One and Two family Dwelling Code
Proposed Changes Affecting Masonry Fireplaces and Chimneys
The One and Two Family Dwelling Code committees (Building, Mechanical and Plumbing) met in Nashville on April 11-13, 1996 to consider proposed changes to the code. There will be a second hearing in the fall where most of these issues will be reconsidered.

The International Code Council (ICC) already administers the One and Two Family Dwelling Code (OTFDC) which used to be administered by CABO. By the year 2000 the plan is for the ICC to administer the International Building Code (IBC) which will be forged out of the existing Uniform Building Code (UBC), National Building code (NBC) and Southern Building Code (SBC). OTFDC will most likely become the residential building code for the whole nation and be part of the IBC.

Below are the issues discussed at the OTFDC First Hearing that are of concern to those of us who care about the residential masonry industry. Comments are by Jim Buckley who represented the Clay Flue Lining Institute and the Western States Clay Products Association at the hearing. For the text of the proposed changes see "1996 Proposed Changes to the Model Energy Code and the One and Two Family Dwelling Code" available from the ICBO (310 699 0541).


PROPOSAL R122-96
Proponent: Daniel Kostelec representing the ICBO Peninsula Chapter
Disapproved

Proposal would restrict masonry veneer above the first story in seismic zones 3 and 4. It will be re-considered at the second hearing in the Fall. I talked with Dan Kostelec and he is not necessarily hostile to masonry - just concerned that when CABO is adopted by the ICC the current seismic provisions in the UBC will go out the window. We need to do groundwork with Dan and attend the second hearing to make sure this issue stays disapproved.


PROPOSAL R146-96
Proponent: Mark Nunn representing the BIA
Approved as submitted

Language added by BIA to limit brick corbels to 30 deg. to the vertical.


PROPOSAL R147-96
Proponent: Daniel Kostelec representing the ICBO Peninsula Chapter
Approved as modified

Masonry chimney flue sizing housekeeping issue. Last sentence eliminated as redundant since reference was corrected to 2105.


PROPOSAL R148-96
Proponent: Mark Nunn representing the BIA
Disapproved

Proposal would have referenced nominal flue sizes on the BIA flue sizing chart.

In recent negotiations the BIA agreed to accept an amendment that would allow, as an alternative to the chart, flues with a cross-sectional area of 10% of the fireplace opening area.

Buckley submitted the amendment which passed 6 to 4 but, because of the obvious controversy, the whole proposal was defeated so that it can be re-considered at the second OTFDC hearing.

I recommend we agree with the BIA to resubmit with an exception similar to that which was approved. We could also maybe redo the whole chart. Mark Nunn said he would use the same language in the ICBO proposal which has already gone through first hearing in January. Without an all-out effort to work with or oppose the BIA, the flue sizing chart will stand and ASTM C315 will be referenced in both the UBC and the ICC One and Two Family Dwelling Code - possibly with an exception for flues that do not meet the ASTM standard.


PROPOSAL R149-96
Proponent: David Johnston (NFPA 211 and National Chimney Sweep Guild)
Approved as modified

Cleanouts. Amended to eliminate new language starting with "provided...." in exception.


PROPOSAL R150-96
Proponent: David Johnston (NFPA 211 and National Chimney Sweep Guild)
Approved as modified

Major reorganization of fireplace and chimney sections by David Johnston to get the code in the text rather than in the chart or illustration. In addition to some wording changes, Johnston proposed some substantive changes concerning anchorage and smoke chamber wall thickness.

Buckley and Nunn were in basic support of proposal.

Buckley submitted amendments to include clay smoke chamber liners (in addition to firebrick) to the proposed smoke chamber section and to replace the requirement that the hearth extension be 36" from the fireback with language similar to that in BOCA and UBC about firebox depth with the exception for Rumfords. Both amendments passed with no dissent.

Nunn submitted an amendment to limit corbeled unit masonry in smoke chambers to 30 instead of 45 deg. I think it was approved but in any case it was not intended to limit smoke chamber liner surfaces or damper surfaces within the smoke chamber to 30 deg. - just unit masonry. Something to check for the second hearing.

Over all the proposal was approved as amended with one dissenting vote so that it will also be re-considered and "tuned" in the fall.

Issues in the fall will include what to do with the Figure which nobody much likes (I think it should be in an appendix or commentary - see R-154). Johnston is worried that masons will simply lay up 4" of masonry using the clay smoke chamber as a form and the wall won't be a full 6' thick. And I don't really like the 20" depth language despite the Rumford exception, but Mark Nunn does.


PROPOSAL R151-96
Proponent: James Keller (Indiana Dept. of Fire and Building Services)
Approved as submitted

Semantics.


PROPOSAL R152-96
Proponent: Jim Buckley (Buckley Rumford Co.)
Approved as submitted

Buckley proposal to add back in the note at the bottom of Figure 1003.1 that it is for illustration purposes only. Said it was consistent with Johnston's R150 proposal and Nunn supported. Approved 7 to 2 with the opposition not wanting the disclaimer which they say makes the illustration useless. We all agreed.


PROPOSAL R152-96
Proponent: Dan Chudy (California building Officials)
Approved as submitted

Add seismic reinforcing to all chimneys in seismic zones 3 and 4 as in UBC. All of us supported the issue except for NAHB representative who was nearly booed off floor. Lot of discussion about all the brick chimneys that fell down in recent seismic events. I didn't intend to testify but I did in order to get in some good words for TMS and modern reinforced masonry chimneys built to code.


PROPOSAL R154-96
Proponent: Jim Buckley (Buckley Rumford Co.)
Disapproved

Add second figure of a Rumford fireplace as another way a fireplace could be built to meet the code. Disapproved 7 to 3 after some testimony about "useless" figures that say they are for illustration purposes only. Committee member, Greg Revels, suggested it would be good to have the Rumford illustration (maybe both illustrations) in the appendix.


PROPOSAL R155-96
Proponent: Jim Buckley (Buckley Rumford Co.)
Withdrawn

Withdrawn since issue was dealt with in amendments to R150.


PROPOSAL R156-96
Proponent: Jim Buckley (Buckley Rumford Co.)
Withdrawn

Withdrawn since issue was dealt with in amendments to R150.

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