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#188993 09/14/09 10:10 PM
Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 356
Niko Offline OP
Can someone please clarify and explain the CEC (California Electrical Code, California building code, the international residential code and the international building code) and which one we Califonians need to follow?

I always went off of the NEC. and now i am planning to hold a seminar on the one and two family dwelling using PP that references IRC and someone told me that California does not accept or adopt the IRC, it has adopted the International building code and the electrical that goes with it.

I would appreciate it if someone can PLEASE clarify in simple terms.

Thank you.

Be kind to your neighbor, he knows where you live

Joined: Dec 2000
Posts: 4,294

Building/Dwelling Code California Building Code 2007 (IBC 2006)

Structural Code California Building Code 2007 (IBC 2006)

Plumbing Code California Plumbing Code 2007 (UPC 2006)

Mechanical Code California Mechanical Code 2007 (UMC 2006)

Electrical Code California Electrical Code 2007 (NEC 2005)

Fire/Life Safety Code California Fire Code 2007 (IFC 2006)

Accessibility Code California Building Code 2007 (Title 24, Part 2)

Energy Code California Energy Code 2007 (Title 24, Part 6)

Elevator Code California Elevator Safety Construction Code 2007 (California Code of Regulations, Title 8)

Any city, county, or fire protection district may establish more restrictive building standards than those contained in the California Building Standards Code (California Code of Regulations, Title 24), if the amendment is reasonably necessary because of local climatic, geological, or topographical conditions

Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 356
Niko Offline OP
Thank you electure,

i appreciate it.

Be kind to your neighbor, he knows where you live

Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 2,723
Likes: 1
Broom Pusher and

Adding to Electure's post, here is some extra information:

1: California Electrical Code ("CEC"):
Reference = California Code of Regulations Title 24, Part 3.

Uses "NFPA 70" (National Electrical Code) as "Model Code".
The Articles contained within a given version of the CEC - Title 24, Part 3, derive from the corresponding version of the NEC - as a"Base" to be used for adoption purposes.

There are (7) Agencies involved with the adoption of an Article from the NEC Model Code. These "Adopting State Agencies" are:

* "BSC": California Building Standards Commission;

* "SFM": Office of the State Fire Marshall;

* "HCD": Department of Housing and Community Developement;

* "DSA-AC": Division of the State Architect - Access Compliance;

* "DSA-SS": Division of the State Architect - Structural Safety;

* "OSHPD": Office of Statewide Health Planning and Developement;

* "DHS": Department of Health Services.

CEC - Title 24, Part 3 is comprised of the adoption of NEC Articles by the above listed California Agencies, using the following provisions:

* Adopt Entire Article (verbatim to the NEC Article),

* Adopt Entire Article - with amendments (amendments listed in Article 89 of the CEC -Title 24, Part 3),

* Adopt _ONLY_ Certain Sections of an Article.


2: NEC (National Electrical Code - NFPA 70):

"Model Code" for the CEC - Title 24, Part 3.


3: Version of Model Code (NEC) applicable to the CEC T 24, Part 3 version:

Typicaly, the version of Model Code (NEC) used for CEC T 24, Part 3 adoption is the previous NEC Code Cycle version.

For example, the current version of CEC T 24, Part 3 is 2007.
The 2007 CEC is based on the 2005 NEC.

The previous version of CEC T 24, Part 3 was the 2004 CEC.
It was based on the 2002 NEC.


4: California Energy Compliance Standards:
California Code of Regulations - Title 24, Part 6

These standards affect the design and installations of the following aspects of a Structure:

* Building Envelope: Framing, Fenestrations (Windows, etc.), Insulation, Sealing of gaps, etc.;

* Mechanical: Equipment, Ducts, Controllers, Water Heating, Water Appliances, etc.;

* Lighting: Interior & Exterior, high efficacy Lamps, controls, maximum power limitations, etc.


I would suggest to obtain the most current versions of the following Documents / manuals for use, application and review materials in your Classes:

*1: 2007 CEC Title 24, Part 3 (to verify and apply the applicable Articles relating to the course curriculum),

*2: 2005 NEC (for reference),

*3: 2005 CEC Title 24, Part 6 (available On-Line in PDF format).
There are TWO Manuals:

a: Residential Compliance Manual (for Single Family Dwellings, and Multi-Family Dwellings of 3 or less stories ... need to verify the Multi-Family limitations);

b: Non-Residential Compliance Manual (for any other Structure that the ones covered in the "Residential"Manual).

*4: ADA Manual:
The Federal manual is fine.
Use these design regulations for mounting height confirmations and examples.
The California version is "CAL-ADA" ,or "CAL-DAG".

The basis of mounting outlets minimum +15" A.F.F. to center, maximum +48" A.F.F. to center, is derived from ADA Standards.

