Jan. 26, 2009: Sprinklers, CO Detectors, Energy Efficiency Are Key Changes to International Residential Code
New safety features in the 2009 International Residential Code include:
• Fire sprinklers required in all new one- and two-family residences beginning Jan. 1, 2011.
• Fire sprinklers in all new townhomes when the code is adopted.
• Carbon monoxide alarms required in new construction dwelling units with fuel-fired appliances, and in existing homes where interior alterations include fuel-fired appliance replacements or attached garages.
• New guidelines for the design and construction of homes in high wind regions, based on the International Code Council’s Standard for Residential Construction in High Wind Regions, ICC 600.
• New guidelines for the design and construction of storm shelters, based on the new International Code Council/National Storm Shelter Association (NSSA) Standard for the Design and Construction of Storm Shelters, ICC 500-2008.
Energy efficiency upgrades in the 2009 code include:
• Programmable thermostats in new homes and buildings with forced air furnaces.
• Maximum fenestration U-factors are lowered in warmer climates to reduce the amount of heat loss or gain through windows and doors to lower energy costs during cooling periods.
• An increase in insulation R-values for walls, floors, and basements in cold climates to achieve heating and cooling savings.
The International Code Council, a membership association dedicated to building safety and fire prevention, develops codes used to construct residential and commercial buildings.
Publication date: 01/26/2009