Heads up: There are no amended sections in this chapter.
Unless stated otherwise, the following words and terms in this code shall have the meanings indicated in this chapter.
Words used in the present tense include the future; words in the masculine gender include the feminine and neuter; the singular number includes the plural and the plural includes the singular.
Terms that are not defined in this code but are defined in the International Building Code, International Fire Code, International Fuel Gas Code, International Mechanical Code, International Plumbing Code or the International Residential Code shall have the meanings ascribed to them in those codes.
Terms not defined by this chapter shall have ordinarily accepted meanings such as the context implies.

Section C202 General Definitions

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
ABOVE-GRADE WALL. See "Wall, above-grade."

ACCESSIBLE. Admitting close approach as a result of not being guarded by locked doors, elevation or other effective means (see "Readily accessible").

ACH75. Air Changes per Hour of measured airflow in relation to the building volume while the building is maintained at a pressure difference of 75 pascals (0.30 in wg).

ADDITION. An extension or increase in the conditioned space floor area or height of a building or structure.

AIR BARRIER. Materials assembled and joined together to provide a barrier to air leakage through the building envelope. An air barrier may be a single material or a combination of materials.

AIR CURTAIN. A device, installed at the building entrance, that generates and discharges a laminar air stream intended to prevent the infiltration of external, unconditioned air into the conditioned spaces, or the loss of interior, conditioned air to the outside.

ALTERATION. Any construction, retrofit or renovation to an existing structure other than repair or addition that requires a permit. Also, a change in a building, electrical, gas, mechanical or plumbing system that involves an extension, addition or change to the arrangement, type or purpose of the original installation that requires a permit.

APPROVED. Acceptable to the code official for compliance with the provisions of the applicable code or referenced standard.

APPROVED AGENCY. An established and recognized agency regularly engaged in conducting tests or furnishing inspection services, when such agency has been approved by the code official.

AUTOMATIC. Self-acting, operating by its own mechanism when actuated by some impersonal influence, as, for example, a change in current strength, pressure, temperature or mechanical configuration (see "Manual").

BELOW-GRADE WALL. See "Wall, below-grade."

BOILER, MODULATING. A boiler that is capable of more than a single firing rate in response to a varying temperature or heating load.

BOILER SYSTEM. One or more boilers, their piping and controls that work together to supply steam or hot water to heat output devices remote from the boiler.

BUILDING. Any structure used or intended for supporting or sheltering any use or occupancy.

BUILDING COMMISSIONING. A process that verifies and documents that the selected building systems have been designed, installed, and function according to the owner's project requirements and construction documents, and to minimum code requirements.

BUILDING ENTRANCE. Any door, set of doors, doorway, or other form of portal that is used to gain access to the building from the outside by the public.

BUILDING SITE. A continguous area of land that is under the ownership or control of one entity.

BUILDING THERMAL ENVELOPE. The walls, below-grade, exterior walls, floor, roof and any other building elements that enclose conditioned space or provide a boundary between conditioned space and exempt or unconditioned space.

C-FACTOR (THERMAL CONDUCTANCE). The coefficient of heat transmission (surface to surface) through a building component or assembly, equal to the time rate of heat flow per unit area and the unit temperature difference between the warm side and cold side surfaces (Btu/h ft2 °F) [W/(m2 K)].

CIRCULATING HOT WATER SYSTEM. A specifically designed water distribution system where one or more pumps are operated in the service hot water piping to circulate heated water from the water-heating equipment to the fixture supply and back to the water-heating equipment.

CLIMATE ZONE. A geographical region based on climatic criteria as specified in this code.

CODE OFFICIAL. The officer or other designated authority charged with the administration and enforcement of this code, or a duly authorized representative.

COEFFICENT OF PERFORMANCE (COP) — COOLING. The ratio of the rate of heat input, in consistent units, for a complete refrigerating system or some specific portion of that system under designated operating conditions.

