NTA joins the International Code Council’s family of solutions

The acquisition will add laboratory and testing capabilities to the Code Council service offerings and will foster innovation by streamlining the time-to-market for product manufacturers

Nappanee, IN – The International Code Council announced today that it has acquired NTA, a leading provider of testing services, product certification, inspection, engineering, off-site construction plan review, and code evaluation. The Indiana-based company will significantly expand the services the Code Council provides by adding major laboratory and testing capabilities.

NTA currently serves residential and commercial builders, code officials, manufacturers and suppliers throughout the building industry. The company has offices and a testing laboratory in Nappanee, Indiana, and will soon break ground on a new testing campus in Bryan, Texas. Additional information about the new facility will be available soon.

“NTA joining the Code Council will bring their exceptional testing capabilities to our suite of services,” said Code Council Chief Executive Officer Dominic Sims, CBO. “This acquisition helps us to better fulfill our building safety mission and serve our members and clients.”

NTA maintains one of the largest manufacturing inspection workforces in the market, and its inspection professionals currently hold hundreds of Code Council certifications. Its network of auditors enables it to provide review and inspection of in-plant quality control procedures, ensuring consistent quality of products for code compliance.

“Since its founding in 1976, NTA has stood for quality and integrity,” said David A. Tompos, President and CEO of NTA. “We are a family-owned company, and entering into this partnership makes us a member of a larger family of companies. We are proud to be a part of the Code Council and are excited about the opportunities this relationship will open up for both companies.”

“ICC Evaluation Service (ICC-ES) is thrilled about this new acquisition,” stated ICC-ES President Shahin Moinian, P.E. “We are a global leader in technical evaluations of building products, and the addition of NTA to the family of solutions will allow us to further streamline the time-to-market for product manufacturers by offering testing services in house.”

Representatives from the Code Council and NTA signed the agreement today at the University of Notre Dame in Notre Dame, Indiana.


About the International Code Council
The International Code Council is a nonprofit association that provides a wide range of building safety solutions including product evaluation, accreditation, certification, codification, and training. It develops model codes and standards used worldwide to construct safe, sustainable, affordable and resilient structures.

About NTA, Inc.
NTA, Inc. provides code evaluation, product certification, inspection, engineering, off-site construction plan review, and testing services, as well as independent quality and standards compliance verification for many building products.


Download the PDF Verison

Contact: Madison Neal
(202) 754-1173
mneal@iccsafe.org

MOSO International BV’s Legal Challenge to Dasso’s U.S. Patent Denied

On November 2, 2018, MOSO filed a petition with the United States Patent Trial and Appeal Board (“PTAB”), in which MOSO sought to invalidate Dasso’s U.S. Patent. In a stunning rebuke of MOSO’s claim challenges to Dasso’s ‘578 Patent, a lengthy Final Decision was entered on May 13, 2019, which concluded as follows: “ORDERED that the Petition is denied as to all challenged claims of the ‘578 patent and no trial is instituted.”    

MOSO’s strategic attempt to invalidate Dasso’s U.S. patent failed spectacularly. Rather than prevailing, MOSO’s patent challenge and the PTAB Final Decision only strengthened Dasso’s ‘578 Patent, including the pending claims against MOSO in a Delaware patent infringement case.    

Dasso is satisfied with the PTAB patent judges’ Final Decision to deny MOSO’s attempt to invalidate its ‘578 patent. Here are some key events leading to the PTAB Final Decision:    

• 11/2/2017 – Dasso files Federal lawsuit against MOSO for unlawful infringement of Dasso’s ‘578 patent. 

• 11/2/2018 – MOSO files a petition with PTAB to invalidate Dasso’s ‘578 patent by claiming Dasso’s patented process is unpatentable.   

• 5/13/2019 – PTAB judges deny all claims by MOSO challenging the validity and patentability of Dasso’s ‘578 U.S. patent.      

