A New Bathroom from PT Ranson

A New Bathroom from PT Ranson
 The forthcoming New Year can be a great time to make improvements in various aspects of your life, and some areas ready for a change may include such all-important areas of your home as the kitchen and bath.

If you have plans to move home or remodel a bathroom in your home, it will be helpful to know what will be fashionable in 2015 and, PT Ranson bathrooms with such delights the range of Victoria and Albert Baths will be able to help you. For those looking to move house then the rooms that buyers scrutinize are the kitchen and bathroom. Since other rooms can be improved upon with paint, floor wax or carpeting and perhaps some minor electrical work, an attractive, recently updated kitchen or bathroom is more likely to tip the scales in favour of a sale.

If you are planning to upgrade to designer bathrooms in your current home for a future home sale or for your own enjoyment, you will want to do your research and find a manufacturer of high-quality luxury bathroom fittings who can deliver exactly what you want. If you are adding a new bathroom to your current home, you will want to choose a sleek design that provides the greatest possible return on your investment, and in many cases it will make sense to upgrade existing bathrooms to ensure a similarly updated and well-appointed look. The right designer will be able to help you do just that.

People adding a new bathroom to their home or upgrading to designer bathrooms have many things to consider before going into a showroom, and it is helpful to envision the desired result before deciding between the options that you have based on space availability, plumbing and other issues. One of the most obvious considerations is what you generally want your designer bathrooms to look like. Do you have a preferred colour scheme? What about a preference for features that will be easy to clean? Do certain types of fixtures appeal to you more than others? Next, consider how your preferences will work with the layout of your current bathroom. To what extent might the existing layout have to change? Would you be willing and able to consider a more extensive renovation that involves new plumbing and electrical wiring? Will the dimensions of your existing bathroom or planned add-on leave enough space and allow for comfortable placement of fittings and ease of movement between the tub or shower, toilet and sink?

All of these questions need to be answered before ordering your luxury bathroom fittings, and the right manufacturer will come to your home, do a walk-through and work with you to develop a design that will work with your preferences as well as any variables that cannot be changed.

Once you have gone through this initial phase of the design process, you will be able to decide on the features that you would like to include in your renovated bathroom. Popular features right now include basin-style sinks on vanity bases with additional shelving or drawers, wide sinks and mirrors which can be shared by couples in master baths, free-standing tubs, recessed spaces for shampoo and other toiletries, stainless steel fixtures and white or off-white fittings against a dark background. If you have limited cabinetry in your current bathroom or exposed plumbing which you would like to conceal, certain luxury bathroom fittings by Kohler and others can solve both problems in the form of an equally attractive and useful vanity base which also will also make the best possible use of the space. Shower cubicles can also be an excellent space-saving feature which makes for easier cleaning. For larger bathrooms, separate shower cubicles and free-standing tubs are an attractive way to break up a large space, and windows with a view of the treetops can make the bath experience even more relaxing. Finally, you will want to make certain that the installers are familiar with the manufacturer’s products and support services. A reputable designer will recommend knowledgeable installers who will typically bring in their own electricians and plumbers as needed for your bathroom renovation project.

Whether your home is ten years old or 100 years old, adding a new bathroom or upgrading to designer bathrooms is one of the best investments you can make in your home. The right luxury bathroom fittings will make your daily routine more enjoyable, impress your guests and put you in a favourable position to sell your home should that day ever come. You might even find that certain space-saving features are more attractive than the ones you already have. Make sure that the designer you choose can offer the best value for the design you have chosen, and your new designer bathroom will delight your family and guests for many years to come.

Many Burgbad bathroom furniture pieces, including sleek wood shelving and wall-mounted vanities, work especially well in bathrooms which reflect an appreciation for the beauty of nature. Imagine having such a bathroom for yourself; you’ll most certainly feel an improvement in your quality of life from the first time you step across the heated floor to your beautiful new tub for a relaxing soak surrounded by calming, natural colours and features.

P.T. Ranson has been supplying and installing components for luxury bathrooms across the UK for over 15 years. We work with architect’s specifications as needed and are prepared to guide homeowners through every step of the process, from initial consultation and planning to final installation. Let our experts outfit your home with the luxury bathroom of your dreams in 2015.

For more information or to schedule an appointment, call us today on 0191 469 6999 or visit the P.T. Ranson designer bathrooms website today.

