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#186135 04/21/09 09:22 AM
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 19
During plan review on a recent project, the inspection department required a switch be installed at each door capable of being used as an entry point to the building. Reference was made to sec. 1006 in the Building Code having to do with egress illumination. I can see that having a switch at every entrnce is good desing practice, but how is it that this portion of the Building Code requires a switch? Are there other portions of the Building Code that address this question?

Building Codes & Related References
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 5,316
Cat Servant
I amnot aware of any such requiewmwnt ... that is, that a person entering a building (or room)be able to turn on a light as they enter.
Logical? Sure. Common sense? No doubt. Good design? Absolutely. Code requirement? No way.

Now, residences do require an EXTERIOR light, controlled at the door. I suppose you could infer that some of this light would spill into the building, making your entry easier ... but that just a supposition.

I can think of many, many commercial buildings, and public areas, wher a deliberate effort was made to NOT have any accessible lighting controls.

Some of this is being indirectly sffected by the sundry 'energy' codes, which are calling for a variety of motion sensors and timers. Ironically enough, even these codes continue the presumption that your typical person isn't competent to operate a light switch.

Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 9,672
Likes: 7
Originally Posted by renosteinke

Some of this is being indirectly affected by the sundry 'energy' codes, which are calling for a variety of motion sensors and timers. Ironically enough, even these codes continue the presumption that your typical person isn't competent to operate a light switch.

I think the problem is the typical person has no problem turning on the switch, it is turning it off that they have a problem with wink

I have lost count of the number of motion detectors I have around here but it is over 20. The lights follow you wherever you go inside or out and turn off when you leave.

Greg Fretwell
Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 1,507
Reno- Look at the electrical code again. I don't see where the switch has to be at the door. There are some words that talk about locating a switch in a customary location and now we have to agree on what is customary.

George Little
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 1,213
Originally Posted by IBC 2006
1006.1 Illumination required. The means of egress, including the exit discharge, shall be illuminated at all times the building space served by the means of egress is occupied.

1. Occupancies in Group U.
2. Aisle accessways in Group A.
3. Dwelling units and sleeping units in Groups R-1, R-2
and R-3.
4. Sleeping units of Group I occupancies.
R-1, R-2 and R-3 pretty much include all houses, duplexes, apartments, models and everything short of nursing homes. Good idea? Yes. Required by 1006? No.

Joined: Sep 2012
Posts: 3
New Member
Electrical switching devices having stationary and movable contacts are preferred.

sydney electrical rewiring

Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 7,283
Likes: 3
The section you quote is regarding egress lighting, not general illumination.

Basically, it requires illumination be provided for the egress path to exit a structure, and it includes illumination thru the last exit door to 'the public way'. ie: emergency lighting at the exterior of exit doors, and the egress pathway to those points of exit.

Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 5,316
Cat Servant
George, you are correct; the NEC is silent as to where the switch would be located.

Indeed, it's even possible to consider one light as illuminating multiple doorways.

Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 7,283
Likes: 3
Anybody read 210.70 in its entirety?

NO, the 'location' of the switch is not spelled out within the NEC, that is design, common sense, good trade practice, etc.; however a switch controlled lighting outlet is required.

The OP did not say resi or comm, but he mentioned a Building Code that deals with egress illumination. IF he is going comm (egress) then 1006 of the Bldg Code specs illumination.

Joined: Apr 2013
Posts: 1
New Member
I might use a main lighting fixture to light up many of the doorways.

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