View the PTAB Final Decision  

https://dassoxtr.com/uploads/docs/P23-Decision-Denying-Institution.pdf

Contact:

6060 Boat Rock Blvd SW, Suite 800, Atlanta, GA 30336 Toll Free: +1.877.394.8574   Phone: 1.404.691.6872   Fax: 1.404.691.6870

DassoXTR.com

NADRA Code Update

July 3rd, 2019

By: Glenn Mathewson

To finish a marathon, you’ve got to push through the last mile.  Such is the same with developing a new edition of the International Residential Code.  Thousands of people are currently running a marathon toward the 2021 IRC, and though they are halfway through, there’s no telling who (or who’s proposals) will make it to the finish line.  While it’s too soon to start cheering, it’s not to soon to feel confident and strong, and that’s how the NADRA and Deck Code Coalition proposals are looking.

With the publishing of the final report from the Committee Action Hearings, the public can not only see the results of the hearing, but also a summary of the comments made by the committee.  There are three result categories, but since those aren’t “final” results, the comments should be the focus.  The committee comments could be looked at as spectators cheering on or booing the runners.  They provide direction, encouragement, and suggestions, much like “you got this! Keep going! You’re so close”.  Unfortunately, sometimes the comments can feel more like “you’re never going to make it! Give up now!  You look so tired!”

The race is not over until you pass the finish line, and sometimes people get a second wind.  That’s what the next phase of the code modification process can offer—a second chance.  Regardless of the committee result, every proposal can receive a public comment modification, and if received, the proposal will be heard again at the final hearings, where a final vote will be made…but not really.  The final vote is actually made online a few weeks after the hearing.  In this vote, only governmental ICC members can cast the final thumbs up or thumbs down.   These members could vote down a proposal approved by the committee, and likewise, the members could turn around a proposal disapproved by the committee.

Public comments to the committee results are due July 24th and these will be the catalyst for the next step in the process.  A proposal that does not receive a public comment is almost certain to be finalized as-is in the “bulk vote” where the governmental members vote for the entire package of proposals.  Having not received any disagreement from the public, the assumption is that the committee opinion is good to go.  Here is the part to pay close attention to:

If the committee result for a proposal is not challenged by July 24th, consider it done.  If there is something you don’t like, silence is equivalent to support.

So let me put it this way…  “Speak now or forever hold your peace”.

Okay…that’s not exactly true, but you would have to hold it until the 2024 IRC code development hearings where everything is on the table again.

Thanks to select NADRA members that have financially supported NADRA representation in the code modification process, I am working alongside other professionals in the Deck Code Coaltion and we are preparing public comments.  We are running this marathon until the end.  I hope you are on the sidelines cheering us on.  Here are the results and comments from the Committee Action Hearings that have us in a runner’s high.  You can view all the Group B ICC documents and the live video from the Group B hearing at this link:  https://www.iccsafe.org/products-and-services/i-codes/code-development/

RB184: Disapproved

Committee Reason:  There were multiple corrections expressed in a modification that the committee felt was too extensive. The wording in Section 507.4 is confusing. The committee urges that the corrections should be brought forward in a public comment. The collaborative effort, and inclusion of engineers in the effort, was a positive aspect for this proposal. (Vote: 10-1)

RB185: Approved As Modified

Committee Reason: The modification to Section R507.10.1.2 removed ‘approved’ because this adjective cannot be applied to manufacture’s instructions. The modification to Section to R507.10.2 reworded the two sentences for clarity. The modification to Section R507.10.4 removes ‘approved’ because this would be confusing to the homeowner. The proposal provided good general prescriptive language for guards that will reduce the need for engineering of guards. The committee had several suggestions for better wording that should come forward in a public comment: Add ‘also’ to Section R312.1.4; ‘design’ instead of ‘construction’ in Section 507.10; revise ‘prevent’ to ‘limit’ in Section R507.10.1.1; joists are part of the deck framing, so the language in Section R507.10.1 is confusing. (Vote: 9-2)

RB186: Approved As Modified

Committee Reason: The modification restores rivets and puts in the term ‘glulam’ to be consistent with the term used in ASTM F1667. Adding the Class D is appropriate for this product. (Vote: 11-0)

RB187: Approved As Submitted

Committee Reason: The committee felt that the overall proposal is a good reorganization that add clarity to the code requirements. Item 3 in Section R507.3.3 is an alternative means that is currently allowed in Chapter 1. (Vote: 11-0)