SEO Ranking Factors Identified

SEO Ranking Factors
As recently as June / July this past year, a group of recognised SEO industry gathered to geek out about one thing: SEO ranking factors. It was known as the SMX Advanced, the Search Marketing Expo. One of the most significant outcomes was maybe the SMX Ranking Factors for 2105. The SEO ranking factors included:

Understand User Intent, and Satisfy It

As you set out to “optimise” a the content in a web page, although it is important to consider keywords, you should also consider the user’s intent.

  • What questions is the user asking?
  • What information does the user need?
  • What is the user’s main purpose in searching?

Then, seek to answer those questions. You can connect the user’s questions to their intent. Then, you can connect the intent to your topic. And that topic will naturally use the correct keywords.

Get a Backlink from a News Site

Back links are still effective but, as we all know, not all links are created equal. As is well documented, some links are more important than others?

One of the most conclusive findings from SMX was “successful pages have more news links than non-successful pages.” If you want to get backlinks from authoritative news websites, I recommend the following:

  • Press releases, to stay current and visible in front of news sites
  • Help a reporter out (HARO), to get direct access to reporters
  • Personal branding, to be a go-to authority and spokesperson in your niche
  • Industry forums, to maintain a presence where news networks will be sure to look
  • Activity community involvement, in order to get mentions and links in local papers
  • Blogging about current events, in order to be a source of research and quotation from news sites

Link Building is still very much on the agenda. Since the Google reviews of 2014, many SEOs have been predicting the end for link building. There was a form of link building that was black-hat and spam based.  But link building is still important. Just as long as you’re doing it carefully.

Use Relevant Keywords

As we have said – Keywords Still Matter.  Always include reference to your targeted key phrases in page content. As has been well documented –  don’t Keyword Stuff or spam – the Search Engines are clever enough to see this strategy and you are likely to get penalised!

There has been so much written about key words / phrases that we will leave this one here.

Create Interactive Elements

The findings also indicate that interactive element are correlated with higher ranking sites. Here are some additional interactive content ideas:

  • Embedded tweets
  • Videos
  • Gifs
  • Infographics
  • Interactive infographics (example)
  • Gifographics
  • Games
  • Social sharing widgets
  • Lessons
  • Links
  • Polls
  • Quizzes
  • Longer content
  • Outlined content
  • List content

If you don’t have the time or talent to make smart interactive pages, don’t worry. Great navigation, a clean interface, and a well-designed site are interactive enough for improved ranking.

Create Content that is Easy to Read

You may not know how to pronounce “Flesch Readability,” but you know good content when you see it. So does Google. The Flesch Readability scale is a measure of how easy it is for people to read your content. The easier it is to read your content, the better you’ll probably rank.

Over the past 18 months, SEOs have noticed content with the following features tends to rank better:

  • Long form: The power of 300-word posts just isn’t the same.
  • Readable: Google employs human graders to determine how readable and useful your content is.
  • Expert: People can tell if your content is authoritative or weak.
  • Layout: Even the way your website is laid out makes a difference in ranking.

Use Lists – Search Engines Love Them

Lists are great. Search engines love them. Users love them. Here’s what the SMX experts said:

Presence of unordered lists: If a user is searching for something in a hurry or is on their phone, as SEOs we have to care about this. Structured content allows users to get to their answers as fast as possible. Tober says it is important to view this factor as a hint: “Users enjoy structured content”. 

Adding a bulleted list to a blog or page is a great way to juice up your content with a little extra usability and optimal experience.

HTTPS as a Ranking Signal

Since Google announced that HTTPS is a ranking signal (August, 2014), we haven’t seen huge ranking changes. Searchmetrics has done the most research on the subject. Their verdict is that “secure connection should be considered.” Is it advised? Yes. Is it critical? Not yet.

Bigger sites have more to lose and therefore, more to gain, by implementing HTTPS. However, it’s obvious that HTTPS is growing in importance. Some brands and businesses appear to have increased their visibility by small percentages since the HTTPS algorithm was released. If you can implement HTTPS, it’s a good idea to do so.

Get Your Website Listed
If you are a small business that is just starting out you will already have some idea of how tough it is competing with other bigger, more established businesses to be noticed by potential customers, especially online.  With many larger businesses being able to afford massive advertising campaigns that appear all over social media and other popular websites and dominating the majority of the first pages of search engine results it can feel a little overwhelming to any small business trying to be seen, but with a little clever internet marketing, from a professional service such as Direct Submit getting your business noticed could be far quicker and easier than you may first think.

