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Electrical Code Revisions

2014 Code Revision and Interpretation Committee Code Interpretation
(Last Updated: May 30, 2014)

In an effort to help the electrical industry make a smooth transition into the new Electrical Code and ensure the continuity in the performance of electrical work, the Department of Buildings will be posting code interpretations on its website. Listed below are new code-related questions and corresponding interpretations by the Code Committee. The users of this list should have available the 2005 edition of the NEC and the associated  NYC Amendments to the 2005 NEC (Local Law 49/06) (PDF) that went into effect on January 1, 2007.

To learn more about what each chapter / topic is about, click on the chapter number.

To find questions on the related topic, click on the topic or section code.

Chapter Description
Chapter 1: General (Section 110.1 to 110.79)
Chapter 2: Wiring and Protection (Code Section 200.1 to 285.28)
Chapter 3: Wiring Methods and Materials (Code Section 300.1 to 398-104)
Chapter 4: Equipment for General Use (Code Section 400.1 to 490.74)
Chapter 5: Special Occupancies (Code Section 500.1 to 590.7)
Chapter 6: Special Equipment (Code Section 600.1 to 695.14)
Chapter 7: Special Conditions (Code Section 700.1 to 770.182)
Chapter 8: Communications Systems (Code Section 800.1 to 830.179)
Chapter 9: Tables (Table 1 to 12(B))
Annex D: Calculation Examples
Administrative: General Requirements

 

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Chapter 1: General (Section 110.1 to 110.79) 
 

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CHAPTER 2: Wiring and Protection (Code Section 200.1 to 285.28) 
 

Section 210.70 - (4/2/2014)

Q: NYCBC 2008, sections 1205.1 and 1205.3.2 require artificial light in every habitable room to provide an average illumination of 10 foot-candles over the area of the room at the height of 30" above finished floor. Requirement to provide 10 foot-candles of illumination appears to be impossible to guaranty by means of portable light plugged into the switch controlled outlet as presently permitted by NYCEC 210.70.(A).(1). Exception No.1.

1. Is NYC Electrical Code Exception No.1 of section 210.70.(A).(1) applicable to lighting design of habitable rooms in R1 occupancy?

2. Is NYC Electrical Code Exception No.1 of section 210.70.(A).(1) applicable to lighting design of habitable rooms in R2 occupancies?

3. Is NYC Electrical Code Exception No.1 of section 210.70.(A).(1) applicable to lighting design of habitable rooms in R3 occupancies?

4. Is NYC Electrical Code Exception No.1 of section 210.70.(A).(1) applicable to lighting design of habitable rooms in other than R occupancies?

A.
1. Yes.
2. Yes.
3. Yes.
4. Yes.
Note: There is no limit in the NYCEC as far as the number of cord-plugged luminaires. Additional luminaires may be added as deemed necessary.

 

Section 215.10 - (2/5/2014)

Q1: Article 250.64(D), provides for three methods of grounding services with multiple disconnection means enclosures (D1, D2, and D3).

D1 allows for taps of the common ground electrode conductor. The size of the common electrode conductor is as per service drop lateral indicated in T250.66.

  1. Can the tap be sized for the conductors feeding each indusial switching, T250.66?
  2. Can the tap be sized for the conductors and the grounding electrode taps be connected by means of buss bar and lugs terminations?
  3. Are split bolts connections allowed for the above application?

Q2: Article 250.64(D), provides for three methods of grounding services with multiple disconnection means enclosures (D1, D2, and D3).

D2 allows for individual grounding of each disconnecting means enclosure.

  1. Does this mean the grounding electrode conductor for each switch is sized for service entrance conductors feeding each individual disconnecting means enclosure as per article 250.66 to grounding electrode system?

Q3: Article 250.64(D), provides for three methods of grounding services with multiple disconnection means enclosures (D1, D2, and D3).

D3 Allows for only grounding electrode conductor in a wireway or other accessible enclosures on the supply side of the service disconnection means. The grounding electrode conductor shall be sized as per article 250.66 based on the service entrance conductor.

  1. Does this mean only one switch need to be provided with a grounding electrode conductors sized as per article 250.66 for feeder drop or lateral?
  2. Can a supplemental ground electrode conductor be connected to the metal frame of the service equipment, neutral buss bar of the common ground electrode of D1 type installation?

A.
A1:
a: Yes.
b: Yes, if approved for the purpose.
c: Yes, if approved for grounding

A2:
a: Yes.

A3:
a: No.
b: Yes.

 

Section 230.7 - (2/5/2014)

Q: The Department of Buildings is providing the following questions/answers to those interested in satisfying the newly enacted NYS Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) program, PON 2758 Gas Station Back-Up Power Program:

Q1: Where can we locate the permanent connection for temporary generator?

