Garage conversion DIY can you help what are legal requirements for walls,floors,ceiling.?

Garage conversion DIY can you help what are legal requirements for walls,floors,ceiling. I understand that for ceilings you need insulation laid both ways.Do you need to fix a waterproof membrane to walls etc.

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9 Responses to “Garage conversion DIY can you help what are legal requirements for walls,floors,ceiling.?”

  1. gavira_76 said:

    the best trick is to invite a builder to quote on how much the works will cost and while he is doing a quotation – ask him questions, saying that you want to do this and that, but don’t know if it’s legal or not.
    even if he asks money for the survey – it will be well worth it.
    Or pay the architect for the drawing – which shouldn’t cost that much for the garage, will help you imagine what goes where and he will know all the building regs as well – so you can feel free to ask him about them!

  2. Duffer said:

    Your local Council will be able to put you straight on current Building Regulations. I assume that you have received planning consent from them?

  3. stevetower said:

    There are many requirements such as egress, power, fenestration, insulation, fire protection, etc. You should try going to your permit issuing authority, (building inspection department?) and ask them if they don’t have a flier for this sort of thing. It will be a simplified compendium of all the requirements. A short list of what you need is, insulation all around, how much depends on where you live, at least one smoke detector that is hard wired with battery backup, at least one window, at least one light fixture, outlets and at least two means of leaving the space.

  4. mustanger said:

    By garage conversion I suppose you’re converting it to an additional space for household use. Insulation laid both ways is not mandatory although this does decrease the likelyhood of air seepage between the insulation rolls. You might also look into having the insulation sprayed on. The cost for this has come way down and the advantages are that it fills ALL the nooks and crannies so you get no outside air intrusion. As to the walls check with the local authorities as to the code requirements, but I would say a minimum 5/8 sheetrock for strength, fire protection and sound deadening. Additionally run the sheetrock horizontally rather than vertically. That way each sheet ties the maximum number of wall studs together for more strength and minimum wall shake. The Insulation you use in the outside walls (and ceiling) should have a vapor barrier. Again a sprayed in insulation prevents any small pockets of air intrusion or leakage. As to the floor, be aware that the garage floor, if it was built to code, is sloped toward the opening. This is to allow potential gasoline spills to drain out and not build up. Not a big thing and not much you can do about it but any cabinets you put in there will not sit exactly level. It’s only minor though. As to floor coverings that’s up to your tastes. Tile, wood or carpet can all be installed over cement. If your garage is a step down from the rest of the house and you want to raise the floor this can be done by laying two bys (Thickness depends on how much rise you want) on edge and then covering with plywood. If you use this method, use 3/4 inch tongue and groove plywood and run a bead of ‘quick nails’ glue down each two by edge then lay the plywood and screw it down. Any floor covering desired can be applied over the plywood and the floor will be much warmer in the winter than a cement one. Hope this helps. Good Luck.

  5. DIY Doc said:

    I can’t know if you live in the US or UK, but Duffer has the intial clue.

    “Codes”, while standardized for many things, can vary through municipalities and depend on specific location, materials available and suggested, etc.

    Certainly “Membranes” are usual on either block or frame construction, JUST INSIDE the exterior wall or most often OUTSIDE (On wood frame) to barrier against moisture to a degree. To add “Tyvek” or similar to the outside surface of an interior wall (facing the insulation, is ill effective, and most often Batting/ Paper covered, rolled insulation is barrier material anyway. You’d do well to seal the existing floor, even lay a barrier, and construct a floor above that.

    Insulation BOTH WAYS??? Hmmm??? I’ll assume you mean roll type? I’d do blown in, in any case, but the issue is what R values ANY insulation will offer, especially if a garage room has no room over it, only roof or crawl space/trusses.

    Anything else you do is just as you would for any interior room in the house. You say this is a conversion, and from an existing garage, but you don’t state if the existing walls and ceiling of the space are OPEN to the studs, or finished IE: Drywall. You’ll also,,, I assume, remove the garage door, re frame that area, and finish appropriately.

    Steven Wolf

  6. chris b said:

    the best way to make sure you have the right legal requirements is to ask your local council, as different councils seem to have slightly different ideas on how garage conversions should be, i know it sounds mad but its the government. some councils like cellotex on the walls (its like polystyrene) some like rockwoll (like the stuff you have in your loft) and the same for the ceilings where either of the before mentioned could apply plus the floor will have to be insulated as for waterproofing the walls that will depend on the ground level outside

  7. A D said:

    Dependant on the borough or area you are in, as I have completed a similar project 5yrs ago all I had to do was draw up plans to convert my garage into a habitable abode. This involved partial planning, copy to planning and building control dealt with the rest, subject to regulations being addressed. As it is already a structure and in situe the actual building permissions would come from building control thus a quicker response to get the go ahead. The big thing with building control is thermal value or insulation and dependant on type of conversion extractor fans, double glazing and jabolite insulation to flooring.I don’t know what your fllor is like but if the concrete in the garage is breaking up I suspect does not conform you will need to lay a new concrete floor or joists and timber flooring, the choice is yours.
    As far as the floor is concerned once you have set datim lines ie depth of inner dig infill b type hardcore and tamp lay a membrane, visqueen to above dpc level and infill with sand, jabolite blocks, concrete in prep for final screed to dpc level.
    Ceilings need to be lagged, insulated throughout using silver back plasterboard to prevent condensation, facing up to inside void area. You can apply a waterproofer to sand and cement an apply to walls and finish with a setting coat, plaster.
    Or you can plasterboard use silver back, and dot and dab these to the walls.
    If the walls are damp leave to dry out once stripped, treat walls. Really there are quite a few options for inside fabrication and all of this is subject to your building regulations for that area and what the ds says.
    Don’t forget completion certificate from ds, niecc electrical certificate, poss gas certificate, and fensa certificate for d/glazing installation.
    Get sound advice first, best of luck

  8. arethusa_lad said:

    Ask at your local council offices. they are the men who come and check so they are the men to tell you what is needed.

  9. Jack Fisher said:

    Dont start doing anything before you know all the legal papers




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