Certification of construction products may take two forms, that to comply with the Construction Products Regulations (UK CPR or EU CPR) or a wider ranging UK independent third-party certification carried out by a duly accredited certification body.
Product Certification in compliance with the UK CPR or EU CPR relates to specific requirements of Designated Standards (DS) in the UK or harmonised European Standards (hENs) in the EU. All DSs and hENs contain an Annex ZA which states the specific testing and where appropriate certification requirements for those Essential Characteristics (ECs) contained in the annex.
All ECs within a DS or hEN have an Attestation and Validation of Constancy of Performance (AVCP) system number and within the fenestration industry only System 1, 3 and 4 are used. These systems have various requirements for manufacturers, test houses/labs and product certification bodies. In the UK test houses/labs and product certification bodies must be accredited by UKAS and are known as Approved Bodies (ABs). In the EU these bodies are known as Notified Bodies and Notified Product Certification Bodies.
The requirements of the three AVCP are as follows:
System 4 – Declaration of the performance of the essential characteristics of the construction product by the manufacturer on the basis of the following items:
- The manufacturer shall carry out:
- determination of the product-type on the basis of testing, type calculation, tabulated values or descriptive documentation of the product
- Factory production control
- No tasks for the Approved Bodies
System 3 – Declaration of the performance of the essential characteristics of the construction product by the manufacturer on the basis of the following items:
- The manufacturer shall carry out factory production control (FPC)
- The Approved test laboratory shall assess the performance on the basis of testing (based on sampling carried out by the manufacturer), calculation, tabulated values or descriptive documentation of the construction product.
- The manufacturer shall carry out:
- Factory production control;
- Further testing of samples taken at the manufacturing plant by the manufacturer in accordance with the prescribe test plan
- The Approved Product Certification Body shall decide on the issuing, restriction, suspension or withdrawal of the certificate of constancy of performance of the construction production the basis of the outcome of the following assessments and verifications carried out by that body:
- an assessment of the performance of the construction product carried out on the basis of testing (including sampling), calculation, tabulated values or descriptive documentation of the product;
- initial inspection of the manufacturing plant and of the factory production control;
- continuing surveillance, assessment and evaluation of factory production control
Although product certification in accordance with the CPR, AVCP System 1 enables external fire resistance doorsets to be legally placed on the market in the UK, following the issues identified in 2018, UKAS accredited Independent Third-Party Certification Bodies in the UK have developed a more extensive certification process which the ACDM fully supports. This UK based voluntary certification process for Composite Fire-resistant Doorsets addresses, amongst other issues, primary test evidence from the manufacturer, regular audit testing and review of component suppliers. The use of cascaded test evidence
 It should be noted that when certifying construction products to System 1, there is no requirement for the manufacturer to provide any test evidence in their own name, all test evidence may be cascaded from another manufacturer or systems house/designer.
 AVCP System 1 does not require the certification body to carry out regular audit testing and providing there have been no changes to either the product or test standard, the original test evidence has no expiry date.