS 10400-XA regulations have to be satisfied when following the Energy Efficiency in Buildings. If the Performance Route or the Reference Building Route is followed then the Appointed Person has to in this case supply the name of the Competent Person. After this, the homeowner or establishment owner and the Appointed Person has to sign this SANS 10400 form and it has to be submitted to the Building Control Officer at the end accompanied with the plans.
  • SANS 10400 FORM 2: APPLICATION FOR APPROVAL AS AN APPROVED COMPETENT PERSON.
    In this step, the Competent Person (energy efficiency) is the one who is going to indicate that he or she has accepted the role for all the energy efficiency related duties, simply by signing the second SANS 10400 form. It is this section that will include the declarations that he/she has the qualification, knowledge and contextual experience necessary to be able to undertake that work. So, before all these have been approved, then the local authority has to approve the competent person – (energy efficiency) as being the best for the specific job. This can be done by ascertaining that the mentioned candidate or the Approved Person has some form of training or has been listed in the Building Control Website. As having attended the appropriate personal training. You have to however note that this second SANS 10400 form is not needed for the prescriptive Route model.
  • SANS 10400 FORM 3: DECLARATION BY A COMPETENT PERSON.
    This step will only be acceptable if the Competent Person (energy efficiency) is required, for making sure that the person is the best for the task at hand. This SANS 10400 form also has the second part which will convey the critical design information concerned with building energy efficiency. The third section only specifies the areas of responsibility to which the Competent Person(energy efficiency)’s expertise is relevant.
  • SANS 10400 FORM 4: CERTIFICATE OF COMPLETION BY OF THE STRUCTURAL, FIRE INSTALLATION OR FIRE PROTECTION.
    Here, the Competent Person – Energy Efficiency has to make sure that they complete and sign a Certification of Completion based on the SANS 10400 form 4 as soon as the building is finished to make sure that the building has been constructed in accordance with the approved Rational Design. It is this person who will also retain the role of seeing all energy efficiency aspects of some project through competition. However, you have to note that in this case, if the energy efficiency route is followed, then ‘energy efficiency in buildings’ check box option doesn’t have to be ticked.