COEFFICIENT OF PERFORMANCE (COP)— HEATING. The ratio of the rate of heat delivered to the rate of energy input, in consistent units, for a complete heat pump system, including the compressor and, if applicable, auxiliary heat, under designated operating conditions.

COMMERCIAL BUILDING. For this code, all buildings that are not included in the definition of "Residential building."

COMPUTER ROOM. A room whose primary function is to house equipment for the processing and storage of electronic data and that has a design electronic data equipment power density exceeding 20 watts per square foot of conditioned floor area.

CONDENSING UNIT. A factory-made assembly of refrigeration components designed to compress and liquefy a specific refrigerant. The unit consists of one or more refrigerant compressors, refrigerant condensers (air-cooled, evaporatively cooled, or water-cooled), condenser fans and motors (where used) and factory-supplied accessories.

CONDITIONED FLOOR AREA. The horizontal projection of the floors associated with the conditioned space.

CONDITIONED SPACE. A space within a building that is provided with heating or cooling equipment or systems capable of maintaining, through design or heat loss/gain, 50°F (10°C) during the heating season or 85°F (29°C) during the cooling season, or communicates directly with a conditioned space. Spaces within the building thermal envelope are considered conditioned space.

CONTINUOUS AIR BARRIER. A combination of materials and assemblies that restrict or prevent the passage of air through the building thermal envelope.

CONTINUOUS INSULATION (ci). Insulating material that is continuous across all structural members without thermal bridges other than fasteners and service openings. It is installed on the interior or exterior or is integral to any opaque surface of the building envelope.

CURTAIN WALL. Fenestration products used to create an external nonload-bearing wall that is designed to separate the exterior and interior environments.

DAYLIGHT RESPONSIVE CONTROL. A device or system that provides automatic control of electric light levels based on the amount of daylight in a space.

DAYLIGHT ZONE. That portion of a building's interior floor area that is illuminated by natural light.

DEMAND CONTROL VENTILATION (DCV). A ventilation system capability that provides for the automatic reduction of outdoor air intake below design rates when the actual occupancy of spaces served by the system is less than design occupancy.

DUCT. A tube or conduit utilized for conveying air. The air passages of self-contained systems are not to be construed as air ducts.

DUCT SYSTEM. A continuous passageway for the transmission of air that, in addition to ducts, includes duct fittings, dampers, plenums, fans and accessory air-handling equipment and appliances.

DWELLING UNIT. A single unit providing complete independent living facilities for one or more persons, including permanent provisions for living, sleeping, eating, cooking and sanitation.

DYNAMIC GLAZING. Any fenestration product that has the fully reversible ability to change its performance properties, including U-factor, solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC), or visible transmittance (VT).

ECONOMIZER, AIR. A duct and damper arrangement and automatic control system that allows a cooling system to supply outside air to reduce or eliminate the need for mechanical cooling during mild or cold weather.

ECONOMIZER, WATER. A system where the supply air of a cooling system is cooled indirectly with water that is itself cooled by heat or mass transfer to the environment without the use of mechanical cooling.

ENCLOSED SPACE. A volume surrounded by solid surfaces such as walls, floors, roofs, and openable devices such as doors and operable windows.

ENERGY ANALYSIS. A method for estimating the annual energy use of the proposed design and standard reference design based on estimates of energy use.

ENERGY COST. The total estimated annual cost for purchased energy for the building functions regulated by this code, including applicable demand charges.

ENERGY RECOVERY VENTILATION SYSTEM. Systems that employ air-to-air heat exchangers to recover energy from exhaust air for the purpose of preheating, precooling, humidifying or dehumidifying outdoor ventilation air prior to supplying the air to a space, either directly or as part of an HVAC system.

ENERGY SIMULATION TOOL. An approved software program or calculation-based methodology that projects the annual energy use of a building.