At Direct Submit Internet Marketing Services they are able to offer a wide range of services to help boost your businesses online profile and raise your online sales and leads, with the use of modern and effective methods such as Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) you can be certain that they will help you give your website a real boost.  SEO is a popular method that can help make sure that your business reaches a far higher ranking on results produced by search engines such as Google or Bing, making your website far more likely to be seen by the people that will really have an interest in your products or services.  As they offer a unique service to every client at Direct Submit they will tailor any SEO optimisation to your individual needs so you make the best use of all options available to your business.

By employing an expert service such as Direct Submit you will be able to have more time to get on with other work to keep your business growing while they make sure that your website really works for you.

With a focus on paying attention to detail and providing every client with the right advice so they can help them build an SEO strategy that is completely suited to the needs of their business, they pride themselves on offering the best possible service to every business no matter how small or large.  With each stage of the process being carried out by one of their team of fully trained staff including key phrase research, website analysis and compliance, SEO promotion and marketing, linking strategy and ongoing monitoring and maintenance you can be certain on having expert advice and support every step of the way.

So if you have a new business or an existing website that isn’t having a lot of success why not take a look at the SEO and other internet marketing services on offer at Direct Submit and see what they could do to help you make sure that your business gets noticed.  You might be surprised what a great investment it turns out to be when your internet sales and leads begin to increase considerably.

For more information on making your website work harder for you, or you would simply like to discuss your Internet Marketing or Search Engine Optimisation project, call us today on 0845 2722350 or visit the Direct Submit website.

Cedars Landscape Gardeners

Cedars Landscape Gardeners
Cedars Garden Design provides top-of-the-line garden design and landscape gardening services to both residential and commercial clients across the North East & Northern England. Celebrating our 14th consecutive year in business, our landscaping team is one of the most experienced in garden design, and implementation. The landscapers at Cedars enjoy the design process of any landscape gardening or block paving services, this because of the varied designs on option and difference in materials used on each project. However the main focus is in the selection and positioning of the garden plants, which add to and soften the patio and walled areas of the garden and give all year round colour and pleasure.

They  can offer the full range of commercial landscaping and gardening services to both the residential and commercial sectors. This includes decking, fencing, patios, garden walling, turfing and many other specialist garden features. This to local authorities, schools and commercial organisations on a contracted basis. Once the contract has been set up, your landscaped gardens will be cared for and looked after. They undertake all types of landscaping jobs from Walls to Patios, Block Paving, Turfing to Tree Felling, Fencing, Car Parks, Flagging & Driveways, Dry Stone Walling, Ponds and Planting as well as a supply of gardeners for bi-monthly private client garden maintenance. In fact the COMPLETE commercial landscaping service.

Located in the North East of the UK, we provide a full landscape garden planning & layout service from design to completion. Our business has been built on strong working relationships with the emphasis being towards the landscaping, design and build of your garden. This includes services to schools, commercial landscaping and local authorities. Client testimonials are available on request.

Cedars landscape gardening are devoted to creating gardens of unique and individual charm. From classic to contemporary garden design, utilising materials and planting, energy and imagination, Cedra landscaping aim to reveal the true potential of your garden whilst keeping within the parameters of your desired budget.

There are many varied types of garden designs, and Cedars are pleased to offer the very latest technology in design… CAD. Yes, Cedars can show you our garden and landscape plans in 3D…so you can take a virtual tour of your future garden. For so many reasons, 3D designs are infinitely better and easier to work with than 2D.

If you would like to contact Cedars Landscape Gardeners about any of their landscape gardening services, please telephone 0191 565 1758 or (Mobile) 07940 189172 or visit the Cedars Landscaping website today.

SEO Tips to Help Improve Rankings for Small Business

SEO Tips to Help Improve Rankings for Small Business
You might have a great website – but do enough people know about it? Do you have a website that doesn’t seem to contribute much to your business or are thinking of developing a new online business? Chances are that you’re looking for ways to promote your website, call us now and let us show you how to attract qualified visitors to your website. Well, how do you optimise your website to attract the traffic you want?

SEO or Search Engine Optimisation is the practice of improving the level of traffic of your website through the use of targeted keywords that are likely to be searched by customers searching for the products or services your business offers. Even if your website looks attractive and is beautifully designed, if it is not optimised properly then it will be unlikely to attract traffic and it is not going to help your business as much as it could without some basic SEO optimisation.

