The National Electric Code (NFPA 70) is bound for another change, as the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) is set to finalize the amendments for the 2014 version. Justin Schultz, engineer and contributor for Consulting-Specifying Engineer Magazine, reports the changes will be available this fall and will take effect starting January 1, 2014. It will feature some revisions and additions, in light of the novel technologies in use today.
NFPA 70 is the premiere standard for installing and repairing electrical equipment—wires, receptacles, and the like—in the United States. While not required by federal law, local laws usually adopt the code as a requirement for many a Clearwater electrician (and electricians in other American cities) to comply with. NFPA 70 was first codified in 1897, a year after the NFPA was formed, and has provided safety guidelines for the field ever since. The code is updated every three years to encompass new concepts.
One of the new additions to NFPA 70 will tackle energy management systems resulting from the trend of energy efficiency and savings. Under Article 750, the code will provide guidelines for the installation of smart grid systems to help homes and offices reduce energy costs. There’s also Article 646, which focuses on the modular data center, a recent trend in data center architecture. This fits the bill for large data centers seeking to work efficiently while being shielded from interruptions.
Given the trend of suspended ceilings in modern homes and offices, the NFPA added Article 393 in the new version. This article discusses the installation and configuration of electrical systems in the ceiling grid for effective distribution of power. This comes at a time when, aside from dropped ceilings being a trend, renewable energy systems are also growing more present in residential and commercial structures. The trend also seems to have renewed interest in direct current systems.
Aside from the additions, several sections of the code are also scheduled for revision, mostly adding new subsections. In 2011, the NFPA received more than 3,000 proposals regarding the changes that must be made to the code. The proposals were narrowed down to a handful in June two years later, during the Association Technical Meeting in Chicago. Electricians must familiarize themselves with the new code as soon as it takes effect next year.
Clients can expect the same quality of service from Clearwater electrical repair companies like Theta Electric, who are bound to comply with the new code to maintain their service delivery to customers.
Not only does the code explain what must be done for certain electrical installations and systems, but it also explains how they can stay safe while working with them. In the end, priority on safety still remains in the code, which has undergone constant revision since its inception.