RB188: Approved As Submitted

Committee Reason: This revision will clarify the engineering option for deck beams where fastened together. (Vote: 11-0)

RB189: Approved As Submitted

Committee Reason: This change clarifies the cantilever limitations. (Vote: 11-0)

RB190: Approved As Submitted

Committee Reason: The proposed footnote allows for a design that does not use the full cantilever, which will allow for a more efficient design. If you do not use this option, the table is more conservative. The commentary should include an example. (Vote: 11-0)

RB191: Approved As Submitted

Committee Reason: The revisions add clarification to the code and allows for better design practice for wood decking. (Vote 11-0)


An Offer from NADRA Members Guild Quality and Best Pick Reports

7.3.19

Dear Fellow NADRA Members,

GuildQuality has some exciting news to share, and we’re seeking your support in helping spread the word!

We are proud to announce that our sister brand, Best Pick Reports, will expand into the greater Seattle area this fall. As a leader in the home services industry for the past twenty years, Best Pick Reports connects contractors with quality-focused customers through a unique model of contractor certification and vetting.

This expansion comes after extensive research into the nation’s top markets, as well as consultation with area contractors and home services professionals. The Puget Sound region needs a new model of lead generation that delivers quality above quantity. Best Pick Reports is poised to fill this gap as we have done in other major metro areas across the country.

With the support of GuildQuality’s tested model of customer research, which is one component of how contractors are vetted and verified, Best Pick Reports will create a hyper-local print and online directory of top-tier home services professionals in King, Snohomish, and Pierce counties. Our goal is to help contractors spend less effort weeding through price shoppers and more time connecting with ready-to-hire homeowners who ultimately become loyal customers.

NADRA members who may be interested to learn more about Best Pick Reports can visit us online at www.bestpickreports.com.  

Home services professionals in King, Snohomish, and Pierce counties are invited to apply for Best Pick Reports certification by contacting James Watson at marketing@bestpickreports.com, by calling (678) 274-6482, or by visiting www.bestpickreports.com/apply/seattle

Thanks for supporting this exciting new chapter of the GuildQuality/Best Pick Reports story.

Sincerely,

The Executive Teams at GuildQuality and Best Pick Reports

MoistureShield Partners with Cardinal Building Products to Distribute Composite Decking & Railing in the Mid-Atlantic Region

ATLANTA, June 18, 2019 – MoistureShield, a division of Oldcastle APG and a manufacturer of innovative composite decking & railing, has partnered with Cardinal Building Products, a leader in building products distribution with vast expertise in decking and alternative exterior products. Headquartered in Leola, PA, Cardinal will carry the full line of MoistureShield state-of-the-art composite products designed to replace traditional decking materials.

A family business since 1992, Cardinal Building Products has close to 1 million sq. ft. of decking at its Leola, PA, facility.  Through the Leola branch location, Cardinal Building Products will supply MoistureShield to lumberyards throughout the Mid-Atlantic Region.

“We have extensive experience in decking and recognize how nicely MoistureShield’s innovative product lines fit into our product selection,” said Rick Hess, General Manager of Cardinal Building Products. “MoistureShield demonstrates the kind of technology our customers are looking for to best meet their customer’s needs and stand out in the decking marketplace.”

The MoistureShield product line features Vision® capped composite decking with a modern, variegated appearance and the exclusive DiamondDefense capped surface. MoistureShield also features its unique CoolDeck technology, for select products, which reduces deck board surface temperatures by up to 35%. Other products include Infuse® decking, a realistic wood-grain finish and ability to withstand total submersion in water; and Vantage®, an uncapped composite with the workability of wood. All MoistureShield decking features the Solid Core Difference™ for advanced strength and moisture resistance. 

“We are excited to partner with Cardinal Building Products to help grow our deck offerings in the Mid-Atlantic,” said Todd Braun, Vice President of Sales for MoistureShield, a division of Oldcastle APG. “Cardinal is strategically positioned to help us continue to expand our offerings in this region, and they have the decking knowledge to help grow the brand.”

MoistureShield composite decking and railing is manufactured from 95 percent recycled content and can be installed directly on the ground, in the ground or under water. The line is backed by an industry-leading warranty against decay, rot and termite damage.  Learn more at www.MoistureShield.com.

