The Value of Mechanical Code Knowledge

August 6, 2007
/ Print / Reprints /
ShareMore
/ Text Size+
Tennyson Barry, Michigan chief mechanical inspector, talks about knowing mechanical codes during the ARI Workshop at FSU.

BIG RAPIDS, Mich. - Having a broad knowledge of mechanical codes and the nuances of the code system is a key ingredient to proper system design. It is certainly a way to head off future problems when questions arise about a building’s HVAC system. Mechanical code knowledge was one of the topics discussed by Tennyson Barry, Michigan chief mechanical inspector, to an audience of educators at the recent Air-Conditioning & Refrigeration Institute (ARI) Regional Workshop at Ferris State University.

Barry began his presentation by saying, “You need to be able to mesh the code side of the business with the textbook side of the business. Codes need to be an integral part of planning and design.”

He told attendees that many of their students may become accomplished designers and engineers, but in doing so they need to familiarize themselves with mechanical codes. Barry said educators should play a role in bringing inspectors into the classrooms to talk about codes.

“Get involved with the code official in your jurisdiction,” he said.

Barry gave an example of how one recent code change has an impact on system design and which trade is actually responsible for the design. He noted the push for a code requiring sprinkler systems in all one- and two-story residential buildings. “The problem here is a question of who actually installs the sprinkler systems,” he said. “In Michigan, it is the responsibility of the mechanical contractor and not the plumber.”

One instructor asked a related question about whose responsibility it was for wiring a thermostat - the HVAC installer or an electrician? Barry said there could be exceptions to codes, which would allow an HVAC installer to do the wiring, but he suggested that contractors contact their local inspectors for code clarifications.

He added there is a lot of information on codes available from the International Code Council (ICC) at www.iccsafe.org. Barry said that ICC books are available to schools for discounted rates.

Ultimately, the responsibility for adhering to mechanical codes lies with the business owner, in this case the HVAC contractor. “Liability belongs with the boss,” Barry said. “Even if he is doing work to code but his employees aren’t and he is not monitoring their work, he is responsible for the consequences.”

Publication date: 08/06/2007

Did you enjoy this article? Click here to subscribe to The NEWS Magazine

Recent Articles by John Hall

You must login or register in order to post a comment.

Multimedia

Videos

Image Galleries

2014 Energy Efficiency Forum

Highlights from the 25th annual Energy Efficiency Forum in Washington, D.C.

Podcasts

NEWSMakers: Mark Satterfield

Mark Satterfield, founder and CEO of Gentle Rain Marketing Inc. and author of “The One Week Marketing Plan” talks about his book and the importance of HVAC blogging. Posted on Sept. 19.

More Podcasts

ACHRNEWS

NEWS 09-15-14 cover

2014 September 15

Check out the weekly edition of The NEWS today!

Table Of Contents Subscribe

Venting R-22

The NEWS reported that a man received prison time for venting R-22. Should EPA step up enforcement?
View Results Poll Archive

HVACR INDUSTRY STORE

plumbing-hvac.gif
2014 National Plumbing & HVAC Estimator

Every plumbing and HVAC estimator can use the cost estimates in this practical manual!

More Products

Clear Seas Research

 

Clear Seas ResearchWith access to over one million professionals and more than 60 industry-specific publications, Clear Seas Research offers relevant insights from those who know your industry best. Let us customize a market research solution that exceeds your marketing goals.

DON'T MISS A THING

Magazine image
 
Register today for complete access to ACHRNews.com. Get full access to the latest features, Extra Edition, and more.

STAY CONNECTED

facebook icontwitter iconyoutube iconLinkedIn i con