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Fire sprinkler requirements

 

Home fire sprinkler requirements at a glance

States/regions requiring fire sprinklers in new, one- and two-family homes: CA, MD, Washington, D.C.   
States prohibiting statewide and new, local adoptions of fire sprinkler requirements: AK, AL, AZ, CT, DE, GA, HI, ID, IN, KS, KY, LA, MA, MI, MN, MS, MO, NH, NJ, NY, NC, ND, OH, PA, SC, SD, TX, UT, VA, WV, WI 
States allowing local adoptions of sprinkler requirements for new homes: AR, CO, FL, IL, IA,  ME, MT, NE, NV, NM, OK, OR, RI, TN, VT, WA, WY 
(*Note: In MA and NY, homes of a certain size must be sprinklered)


Requirements for home fire sprinklers


State/Region   
 
Promulgating Body Action
                                                                                                                                         
 California  
Effective January 1, 2011, the California Building Standards Commission approved the State Fire Marshal's Building, Fire and Residential Code adoption packages for the 2010 California Building Standards Codes, including its requirements for residential fire sprinklers in all new one-and two-family dwellings and townhome construction statewide. More about fire sprinkler codes in California.
 Maryland The Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development has adopted the 2015 International Residential Code, including its requirement for automatic fire sprinklers in new, one- and two- family dwellings. Maryland law prohibits local jurisdictions from weakening the sprinkler requirement in their building code adoptions.
 Washington,  D.C.  Effective January 1, 2011, all new residences (townhomes and one- and two-family dwellings) are required to have fire sprinklersWashington, D.C., uses the 2012 International Residential Code. 

Status of sprinkler requirements in other states

State Promulgating Body Action Take Action
Alaska No statewide adoption for home fire sprinklers, and no new local jurisdictions may adopt sprinkler ordinance due to legislative action. Contact NFPA Regional Sprinkler Specialist Jeff Hudson
Alabama Uses the 2009 IRC with the following modification: jurisdictions that did not have a residential building code in effect on March 9, 2010 must begin enforcing the Alabama Energy and Residential Code (AERC) by October 1, 2012. Jurisdictions that already had a code in effect may continue to enforce that code. However, if they choose to update their code, they must adopt the AERC. No jurisdiction can mandate home fire sprinklers with the exception of municipalities that had adopted and were enforcing that provision prior to March 9, 2010. Contact NFPA Regional Sprinkler Specialist Tim Travers.
Arkansas No statewide adoption, but local jurisdictions may adopt a sprinkler ordinance.

Contact NFPA Regional Sprinkler Specialist Tim Travers.
Arizona No statewide requirement for home fire sprinklers in one- and two-family homes. No new local jurisdictions may adopt sprinkler ordinance due to legislative action. Exempt from this law are cities like Scottsdale, which has an ordinance to sprinkler its new homes that went into effect in 1986. Join the Arizona Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
Colorado No statewide building code, but local jurisdictions may adopt sprinkler ordinance. Visit the Colorado Fire Sprinkler Coalition page for a list of local adoptions. Join the Colorado Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
Connecticut Uses the 2012 International Residential Code, but  the requirement to sprinkler townhouses and one- and two-family sprinkler requirements has been removed.  Local jurisdictions may not adopt sprinkler ordinances. In 2015, the Connecticut General Assembly passed a bill requiring landlords to notify tenants on the existence or nonexistence of fire sprinklers in a dwelling units.
Join the Connecticut Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
Delaware No statewide building code, but the Levy Court of Kent County and the County Councils of New Castle County and Sussex County may adopt and enforce building codes, plumbing codes, electrical codes or other similar codes. Local jurisdictions may not adopt sprinkler ordinances. On Aug. 6, 2015, Governor Jack Markell signed into law a sprinkler bill requiring builders of new, one- and two-family homes to give buyers a cost estimate for installing fire sprinklers and requiring homebuyers to receive information from the State Fire Marshal's Office about sprinkler benefits.
Join the Delaware Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
Florida Uses the 2012 International Residential Code. There is no statewide adoption for home fire sprinkler requirements, but local jurisdictions are permitted to require sprinklers, pending certain local conditions.