About Oldcastle APG

Oldcastle APG, North America’s largest manufacturer of Outdoor Living Products, is part of CRH’s Building Products division. CRH is a leading global diversified building materials group with operating locations in 32 countries worldwide. MoistureShield, a division of Oldcastle APG, proudly manufactures composite deck boards and related products serving a range of retail and distribution customers across North America and several international markets. The development of new technologies and patents has enabled MoistureShield to manufacture superior composite products from recycled wood fiber and recycled polyethylene plastic.

About Cardinal Building Products:

Cardinal Building Products is the premier choice for Mid-Atlantic specialty building product needs. The company has nearly one million square feet of vinyl, composite and polyethylene decking on site, and also offers vinyl and aluminum railing to complete any residential or commercial deck.  They can easily deliver truckloads or skid lots of material to your store or commercial job site. https://www.cardinalbuildingproducts.com

Simpson Strong-Tie Promotes Deck Safety Month® with an Updated Online Deck Resource Center for Contractors and Homeowners

Pleasanton, Calif. — Simpson Strong-Tie, the leader in engineered structural connectors and building solutions, today announced a comprehensive update to its online deck resource center in conjunction with Deck Safety Month.

Presented each May by the North American Deck and Railing Association (NADRA), Deck Safety Month is dedicated to raising deck safety awareness for contractors and homeowners. According to NADRA, of the 50 million decks in the US alone, it’s estimated that 25 million currently need to be replaced or repaired.

In addition to Deck Safety Month resources available at nadra.org, the Simpson Strong-Tie® Deck Center is an online resource that provides deck builders and consumers with in-depth deck safety information, an idea and inspiration page for building safe decks, as well as a selection of videos, online and in-person training opportunities, literature, and industry tips for safe deck construction.

With most wood decks expected to last only 10 to 15 years, contractors and homeowners can also explore the 5 Warning Signs of an Unsafe Deck. Rotting wood, missing hardware, and other hazards can all contribute to unsafe conditions, and Deck Safety Month presents an ideal opportunity to conduct simple deck inspections that can head off problems before failures occur.

Visitors to the Simpson Strong-Tie Deck Center can also get installation details and feature and benefit information for a wide range of deck connectors, fasteners and construction solutions offered by Simpson Strong-Tie, including the complete line of Outdoor Accents®decorative hardware.

For more information about deck safety, including best practices for designing, inspecting, and repairing great decks, visit the Simpson Strong-Tie Deck Center, watch our newest video featuring “6 Warning Signs of Unsafe Decks,” and read our deck safety posts on the Simpson Strong-Tie Building Strong blog.

Viance Hires Reid Price as Graphic Design Manager

Charlotte, N.C. (May 7, 2019) – Viance, a leading innovator in the wood preservation industry, is pleased to announce the hiring of Reid Price, who has joined the Viance team as Graphic Design Manager. In this role, Reid will utilize his graphic design, photography and videography experience, to design print and digital advertising, point of purchase materials, logos, and technical product brochures.

Reid comes to Viance with over 10 years’ experience in art direction and communications with Future’s Graphics, LLC, the SC Chamber of Commerce and Magnum Publications. Reid earned his BA in Graphic Design and Studio Arts from the University of South Carolina. He has been awarded the Best in Business award by the SCSAE for design for Business Week and the Silver Wing and Mercury Awards by SCPRSA for design work on SC Business Magazine.

“Reid’s breadth of experience will strengthen our ability to provide our customers industry-leading services,” states Edie Kello, Director of Marketing. His track record serving B2B companies makes him well-suited for success in this role.”

About Viance

Viance, a leading provider of wood treatment preservatives, offers an extensive range of advanced wood treatment technologies and services to the global wood preservation industry. With expertise in wood biocides and wood protection chemicals, Viance technologies improve the performance and durability of wood products for sustainable building. Viance is a joint venture of Dupont™ and Venator™ Materials PLC.

