When you need to check code...

When you need to check code on something, what are the ways that work the best? Are there any one-stop websites that cover local/national, NEC, IRC etc? Are there any great online resources of will I be using actual books to locate info?

Also, same question for diagrams, charts etc. Is there a consolidated resource when you need an insulation depth table, overhead service conductor diagram, an illustration to add to your report?

Code Check Complete

And Illustrated Home by Carson Dunlop

ecodes.biz is a good resource

Codes change from city to city many areas are crazy with codes. Check your AHJ.

I do not need to check code.

I am NOT a code inspector.

You should not need code pics often, because you are not a code inspector.

Is it a good idea for an inspector to be familiar with code?

Does being too familiar with code overcomplicate inspecting?

Yes. Slippery slope.

Mike, I’d try to avoid using “code” in my reports. You can state that current building practices dictate etc… Best practice is… This item is a concern and requires correction because of …You can recommend anything you like regardless of code compliance.

edit: that being said I have referenced it if my finding is called into question and it helps my argument :wink:

I agree with Mike, and with that being said, much of what you observe is “based upon code”, so just ignore the non-HI’s BS. Yes, you need to be aware of your local, state, and national codes. Yes, code is a PIA. Yes, you should have multiple resources. Yes… yes… yes…!

Code is a basic, bare minimum standard. Quote code, charge bare minimum fees for your home inspection.

It im opinion that CODE CHANGES through out the life of the building. How are you supposed to be accurate in knowing what the code was when it was built to present?

Just because it is NO LONGER to code does not equal a defect. What are home owners supposed to keep their homes up to code all the time?

I would be interested in “why” you ask this question. Did something happen that you felt you needed to “quote code” at a particular inspection?

As far as diagrams are concerned, you can find some here:http://www.nachi.org/gallery/

When it comes to “finding codes” you can go to the ICC website and purchase all of the current codes.
I would STRONGLY recommend that you also buy the CD so that you can download it to your laptop and carry it with you as you conduct your inspection’s. {That’s what I did before I retired.}

A word of caution… I have seen Home Inspectors “quote code” on a particular item and then I have seen them get sued because they “missed” 9 or 10 other code violations and they were not included in their report!
So the bottom line is… If you are going to “quote code” you had better find each and every item that “fails inspection”.

As far as finding answers…
The best method is to “educate yourself” enough to become ICC certified.

The second best method is… Asking an “expert”.

There are several InterNachi members who are “Code Compliance Inspectors”. Many of us are frequent visitors to the message board and are more than willing to help our fellow members.
{NOTE: If your question is “time sensitive” be sure to go to the “Emergency Forum” section of this message board.}
I hope this helps.[size=3]:nachi:


Very good info Frank and I completely agree. When someone asks me this question I just show them how many pages there are on the code and that the codes are not designed to protect Humans but are there to protect structure for the most part.
As the famous statement from Nachi comes to mind.
“Anything less than minimum Code is criminal”

What??? :shock:

Ever read the opening portion of your IRC book Christopher.

From the first sentence of the introduction.

Internationally, code officials recognize the need for a modern, up-to-date residential code addressing the design and construction of one- and two-family dwellings and townhouses. The International Residential Code®, in this 2012 edition, is designed to meet these needs through model code regulations that safeguard the public health and safety in all communities, large and small.

*This code is founded on principles intended to establish provisions consistent with the scope of a residential code **that adequately protects public health ****, safety and welfare

*I don’t see anything stating the codes were, (“for the most part”) designed to protect structure and not “protect Humans”.

Perhaps it was written in the SSM, ON, CA version, Chris.

Frank, thanks for the advice. The reason I ask this question is because I am a student trying to figure out the relationship between HIs and code. I am doing the Nachi online education and codes are referenced throughout to help define what we should be looking for. I understand that code informs us and that we have no authority to enforce it. I don’t fully understand this job yet (or ever) but it seems that awareness of code would be beneficial if you would need to talk to an electrician or plumber as to why you called something out as a defect. You could do it without quoting code but knowing the code would seem to provide a firmer foundation for the HIs reasoning.

Thanks but I am talking about the code that is adopted not the code that has 10 years to wait.