Join the Florida Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
Georgia Uses the 2012 International Residential Code, but has implemented amendments. The intent of the amendments is that fire sprinklers shall not be mandatory in one- and two-family dwellings. However, the provisions for fire sprinklers are to remain in the code for use when the builder/developer or owner chooses to install fire sprinklers as an option. Contact NFPA Regional Sprinkler Specialist Tim Travers.
Hawaii Hawaiian counties adopt their own building code editions with the exception of fire sprinkler requirements. State law currently prohibits local jurisdictions from adopting fire sprinkler requirements. This law sunsets in 2017.
Join the Hawaii Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
Idaho Uses the 2012 International Residential Code, but legislation prohibits adopting fire sprinkler requirements. Join the Idaho Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
Illinois Local jurisdictions can adopt a building code requiring fire sprinklers in new homes. Approximately 100 communities have adopted an ordinance for fire sprinklers. Join the Illinois Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
Indiana Uses the 2009 International Residential Code. Rulemaking body removed the fire sprinkler provisions from the adoption of the 2009 IRC.  Contact NFPA Regional Sprinkler Specialist Jeff Hudson.
Iowa There is no statewide requirement for home fire sprinklers, but local jurisdictions may adopt a sprinkler ordinance. Contact NFPA Regional Sprinkler Specialist Jeff Hudson.
Kansas No statewide building code. No new local jurisdictions may adopt sprinkler ordinance due to legislative action.
Join the Kansas Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
Kentucky Uses the 2012 International Residential Code, but state did not adopt requirement to sprinkler new, one- and two-family homes.  Contact NFPA Regional Sprinkler Specialist Jeff Hudson.
Louisiana Uses the 2012 International Residential Code. IRC shall be amended as followed: state shall not adopt or enforce any part of the International Residential Code or any other code or regulation that requires fire sprinklers in one- or two-family dwellings. Further, no municipality or parish shall adopt or enforce an ordinance or other regulation requiring fire sprinklers. Where no fire sprinklers are installed, a common two-hour fire-resistance-rated wall is permitted for townhouses if such walls do not contain plumbing or mechanical equipment, ducts or vents in the cavity of the common wall. Contact NFPA Regional Sprinkler Specialist Tim Travers.
Maine Uses the 2009 International Residential Code, but no statewide requirement to sprinkler new homes. Local jurisdictions may adopt sprinkler ordinance. There are also passive requirements for floor assemblies in unsprinklered homes.
Join the Maine Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
Massachusetts Uses the 2009 International Residential Code. Fire sprinklers for new townhouses shall be designed and installed in accordance with NFPA 13, 13R, or 13D, as applicable. Only one- and two-family dwellings having an aggregate area greater than 14,400 square feet shall have fire sprinklers installed in accordance with NFPA 13D.  Aggregate areas shall include basements but not garages and unfinished attics. Additions to such sprinklered dwellings shall have automatic sprinklers installed in accordance with NFPA 13D.
Join the Massachusetts Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
Michigan Uses the 2015 International Residential Code, but has removed requirement to sprinkler new homes. Local jurisdictions may not adopt a sprinkler requirement. Join the Michigan Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
Minnesota Minnesota's Department of Labor and Industry passed requirements for fire sprinklers in new homes larger than 4,500 square feet, effective January 24, 2015. The Minnesota Court of Appeals overturned the requirement in October 2015. State Supreme Court decided not to review lower court's decision. Townhomes are required to be sprinklered.  Contact NFPA Regional Sprinkler Specialist Jeff Hudson.
Mississippi The Mississippi Building Codes Council requires the 2012 International Residential Code to be enforced. However, jurisdictions had 120 days after the effective date of August 1, 2014 to opt out of this adoption. The law doesn't allow jurisdiction to adopt sprinkler requirements. Contact NFPA Regional Sprinkler Specialist Tim Travers.
Missouri  Law requires that builders inform a prospective home buyer about home fire sprinklers and give them the option to have them installed.  
Join the Missouri Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
Montana Uses the 2012 International Residential Code. However, there is no statewide requirement for home fire sprinklers. Local jurisdictions may adopt a sprinkler ordinance. Contact NFPA Regional Sprinkler Specialist Jeff Hudson.
Nebraska Uses the 2012 International Residential Code. However, legislative action prohibits statewide sprinkler adoption. Local jurisdictions may adopt sprinkler ordinance.
Contact NFPA Regional Sprinkler Specialist Jeff Hudson.
Nevada There is no statewide adoption of home fire sprinkler requirements. Local jurisdictions may adopt sprinkler ordinances under certain circumstances. Contact NFPA Regional Sprinkler Specialist Jeff Hudson.
New Hampshire Uses the 2009 International Residential Code. There is no statewide adoption for fire sprinklers in new homes. Legislative action prohibits local jurisdictions from adopting sprinkler requirements. Join the New Hampshire Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
New Jersey Uses the 2015 International Residential Code, but sprinkler requirements for new homes has been deleted. Local jurisdictions may not adopt sprinkler ordinances. 
Join the New Jersey Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
New Mexico Legislative action prohibits statewide, sprinkler adoption. Local jurisdictions may adopt fire sprinkler requirements. Contact NFPA Regional Sprinkler Specialist Jeff Hudson.
New York Uses the 2015 International Residential Code. Townhomes having a height of three stories above grade shall be equipped with fire sprinklers. One- and two-family dwellings having a height of three stories above grade shall be equipped with fire sprinklers. Local jurisdictions may not adopt sprinkler ordinances. In 2014, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed legislation requiring tenants to be informed whether or not a home has fire sprinklers. Join the New York Sprinkler Initiative.
North Carolina Uses the 2012 International Residential Code. Fire sprinklers shall be installed in townhomes, with the exception of the installation of a two-hour separation between units. The requirement to sprinkler one- and two-family homes has been deleted. Local jurisdictions may not adopt sprinkler ordinances. Join the North Carolina Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
North Dakota Uses the 2012 edition of the International Residential Code. However, legislation prohibits adoption of home fire sprinkler requirements.  Contact NFPA Regional Sprinkler Specialist Jeff Hudson.
Ohio Uses the 2009 International Residential Code, but there is no statewide adoption of home fire sprinklers. Contact NFPA Regional Sprinkler Specialist Jeff Hudson.
Oklahoma Uses 2015 International Residential Code. Requirement to sprinkler one- and two-family homes has been deleted. Local jurisdictions may adopt sprinkler ordinances.
Contact NFPA Regional Sprinkler Specialist Tim Travers.
Oregon Uses the 2009 International Residential Code. Local jurisdictions may adopt requirements for home fire sprinklers.  Join the Oregon Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
Pennsylvania