###

AZEK BUILDING PRODUCTS PARTNERS WITH GREAT SOUTHERN WOOD PRESERVING IN MARYLAND AND VIRGINIA

Chicago, Ill., May 17, 2019 – AZEK Building Products, a leading manufacturer of premium outdoor building materials, is excited to announced two new distribution centers, further developing its long-standing relationship with Great Southern Wood Preserving, Inc. The Alabama-based company will now offer full lines of TimberTech®and AZEK®Exteriors’ products at both its Rocky Mount, Virginia and Hagerstown, Maryland locations. 

“We are excited that our relationship with AZEK continues to grow and, along with it, our distribution footprint,” said Jimmy Rane, CEO of Great Southern Wood Preserving, Incorporated. “We believe that AZEK has the best product offerings and customer service in their industry, which ultimately gives homeowners, contractors, builders, dealers and architects outstanding solutions for their outdoor trim, decking, and railing needs.”

With the addition of these two facilities, AZEK Building Products and Great Southern now partner at 12 distribution centers across the United States. 

“We welcome the collaboration with Great Southern and look forward to developing our dealer network together in the Lower Mid-Atlantic market,” said Joe Ochoa, President of AZEK Building Products. “This strategic partnership will help accelerate growth in a market that is very important to us. We look forward to expanded visibility of our decking, railing and trim products in these areas.” 

With the industry’s widest selection of premium, capped composite and capped polymer decking colors and styles, AZEK Building Products is dedicated to manufacturing the most inspiring, sustainable and long-lasting outdoor building materials in the marketplace. For more information on AZEK Building Products, visit TimberTech.com and AZEKexteriors.com.

Great Southern Wood Preserving provides dealers with a broad range of traditional and alternative decking products, as well as additional treatment options, serving all user segments.

For more information on Great Southern Wood Preserving, visit www.yellawood.com

###

About AZEK® Building Products

AZEK Building Products, a division of The AZEK Company, manufactures home building materials under two divisions: TimberTech® and AZEK® Exteriors. TimberTech offers a premium portfolio of capped polymer and capped composite decking – as well as railing, porch, lighting and paver products – while AZEK Exteriors manufactures distinctly unique trim and moulding. Together the brands present homeowners, builders, architects, dealers and contractors with a comprehensive suite of first-rate products that are long lasting, sustainable alternatives to wood. AZEK is headquartered in Chicago, IL (with plants in OH and PA) and also owns business operations of Minneapolis-based Ultralox railing systems. For more information visit AZEKCo.com or call 1-877-275-2935.

About Great Southern Wood Preserving, Incorporated:

Great Southern Wood Preserving, Incorporated is a wholly owned subsidiary of Great Southern Wood Holdings, Inc. The company is headquartered in Abbeville, AL. It and its subsidiaries have plants located in Mobile and Muscle Shoals, AL; Brookhaven, MS; Glenwood, AR; Columbus, TX;  Buckner, MO; Conyers and Jesup, GA; Mansura, LA; Bushnell, FL; Rocky Mount, VA; Hagerstown, MD; and Fombell, PA. For information, please call 334-585-2291 or visit www.yellawood.com. 

Tyler Rabel
Two by Four
312-445-4728
trabel@twoxfour.com


NADRA Code Update

May 8th, 2019

Notes from NADRA’s Code Committee Chair, Mark Guthrie:

Building codes are always going to play a critical part in the safety, growth and public perception of our industry.  NADRA recognizes this and has been dedicating an increasing amount of time and resources to better understanding and shaping the codes that we all must build to and live by.   A big part of this is our preparation and attendance at the ICC Code Hearings.

Last week, I attended the hearings along with our Technical Advisor Glenn Mathewson.  We spoke on behalf of NADRA, both “for” and “against” code proposals that have the potential to impact our future. In most cases, we were able to gain the support of the voting committee on the codes that we felt best represented the position of NADRA – safer decks built to reasonable, fact-based standards of construction.  

Other than the individual code items that we spoke to, the biggest win in my mind was that NADRA came away from this meeting as a more recognized and respected voice in a room full of the most influential and credentialed building industry professionals.  Glenn was well prepared to state our case supported by facts and passion on our behalf and it was recognized.

What follows are Glenn’s notes on the meetings.  It’s a great rundown of what we can look forward to in future codes and how to shape it with your help.  It’s well worth the read.

