International Residential Code 2009 (IRC 2009)

Heads up: There are no amended sections in this chapter.
The provisions of this chapter shall establish the general administrative requirements applicable to plumbing systems and inspection requirements of this code.
In addition to the general administration requirements of Chapter 1, the administrative provisions of this chapter shall also apply to the plumbing requirements of Chapters 25 through 33.
Existing building sewers and drains shall be used in connection with new systems when found by examination and/or test to conform to the requirements prescribed by this document.

Additions, alterations, renovations or repairs to any plumbing system shall conform to that required for a new plumbing system without requiring the existing plumbing system to comply with all the requirements of this code. Additions, alterations or repairs shall not cause an existing system to become unsafe, insanitary or overloaded.

Minor additions, alterations, renovations and repairs to existing plumbing systems shall be permitted in the same manner and arrangement as in the existing system, provided that such repairs or replacement are not hazardous and are approved.

New plumbing work and parts of existing systems affected by new work or alterations shall be inspected by the building official to ensure compliance with the requirements of this code.
A plumbing or drainage system, or part thereof, shall not be covered, concealed or put into use until it has been tested, inspected and approved by the building official.
Test equipment, materials and labor shall be furnished by the permittee.
The building sewer shall be tested by insertion of a test plug at the point of connection with the public sewer and filling the building sewer with water, testing with not less than a 10-foot (3048 mm) head of water and be able to maintain such pressure for 15 minutes.
Rough and finished plumbing installations shall be tested in accordance with Sections P2503.5.1 and P2503.5.2.

DWV systems shall be tested on completion of the rough piping installation by water or air with no evidence of leakage. Either test shall be applied to the drainage system in its entirety or in sections after rough piping has been installed, as follows:

  1. Water test. Each section shall be filled with water to a point not less than 10 feet (3048 mm) above the highest fitting connection in that section, or to the highest point in the completed system. Water shall be held in the section under test for a period of 15 minutes. The system shall prove leak free by visual inspection.
  2. Air test. The portion under test shall be maintained at a gauge pressure of 5 pounds per square inch (psi) (34 kPa) or 10 inches of mercury column (34 kPa). This pressure shall be held without introduction of additional air for a period of 15 minutes.
After the plumbing fixtures have been set and their traps filled with water, their connections shall be tested and proved gas tight and/or water tight as follows:
  1. Water tightness. Each fixture shall be filled and then drained. Traps and fixture connections shall be proven water tight by visual inspection.
  2. Gas tightness. When required by the local administrative authority, a final test for gas tightness of the DWV system shall be made by the smoke or peppermint test as follows:
    1. Smoke test. Introduce a pungent, thick smoke into the system. When the smoke appears at vent terminals, such terminals shall be sealed and a pressure equivalent to a 1-inch water column (249 Pa) shall be applied and maintained for a test period of not less than 15 minutes.
    2. Peppermint test. Introduce 2 ounces (59 mL) of oil of peppermint into the system. Add 10 quarts (9464 mL) of hot water and seal all vent terminals. The odor of peppermint shall not be detected at any trap or other point in the system.
Where shower floors and receptors are made water tight by the application of materials required by Section P2709.2, the completed liner installation shall be tested. The pipe from the shower drain shall be plugged water tight for the test. The floor and receptor area shall be filled with potable water to a depth of not less than 2 inches (51 mm) measured at the threshold. Where a threshold of at least 2 inches high does not exist, a temporary threshold shall be constructed to retain the test water in the lined floor or receptor area to a level not less than 2 inches deep measured at the threshold. The water shall be retained for a test period of not less than 15 minutes and there shall be no evidence of leakage.
Upon completion of the water-supply system or a section of it, the system or portion completed shall be tested and proved tight under a water pressure of not less than the working pressure of the system or, for piping systems other than plastic, by an air test of not less than 50 psi (345 kPa). This pressure shall be held for not less than 15 minutes. The water used for tests shall be obtained from a potable water source.
Inspection and testing of backflow prevention devices shall comply with Sections P2503.8.1 and P2503.8.2.
Inspections shall be made of all backflow prevention assemblies to determine whether they are operable.
Reduced pressure principle backflow preventers, double check valve assemblies, double-detector check valve assemblies and pressure vacuum breaker assemblies shall be tested at the time of installation, immediately after repairs or relocation and at least annually.

Gauges used for testing shall be as follows:

  1. Tests requiring a pressure of 10 psi or less shall utilize a testing gauge having increments of 0.10 psi (0.69 kPa) or less.
  2. Tests requiring a pressure higher than 10 psi (0.69 kPa) but less than or equal to 100 psi (690 kPa) shall use a testing gauge having increments of 1 psi (6.9 kPa) or less.
  3. Tests requiring a pressure higher than 100 psi (690 kPa) shall use a testing gauge having increments of 2 psi (14 kPa) or less.
UpCodes Premium
Leverage the most sophisticated code compliance platform.