Uses the 2009 International Residential Code. No statewide adoption of code's fire sprinkler requirement. Legislative action prohibits local jurisdictions from adopting sprinkler requirements.

Join the Pennsylvania Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
Rhode Island Uses the 2012 International Residential Code, but no statewide adoption of the fire sprinkler requirement. Local jurisdictions may adopt sprinkler ordinances. Join the Rhode Island Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
South Carolina Uses the 2015 International Residential Code. Fire sprinklers are not required in townhomes when constructed in accordance with  provisions in the code. Fire sprinklers are not required  in one- and two-family dwellings. Local jurisdictions may not adopt sprinkler ordinances. Join the South Carolina Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
South Dakota Uses the 2015 International Residential Code. Legislative action prohibits statewide and local adoptions of requirements for home fire sprinklers. Join the South Dakota Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
Tennessee Adoption of 2009 International Residential Code (IRC) with three conditions: state will not enforce sprinklers in one- and two-family homes, jurisdictions can decide whether to require sprinklers, and jurisdictions can opt out of having IRC enforced by super majority of elected officials and after each election the jurisdiction would have to take another vote to opt out. Join the Tennessee Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
Texas Uses the 2009 International Residential Code. Due to legislative action jurisdictions may not enforce sprinkler provisions in new homes unless they have had sprinkler ordinances in place on 1/1/09. Join the Texas Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
Utah. Uses the 2012 International Residential Code, but no statewide adoption of the requirement for sprinklering one- and two-family homes. Join the Utah Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
Vermont Vermont does not have a statewide, residential building code. However, the state has adopted nationally recognized safety standards to protect the public from fire and explosion hazards. The Division of Fire Safety amends the national standards only when necessary to address conditions specific to Vermont. They have adopted NFPA 101, Life Safety Code®, but deleted the section on sprinklering one- and two-family dwellings. Local jurisdictions may adopt sprinkler ordinances.
Contact NFPA Regional Sprinkler Specialist Tim Travers.
Virginia Uses the 2012 International Residential Code, but has removed requirements to sprinkler new townhomes and one- and two-family homes.
Contact NFPA Regional Sprinkler Specialist Tim Travers.
Washington Uses the 2015 International Residential Code, but has amended out requirement to sprinkler state's new homes. Local jurisdictions may adopt a sprinkler requirement. Visit the Washington Fire Sprinkler Coalition page for a list of local adoptions. Join the Washington Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
West Virginia Uses the 2015 International Residential Code, but deleted sprinkler requirements for townhomes and one- and two-family homes. Local jurisdictions may not adopt sprinkler ordinances. Contact NFPA Regional Sprinkler Specialist Tim Travers.
Wisconsin


The Wisconsin Legislature has placed restrictions on municipalities regarding automatic fire sprinklers The Uniform Dwelling Code, which is used for all one- and two-family dwellings, does not allow municipalities from enacting local ordinances requiring home fire sprinklers. However, Wisconsin does require sprinklers in all residential buildings containing three or more units. 


Join the Wisconsin Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
Wyoming There is no statewide requirement to fire sprinkler new homes, but jurisdictions may adopt sprinkler ordinances. Join the Wyoming Fire Sprinkler Coalition.