ENTRANCE DOOR. Fenestration products used for ingress, egress and access in nonresidential buildings, including, but not limited to, exterior entrances that utilize latching hardware and automatic closers and contain over 50-percent glass specifically designed to withstand heavy use and possibly abuse.

EQUIPMENT ROOM. A space that contains either electrical equipment, mechanical equipment, machinery, water pumps or hydraulic pumps that are a function of the building's services.

EXTERIOR WALL. Walls including both above-grade walls and walls, below-grade.

FAN BRAKE HORSEPOWER (BHP). The horsepower delivered to the fan's shaft. Brake horsepower does not include the mechanical drive losses (belts, gears, etc.).

FAN SYSTEM BHP. The sum of the fan brake horsepower of all fans that are required to operate at fan system design conditions to supply air from the heating or cooling source to the conditioned spaces and return it to the source or exhaust it to the outdoors.

FAN SYSTEM DESIGN CONDITIONS. Operating conditions that can be expected to occur during normal system operation that result in the highest supply fan airflow rate to conditioned spaces served by the system.

FAN SYSTEM MOTOR NAMEPLATE HP. The sum of the motor nameplate horsepower of all fans that are required to operate at design conditions to supply air from the heating or cooling source to the conditioned spaces and return it to the source or exhaust it to the outdoors.

FENESTRATION. Products classified as either vertical fenestration or skylights.

Skylight. Glass or other transparent or translucent glazing material installed at a slope of less than 60 degrees (1.05 rad) from horizontal.

Vertical fenestration. Windows (fixed or moveable), opaque doors, glazed doors, glazed block and combination opaque/glazed doors composed of glass or other transparent or translucent glazing materials and installed at a slope of at least 60 degrees (1.05 rad) from horizontal.

FENESTRATION PRODUCT, FIELD-FABRICATED. A fenestration product whose frame is made at the construction site of standard dimensional lumber or other materials that were not previously cut, or otherwise formed with the specific intention of being used to fabricate a fenestration product or exterior door. Field fabricated does not include site-built fenestration.

FENESTRATION PRODUCT, SITE-BUILT. A fenestration designed to be made up of field-glazed or field-assembled units using specific factory cut or otherwise factory-formed framing and glazing units. Examples of site-built fenestration include storefront systems, curtain walls, and atrium roof systems.

F-FACTOR. The perimeter heat loss factor for slab-on-grade floors (Btu/h ft °F) [W/(m K)].

FLOOR AREA, NET. The actual occupied area not including unoccupied accessory areas such as corridors, stairways, toilet rooms, mechanical rooms and closets.

GENERAL LIGHTING. Lighting that provides a substantially uniform level of illumination throughout an area. General lighting shall not include decorative lighting or lighting that provides a dissimilar level of illumination to serve a specialized application or feature within such area.

GENERAL PURPOSE ELECTRIC MOTOR (SUBTYPE I). A motor that is designed in standard ratings with either of the following:
  1. Standard operating characteristics and standard mechanical construction for use under usual service conditions, such as those specified in NEMA MG1, paragraph 14.02, "Usual Service Conditions," and without restriction to a particular application or type of application.
  2. Standard operating characteristics or standard mechanical construction for use under unusual service conditions, such as those specified in NEMA MG1, paragraph 14.03, "Unusual Service Conditions," or for a particular type of application, and that can be used in most general purpose applications.
General purpose electric motors (Subtype I) are constructed in NEMA T-frame sizes or IEC metric equivalent, starting at 143T.

GENERAL PURPOSE ELECTRIC MOTOR (SUBTYPE II). A motor incorporating the design elements of a general purpose electric motor (Subtype I) that is configured as one of the following:
  1. A U-frame motor.
  2. A Design C motor.
  3. A close-coupled pump motor.
  4. A footless motor.
  5. A vertical, solid-shaft, normal-thrust motor (as tested in a horizontal configuration).
  6. An 8-pole motor (900 rpm).
  7. A polyphase motor with voltage of not more than 600 volts (other than 230 or 460 volts).
GREENHOUSE. A structure or a thermally isolated area of a building that maintains a specialized sunlit environment exclusively used for, and essential to, the cultivation, protection or maintenance of plants.

