Here's a list of general Regulations and Guidance that Horne thermostatic mixing valves, showers and taps contribute to compliance. Click on the + to expand each topic below.
L8 Approved Code of Practice, 4th Edition (2013): Legionnaires' Disease - The control of legionella bacteria in water systems.
HSG274 Part 2 (2014): Legionnaires Disease - Part 2: The control of legionella bacteria in hot and cold water systems. [Guidance]
L8 ACOP provides practical advice on how to comply with the law, specifically in relation to the Health and Safety at Work Act (1974) and COSHH, Control of Substances Harmful to Health.
The law applies to dutyholders, which includes landlords and employers.
Material and Product Approval to the Water Supply (Water Fittings) Regulations 1999 and Scottish Water Byelaws 2014.
Regulation 4(1)(a) states that every water fitting shall be of an appropriate quality and standard, considered so if it (4(2)(c) conforms to an appropriate British Standard or (4(2)(c) specification approved by the regulator.
Part of this approval refers to materials and substances in contact with (wholesome or potable) water:
[Schedule 2, Para 2(1)] ...no material or substance, either alone or in combination with any other material or substance or with the contents of any water fitting of which it forms a part, which causes or is likely to cause contamination of the water shall be used in the construction, installation, renewal, repair or replacement of any water fitting which conveys or receives, or may convey or receive, water supplied for domestic or food production purposes.
Materials Approval. For non-metallic materials, this requirement is met by compliance with BS 6920 - Suitability of non-metallic products for use in contact with water intended for human consumption with regard to their effect on the quality of water. Therefore, components such as O-ring seals and other rubber or plastic parts are tested for their effect on water quality; appearance, odour or flavour, leaching compounds and their ability to offer a source of nutrients to support and promote growth of micro-organisms/pathogens.
Approval is only given to materials that do not leach compounds and do not support aquatic micro-organisms such as Legionella and Pseudomonas.
Product approval. Is given to complete fittings that undergo mechanical and water quality testing (all non-metallic components must have their own UK Water Regulation 4 material approval).
Product approval certificates (UKReg4 or WRAS) are listed in the Useful Documents section of relevant product pages or in our Product Approvals list.
Following a petition and campaign by the Scottish Burned Children's Club to the Scottish Parliament in November 2004 and a Westminster private members' bill by Labour MP Mary Creagh in March 2006, the high incidence of bath scalding accidents in the home was addressed in both the Scottish Building Standards (from May 2006) and the UK Building Regulations (from March 2010).
The relevant sections of each current guidance document are:
The Building Regulations, Approved Document G, Sanitation, hot water safety and water efficiency (2016 Update)
Scottish Building Standards, Technical Handbook - Domestic (2017). Part 4: Safety
Scottish Building Standards, Technical Handbook - Non-domestic (2017). Part 4: Safety
Pre-requisites for compliance with each of the documents above are WRAS Approval and HSE L8 compliance (for workplaces and premises controlled in connection with a trade, business or other undertaking). Emphasis is also placed upon the operator's duty of care and the required maintenance of safety devices to ensure correct operation.
Prevention of Scalding
To prevent scalding, the temperature of hot water, at the point of delivery to a bath or bidet, should not exceed 48°C. (para 4.9.5, SBS Domestic technical handbooks)
The hot water supply temperature to a bath should be limited to 48°C by use of an in-line blending valve or other appropriate device. (para 3.65, Part G)
Facilities used for personal hygiene - to prevent scalding, the temperature of hot water, at point of delivery to a bath, shower or bidet, should be limited...up to a maximum of 48ºC. Delivery temperature of hot water to a facility should relate to the vulnerability of people who may use the facility, particularly elderly people or unsupervised children, who are more at risk from injury. (para 4.9.5, SBS Non-Domestic technical handbook
Acceptability of a TMV for this application is demonstrated by compliance with BS EN 1111 and BS EN 1287 (SBS Technical Handbook para 4.9.5, Part G para 3.66), which is confirmed by selecting a TMV with TMV2 Scheme Approval as minimum.
In-line blending valves and composite thermostatic mixing valves should be compatible with the sources of hot and cold water that serve them. (para 3.67, Part G)
For the prevention of contamination and colonisation by waterborne pathogens (Legionella Pneumophila, for example), Part G also recommends minimising the length of supply pipe between in-line blending valves and the outlet, as well as thermal disinfection/flushing of infrequently used outlets (para 3.68).
There are a number of guidance documents that relate to accessible facilities for less able people and their carers:
The Building Regulations, Approved Document M. Access to and use of Buildings Volume 2: Buildings other than dwellings. (2015)
British Standard 8300:2018 Design of buildings and their approaches to meet the needs of disabled people – Code of practice
Changing Places Consortium has produced Practical Guidance for the development of assisted and accessible changing, toilet and shower facilities in public spaces such as airports, motorway service stations, leisure centres and shopping centres.
Sport England have also produced a Design Guidance Note Accessible Sports Facilities in relation to team and public shared-use facilities.
