NFPA 211 Proposes Changes for the 2024 Edition

From Advocacy Chair, Debbie Wiedwald

During the 2023 NCSG Convention, Jim Brewer, who represents NCSG on the NFPA 211 committee, shared standards updates proposed for the 2024 edition. Convention session attendees expressed concerns regarding proposed language, which may reduce the inspection scope based on the customer’s request.

Please review the existing 2019 NFPA 211 Standard language and the proposed addition for the 2024 NFPA 211 Standard below. NFPA 211 is currently in the appeals phase, and members can comment on the proposed change. The appeals phase ends on April 13, 2023. Please contact Debbie Wiedwald, NCSG Advocacy chair, at [email protected] if you would like a sample letter template to send to NFPA regarding concerns about the addition and instructions to send the appeal and NITMAM (Notice of Intent to Make a Motion) to the Secretary of the NFPA 211 Standards Council.

  • 2019 NFPA Standard 211
    • Chapter 15 Inspection of Existing Chimneys
    • 15.4 Level II Inspections
      • 15.4.2 Scope and Access
  • “The inspection shall include examination of accessible areas of all chimney flues and the internal surfaces of all flue liners incorporated within the chimney with video scanning equipment or other means used as necessary to observe those areas.”

    The language will remain largely intact, with a new subsection immediately following. This new subsection for inclusion in the 2024 Standard 211 is as follows:
  • the requirement to inspect all chimney flues and all flue liners in shall be limited to the chimney flues and flue liners requested to be inspected.”

Attendees during the session expressed the following concerns:

For more than 20 years, the chimney service industry has reduced loss through complete and accurate chimney and venting system inspection utilizing chapters 14 & 15 of the NFPA 211 as the industry standard for inspection. The true extent and scope of prevented losses cannot be measured, as the losses did not occur.

As written, the language in the new subsection,, presents multiple concerns, including to homeowners, the chimney service industry and chimney service professionals’ ability to prevent loss. By specifying that less of the chimney system is required to be inspected during a Level 2 Inspection, less of the chimney system will be inspected. By inspecting less, a very natural result will be lost. While it can’t yet be predicted, calculated or measured, resulting losses that are a direct result of less of an inspection can be categorized as losses that were potentially preventable through the scope of the Inspection chapter of the Standard as it’s been written and utilized for over 20 years.

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