No AFCI In New Home

The house was built in Feb. 2006 and has never been occupied. There are no AFCI’s for the bedrooms. The house resides in Cherokee Co., OK which has no electrical inspector. Cherokee Co. follows what the state of OK has adopted, which has adopted NEC 2005. Do I need to put there are no AFCI’s for the bedroom circuits in my report?

You can certainly recommend them as an additional safety factor that is now “standard” in most new homes…avoiding any reference to “code”.

You bet CRichardsA all the way . You can not be wrong on saftey.
Roy Cooke …How About gfci are they OK

Ahh,and herein lies the rub.
How do we do it without citing the dirty word…CODE ? As we are not code inspectors or enforcers.
No help , I know .
What a predicament.
I might say that current studies prove that installation of AFCI’s greatly reduce the chance of an electrical fire should an arc occur.No code mentioned .
Or you could always defer to an electrician.


How about simply stating that under normal construction in todays safety standards world, AFCI’s are required by the minimum standards of the NFPA and should be present in new construction.

Amazing how I did a Seminar in Atlanta,GA and all the HI’s wanted was CODE…simply amazing…anyway I see nothing wrong with using an section of the NEC as a reference in such a regard as their is no formal inspection process in your county…Still makes it SAFER by the mandate of the board who determine these things and help formulate the NEC.

I think the jury is still out about how much AFCIs actually add to safety.
Without quoting code I am not sure how you would talk about this. It has to be noted, a number of AHJs specifically removed the AFCI requirement in their amendments.
You can always report anything you want but I am not sure it is a defect if the AHJ doesn’t call it a violation. There are guys in Chicago who call Romex a defect.

One could “recommend bedroom AFCI’s for enhanced safety” and leave it to them to decide.

What was the date that AFCIs became required?

Regardless…the AFCI safety debate is not out to jury in MY mind…I happen to have seen plenty of documentation and demonstrations that I believe in them and in my mind they are much like the early days of the GFCI…However, I do not believe they need to be beyond the bedroom so personally I like the way the NEC is written now in regards to them…not the way the 2008 is moving.

You can’t confuse the AFCI with the GFCI, even if they are only one letter apart. The GFCI has a specified performance standard. The AFCI is more smoke and mirrors than any defined function. Certainly Cuttler Hammer has done a great marketing job in selling them but they do not protect against one of the worst kind of arcing faults, the loose connection.
This is more a case of a product looking for a market than a market need fulfilled by a product. They promised us “arc fault protection” and only delivered a product that will detect a fault that the O/C device will usually clear, a short. The place where a retrofit would really make sense would be aluminum wire, but, alas, this will not detect those faults.

Thanks for all the input, I knew not to mention the evil CODE word and that there is alot of debate about its use ans intention. I will mention it as a current new construction safety standard that is required by the NFPA, and should be present for new home construction.


Not confusing the letters fella…lol…I just happen ( along with Mike Holt and many others ) to believe the AFCI is a move in the right direction…let me have my opinion in it fella…lol…

With so many home fires that happen…I am all for the advancement of technology and even if we argue LOBBYISTS have put this in place…just happen to feel it is a step in the right direction for safety…and CT also has them now for both Par. and Ser arcs…

I will let you KNOW more about it when I get back from touring their plant hopefully in a few weeks…I will ask the hard questions fella…

Here is a rather nice article on the subject of do AFCI’s work :

I happen to agree with the guy in that I believe it is a step forward…my association to it like the GFCI was based on the remarks that came out when the first GFCI came out…everyone is a skeptic until it proves to save lives and if a life is being saved for a 30-50 buck breaker…I have no problem with it.

You can recommend AFCI’s installed, but before you make the statement that they ARE required, check with your state’s position.

I was told, NJ and NY adopted current versions of the NEC, but have amended the AFCI’s as optional.


What do you expect from a state that has no state licensing anyway…tells me they can’t come together to agree on anything…much less AFCI’s.

And the only person who said REQUIRED is wesley…and Wesley the statement on AFCI’s was effective in 2002.

It may be a step in the right direction but it is a crime to put something in the law that does not exist. These should be optional and let the customer decide if they want to Beta Test a device under development in their home.
This landed in the ROP for the 99 code before Cutler Hammer could even define what an arc signature was. They are still fine tuning that definition. They still can’t detect a series arc. The fact is that most of the protection from these things comes from the ground fault protection anyway. AFCIs only detect shorts that spike up to about 70a and most short circuit faults will be phase to ground. The GFCI will see that and also detect a neutral to ground fault. The only advantage over a garden variety GFCI is the rare chance that you would have a phase to neutral fault inside a wall that doesn’t trip the breaker. How does that happen? How often?
I have seen statistical analysis that says we are paying about 2 billion dollars per fire that might be prevented if these things work as advertised…

We Hoosiers have deleted AFCI’s in the Indiana IRC amendments for 2005

What is wrong with reporting what you wrote there? It shows that you identified a potnetial issue, and that (having some familiarity with AFCIs being required in some jurisdictions, you went the extra mile to define what the prevailing code is. Attaching the appropriate portion of the NEC would also be helpful.

If you disclaim in your agreement and in your report that while you may refer to codes and other standards for purposes of illustration and background information, you are not performing a code inspection - I don’t see the big deal about mentioning codes.

Still, if you are hesitant, use the euphamism “current building and safety standards” in place of code and you get the same effect…

I cannot speak for Y, but that is accurate in NJ.

Man you cut deep. Pa has no state licensing, and a positive effect of that is less bureaucracy, which leads towards us adopting the NEC the same year it comes out, and the ICC/IRC the same year too.

NJ has state licensing, and I was told AFCI’s aren’t required and it’s been in the NEC for how many cycles?


Yeah…but HOFFA is also somewhere buried in Jersey as well.

Well I ain’t braggin on VA either fella…takes VA 3 years to just adopt a code cycle because they read it over and over and over and over…and then finally adopt it.

Less bureaucracy…heck if I would want to have to get a little community license in every county…been their…done that back in the late 80’s and early 90’s before the DPOR took over in VA…then it went statewide.

Heck I had to lobby for CEU requirements in VA and they gave us only 3 hours of CODE…heck it’s hard to cover sizing a service in 3 hours for some people but thats all they required I guess.