HEAT TRAP. An arrangement of piping and fittings, such as elbows, or a commercially available heat trap that prevents thermosyphoning of hot water during standby periods.

HEATED SLAB. Slab-on-grade construction in which the heating elements, hydronic tubing, or hot air distribution system is in contact with, or placed within or under, the slab.

HIGH SPEED DOOR. A nonswinging door used primarily to facilitate vehicular access or material transportation, with a minimum opening rate of 32 inches (813 mm) per second, a minimum closing rate of 24 inches (610 mm) per second and that includes an automatic-closing device.

HISTORIC BUILDING. Any building or structure that is one or more of the following:
  1. Listed, or certified as eligible for listing by the State Historic Preservation Officer or the Keeper of the National Register of Historic Places, in the National Register of Historic Places.
  2. Designated as historic under an applicable state or local law.
  3. Certified as a contributing resource within a National Register-listed, state-designated or locally designated historic district.
HUMIDISTAT. A regulatory device, actuated by changes in humidity, used for automatic control of relative humidity.

INFILTRATION. The uncontrolled inward air leakage into a building caused by the pressure effects of wind or the effect of differences in the indoor and outdoor air density or both.

INTEGRATED PART LOAD VALUE (IPLV). A single-number figure of merit based on part-load EER, COP or kW/ton expressing part-load efficiency for air-conditioning and heat pump equipment on the basis of weighted operation at various load capacities for equipment.

LABELED. Appliances, equipment, materials or products to which have been affixed a label, seal, symbol or other identifying mark of a nationally recognized testing laboratory, inspection agency or other organization concerned with product evaluation that maintains periodic inspection of the production of the above-labeled items and whose labeling indicates either that the appliances, equipment, material or product meets identified standards or has been tested and found suitable for a specified purpose.

LAMP. The device in a lighting fixture that provides illumination, typically a bulb, fluorescent tube, or light emitting diode (LED).

LINER SYSTEM (Ls). A system that includes the following:
  1. A continuous vapor barrier liner membrane that is installed below the purlins and that is uninterrupted by framing members.
  2. An uncompressed, unfaced insulation resting on top of the liner membrane and located between the purlins.
For multilayer installations, the last rated R-value of insulation is for unfaced insulation draped over purlins and then compressed when the metal roof panels are attached.

LISTED. Appliances, equipment, materials, products or services included in a list published by an organization acceptable to the code official and concerned with evaluation of products or services that maintains periodic inspection of production of listed equipment or materials or periodic evaluation of services and whose listing states either that the appliances, equipment, material, product or service meets identified standards or has been tested and found suitable for a specified purpose.

LOW-SLOPED ROOF. A roof having a slope less than 2 units vertical in 12 units horizontal.

LOW-VOLTAGE DRY-TYPE DISTRIBUTION TRANSFORMER. A transformer that is air-cooled, does not use oil as a coolant, has an input voltage less than or equal to 600 volts and is rated for operation at a frequency of 60 hertz.

LOW-VOLTAGE LIGHTING. Lighting equipment powered through a transformer such as a cable conductor, a rail conductor and track lighting.

MANUAL. Capable of being operated by personal intervention (see "Automatic").

NAMEPLATE HORSEPOWER. The nominal motor horsepower rating stamped on the motor nameplate.

NONSTANDARD PART LOAD VALUE (NPLV). A single-number part-load efficiency figure of merit calculated and referenced to conditions other than IPLV conditions, for units that are not designed to operate at AHRI standard rating conditions.

OCCUPANT SENSOR CONTROL. An automatic control device or system that detects the presence or absence of people within an area and causes lighting, equipment or appliances to be regulated accordingly.

