Education

New Construction Codes Effective 2022: Plumbing Code Changes

The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania will adopt the 2018 International Plumbing Code for construction projects, except for two municipalities (the City of Philadelphia and Allegheny County), on February 14, 2022.  There will be a six-month grace period during which some may be reviewed under the 2015 IPC.  Construction projects, regardless of circumstances, will be designed in … Read more

New Construction Codes Effective 2022: Mechanical Code Changes

As Pennsylvania begins enforcement of 2018 International Mechanical Code, it’s important to understand what, if any changes could affect your project.  This is particularly important if you’ve had a project shelved due to the pandemic and are planning to dust it off this year.  Whether it was a funding issue, price of materials, or just … Read more

New Construction Codes Effective 2022: Electrical Code Changes

The building code in Pennsylvania is known as the Uniform Construction Code (UCC). Enforcement of this code is handled either locally (by municipalities, townships, or contracted third-party reviewers) or by the state’s Department of Labor and Industry. Prior to 2018, the Pennsylvania UCC referenced the 2009 International Codes (I-Codes). In 2018, the UCC was updated … Read more

New Construction Codes Effective 2022: The Overview

The current pandemic has affected nearly every aspect of our personal and professional lives.  In the case of the Pennsylvania Uniform Construction Codes (UCC), it has significantly delayed the legally required update to the 2018 edition of the International Construction Codes.  Among the many requirements and procedures outlined in the Pennsylvania Construction Code Act Omnibus Amendments (Act … Read more

Electrical Design Challenges in High-Rise Buildings

There are many unique challenges in the design and construction of high-rise buildings. The electrical design in these facilities is no exception, particularly regarding the emergency systems required to allow people to safely exit the building during a fire or emergency event. A ‘high-rise building” is defined in the International Building Code (IBC) as “a … Read more

Germicidal lighting eliminating COVID-19 virus

Germicidal Lighting: Less Hype, More Facts

Armed with the knowledge that germicidal lighting, such as Germicidal Ultraviolet-C (GUV-C) Light, possesses the proven ‘superpower’ of eradicating harmful viruses including COVID-19, many people have begun searching for ways to safely incorporate it into their everyday lives. But, with new products hitting the market daily, consumers can easily become overwhelmed and confused given the … Read more

Ultraviolet HVAC Components

A search for “ultraviolet light” on Google will yield no less than 91 million search results. UV light sanitizers, industrial UV sanitizers, and thousands of other products show up. These results are an impressive show of our society’s ability to provide millions of pieces of information, all in our living room or office, in just … Read more

Enhanced Filtration

Our next installment in this series on reducing airborne contaminants is focused on increasing the effectiveness of new and existing filtration systems. Some of the concepts in this article are long-proven items, and some are on the forefront of innovation. This article is to provide information for available products, not to recommend a specific approach, … Read more

Airborne Contaminant Mitigation

Since early 2020, it seems just about everyone has an opinion on viruses, disease transmission and what should be done as a society, as a business owner, and as a private citizen. We here at Barton Associates are not healthcare workers, epidemiologists, or even medical students. We are a group of engineers who believe in … Read more

Operation and Maintenance Considerations Before Re-Occupancy

A large portion of commercial, educational, and healthcare facilities have been either partially occupied or unoccupied for several weeks, even months. With extended periods of unoccupancy, building systems can become stagnant, potentially resulting in adverse effects on air systems, domestic water systems and building materials. Most of us know the smell of dust burning off … Read more

Preparing for the New Normal?

Everyone is probably tired of hearing how unprecedented these times are and how the picture of what the “new normal” will look like seems to change on a daily basis. Beyond all of that, we will get back to some sense of normalcy and, when we do, we need to be ready. So what does … Read more

Emergency Responder Radio Coverage Systems

In an emergency, firefighters rely on good communication to coordinate their efforts and keep each other safe. They may approach a fire area deep within a building and realize they need additional personnel or equipment. If your building is especially large, has thick concrete walls, or has a lot of equipment that creates interference, the … Read more

Changes to PA UCC Code: Lighting Code Changes 2009 vs 2015 IECC

“Hearing can be deceiving, seeing is believing, but feeling – that’s the naked truth” is a phrase which can be applied to many highly anticipated events in life. For the building industry, Pennsylvania’s long-awaited jump to the 2015 (2018 in Philadelphia) ICC International Codes last October was one of these greatly anticipated events. Historically, anticipation … Read more

Changes to PA UCC Code: Electrical Code Changes to the IBC and NEC

As has been discussed in previous editions of “Insights”, Pennsylvania has recently updated their baseline building codes from the 2009 International Codes to the 2015 International Codes. Along with that change comes not only revisions contained in the International Codes themselves, but also updated references to other standards including the 2014 National Electrical Code (previously … Read more

Changes to PA UCC Code: Plumbing Code Changes 2009 vs 2015 IECC/IPC

Change. Whether good, bad, or somewhere in between, we must accept change and constantly adapt in order to move forward, grow and even improve. Changes in the International Plumbing and Energy Conservation Codes are no exception. The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, except for the City of Philadelphia, adopted the 2015 International Codes the past October, superseding … Read more

Changes to PA UCC Code: Mechanical Code Changes 2009 vs 2015 IECC/IMC

The change from the 2009 International Codes to the 2015 International codes in Pennsylvania, except for the City of Philadelphia, ushered in many substantial changes when it comes to mechanical system design, construction and operation. Similar to other code updates, the hike toward sustainable design and operation continues in these common areas: increased equipment efficiency … Read more

Changes to Pennsylvania UCC Code: The Overview

The Pennsylvania Uniform Construction Code (UCC) first began being enforced in April 2004. Fourteen years later, Act 35 of 2017 updated the code requirements to the 2015 International Codes. Application of this new standard began for all projects without a signed construction contract on October 1, 2018. The grace period for permit application for projects … Read more

Access is Key: Emergency Plumbing Fixtures

There seems to be a misunderstanding among facility owners and operators these days about requirements for emergency fixtures (eyewashes and drench showers). Plumbing codes do not prescribe when or where to locate eyewash fixtures. Rather, they address the installation of these emergency fixtures if or when they are required. The Owner is responsible for knowing … Read more

Understanding Legionella – Designing to Reduce Risk

Pontiac Fever. It’s got nothing to do with cars, and everything to do with Legionellosis, the disease caused by a pathogenic bacterium called Legionella pneumophila. Legionellosis or Legionnaire’s Disease preys on the elderly, the young and anyone with weakened immune systems. The subsequent fallout can also be catastrophic to a facility and owner because the … Read more