Q2: Can the permanent connection be located adjacent to the gas station booth?

Q3: Is there a conflicts with section 230.70(A)(1), if the permanent connection for the temporary generator is installed as a service switch?

Q4: Is solid or switched neutral required for the installation?

Q5: Can extra hard use cords be used between the permanent connection and the temporary generator?

Q6: What type of loads is required to be on the temporary generator?

Q7: Does this installation require Advisory Board approval?

A.
A1: The permanent connection box, the connection cables, and the generator shall be located outside the Class I, Division II region. The installation shall comply with Article 514 for clearances.

A2: Yes, when complies with the above requirement.

A3: Yes for a service rated service switch combination Manual Transfer Switch (MTS), and no conflict for a standalone generator disconnect switch.

A4: A solid or switched neutral must comply with Article 250.

A5: When comply with A1 requirement above.

A6: Confirm requirement with the NYSERDA program and the station management.

A7: No. Electrical permit and inspection are required.

 

Section 240.24 - (2/5/2014)

Q: We are designing a 19 story high rise, mixed use (residential, hotel and retail) building. It has been requested by ownership that the refrigerator receptacle and (1) convenience receptacle in each residential apartment be supplied with a dedicated emergency circuit (one circuit for both receptacles).

Our current design includes emergency standby panels on floors 8, 11, 14 and 18, dedicated to supplying power to the designated emergency receptacles in each apartment. These panels are located exterior to the apartments, in electrical closets on the associated floors. These panels are normally fed by utility power and backed up by on site emergency generator via a designated automatic transfer switch.

Section 240.24 of NEC 2008 states that "Each occupant shall have ready access to all overcurrent devices protecting the conductors supplying that occupancy unless otherwise permitted in 240.24(B)(1)". Section 240.24(B)(1) also states that "where electric service and electrical maintenance are provided by the building management and where these are under continuous building management supervision, the service overcurrent devices and feeder overcurrent devices supplying more than one occupancy shall be permitted to be accessible only to authorized management personnel in the following: multiple-occupancy buildings, guest rooms or guest suites".

In this case, the building in question will have a 24 hour super to provide maintenance to the standby panels serving emergency receptacles within apartments. It is our interpretation that since this is a multiple-occupancy building, and that there is continuous building management supervision, that our design would be allowed by code.

Would you agree with our interpretation of NEC 2011 in regards to our current design?

A. No, the code section sited refers to service and feeders not branch circuits.

 

Section 250.1, 250.21, and 250.30 - (2/5/2014)

Q: The question is related to having more than one separately derived grounding system in the same building. Our client is building a highly specialized cancer treatment center. The equipment vendor requires a separately derived grounding system to provide a clean ground to do independent testing/measurement of their equipment. The equipment technicians will have no equipment permanently connected to the reference system. Is the proposed installation acceptable to install two separate grounding systems, one will be the required grounding electrode system, and one shall be for the equipment vendor technicians for their sole use of equipment calibration?

A. No. as per sections 250.1(A), 250.21(A), and 250.30 bonding between the two grounding electrode systems are required.

 

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CHAPTER 3: Wiring Methods and Materials (Code Section 300.1 to 398-104)
 

 

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CHAPTER 4: Equipment for General Use (Code Section 400.1 to 490.74)
 

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CHAPTER 5: Special Occupancies (Code Section 500.1 to 590.7)
 

 

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CHAPTER 6: Special Equipment (Code Section 600.1 to 695.14)
 

Section 695.6 - (4/2/2014)

Q: We have 40hp fire pump on the 19th floor of a hotel, the normal feed with, 3#2/0, is coming from the cellar main service room, it us our understanding that lifeline cable is approved for use horizontally (for 2hr rating) but NOT vertically, can we use lifeline cable and in all areas that require a horizontal run and in vertical runs (riser shaft) we would enclose in a 2hr rated shaft-way, until such a point that the conduit with the wire in it goes horizontal again in which case the lifeline protection would take over ?

A. Yes, when the shaft is dedicated for the Fire Pump circuit.

 

Section 695.6(B)(3) - (4/2/2014)

Q: Is painting the fire pump feeder conduit with 2-hour rated intumescent paint an acceptable method of achieving the 2-hour fire rating of Section 695.6(B)(2) or Section 695.6(B)(3)?