An additional set of references would be the "ESR" Manuals from Utility Companies.
("ESR" = Electrical Service Requirements).

These Manuals cover Service Equipment and Service Feeder requirements, placements, locations, and similar information.

ESRs are available On-Line, as free downloads (.PDFs).
SCE, City of Anaheim, SDG&E, PG&E, LADWP, and others have these documents available. You just need to search for them!

Contact me if you need additional information, or suggestions - either via P.M., or direct E-mail response.
For E-mail contact, send your message to:

info @ setelectric dot net
(remove the spaces between words & symbols, and change the word "dot" to an actual dot!)

Good luck!


Scott " 35 " Thompson
Just Say NO To Green Eggs And Ham!
Joined: May 2007
Posts: 169
I'm not sure about the others but the CEC is basically the NEC 2 years back with some special exceptions that mostly appear to allow California to amend what it does in its own buildings.

2007 CEC = 2005 NEC.
2010 CEC will be 2008 NEC

My framing buddies tell me they are adobpting the IBC in CA but I don't know if that happened yet.

And of course the energy code is in place to keep you spending hours explaining why you can't install what people want you to.

The CEC online for free:

The energy section:

They were supposed to adopt the 2009 standards for section 6 on 9/1/2009 but it appears they have extended it to 1/1/2010.

Go figure. CA put a standard in place before everyone was ready and needed to extend the time frame.....again.

Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 5,445
Likes: 3
Cat Servant
Just a caution here ... if your customer is a governemnt agency, they may have additional requirements.

For example, I see that the California "Dept. of Housing and Community Development" has just announced its' intent to adopt the 2008 NEC.

Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 2,723
Likes: 1
Broom Pusher and

Thanks for posting the link to the CEC Title 24, Part 3 (Cal. Electrical Code), PDF version!
thanks thumbs

I downloaded the PDF successfully. Took less than 4 Minutes to download via ADSL connection (peak download @ 3.0 mbps).
File size is apx. 73.4 MB, so anyone with slow download speeds (less than 384 kbps), get ready for a loooo-nnnn-g waiting period!

Already have Hard Copy of the current 2007 version, along with several previous issues
(when a new CEC version becomes effective, I purchase the Manual in Hard Copy), but many others I regularly work with, do not have the Manual in any format - Hard Copy or PDF.

Now I can give these Contacts (mostly Contractors, fellow Engineers, and Managers) their own copy, and my Hard Copy Manual gets to stay right by my Work Station!

The benefits (for me), of having the CEC T24 Part 3 in "Electronic Format", are:

* Copy / Paste Article text to Contract Documents,


* For the submission of Articles via E-mail, Disk Media, or FTP site access.
(for the purpose of quoting a specific article, or to address / clarify / interpret a given article).

Now I do not need to scan + convert relevant pages!!!


As to the Energy Efficiency Standards (CCR Title 24, Part 6):

You are correct about the postponement of the Effective Date.

The 2008 version of CCR Title 24, Part 6 Compliance Manual, was approved for Publication on September 11, 2008.

The 'Original" Effective Date (the date of which compliance per the 2008 version begins, and compliance per the 2005 version ends), was August 1st, 2009 - but the Effective Date for 2008 version has been postponed.

Effective Date for 2008 version to begin, is January 1st, 2010.

In order to be ready for the new cycle, I compiled new Spreadsheets for the 2008 version, per the newer Standards Manual.
Pushing back the Effective Date has allowed me to complete the "OLTG" (Outdoor Lightiing) Compliance Documents Workbook, at a relaxed pace (instead of rushing to finish!).

Compiling the "LTG" Set Workbook was done at an expedited rate.
Found out the Effective Date was postponed right after I completed & Debugged the "LTG" set!!!
cry mad bash

Oh well, at least they are done!


Scott " 35 " Thompson
Just Say NO To Green Eggs And Ham!
Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 356
Niko Offline OP
Thank you to all for providing the great information. I print a copy and keep it in the truck for reference.

So far I have followed the latest NEC and have been O.K.

Why not one national code per trade. Why do californians have to be different with their own codes and standards. it just make things confusing.

Be kind to your neighbor, he knows where you live

Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 9,931
Likes: 34
I am sure California would say the national codes are not strong enough for them (earthquakes, mudslides, environmentalism etc)

I know Florida has a lot tougher wind codes than most places, for good reason. The only thing I can think of that they added to the NEC is bonding steel studs ... but we killed a guy.

Greg Fretwell
Joined: Oct 2002
Posts: 482
Perhaps even our out of state collegues should take a good look at our title 24. I'm sure it is indicative of things to come their way pretty soon... If parts of it are not implimented in there areas already

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