ON-SITE RENEWABLE ENERGY. Includes solar photovoltaic; active solar thermal that employs collection panels, heat transfer mechanical components; wind; small hydroelectric; tidal; wave energy; geothermal (core earth); biomass energy systems; landfill gas and bio-fuel based electrical production. On-site energy shall be generated on or adjacent to the project site and shall not be delivered to the project through the utility service.

OPAQUE DOOR. A door that is not less than 50-percent opaque in surface area.

POWERED ROOF/WALL VENTILATORS. A fan consisting of a centrifugal or axial impeller with an integral driver in a weather-resistant housing and with a base designed to fit, usually by means of a curb, over a wall or roof opening.

PROCESS ENERGY. Energy consumed in support of manufacturing, industrial, or commercial processes other than conditioning spaces and maintaining comfort and amenities for the occupants of a building.

PROPOSED DESIGN. A description of the proposed building used to estimate annual energy use for determining compliance based on total building performance.

RADIANT HEATING SYSTEM. A heating system that transfers heat to objects and surfaces within a conditioned space, primarily by infrared radiation.

READILY ACCESSIBLE. Capable of being reached quickly for operation, renewal or inspection without requiring those to whom ready access is requisite to climb over or remove obstacles or to resort to portable ladders or access equipment (see "Accessible").

REGISTERED DESIGN PROFESSIONAL. An individual who is registered or licensed to practice their respective design profession as defined by the statutory requirements of the professional registration laws of the state or jurisdiction in which the project is to be constructed. Design by a registered design professional is not required where exempt under the registration or licensure laws.

REPAIR. The reconstruction or renewal of any part of an existing building for the purpose of its maintenance or to correct damage.

REROOFING. The process of recovering or replacing an existing roof covering. See "Roof recover" and "Roof replacement."

RESIDENTIAL BUILDING. For this code, includes detached one- and two-family dwellings and multiple single-family dwellings (townhouses) as well as Group R-2, R-3 and R-4 buildings three stories or less in height above grade plane.

ROOF ASSEMBLY. A system designed to provide weather protection and resistance to design loads. The system consists of a roof covering and roof deck or a single component serving as both the roof covering and the roof deck. A roof assembly includes the roof covering, underlayment, roof deck, insulation, vapor retarder and interior finish.

ROOF RECOVER. The process of installing an additional roof covering over an existing roof covering without removing the existing roof covering.

ROOF REPAIR. Reconstruction or renewal of any part of an existing roof for the purpose of its maintenance.

ROOF REPLACEMENT. The process of removing the existing roof covering, repairing any damaged substrate and installing a new roof covering.
UpCodes note: We corrected a typo in the above definition. It was "ROOF REPLACMENT" in the original publication.
ROOFTOP MONITOR. A raised section of a roof containing vertical fenestration along one or more sides.

R-VALUE (THERMAL RESISTANCE). The inverse of the time rate of heat flow through a body from one of its bounding surfaces to the other surface for a unit temperature difference between the two surfaces, under steady state conditions, per unit area (h ft2 °F/Btu) [(m2 K)/W].

SCREW LAMP HOLDERS. A lamp base that requires a screw-in-type lamp, such as a compact-fluorescent, incandescent or tungsten-halogen bulb.

SERVICE WATER HEATING. Supply of hot water for purposes other than comfort heating.

SHADING COEFFICIENT. The amount of the sun's heat transmitted through a given window compared with that of a standard 1/8-inch-thick single pane of glass under the same conditions.

SITE-RECOVERED ENERGY. Waste energy recovered at the building site that is used to off-set consumption of purchased fuel or electrical energy supplies.

SLEEPING UNIT. A room or space in which people sleep, which can also include permanent provisions for living, eating, and either sanitation or kitchen facilities but not both. Such rooms and spaces that are also part of a dwelling unit are not sleeping units.

SMALL ELECTRIC MOTOR. A general purpose, alternating current, single speed induction motor.

