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Code Compliance

EPP offers code compliance testing for IECC 2009, 2012, and 2015.  If your state is preparing for the 2018 IECC we can test for that as well. 

There are three options for code compliance.  First the IECC allows for Prescriptive compliance – all insulation and fenestration (windows and doors) meet the requirements by component as listed in the component table.  Also allowable by the IECC is the Total UA Alternative which considers the total building thermal envelope for compliance.  Lastly there is the Simulated Performance Alternative where the energy costs are shown to be equal to or less than the costs of a home built entirely to code.  There are certain additional mandatory performance item requirements that must be met including blower door air infiltration and duct leakage testing.  There are also other mandatory items such as lighting, which must be at least 50% high efficacy (CFL or LED) lamps, and programmable thermostats must be installed. 

The term used for 2015 IECC simulated compliance is the Energy rating Index (ERI).  The allowable ERI for climate zone 5 is 55.  Although not referred to in the Code by the acronym “HERS”, the requirements for the ERI mirror the requirements for HERS.  Click here for a fact sheet on the ERI from Resnet. 

Click here for the DOE Building Energy Codes University - it has complete training on the 2015 energy codes in language any layman can understand 

After any design help supplied, EPP code compliance inspections are completed in two parts.  After insulation but pre drywall – EPP will check to be certain the insulation and air sealing products were installed according to the manufacturer’s specifications.  Insulation for instance must be installed to fill the cavity and touch on all six sides with no gaps – Front/Rear/Right/Left/Top/Bottom.  Click here for the Installation Guide for Owens Corning Light Density Fiberglas Building Insulation.

For the final Code Compliance checking the home will need to be substantially complete.  “Substantially Complete” is open to interpretation but typically means after flooring is installed.  At that time EPP will run a blower test for air infiltration and a duct blaster test for duct system air leakage.  The 2009 code allows 7 air changes per hour at 50 pascals (ACH50), the 2012 and 2015 codes allow only 3 ACH50 for climate zones 3-8.  7 ACH50 is a slam dunk to make, 3 ACH50 is tough for many builders.  Michigan has decided to allow up to 4 ACH50 for their 2015 code while Ohio has a proposal on the table to allow up to 5 ACH50 for their adoption of the 2012 code.