Carbon Monoxide Alarms

New rules adopted; effective July 1, 2016:

The State Building Code Council adopted the 2015 IBC, IRC, and IFC with amendments regarding CO Alarms, as follows:

  • WAC 51-50-0915 - New Building Code requirements for certain Group E occupancies
  • WAC 51-51-0315 - Residential Code requirements for detached one and two-family homes, adult family homes, and townhouses
  • WAC 51-54A-0915; New Fire Code requirements for certain Group E occupancies
  • WAC 51-54A-1103 (see 1103.9) - existing building requirements have not changed, other than minor modifications re: nomenclature
  • Alarms must meet the requirements of NFPA 720 - 2015 edition

History of CO Alarm requirements in Washington codes: 

The statutory deadline for installation of CO Alarms in residential settings was January 1, 2013 under the 2009 Washington State Building, Fire and Residential codes.1 

Those codes were updated and replaced with the 2012 codes, and amended to include Group I occupancies, effective July 1, 2013. Alarms were required to comply with NFPA-720 (2012 edition).

For state-licensed facilities, please refer to these basic installation instructions and exceptions, provided by the State Fire Protection Bureau - Prevention Division.

1RCW 19.27.530 required property owners to install CO alarms in existing residences by January 1, 2013, with the exception of certain owner-occupied homes (legally occupied before July 26, 2009).