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#95032 08/24/05 05:33 PM
Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 49
This is difficult to explain but...
Upstairs hallway that is 8ft in length. Two bedrooms and the staircase going down is inside the hallway.

There is a single smoke detector that is aprox 6 ft from the bedroom doors and 2ft from the edge of the wall where the staircase is...

The inspector is failing us because he says that the smoke detector that is 2ft away from the wall of the staircase is servicing the bedrooms therfore can't service the top of the stairs requirement.

He is reasoning this because there is a air supply vent 3 feet away from the smoke that is sitting over top of the stairs. The supply vent blows the air away from the hallway therfore it would blow any smoke away from the smoke detector so it doesn't count.

What does this guy expect, a smoke that will be directly overtop of the landing at hte staircase?

I challenged him on this and he looked at the NEC for bout 15 minutes after saying "Well here it says that it is required to have a smoke that is in accordance with 902.5 in the NFPA 5.0 and I am failing based on NFPA 5.0 902.5".

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#95033 08/24/05 05:54 PM
Joined: May 2002
Posts: 1,716
Ask the inspector how he is enforcing NFPA 5, there is no NFPA 5


#95034 08/24/05 06:16 PM
Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 49
I thought he said NFPA 5 I'm not sure?
Thinking I know he said that, so I'm sure he's off his rocker, cause looking he prolly meant NFPA 72.
Can anyone cite NFPA 72 902.5?

[This message has been edited by foestauf (edited 08-24-2005).]

#95035 08/24/05 07:01 PM
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 706
Maybe he's operating under the principle of...

"If you can't beat him with the facts, baffle him with BS"


(edited for a heaping helping of Crow)

I opened the instructions with a Kidde alarm

Smoke alarms should not be installed within 3 ft. of the following:
the door to a kitchen,
the door to a bathroom containing a tub or shower,
forced air ducts used for heating or cooling,
ceiling or whole house ventilating fans,
or other high air flow areas.

[This message has been edited by Tiger (edited 08-24-2005).]

#95036 08/24/05 07:22 PM
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 706
So the violation may be in regard to Article 110.3(B).


#95037 08/25/05 12:05 AM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 240

will you help clear up two things...
is this a vaulted area and the hallway being the top floor? I dont see why a smoke detector couldnt/wouldnt be able to serve as dual purpose smoke in such a design.

as far as the 3' from the air supply...
what is the min. distance required?
if that is it, then he doesn't need to predict the air flow because its already been taken into consideration by the experts therefore that distance has been established.

doesnt the locations of the smoke fall under the building inspectors jurisdiction?
or even the fire marshalls?

anyway thats how we do it here in my little neck of the woods in the pacific northwest.


#95038 08/25/05 12:08 AM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 240
anyway thats how we do it here in my little neck of the woods in the pacific northwest.

building inspector not the electrical inspector has final say before house receives its certificate of occupation.


#95039 08/25/05 12:45 AM
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 9,917
Likes: 29
I am finding out that there are a lot of "rules" about where smoke detectors go but very little can actually be cited from code.

Greg Fretwell
#95040 08/25/05 09:46 AM
Joined: Aug 2003
Posts: 64
going along with what gfretwell said, I'd ask him for a code reference requiring a smoke detector at the top of the stairs. All of the building codes with which I am familiar (IBC, IRC, UBC) require a smoke detector outside the bedrooms, but none of them require a smoke detector to "service the top of the stairs".

#95041 08/25/05 07:51 PM
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 5,442
Likes: 2
Cat Servant
I'd like to quote from the 1997 UBC

310.9.1.4 Location within dwelling unit.

...a detector shall be installed in each sleeping room and at a point centrally located in the corridor or area giving access to each separate sleeping area. When the dwelling has more than one story, and in dwellings with basements, a detector shall be installed on each story and in the basement. In dwelling units where a story or basement is split into two or more levels, the smoke detector shall be installed on the upper level, except that when the lower level contains a sleeping area, a detector shall be installed on each level. When sleeping rooms are on an upper level, the detector shall be placed at the ceiling of the upper level in close proximity to the stairway.....where the ceiling heigth of a room open to the hallway serving the bedrooms exceeds that of the hallway by 24 inches or more, smoke detectors shall be placed in the hallway and in the adjacent room..."

As I read this, you have to put one at the top of the stairs.

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