Your small business can do the following simple SEO techniques to improve its ranking on the search engines:

Determine your target audience & Key Phrase
This is the first step in your SEO campaign. Always identify the intended target audience of your website and select a keyword or key phrase that this audience will likely use to search for your products. Then set up page content based on this keyword or key phrase to ensure the page or website is ‘relevant’ to the targeted key phrase.

Produce unique content for your Website Constantly
Look to write unique and informative articles, blogs etc for your website. Original and interesting content will be valued by your visitors and provide visitors with a reason to remain (and hopefully return) to your website.  This ‘valued content’ will help generate ongoing interest in your website, helping increase the potential for a sale. Providing value to the visitor will result in a higher ‘ROI’ for your business via your website.

Have your business listed in Google Local Business Listing
This is a free feature offered by Google where you can create additional links so people can easily find your site, therefore your web traffic will be increased. Signing up is easy and quick, you only need to provide your business name, address, contact information, etc. You also can get linked by listing with other online directories like Chamber of Commerce and local business directories.

 Arrange for Quality and Relevant links back to your website
Inbound links are considered very important in the SEO world, particularly by Google. If you have decent quality and relevant links directed back to your website, your ranking on search engines will be enhanced.  Using directories, suppliers, social networks sites can offer a free and quick way to start with creating back links to your site. Note that some more ‘notable’ directories may require fee to generate a link. Do not use link farms or the like as these will probably be noticed by the Search Engines and get your website banned or penalised.

Promote your Website URL Offline
Always include your website address on stationary, on marketing materials and on company vehicles. This is a sure fire way to help achieve continuous promoting of the website address.

All businesses should explore and utilise their website to work well in the Search Engines. If your site is properly optimised for the search engines you can attract more traffic, your business can easily be found by potential clients, and you will hopefully achieve more sales for your business.

Specialising in Internet Marketing Services, Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and Pay per Click (PPC) online marketing and over the past decade we have built up a loyal client base. The depth and breadth of knowledge we have built up helps set us apart in an increasingly competitive and crowded SEO market place.

With in excess of 10 years of online marketing experience, we know which techniques work and are always researching new methods to stay one step ahead of the competition. We do all of this and more on your behalf.

To speak to one of our Internet Marketing Consultants for advice on making your Web Marketing project a success, call us now on 0845 272 2350  or email us at mail@directsubmit.co.uk

Brighten your Home with Made-to-Measure Blinds

Brighten your Home with Made-to-Measure Blinds
Winter weather is on its way to the UK, and that means it’s time for smart homeowners and flat dwellers to make sure they are doing everything they can to keep their homes as warm as possible this summer.

According to the Energy Saving Trust, most people can expect to save anywhere from £10 to £50 per year on their utility bills simply by draught-proofing around windows and exterior doors. Those with a bigger budget might consider having double-glazed windows installed, but for many, this is simply too much of an undertaking both financially and logistically.

Yet another way to keep your home warm this winter is simply by ordering made-to-measure blinds for the windows and exterior doors which provide superior coverage and insulation compared to most models available in home improvement stores.

When it comes to keeping the home warm this winter, the benefits of made-to-measure blinds are two-fold: darker colours will block out more sunlight (what there is), and made-to-measure blinds will cover the windows and doors more completely, allowing fewer rays of sunlight to enter through cracks or around the edges of blinds.

Types of blinds that one might consider for this purpose include pleated blinds and blinds which are custom built to fit the window with their own frame. Many excellent models are available which do not require drilling into your existing windows or otherwise voiding the warranty, so if you do already have plans to install replacement windows, then custom blinds would be ideal!

The Beautiful Blind Company
The Beautiful Blind Company has been installing made-to-measure blinds in homes and offices in the Northeast for many years. Our Redcar-based installers provide an excellent service and will install our Perfect Fit blinds, or any other blinds you might select from our range of products, to meet your exact requirements.

For more information on how we can help you improve energy efficiency and keep your home comfortably cool all summer long, call us today on 01642 688049 or visit the Beautiful Blind Company website today.

A New Bathroom For the New Year

A New Bathroom For the New Year
Installing a new bathroom as the new year begins is a great way to have a real fresh start, having a relaxing bath or shower in beautiful surroundings is the perfect way to chase away those January blues.  At P T Ranson they have everything you need to completely transform any bathroom, with a massive range of luxury bathroom products for top quality designers you will find plenty of inspiration no matter how large or small your renovation plans may be.

No matter what shape or size your bathroom is at P T Ranson you will be sure to find the perfect answer to your all storage and space solutions, with so many stylish and practical designs to choose from you are certain to  be able to create a well organised and attractive space in even the most awkward room.

