Municipal Affairs Update from Jeff Click

There has been a litany of changes over the last few months regarding building in the City of Oklahoma City. Apropos of that, I thought it appropriate to update the membership as a whole of things you should expect as we move forward.

The City of Oklahoma City has adopted the 2015 IRC. This adoption will bring with it several significant changes on top of other enforcement changes currently in the works.  I have provided a list of some significant examples below.

  • Vent Hood Installation: If you install a vent hood that moves more than 400 CFM you need make up air. (This has actually already been in the code for a while, but builders are now reporting it’s being enforced.)
  • Air Testing of ground plumbing: The water system of new home builds will now have to be air tested with a manifold. 
  • Hot water pipe insulation (Prescriptive). Insulation for hot water pipe with minimum thermal resistance (R-value) of R-3 shall be applied to the following:
    • Piping 1 inch (25 mm) and larger in nominal diameter.
    • Piping serving more than one dwelling unit.
    • Piping located outside the conditioned space.
    • Piping from the water heater to the distribution manifold.
    • Piping located under a floor slab.
    • Buried in piping.
    • Supply and return piping in recirculation systems other than demand recirculation systems.

**NOTE: We are working to rectify this through clearer guidance from the OUBCC**

  • Site plan inspections: OKC inspectors will soon be issued iPads to assist in their inspection process. Builders should expect a site plan inspection during their foundation inspections. If the home is not where it should be according to the approved site plan, you will be red tagged and must re-submit the site plan for approval.
  • Ice Dam Prevention: The adoption of the 2015 IRC brought with it a requirement to mitigate against ice damming on all new roofs and re-roofs despite guidance to the contrary from the Oklahoma City Residential Code Commission. We have contacted the city and expressed our displeasure with this requirement, and have been ensured that it will remain unenforced for the time being. However, be aware that it is in the code as adopted, and you could be held responsible for it at an inspector’s discretion.

This list is by no means comprehensive.

We have requested specific information from all of the inspection departments about changes and have only heard back from the plumbing and mechanical departments. To see the full comprehensive list of those changes see the links at the bottom of this post. If we receive word from the other departments we will update you with those as available.

Currently, we have our hands full with an onslaught of onerous regulation that is unnecessarily burdensome. While we work to roll some of these things back, we are also asking the city for a formal notification process that will regularly update us on points of emphasis and new inspections so we have time to adjust to changes before we get red tagged.

Lastly, if you have recently been negatively affected by an issue inconsistent with code within the City of Oklahoma City, we’d like to hear from you. We are holding a Municipal and Utility affairs meeting on Thursday, February 13 at noon. We want you to attend to provide input so we can develop plans to address your concerns.

If you have an issue that needs to be on the agenda, please contact Rusty Appleton at by noon, Tuesday, Feb 4th with a detailed summary of your issue to be placed on the agenda. We will have a full and fixed agenda and will have limited open-topic discussion. Lunch will be served and there will be a $15 charge to attend.

Any COHBA member is welcome to attend and we hope to see you there.

Best Regards,

Jeff Click


Municipal and Utility Affairs