2017 National Electrical Code Adoption Kit

Contact: Dan Buuck
Senior Program Manager, Codes & Standards
(202) 266-8366

Since 1911, the National Fire Protection Association has developed and published the National Electrical Code (NEC). The 2017 National Electrical Code (NEC) (standard NFPA 70) was issued by the NFPA Standards Council on August 6, 2016 with an effective date of Aug. 24, 2016. Copies of the 2017 NEC are available for purchase at www.iccsafe.org.

Significant Changes

Note: Arc-Fault Circuit Interrupters (AFCIs) requirements have not expanded to the entire dwelling unit (to include bathrooms, basements and crawl spaces). Also, a requirement for a required exterior main shut-off for use by the fire department was defeated by the NFPA membership at the tech session. Although some changes were made to the AFCI section in the code, they apply only to dorms and hotels/motels.

210.8(A)(7) GFCIs Required Near Sinks
This change clarifies how to establish the measurement from a kitchen sink — the 6-foot measurement is made from the top inside edge of the sink bowl (instead of “outside edge of the sink”). Receptacles in the cabinet below, such as for a food waste grinder, will now be excluded from the GFCI requirement. But a GFCI is still required for the dishwasher (See section 210.8(D)).

210.11(C)(4) Garage Branch Circuits
A new requirement was added to install at least one, 120 volt 20 ampere branch circuit. Applies to attached garages and to detached garages supplied with power. The circuit cannot supply lighting outlets inside or outside of the garage, but an exception permits the circuit to supply readily accessible outdoor receptacle outlets.

This NFPA video discusses the residential changes in more detail.

Cost Impact

The cost impact of moving adopting the 2017 NEC where currently the 2014 edition is enforced is minimal since AFCI requirements were not increased for dwellings. However, the cost could be much higher where the current code does not require AFCIs, and proponents are pushing for the AFCI provisions to be adopted without amendment.

Suggested Amendments

View NAHB’s 2017 NEC Suggested Amendments.