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Elevator pit – Are Fire Sprinklers required?

Currently, I have heard a lot of debate about whether an elevator pit fire sprinkler will have to be installed the bottom of an elevator pit to a traction elevator? We have a sprinkler in the elevator pit of a traction elevator, and the AHJ says that fire sprinkler can be removed and is not needed per NFPA -13 – The AHJ indicated that if the fire sprinkler was to remain in its current location that it would have to have dedicated monitoring and shunt the elevator or that we can remove the said fire sprinkler. Either way would be acceptable to the local AHJ, and they did not seem to have a preference.

A picture of a hydraulic elevator pit.
An elevator pit of a hydraulic elevator.

The second debate is where I am reaching out for further opinion. It seems very cut in dry that per 2013 NFPA – that the sprinklers not required.  This debate is whether the elevator inspector will enforce the sprinkler in the elevator pit?  ASME A17.1 – 2004 Safety Code for Elevators and Escalators seems only to tell you what to do if there is a fire sprinkler in the elevator pit. Honestly, I have not read the whole thing and do not have a searchable copy.

Who has jurisdiction over the sprinkler in the elevator pit?  The local AHJ or the State Elevator Inspector?

During my investigation to determine whether to remove or leave the sprinkler. I also ran across an article from William E Koffel, P.E about Sprinklers in Elevator Hoistways and Machine Rooms.  This article is old since it references NFPA 13, 1989, but does bring up a relevant subject and that is the fact that it talks about the buildup of trash and debris that has collected at the bottom of the shaft.  That over time will provide a potential fire load at the bottom of the elevator pit.  Has anyone seen this article roaming the internet, but more importantly is the State Elevator Inspector in forcing a sprinkler to be installed because of the potential for the buildup of refuse in the bottom of the elevator pit because of the scenario presented in this article.

A Circular Letter E-99-1 – Shunt Trips for Sprinkler in Elevator Pits was presented to me to substantiate leaving the sprinkler and not having to shunt the elevator.  This Circular is from the State of California Department of Industrial Relations and seems to indicate that they will not require the shunt trip on the sprinklers located two feet or less from the elevator pit floor.  When I approached the city AHJ about this circular letter, he indicated that he was aware of it and that if the fire sprinkler was to remain that it would have to be monitored and shunt the elevator.

I was hoping that someone with a passion for the NFPA 13,  ASME 17.1 and California Building Code can help myself and other individuals in similar occupations make a little more sense of who has jurisdiction over the elevator pit and if a fire sprinkler should be required in a California elevator pit.

To learn more about the requirements of fire sprinklers in elevator pits and access NFPA 13.

To check the closing pressure on elevator doors purchase one of our door pressure gauges.

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Building Code Discussion Group

The Building Code Discussion Group

Building Code Discussion Group is one of the largest professional platforms on the World Wide Web. A platform for building, fire, MPE, accessibility/ADA code discussions and technical opinions. This Building Code Discussion Group has enough forums to cover all the necessary building code topics and disciplines. The Building Code Discussion Group is sponsored by Interwest Consulting Group.

THE BCDG…. is a powerful Online Community available to “Premium Members” that can access all the features afforded by the BCDG. The BCDG forums are available free for read-only access (registration is required). Another solution created by Imad Naffa since 1995. One of the largest, most-active, professional Building Code Discussions Group on the World Wide Web. A platform for building, fire, MPE, accessibility/ADA code discussions and technical opinions. Over 24 forums make up the BCDG that cover all building code topics and disciplines.

Explaining, educating, interpreting and deciphering the complex building codes for the masses (novices and experts alike) is the goal here! If you build, design, inspect, engineer, plan check, review, in a construction or design training program or deal with the building permit process – this is your place. International storehouse for building code discussions & resources, CASp and SB 1608, accessibility, ADA, emerging technologies & online collaboration. National participants/experts. The #1 searchable source for building/construction, technical support & building/fire codes learning.

