Have you ever driven down the highway at night, seen an empty office building with entire floors still lit up and thought, “Wow, that’s a waste of energy?”
The 2012 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) was created to prevent just that. The code was designed to help people work and live smart and prevent wasteful energy usage. Understanding the 2012 IECC allows our engineers to successfully apply it to our clients’ projects and save them money with energy efficient lighting control solutions. All projects where you’re modifying more than 50 percent of the lighting, increasing the total wattage, or increasing the number of fixtures are required to meet the current code.
The code has been adopted statewide in Illinois, along with 19 other states. Engineers must submit an energy compliance form (COMCheck) that documents the lighting power density (W/SF) as well as the lighting controls that are required.
Though the 2012 IECC has been around for a few years, some in the AEC industry still have questions about the requirements and implementation processes. Read below to discover a few major updates.
The 2012 International Energy Conservation Code updates
One of the biggest changes with the 2012 IECC is that it requires automatic lighting controls to be used in all buildings, not just those larger than 5,000 square feet. This is in an effort to prevent the need to rely on people to turn off the lights.
Also, commissioning was not strongly enforced in previous codes, so another important update is that all projects require commissioning, which ensures that the lighting controls are designed according to code and perform the way they were intended to perform. Because of this, the project needs to be inspected upon completion and signed off that the 2012 IECC is being met. This increases the likelihood that the code is properly implemented in both the design and construction processes and energy efficiency is realized.
Have you ever wondered what the difference is between occupancy sensors and vacancy sensors and why does it matter? How about when is daylight harvesting required and what’s the easiest (and most cost effective) way to do it? Or does having an automatic timer mean you can’t turn on the lights after hours? All of these questions and more will be answered in our next installment that discusses the ins and outs of specific lighting control solutions to save time and money on your projects.