All of the above help meet obligations under The Disability & Equality Act 2010 and provide advice on the design and layout of facilities to cater for all, whether able-bodied or with any kind of physical impairment.
In our experience, Doc M is the guidance most rigourously followed on construction and refurbishment projects. Doc M, however, does also refer to all these other documents for additional guidance in regard to appropriate sanitary fittings and changing/showering layouts.
The relevant requirements for each of these documents is summarised below. For detailed information, please refer to the relevant document link in the adjacent list.
Sanitary facilities - Showers
Pre-requisites of the documents above is WRAS approval (see previous section) for terminal tap and shower fittings. BS 8300 refers specifically to the enclosure of hot water pipes and wastes in order to avoid the possibility of injuries caused by hot surfaces.
BS 8300 and Changing Places guidance calls for showers, bath and basin taps to be thermostatically controlled by a thermostatic mixing valve (TMV). Considering the potential increased vulnerability of disabled users, it would seem logical that this TMV should be TMV3 Scheme Approved as those used for healthcare applications.
For sanitary fittings, visual contrast with the background surface is important, as agreed in all 4 documents. Sport England's Accessible Sports Facilities document also states, 'of people registered blind or partially sighted, 96% have some degree of vision that can be significantly enhanced by good use of colour, luminance and textured surfaces'.
To further assist blind and partially sighted users, Doc M and BS 8300 suggest that tap and shower controls are marked in a clear and logical manner.
All documents require easy to operate lever controls for taps and shower fittings to assist users with limited grip and hand mobility. Thus, easy to operate with a 'closed fist'.
Where the documents deviate in their advice is in relation to the arrangement of the shower head relative to the shower controls. The advice is, therefore, open to interpretation. Below is a summary of the requirements for each document (note, in particular, the inclusion/omission and mounting heights of the secondary fixed shower head).
|Document / Feature||Part M||BS:8300||Changing Places||Sport England|
|Lever Control||see BS 8300||yes||easy to operate||yes|
|Control Markings||logical & clear||logical & clear||easy to read||not mentioned|
|Control Height (mm)||750-1000||750-1000||750-1000||1000|
|Adjustable showerhead height (mm)||1200 - 1400||1050 - 1850||1200 - 1400||1400|
|secondary showerhead height (mm)||not specified||not required||not required||1800|
The Horne T108A2L shower panel, mounted with base of panel at 780mm above finished floor level (upper control at 940mm), provides a shower head adjustment range 1200-1740mm, thus meets the Changing Places recommendations.
The Horne T605A2L shower range is compliant with Building Regulations Part M and Changing Places advice when paired with a white or orange wall-mounted riser rail (mounted at 983 - 1658mm AFFL) and (optional) pipe cover.
Both shower models meet the requirements laid out above:
Pre-plumbed enclosure - no exposed hot water pipes (plus quick and easy installation)
Integral TSV1-3 shower valve - TMV3 Scheme & WRAS approved
Visual contrast: shower controls, head, hose & handset / background panel (LRV = 84) / Black/grey lever riser mechanism against white or orange riser rail
Lever controls, clearly marked and individually shaped to further denote function by feel.
The Doc M and Changing Places arrangement and mounting heights for the shower controls, (fixed head) and adjustable shower head can be achieved in mounting the riser rail accessory on the wall adjacent to the shower panel (upper fixing at 1658mm AFFL, lower fixing at 983mm AFFL). This gives a height adjustment range of 1200-1736mm from finished floor level. The pull tab can assist shorter or wheelchair shower users to lower a high-set handset.
Strangely, Volume 1 (Dwellings) of the Building Regulations Approved Document M does not provide information relating to shower (control and riser) or grab rail mounting heights for accessible and adaptable dwellings [M4(2)(2)(a) and (b)] or wheelchair user dwellings [M4(3)(2)(a) and (b)]. Nor does it refer the reader to other information sources.
However, paras 2.26 and 3.36 state: a dwelling should comply with the following... (d) all walls, ducts and boxings to every WC/cloakroom, bath and shower room are strong enough to support grab rails, seats and other adaptions the could impose a load of 1.5kN/m2.
Sanitary Facilities - Grab Rails
There is consensus across all the above documents (and also HBN 00-02 in our Healthcare regulations section) regarding the recommended mounting height of grab rails associated with accessible changing areas, shower areas, basins, baths and WCs.
The table below gives recommended mounting heights for each sanitary assembly. Units are mm above finished floor level, AFFL.
|Area / Rail||Vertical Rail||Horizontal Rail*||Other Rail|
800 (towel rail)
800 (towel rail)
|Hand wash basin||2 No. @ 800-1400
300-350mm L and R
from basin centreline
|not applicable||not applicable|
|WC||2 No. @ 800-1400
470mm L and R
from WC centreline
top edge of bath
75-100 (lower fitting)
*Please note that the mounting height refers to the top edge of the rail and not the height of the fixing points. Horne grab rails are 32mm in diameter, therefore the fixing centres should be 664mm or 784mm above finished floor level.