Update from Glenn Mathewson:

Last week, I had the honor of attending and speaking on behalf of NADRA at the International Code Council Committee Action Hearing for the creation of the 2021 International Residential Code.  

These hearings ran from 8am to 7pm, with every code topic imaginable being scrutinized, debated and voted on throughout the week.  Deck-specific proposals were scattered between more general ones. Keep in mind that many features inside a home, like stairs for instance, are also an important part of decks.  However, many proponents of change don’t necessarily realize how their proposals may impact our industry. I was there to consider and react to these, ready to defend the interests of our membership while still focusing on the deck related changes we had prepared for.

The code hearing process can be a little confusing but worth a quick explanation.  A volunteer committee of varied professionals at this stage considered testimony for and against the more than 300 modification proposals.   Their majority vote for approval or disapproval then set in motion the next phase where the public can submit changes to these proposals. All proposals that receive a public comment for modification will be deliberated again in the Final Action Hearings in October like last week’s meeting.  However, this time the final vote will be made by governmental ICC members made up mostly of local code officials from around the country.

There is still more work that needs to be done whether you agreed or disagreed with the votes taken last week.  A modification to a proposal that was approved by the committee only now requires a majority vote to become 2021 code.  To turn over a committee disapproval takes a 2/3rd majority. So, if you don’t agree with the committees vote this time, you better submit a public comment to help sway sentiment at the final hearings.  

Here is a rundown of the more significant deck-related proposals and what the committee felt about them:

RB46 & RB47 were the work of many in trying to separate guards and handrails into their own rows in the minimum live load table, and to better identify the loading direction that must be resisted.  Currently both must resist loads in all possible directions. Argument was delivered that a guard is for fall protection off an elevated floor surface and thus should not be required to be designed to support the same loads pulling back in toward the deck as those pushing out over the edge.  The committee disagreed and this one was a half win. Handrails and guards were split on the table, but the loading direction was unchanged. This is still a good first step that will allow future work to better identify the loads they must each resist.

RB50 was a serious proposal suggesting that all decks be built to a minimum 60 psf live load, rather than the current 40 psf.  However, to achieve this, the proposal required a using the 70 psf snow load tables in a different proposal by NADRA and the Deck Code Coalition (DCC).  Luckily, after much deliberation, the committee decided this was not appropriate and the proposal was disapproved. After the decision, I reached out to the proponent and invited them to discuss their concerns in deck live loads with us.  There are many with ideas and experience in decks and they cannot be dismissed. NADRA stands by collaboration as the only way to appropriately develop the future codes of our industry.

RB106 suggested a strict method of constructing stairs, including stringer cuts, spans and spacing, securing to a concrete landing, and details for connecting the stairs at the top.  The proposal is not a surprise, as the absence structural code provisions for how to build stairs is well known. However, the suggestions in RB106 just didn’t represent very much flexibility and needed more work.  We spoke against this proposal and it was disapproved.

There were many other proposals with minor impacts that we spoke to in support and opposition, and in nearly all cases the committee voted in the manner we had hoped.  On the last full day of testimony, the proposals that NADRA and the DCC have spent months developing were heard.

RB184 was our largest proposal and offered new design tables for sizing deck structural members.  The new tables expanded the current 40 psf live load to 50, 60 and 70 psf snow loads options.  This would allow many more regions to use the prescriptive design method in the IRC. This proposal also included critical alterations to the footing table, such as reducing the minimum 14-inch diameter pier currently in the IRC to as small as 8-inch diameter for small decks and stair landings.  It also expanded the post-sizing table to include the actual area of the deck supported and various wood species. Unfortunately, some last minute engineering tweaks had to be made to the table that was submitted and the committee didn’t feel they had sufficient time to review them. They disapproved it.  Luckily, there were no negative statements made in committee discussions and no opposition testimony. The committee encouraged us to submit the revisions as public comment so they can be thoroughly reviewed. Other attendees at the hearing, not affiliated with the DCC, stood and spoke in favor of our proposal.  There is still hope for a strong vote of approval in the Final Action Hearings.