You may want to consider taking a look at the collection from Imperial Bathrooms if you want to create a classy and ornate theme within your room, with a huge range of designs to choose from including both traditional and more modern styles there is something there that will appeal to everyone.  With collections featuring everything you need to completely overhaul your bathroom including ceramic ware, basins, furniture and accessories you are sure to be able to create a perfectly coordinated design with a top quality finish.  All items with the Imperial Bathroom range are made only using the highest quality materials including solid wood, cast brass and ceramic finished using Imperials famous trade mark glaze so you can be sure that they are guaranteed to last for years to come.

If you love the idea of creating a real focal point within your bathroom then the bath tubs available from the Victoria and Albert Bathroom range are definitely for you!  With a wide variety of free standing tubs to choose from in a range of stunning designs you are sure to find the perfect tub to help you create a real movie star bathroom, whether you are looking for a more traditional style bathtub or would prefer a more modern streamlined design you are sure to find plenty of options that will suit your tastes.  With all tubs being made from 100 percent Quarry cast, a blend of volcanic limestone and high performance resins you can be sure that purchasing a tub from the Victoria and Albert Bathrooms range is a worthwhile investment that will stay looking great for ages.

Browsing the Burgbad bathroom furniture range is a really good idea if you are looking for some really good storage solutions or you want to create a really quality finish to your room.  With a wide selection of stylish designs of bathroom furniture including wall mounted units, cabinets, vanity units, basins and many other items you are sure to be able to transform even the smallest bathroom in to a functional and attractive area for the whole family. Made using a combination of the finest craftsmanship and modern techniques all Burgbad furniture is created with a focus on quality, usability and unique design.

So why not head over to P T Ranson and see how easily you could transform your bathroom into a tranquil haven this New Year.  With so many beautiful collections and high quality products to choose from you will be surprised how simple it can be! P.T. Ranson has been providing branded bathroom supplies and service for bathroom remodelling projects for years. With more than 30 years of collective experience and a commitment to providing the best possible products and service for each individual bathroom remodelling project.

When buying online from P.T. Ranson, deliveries on the UK mainland are free of charge. For more information, call today on 0191 4696999 or visit the P.T. Ranson website today.

Sound Testing Consultancy

Sound Testing Consultancy
The importance of undertaking acoustic design reviews and on site construction checks cannot be underestimated during the design and construction phase of new and conversion developments. If the project fails the sound testing and prevents the building handover, it can be extremely costly in terms of programme and in some instances can lead to claims by the client. By undertaking careful acoustic design from the initial design stage through to completion APT Sound Testing can help you achieve compliance with Part E of building regulations and reduce the chance of sound testing failure.

We offer seamless acoustic package which encompasses acoustic design, onsite construction checks and pre-completion sound testing. Using our on-going, proactive approach we ensure clients receive professional acoustic advice every step of the way, with an on-going continual consideration of cost. We can also undertake ‘in house’ UKAS accredited air tightness testing and sound testing in one seamless package, lowering costs and negating potential coordination issues.

In some instances we undertake pre-conversion sample sound tests on existing buildings. In most instances it is best if construction work is delayed until the pre-conversion sound tests have been carried out and evaluated. After the sound tests results are realised we will have a more accurate overview of the existing sound insulation properties and can subsequently undertake a targeted and measured acoustic design, which should save time and money on the acoustic construction.

To enable accurate sample sound testing the following items need to be in place:

  1. All existing doors should be in place
  2. All windows should be in place
  3. All walls should be in place.
  4. All existing floorboards should be left in place.

We then undertake a series of sample airborne sound insulation measurements of the existing walls and floors, as well as impact sound test measurements of the floors to establish the current levels of sound insulation being achieved by the existing dividing partitions.

If the existing wall or floor structures badly fail the sample sound tests, we can prepare an acoustic desktop assessment covering situations where:

  1. the performance of the existing structure is below the required standards and the client requires an acoustic design to pass Part E.
  2. no testing or working details have been prepared by the client and the acoustic consultant is asked to design and recommend all the separating walls and floors.
  3. If the internal walls are constructed out lightweight materials so there is a high chance of noise flanking.
  4. Also, to limit the risk of noise transmission, new build and conversion projects can be carefully planned to take into account the positioning of sensitive rooms in adjoining dwellings. It is important that potentially noisy areas such as kitchens and living rooms should, wherever possible not be located next to quieter areas in the neighbouring dwellings such as bedroom and studies. It is also best to ensure that similar room uses are aligned above and below one another, for example bedrooms should be situated above or below bedrooms and lounges next to lounges.

