It is now coming up on the time of year where several local jurisdictions will officially adopt the 2011 edition of the National Electrical Code (NEC). The City and County of Denver typically adopts the new NEC code anywhere from August to October of the year the new code is published. Many of the other larger local jurisdictions usually follow suit, either officially adopting the code around the same time frame or soon thereafter.
There have been some significant updates and changes from the 2008 NEC. The following items are an excerpt of the changes that will most affect the design team in all upcoming projects that are submitted for permit after the jurisdictional adoption of the code:
· 110.26(D) Illumination about Electrical Equipment:
Added language to the code which states that illumination provided around electrical equipment shall not be controlled by an automatic means only such as an occupancy sensor.
· 210.8 Ground-Fault Circuit Interrupters (GFCI’s):
These devices are now required to be readily accessible, so a GFCI device located behind a vending machine or a refrigerator will now require and accessible means to test and reset the GFCI mechanism.
· 210.52(E)(3) Balconies, Decks and Porches:
The exception was removed. A receptacle outlet is now required, regardless of the size of the balcony, deck or porch.
· 406.12 Tamper Resistant Receptacles for Dwelling Units:
An exception was added for receptacles located more than 5-1/2’ above the floor. These receptacles are not required to be tamper resistant.
· 406.13 Tamper Resistant Receptacles in Guest Rooms and Guest Suites:
Tamper resistant receptacles are now required for guest suites in hotels and motels.
· 406.14 Tamper Resistant Receptacles in Child Care Facilities:
Tamper resistant receptacles are now required for all child care facilities.
· 408.4(B) Field Identification – Source of Supply:
All switchboards and panelboards supplied by an electrical feeder in commercial applications are now required to be marked to indicate the location of their source of electrical supply.
· 410.16 Luminaires in Clothes Closets:
Surface mounted LED luminaires are now permitted in clothes closets.
· 410.130(G)(1) General (Electric Discharge Lighting Systems of 1000 Volts or Less):
A disconnecting means is now required to be installed in existing fluorescent luminaires when the ballast is removed and replaced.
· 424.44(G) Installation of Cables in Concrete or Poured Masonry Floors (Electric Space Heating Cables):
Ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) protection is now required for cables installed in electrically heated floors of kitchens.
· 450.14 Disconnecting Means (Transformers):
New disconnecting means requirements were added for transformers (other than class 2 and class 3). Where located in a remote location (out of sight or greater than 50 feet away), the disconnecting means must be capable of being locked in the open position and the location of the disconnecting means must be field marked on the transformer.
· 517.16 Receptacles with Insulated Grounding Terminals (Health Care Facilities):
The installation of Isolated Grounding (IG) type receptacles in patient care areas of health care facilities is now prohibited.
There are several books available for reference regarding the changes to the 2008 National Electrical Code. Please refer to the 2011 National Electrical Code, Analysis of Changes to the National Electrical Code and the 2011 National Electrical Code Handbook for clarifications of these changes and for more information.