RB185 was the most collaborated proposal of all from the DCC, as it was related to guard post installation.  Working with the many parties in the DCC, there have always been very differing opinions about how specific guard construction should be detailed in the IRC.  After much argument, disagreement, and sharing of knowledge, the members of the DCC were able to respect each other and all agree on a minimum proposal to make a step forward in safer guard construction.  We agreed to prohibit the notching of 4×4 posts and to include code language requiring a post to be secured into the adjacent framing of the deck, not just the single rim board. However, no specific hardware was specified, keeping the code generic and flexible.  The committee congratulated us a number of times for the professional manner in which we worked together. The proposal was approved.

RB187 was a pretty simple proposal to make better sense of various deck foundation types, minimum depths, and frost depth exceptions.  With the committee approval of this proposal, the code will be better presented. One clarification made was that decks attached to non-frost-protected structures, such as detached garages or sheds, will not have to themselves be frost protected.

RB190 is a proposal that makes beam design for decks much more flexible.  The current table in the IRC for sizing beams is based on the span of the joist supported by the beam, but it assumes those joists are at their maximum allowable cantilever beyond the beam.  For decks with flush beams and no cantilevered joists, the maximum beam span is incredibly conservative. We proposed a footnote modification method that will allow the table to be more flexible and alter the values based on the lesser amount of cantilever.  The example used in the proposal showed how a beam without cantilevered joists was still being limited to a maximum 7 foot 4 inches, but with our new footnote modification would actually be able to span 9 feet. The committee agreed that this was a much-needed flexibility to the table and approved our proposal.

RB 191 is a proposal based in truth, though it may not be something deck builders will be thrilled about.  None-the-less, our reputation as contributors to the code development process must remain grounded in what is most appropriate for the industry.  The maximum joists spacing of different thicknesses of wood decking is derived from an analysis method that assumes each board is spanning at least two joist bays, bearing on three joists.  This is not currently explained in the code. The provisions we proposed maintained the maximum joists spacing for decking supported on at least three joists, but reduced the maximum spacing for decking supported by only two joists.  For these short lengths, the maximum joist spacing will be approximately half. Revealing this oversight in the code maintains a high level of professionalism in our industry, yet also allowed us to craft the code in a manner that provides more assurance for sound construction, while also allowing for design freedom..

RB302 was our final proposal and it was related to the guard design collaboration.  To address concerns of building departments that have no way to approve simple, basic guard designs while not hindering the professional builders from unique guard designs, a new appendix chapter was proposed.  IRC appendix chapters must be adopted individually by a jurisdiction and are not automatically part of the mandatory code. Where not adopted, they can still be referenced as an approved manner for construction.  The proposal included specific methods for attaching guard posts that have been engineered to support the 200 lb. required design load. Assuming the committee would agree that guards don’t need to support a 200 lb. inward load, that load was not specifically addressed.  Unfortunately, that assumption was incorrect, and the committee did not approve the appendix proposal.

Overall, the contributions of NADRA and the DCC were an overwhelming success.  Our voice was heard, respected, and made a difference. It’s a voice that we can’t allow to ever go silent.  The IRC will be modified every three years, as will the IBC and the swimming pool and spa code (ISPSC), both of which have implications on decks.  There will always be a need for the deck industry to stand and speak. We have made a great impression, but there is still much work to be done to complete the 2021 IRC.

Congratulations to us all on this success,

Glenn Mathewson, MCP – NADRA Technical Advisor.

NADRA Code Update

ICC Committee Action Hearings, Group B Codes – Albuquerque, 2019:

May 2nd, 2019 Update – By: Glenn Mathewson

Deep into the IRC Committee Action Hearings. So far the deck industry has been well represented by The North American Deck and Railing Association and our friends in the Deck Code Coalition.

Preview of our accomplishments as the voice for our industry:

  • Guard and handrail load requirements were approved to be split into two columns which sets the stag to better evaluate the unique job they each do.
  • Raising the minimum design live load for decks from 40 psf to 60 psf was disapproved.

This is just the beginning of the process though, as public comments and the Final Action hearing can still change everything, MUCH work is still to be done. Please consider making a pledge today to help NADRA continue to have representation at these critical hearings. Learn more about our fundraising initiative HERE.

Today will be another long 11-hour day of testimony, but I’m proud to be here speaking on behalf of NADRA and for all those that work in decks and rails!