There are other simple considerations when designing for acoustics, the Cupboards and wardrobes that do not have silent closure mechanisms may lead to complaints about random and sudden noise. Sockets fixed back to back in separating walls may also lead to complaints about noise arising when plugs are inserted and switches are activated. The use of an additional sacrificial wall lining can reduce such noise complaints.

Note that aerial points on or adjacent to separating walls encourage people to place televisions and other entertainment systems against the separating wall and the resultant noise often leads to complaints, if the TV or stereo is simply moved to an internal/external partition this may lower the potential of noise complaints.

With the vast amount equipment and appliances used in today’s kitchens and utility rooms, it is often a cause of noise complaints due to the large amount of noise sources. Wherever possible, sockets for washing machines, dishwashers and fan extract ducts should be located away from the separating wall, especially if they are next to quiet rooms, e.g. studies and bedrooms in the adjoining dwelling. If this cannot be avoided, the separating wall should be designed to provide higher levels of sound insulation via extra wall linings and insulation etc. Plant rooms and lifts can also generate high levels of noise. If the lift has a track system the tracks should be fixed away from the separating wall from adjoining dwellings and extra acoustic upgrades used on the wall adjacent to the lift well.

It is also important to carefully consider floor surface finishes. Hard floor finishes such as wood laminates, tiles and floorboards can significantly increase the level of footstep noise (Impact) in the dwelling below.

The importance of undertaking acoustic design reviews and on site construction checks cannot be underestimated during the design and construction phase of new and conversion developments. If the project fails the sound testing and prevents the building handover, it can be extremely costly in terms of programme and in some instances can lead to claims by the client. By undertaking careful acoustic design from the initial design stage through to completion it greatly reduces the risk of sound testing failure.

Improving Existing Wall and Floor Partitions
Many existing dwellings consist of flats converted from large Victorian/Edwardian houses. Unfortunately at the time of the building conversion, designing for sound insulation was not a high priority and so many of the dwellings suffer from adverse noise transference between the floor and wall partitions. This can be extremely stressful to the occupant’s wellbeing is a major cause for concern.

There are ways to improve the airborne and impact performance by improving the wall/floor partitions ability to reduce the amount of sound transmission from one side of a construction element to the other. By isolating the different materials may not be enough it’s own and you may need to improve the mass of the partition as well.

Improving Existing Floor Partitions
In our experience – of undertaking thousands of sound tests), refurbishment projects usually achieve 30-35dB for airborne sound and 70dB for Impact Sound if no previous acoustic upgrades have been made to the existing construction. Unfortunately these figures fall far short of the required 43dB & 64dB as stipulated in Part E of Building Regulations. As sound levels double every 10dB, this is a massive failure and acoustic improvements must be made to avoid potential future complaints. A typical existing site construction is shown in as detail 1 below.

Acoustic Upgrade for Existing Floor Partitions
To reduce airborne and impact sound transmission this usually means adding density and isolation to the floor construction. This can be as simple as adding a drop ceiling consisting of 125mm timber frame. The top of the frame must be a minimum of 25mm below the existing ceiling finish – such as lathe and plaster. Then, to the inside of the timber frame add 100mm of Acoustic Wool and two layers of sound-board tacked to the bottom of the timber frame – all boards to be lapped. This should improve your sound test results by approx. 15dB depending on the existing site conditions and quality of the installation – Detail 2 shows this in more detail.

Improving Existing Wall Partitions
The standard onsite construction for existing internal walls may be a mixture of 100mm masonry with render applied to either side; or, 100mm timber partition with lathe and plaster to either side. Unfortunately neither of these existing wall constructions will have the acoustic properties to pass Part E in their existing state due to lack of mass and poor isolation values. 

Acoustic Upgrade for Wall Partitions
One way to quick and simple way improve the acoustic performance of a the dividing wall partition, is to install a 70mm met-sec partition in front of the existing wall – its usually best to install this in the largest room. Leave approx. 25mm gap between the back of the met-sec and the wall. Then install 50mm acoustic wool to the inside of the met-sec and add two layers of soundboard to the outside of the met-sec frame, ensuring all boards are properly lapped and the perimeter joints are filled with acoustic mastic – Detail 3 shows this in more detail.