If you would like to check out All Things Inspector’s building code forum feel free to take a look.  Our building code forum or discussion group is not ad-free, but we don’t charge you for a premium membership to participate in our forum. All you have to do to post or ask a question is to register to our site as a free member.  We do support our forum and blog efforts through profits from our online store.

Are you an inspector, architect, contractor, safety professional and have a topic you are an expert in and would like to share it with the world.  We would like to encourage you to become a guest blogger. If you want to learn more about becoming a guest blogger please visit our guest blogger page.

Building Code Discussion Group

Other building code discussion groups.



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The Building Code Forum

The Building Code Forum

The Building Code Forum is a robust forum message board for building code talk, sharing information related to the building industry to include all construction codes.  The Building Code Forum is a robust forum with over 14,000 discussions, over 160,000 messages and over 5,000 members.  If you have a building code related questions and are seeking answers spend a few minutes and search for it here and if you don’t find what you are looking for register and post a question and most likely someone will help you to come up with an answer.

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Free Building Code With Online Access

Free Building Code

This link provides you searchable online free building code anywhere you have an internet connection for just about all 50 states. This site provides access to 2010 – 2016 building codes based on your jurisdiction.

Free Building Code Free Building Code

Other building code free resources.

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Mike Holt Enterprises | electrical training and forum

A picture of Mike Holt's website

Mike Holt Enterprises for over 25 years has been the leader in Electrical Continuing Education.  They are your One-Stop electrical training resource. Mike Holt Enterprises was created by a Master Electrician for Electricians, Inspectors, Contractors, Electrical Instructors, Building Code Officials and Engineers.

Visit to find, tips for passing an electrical exam,  answers to technical questions or even post a question in their electrical forum.   Mike Holt’s electrical forum has over a million posts where you can search to find answers to your questions or post your own question to get technical advise.  Their website is a great resource if you are looking for electrical code resources as they have a robust online store where you can find almost any electrical training material that you may need to purchase.

Mike Holt worked his way up through the electrical trade from apprentice to master electrician and electrical contractor. In 1973, he began teaching electrical classes, and by 1980 he had stopped contracting and was focused solely on training. Now, Holt is nationally recognized as an expert on the NEC and is one of the most knowledgeable electrical instructors in the US. His series of books and videos are used across the country by numerous training centers, electricians, and engineers. His books include Understanding the National Electrical Code, Grounding vs. Bonding. After dropping out of high school, Holt later received his MBA from the University of Miami.

Mike’s also an eight-time National Barefoot Water-ski Champion,  has set many national records and competed in four World Championships. Mike and his wife Linda reside in Central Florida and are the parents of seven children.

Mike’s personal educational journey impacts the way he designs training. As a young man he was unable to complete his high school diploma due to life circumstances, but realizing that success depends on one’s education, he immediately attained his GED. Then, ten years later, he attended the University of Miami’s Graduate School for a Master’s in Business Administration. Because of this experience, he understands the needs of his students, and strongly encourages and motivates them to continue their own education. He has never lost sight of how hard it can be for students who are intimidated by the Code, by a school, or by their own feelings about learning. His story has impacted the way he designs his materials and continues to guide him to this day.

Please visit  Mike Holt Enterprises at or visit his YouTube channel which has over 27,000 subscribers.

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Hiring a certified third party firm to perform your Lightweight Concrete In-situ Relative Humidity Testing per ASTM 2170.

Why is it important to hire a neutral third part when having your Lightweight Concrete In-situ Relative Humidity Testing performed per ASTM 2170?

What certifications are out there and what are the best certifications?

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Welding Basics

What are Welding Procedures Specifications?

A Welding Procedure Specification or (WPS) is a document that provides the guidelines to perform a particular weld.  It is a key document used to inform welders of the accepted procedures to ensure a welded joint will achieve the specified levels of weld quality and mechanical properties repeatably when using proven welding techniques as outlined in the welding procedure specification.


What are Standard Welding Procedure Specifications?


I need a welding procedure Specification or (WPS).  Who Can  Write a Welding Procedure Specification for me?  A welding engineer or any knowledgeable and competent person in the welding metallurgy with appropriate experience can write a WPS.