A. No.

 

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CHAPTER 7: Special Conditions (Code Section 700.1 to 770.182)
 

Section 700.9 - (4/2/2014)

Q: Local Law 111/2013 was passed at the end of 2013 which became effective upon passing adding a new category of loads to be generator supported power by the inclusion of an amended NEC Article 701-Legally Required Standby Systems. The loads were previously defined as Emergency loads under NYCEC Article 700. The new classification of these loads includes differences from those defined for emergency systems in equipment, wiring and performance requirements. These are less restrictive than for emergency systems installed per NYCEC Article 700. NYCEC Article 702 also defines requirements for Optional Standby loads with a further reduction in restrictions.

Specific compliance with Articles 700, 701 and 702 results in 3 discrete generator supported electrical installations in addition to the normal power distribution system. There is no identifiable code language that permits upgrade to a higher level of performance for loads supported per Articles 701 & 702.

  1. Is it permissible to support Legally Required Standby Loads from the Emergency System where the Legally Required Standby system loads are installed and operate per NYCEC Article 700.
  2. Is it permissible to support Optional Standby Loads from the Legally Required Standby System where the Optional Standby system loads are installed and operate per NYCEC Article 701.
  3. Is it permissible to support Optional Standby Loads from the Emergency System where Optional Standby system loads are installed and operate per NYCEC Article 700.

A.

  1. Yes, when the Legally Requires Loads are re-identified and treated as Emergency load.
  2. Yes, when the Optional Standby Loads are re-identified and treated as Legally Required load.
  3. No.
 

Section 700.9(D)(1) - (2/5/2014)

Q: For emergency system feeders between emergency generator and emergency system distribution equipment section 700.9D1 requires that feeders circuit wiring meet one of the following.

  1. Be installed in spaces or areas that are fully protected by an approved automatic fire suppression system.
  2. Be a listed circuit protective system with a 1 hour fire rating. (FPN:UL guide information for electrical circuit protection systems (FHIT) contains information on proper installation requirements to maintain fire rating.)
  3. Be protected by a listed thermal barrier system for electrical system components
  4. Be protected by a listed fire-rated assembly that has a minimum fire rating of 1-hour and contains only emergency wiring circuits.
  5. Be embedded in not less than 50mm (2 in) of concrete
  6. Be a cable listed to maintain circuit integrity for not less than 1 hour when installed in accordance with the listed requirements.

As per this section is it permissible to install the following (FHIT) feeders in NYC:

a. 1850Mi cable
b. RHW in non-galvanized EMT.

A.
a. Yes. In accordance with the listing.
b. Yes. In accordance with the current listing. Note; attention should be given to unique installation requirement of this system.

 
 

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CHAPTER 8: Communications Systems (Code Section 800.1 to 830.179)
 

 

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CHAPTER 9: Tables (Table 1 to 12(B))
 

 

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Annex D: Calculation Examples
 

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ADMINISTRATIVE: General Requirements
 

License - (2/5/2014)

Q: Is a master electricians license required when installing power poles/ posts for furniture partition. These posts are UL listed and contain electrical wiring. A hard wire connection must be made to the post and a flexible metal conduit wiring harness supplies power to each other post in the furniture configuration.

A. Yes.

 

Administrative Sections 27-115 and 27-118(a) - (4/2/2014)

Q: (i) Emergency power generation feeders and automatic transfer devices that are required to be installed in existing buildings pursuant to §27-1 15 or 27-118(a) of the Administrative Code shall not be located in the same room as the main or primary electrical service equipment.

(ii) Any automatic transfer device that is not located at the load shall be remotely located or separated by 2-hour fire resistance rated construction from the emergency generator and any fuel burning equipment.

a. As per this section, is it permissible to install automatic transfer switches, a dedicated emergency distribution board feeding automatic transfer switches, and a dedicated normal distribution board feeding automatic transfer switches in the same 2-hour fire resistance rated room as shown on attached sketch 'AB-001' and 'AB-002'?M/b>

b. lf not, as per this section, is it permissible to install automatic transfer switches in a 2-hour fire resistance rated room, and a dedicated emergency distribution board feeding automatic transfer switches, and a dedicated normal distribution board feeding automatic transfer switches in the emergency generator room as shown on attached sketch 'AB-003'? (See attached three sketches).

A. No.

 

Copies of the NYC 2011 Electrical Code (only the amendments to the NEC 2008 Electrical Code) and the New York City Electrical Code (the amendments and the NEC 2008 Electrical Code) can be purchased at the CityStore.

Other Code Interpretation Links:

Code Interpretation for 2013
Code Interpretation for 2012
Code Interpretation for 2011
Code Interpretation for 2010
Code Interpretation for 2009
Code Interpretation for 2008
Code Interpretation for 2007
Code Interpretation for 2006
Code Interpretation for 2005
Code Interpretation for 2004
Code Interpretation for 2003
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