Our team of experienced sound test engineers are dedicated to giving our customers the best quality of service and offer acoustic design advice where possible, to help our clients achieve the required acoustic results to pass the sound testing and attain building completion. We can also undertake ‘in house’ UKAS accredited air tightness testing and sound testing in one seamless package, lowering costs and negating coordination issues.

We pride ourselves on offering:

  • UKAS Accredited – we are one of the few companies that is UKAS accredited for both air and sound testing, so you can rest assured our reports will be accepted by building control.
  • One Stop Solution – for Air Tightness & Sound Testing (Building Regulations Parts E & L) to lower costs and negate coordination issues.
  • Fast response – we can usually get to your project within one working week, sometimes faster if it’s an emergency.
  • Acoustic remedial advice – if your development fails any of the tests we can offer a remedial acoustic solution to help you achieve compliance.
  • Quick results – sound testing is arranged around your build schedule and you will receive an immediate indication of test performance on site.
  • Electronic reportage – all or reports are sent electronically so you can send it straight to building control for immediate sign off – no snail mail with us.

Noise Flanking Paths
One of the most common reasons for failed sound tests is due to noise flanking. Noise Flanking is a term used by acoustic engineers wherein the sound passes over the top or under the primary partition separating the two spaces under test. Flanking sound transmission can be especially bothersome in multi-family residential buildings do to the sheer number of dividing partitions.  One way to reduce the chance of flanking transmission/s is careful acoustic design at the start of the project. Unfortunately, by simply specifying high performance wall and floor partitions between dwellings is no guarantee to a sound isolation and subsequently a successful sound test. APT Sound Testing offer both preconstruction and post construction design solutions to achieve the required sound isolation requirements of Part E of Building Regulations. We also offer an acoustic onsite inspection service to ensure that the sound insulation elements are being installed as per manufactures guild lines and the quality of the workmanship is consistent with ‘best practice’ noise control procedures.  You can also undertake you own checks by asking the design consultant i.e. the architect or the builder what steps have been taken to insure your building will be sound adequately sound proofed from your neighbours and from noise intrusion through perimeter envelope from outside the building, after all there isn’t any point your dwelling having high spec acoustic insulation between the inner partitions if sound is transferring through the outer envelope.

It is never safe to assume because the architect has specified high performance walls, windows and floor/ceiling assemblies that the materials and onsite workmanship will result in compliance with the anticipated results and ultimately a successful sound test. In all these instances successful sound isolation in your home depends on the workmanship during the construction phase, the problem is the site installer may know little about noise control techniques unless he is give the right supervision and direction the construction phase.  Typical Sound Flanking Pathways:

  • Dividing Floor Partitions – Through Floor and Floor Joist Space (if insulation has not been installed or direct fixing to joists without a drop ceiling below the partition under test)
  • Dividing Floor/Ceilings Partitions – Above and Through the Ceiling Space (where an adequate acoustic break has not been carried on through the ceiling void) » Through Structural Steel (structural steel beams are often a major cause of noise transmission as plasterboard is often fixed directly to the steel without sound breaks)
  • Shared Structural Building Components – Floor Boards, Floor Joists, Continuous Drywall Partitions, Continuous Concrete Floors, and Cement Block Walls.
  • Through Windows (if they are no double glazed or have secondary glazing as a minimum)
  • Fixtures & Outlets – Light Switches, Telephone Outlets, and Recessed Lighting Fixtures (if penetrations have been cut back to back with the opposite dwelling under test)
  • Structural Joints – Perimeter Joints at Wall & Floor, Through Wall & Ceiling Junctures (these should be filled with acoustic mastic) » Plumbing Chases – Junctures Between the Walls & Floor Slab Above or at the Exterior Wall Juncture (this should be filed with mortar etc. to add mass to this weakened area)
  • Around the End of the Partition Through the Adjacent Wall (acoustic mastic should be used to seal this junction)

If you would like more information in regards to acoustic design and sound testing on your for your development, please contact us at info@aptsoundtesting.co.uk or phone us on: 07775 623464.





Growing Your New Business with SEO

Growing Your New Business with SEO
Newcastle’s thriving business community is both a positive and a negative for new business owners. On the one hand, it seems like a better time than ever to be in the retail or service industries. On the other hand, so many businesses are already established that any newcomers might worry about how to bring customers to their doors.

If you are a new business owner in the Newcastle area or in the North East of England, you may be wondering how to set your business apart from the vast competition. You might have begun a word-of-mouth campaign among friends or considered how you might use social media to spread the word about your new business. You might have even considered a pay-per-click advertising campaign.