SOLAR ENERGY SOURCE. Source of thermal, chemical, or electrical energy derived from direct conversion of incident solar radiation at the building site.

SOLAR HEAT GAIN COEFFICIENT (SHGC). The ratio of the solar heat gain entering the space through the fenestration assembly to the incident solar radiation. Solar heat gain includes directly transmitted solar heat and absorbed solar radiation which is then reradiated, conducted or convected into the space.

STANDARD REFERENCE DESIGN. A version of the proposed design that meets the minimum requirements of this code and is used to determine the maximum annual energy use requirement for compliance based on total building performance.

STOREFRONT. A nonresidential system of doors and windows mulled as a composite fenestration structure that has been designed to resist heavy use. Storefront systems include, but are not limited to, exterior fenestration systems that span from the floor level or above to the ceiling of the same story on commercial buildings, with or without mulled windows and doors.

THERMOSTAT. An automatic control device used to maintain temperature at a fixed or adjustable set point.

TIME SWITCH CONTROL. An automatic control device or system that controls lighting or other loads, including switching off, based on time schedules.

U-FACTOR (THERMAL TRANSMITTANCE). The coefficient of heat transmission (air to air) through a building component or assembly, equal to the time rate of heat flow per unit area and unit temperature difference between the warm side and cold side air films (Btu/h ft2 °F) [W/(m2 K)].

UNCONDITIONED SPACE. A space within the building but not within the building thermal envelope.

VARIABLE REFRIGERANT FLOW SYSTEM. An engineered direct-expansion (DX) refrigerant system that incorporates a common condensing unit, at least one variable-capacity compressor, a distributed refrigerant piping network to multiple indoor fan heating and cooling units each capable of individual zone temperature control, through integral zone temperature control devices and a common communications network. Variable refrigerant flow utilizes three or more steps of control on common interconnecting piping.

VAPOR RETARDER CLASS 1. A measure of the ability of a material or assembly to limit the amount of moisture that passes through that material or assembly. Vapor retarder class 1 is defined as 0.1 perm or less when using the desiccant method with Procedure A of ASTM E96.

VENTILATION. The natural or mechanical process of supplying conditioned or unconditioned air to, or removing such air from, any space.

VENTILATION AIR. That portion of supply air that comes from outside (outdoors) plus any recirculated air that has been treated to maintain the desired quality of air within a designated space.

VISIBLE TRANSMITTANCE [VT]. The ratio of visible light entering the space through the fenestration product assembly to the incident visible light. Visible transmittance includes the effects of glazing material and frame and is expressed as a number between 0 and 1.

WALK-IN COOLER. An enclosed storage space capable of being refrigerated to temperatures above 32°F (0°C) and less than 55°F (12.8°C) that can be walked into, has a ceiling height of not less than 7 feet (2134 mm) and has a total chilled storage area of less than 3,000 square feet (279 m2).

WALK-IN FREEZER. An enclosed storage space capable of being refrigerated to temperatures at or below 32°F (0°C) that can be walked into, has a ceiling height of not less than 7 feet (2134 mm) and has a total chilled storage area of less than 3,000 square feet (279 m2).

WALL, ABOVE-GRADE. A wall associated with the building thermal envelope that is more than 15 percent above grade and is on the exterior of the building or any wall that is associated with the building thermal envelope that is not on the exterior of the building.

WALL, BELOW-GRADE. A wall associated with the basement or first story of the building that is part of the building thermal envelope, is not less than 85 percent below grade and is on the exterior of the building.

WATER HEATER. Any heating appliance or equipment that heats potable water and supplies such water to the potable hot water distribution system.

ZONE. A space or group of spaces within a building with heating or cooling requirements that are sufficiently similar so that desired conditions can be maintained throughout using a single controlling device.
UpCodes Premium
Leverage the most sophisticated code compliance platform.
TRY FREE FOR TWO WEEKS VISIT PRICING