Code Administration Department Updates
Welcome to Brunswick County Code Administration Department Updates Page. This page has been developed to convey important information you may need during your contact with the Code Administration Department. This page will be updated periodically.
New HVAC Efficiency Standards
This is an update and a reminder of the scheduled appliance efficiency increase taking effect January 1, 2023. State energy codes, including North Carolina, cannot preempt federal law, and therefore the minimum efficiency allowed simply follows the federal requirement, including the dates when they go into effect. Designers and contractors are encouraged to plan accordingly, as the effective date is not based on permit date of a project, but rather on the effective date of the standard.
The effective date is:
- For straight AC units (split system or package) January 1, 2023, and this is an installed-by date. Equipment not meeting the standard cannot be legally installed in NC, but they could be shipped to other areas of the country where the installed-by date is not mandatory.
- For heat pumps (split system or package) January 1, 2023, but it is a manufacturing end date, so products legally manufactured up to that point in time can be installed after that date.
- This efficiency increase is not for commercial units, only to HVAC units subject to the National Appliance and Energy Conservation Act of 1987 (NAECA). The split-system heat pump requirements for NC are going to be 15 SEER in cooling mode, and 8.8 HSPF in heating. Straight AC split systems will be required to be 15 SEER if capacity if less than 45,000 Btu/hr., and 14.5 SEER if capacity is greater than or equal to 45,000 Btu/hr.
Also, for further reading please refer to the North Carolina Board of Examiners for Plumbing, Heating, and Fire Sprinkler Contractors May 2022 Newsletter for a very good and informative article concerning this standard.
www.nclicensing.org – refer to the Newsletters tab and click the link for the May 2022 Newsletter.
The Code Administration Department may require Contractors to provide 3rd Party Inspections Report by a Design Professional recognized by the State of North Carolina, if anchor bolts have been damaged or replaced that were originally installed prescriptive per section R4504.2.
Please review this document regarding the requirement for two separate circuits to the grinder pump that will be enforced beginning on January 31st 2021.
Non-Encroachment Areas (NEAs) – For all contractors, surveyors and engineers; please consult this document for important information concerning Non-Encroachment Areas (NEA’s) as they relate to flood zone identification and the calculations necessary to determine how to correctly proceed with projects located in these highly restrictive development areas.
Effective July 1, 2020 Mechanical Gas permits for LP gas lines to a tank or a generator will no longer be included in the new construction permit without a fee. This has been added/included without a fee in error in the past. This change is being initiated to correct that error.
Senate Bill 704 (pg. 67-68) authorizes local government to provide a 5-month permit extension for “Any building permit issued under Article 9 of Chapter 143 of the General Statutes” that was set to expire between March 10, 2020 and April 28, 2020.
We have received several calls requesting whether are not private third-party design professionals could perform inspections to keep projects going. Contractors may use third-party design professionals to perform footing, foundation and slab inspections only. Here’s the memorandum from the Department of Insurance drafted by Cliff Isaac Deputy Commissioner dated 3/23/2020, giving clarifications and options on how to deal with Inspections and our current situation that our nation is dealing with.
After consulting with the Department of Insurance we have decided to no longer require an inspection for garage slab unless it meets one of the two following conditions:
- 2’ or more of fill was required for prepping of slab, in which a compaction report would be required.
- The slab is considered Structural and has a thickened area or lug for bearing.
Questions regarding electric service and equipment in Special Flood Hazard Areas (SFHA) has been the topic of discussion. For projects located in the Special Flood Hazard Areas, a requirement to protect the equipment is governed by the Brunswick County Flood Damage Prevention Ordinance. For guidance and more information, please follow the below links to ensure your project will be compliant.