While these are all worthwhile endeavours depending on the type of business you are running, one must keep in mind that not every potential client will be searching for your business by name.

Let’s say you’ve recently opened, or will soon be opening, a vegetarian restaurant near Eldon Square and would like to attract customers who have just been shopping nearby. How would you begin to make your restaurant type and location known to hungry shoppers who don’t want to drive home and cook or stop somewhere for a burger? Since they are likely searching for “vegetarian restaurants Newcastle city centre” on their smartphones as you reflect upon this, it stands to reason that the key to drawing them into your restaurant lies in keyword-specific content on your website or elsewhere in cyberspace that will raise your profile in online search results.

This is exactly what search engine optimisation, or SEO – specifically local SEO, can do for your business. By publishing keyword-rich content that will draw more traffic to your website, you will gain market share simply by growing your online presence. SEO is a very effective part of a comprehensive Internet marketing campaign and will do more than any other form of advertising to increase your visibility to potential clients searching by business type, product or service.

Direct Submit Internet Marketing Services is dedicated to helping businesses of any size and in all sectors to reach and exceed their profit goals through effective and ethical SEO marketing. Whether yours is an established business with a website in need of more traffic or you’re just now venturing into cyberspace, Direct Submit will develop the ideal SEO marketing campaign to bring in new clients so that you can focus on the core business while watching revenues soar. As a leading Internet Marketing business, we specialise in SEO and other Internet marketing strategies for UK businesses, both large and small – local and National. No matter your advertising budget, we will work with you to develop a campaign to help your clients find you right when they need you.  To learn more about how we can help you maximise profits, call us today on 0845 272 2350 or visit our Internet Marketing Services website today.

Sound Insulation Testing Services

Sound Insulation Testing The required Site Conditions for Sound Testing
During the sound insulation testing, our equipment produces high levels of noise; between 100-100dB. However, to record accurate test measurements, relatively quiet conditions are required on site throughout the testing. Any site operatives working in the testing area will have to leave temporarily and any noisy works in the vicinity of the test areas including external site activity such as groundworks, drilling and banging will need to be halted. We also require full access to all the rooms being tested. We provide a full testing schedule within our quotation which will clearly identify suitable couplings of test rooms which may require access to adjoining neighbours dwellings to enable us to complete the testing. APT Sound Testing will try to schedule the sound testing with you at a time when noise can be controlled to achieve the best possible testing results.

How Long Will the Sound Testing Take? The time taken to undertake sound testing varies from project to project as no site is exactly the same. Taking into account standard site conditions a set of tests on houses -two airborne walls will take one to two hours. A six pack of tests on flats – 2 airborne wall, two airborne floor and two impact tests will take between two to three hours. Throughout the sound testing we will require full free uninterrupted access to the units/rooms in all test areas.

Should I inform my Neighbours of the Sound Testing? Your neighbours will need to be contacted if access is required to their properties to complete the sound testing. Also as the sound levels produced during the test are very high it would be ‘neighbourly’ to inform the residents as they are likely to hear the test. If your project is a new build and/or a change of use and its built onto an existing property then chances are you will be required to undertake an airborne wall test.  We recommend that you check this with your local building control officer prior to the testing so you can plan access to the neighbouring properties accordingly.

Can I Observe the Sound Testing? APT Sound Testing will happily give you a brief demonstration and overview of the test, if so required; however, during the actual sound testing, we will need to follow stringent rules which restrict extra personnel within the test areas.

I want peace of mind that I’ll pass the sound testing Poor Sound test results can occur for many reasons. The most common factor influencing acoustic performance is poor workmanship. Detailing is critical to maximising on site acoustic performance, especially in floor and wall isolation and appropriate party wall and floor construction. If inadequate provision for the isolation of materials is not undertaken Noise flanking may occur which is another common reason for sound test failure. We offer an acoustic design service to review the construction detailing. We also offer a sample testing service along with site inspections which provides a ‘one stop acoustic solution’. We visit site during the build process to check for any workmanship issues that may cause problems during the final pre-completion testing.

If you would like APT Sound Testing to review your site construction or to comment on their suitability, then please speak to us about our acoustic design advice service. This is a relatively inexpensive option that may avoid sound testing failures which result in expensive remedial treatment and delay your project handover.

For information in regards to sound testing or acoustic design, please follow our blog at: http://soundtestinguk.blogspot.co.uk/, or contact us on 0777 5623464 or visit our website at: www.aptsoundtesting.co.uk