Changes to ECAN log burner rules
Amendments have been made to the
B1 Structure: B1/AS1, B1/VM1, B1/VM4B2 Durability: B2/AS1C1-C6 Protection from fire: C/AS1 to C/AS7D1 Access routes: D1/AS1, D1/VM1D2 Mechanical Installations for Access: D2/AS1E1 Surface Water: E1/VM1E2 External Moisture: E2/AS3E3 Internal Moisture: E3/AS1F2 Hazardous Building Materials: F2/AS1F4 Safety from Falling: F4/AS1F6 Visibility in Escape Routes: F6/AS1F8 Signs: F8/AS1G2 Laundering: G2/AS1G3 Food Preparation and Prevention of Contamination: G3/AS1G4 Ventilation: G4/AS1, G4/VM1G10 Piped Services: G10/AS1, G10/VM1G11 Gas as an Energy Source: G11/AS1G12 Water Supplies: G12/AS1, G12/AS2, G12/VM1G13 Foul Water: G13/AS1, G13/AS2, G13/AS3, G13/VM2G14 Industrial Liquid Waste: G14/VM1
Energy Efficiency: H1/AS1, H1/VM1.
Internal alterations that require retrofitting insulation
See the revised details from BRANZ.
Have you heard about the changes coming into effect for swimming pools?
Blue Strap enquiry
Our Building Team received an enquiry today in regards to the inconsistency of inspectors regarding the spacing of horizontal strapping over building wrap.
This has been investigated and for the job the enquiry was about, the horizontal strapping was not required to be at 300mm centres due to the stud spacing being at 400mm centres.
Thank you for the enquiry and we hope this clarifies the matter.
GIB System updates
2. New — GIBFix® framing system
The GIBFix® Framing System is an alternative approach to timber framing for buildings within the scope of NZS3604:2011.
The GIBFix® Framing System Offers:
- Reduced potential for fastener pop and joint cracking of interior plasterboard linings resulting from timber
- Lighter, quicker drying frames
- Reduced potential for on-site call backs
- Improved thermal performance
- Fully integrated into GIB EzyBrace® Systems.
Construction Contracts Amendment Act 2015
For more information on the Construction Contracts Amendment Act 2015 check out the guidance document
Guidance on smoke alarm placement
Click here to see guidance on installation of smoke alarms in houses, as specified in the Building Code Clause F7 - Warning Systems.
Ban declared on foil insulation
The Chief Executive of the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) has declared a ban, under section 26 of the Building Act 2004, on retrofitting or repairing foil insulation.
The ban is specifically on the following building methods:
- the installation of foil insulation into residential buildings with an existing electrical installation (retrofitting foil insulation), and
- the repair of foil insulation in residential buildings with an existing electrical installation (e.g. stapling ripped or damaged foil back onto the floor joists of a building).
The ban follows strong feedback on the need to eliminate the risks posed by foil insulation products. These concerns were raised by submitters during consultation on proposed changes to the Residential Tenancies Act 1986 (that will require insulation and smoke alarms in rental properties).
The risk with retrofitting foil insulation is that the person installing it could accidentally pierce a live electrical cable with the fasteners (e.g. staples or nails) that they are using to attach the foil to the building structure. The foil, being metallic, conducts electricity and can become live if it comes into contact with live electrical wiring – potentially enlivening the entire underfloor of a building. To date, there have been five reported deaths in New Zealand caused by electrocution associated with foil insulation in a residential building, as well as one reported non-fatal electric shock.
The changes to the Residential Tenancies Act are expected to require about 180,000 properties to be insulated by July 2019. This will result in much more widespread insulation activity over the next few years - which could increase the use of foil insulation and therefore the chance of injury or fatalities.
MBIE considers that a ban is necessary to reduce the likelihood of any further injuries or deaths, and to ensure buildings are safer to use.
The ban comes into force on 1 July 2016 and will remain in place until amended or revoked by the Ministry. It is an offence under the Building Act to breach a ban and anyone who breaches the ban may be liable to a fine of up to $200,000.
As the Residential Tenancies Act will require landlords to assess the extent of insulation in their buildings, we expect landlords and tenants will be getting under their floors to conduct checks on existing insulation. This could pose an electrocution risk as there could be cases in existing buildings where previously installed foil insulation is electrically live (e.g. if foil insulation has been installed with the power off and not tested for safety once power was restored).
WorkSafe NZ has also developed some guidance, as part of its functions as the regulator of electrical safety under the Electricity Act 1992. Its Electrical Code of Practice is publicly available and sets out how to protect people and property from harm due to improperly installed foil insulation. The Code of Practice will enable building owners and the industry to better manage electrical safety risks associated with existing foil insulation.
Anyone concerned about how to work around foil insulation should consult WorkSafe's guidance or engage the services of a licensed electrical worker.
Read the full ban on foil insulation.
See the public register of electrical workers on the Electrical Workers Registration Board website.
New asbestos removal rules
Did you know that there are new rules coming into effect on the 4th April 2016 about the removal of asbestos?
Learn more about identifying asbestos, removal of asbestos and the rule changes
Stamped approved documents must be on-site at
As per the Building Consent document issued with every approved application, page two clearly states:
This building consent is subject to the following Building Act 2004 conditions:
Building Act Section 90 (1) - Inspections
Under Section 90 of the Building Act 2004, agents authorised by the Council (acting as a Building Consent Authority) are entitled, at all times during normal working hours or while building work is being done, to inspect:-
- land on which building work is being or is proposed to be carried out; and
- building work that has been or is being carried out on or off that building site; and
- any building
- Failure to request any inspection may result in inability to issue a Code of Compliance Certificate.
- If a re-inspection is required it will be charged at the current rate.
- Cancellations with less than 24hrs notice will incur the full inspection fee.
- Application for Code Compliance must be applied for on the statutory application form supplied and must be made upon completion of work.
- ALL Building Consent documents and any approved Amendments, including the Project Memorandum (PIM), must be on-site at the time of inspection. Inspections will only be carried out if the original stamped Council approved documents are present on-site at the time of inspection. If a re-inspection is required, due to the lack of documents on-site, it will be charged at the current rate.
Before a building is erected on any site, all rubbish, noxious and organic matter must be removed from the area that will be covered by the building.
This does not mean weed spraying to kill the vegetation.
Inspectors have from time to time come across a floor slab ready to be poured but grass and topsoil has been left with hardfill and polythene placed on top of the grass and vegetation.
This is not in accordance with NZS 3604:2011 and means that all the work in preparing the slab has to be redone.
Please ensure all vegetation is removed.
The following flow chart details the type of home heating you can install.
The provisions for home heating are outlined below for the Ashburton Clean Air Zone.
Please note that these may change through the air plan hearings process.
|All wood burners||Installed on sites less than 2ha and must be Environment Canterbury authorised wood burners.|
|Ultra-low emission wood burners||Are allowed into new homes and other buildings. This includes pellet fires that meet ultra-low standard.|
|Low-emitting wood burner installation ||Not allowed in new homes or other new buildings except as replacement burners from 31 December 2015 up to 1 January 2019.|
|Open Fires||Use is not allowed.|
|Older style wood burners||Use is allowed for 15 years from the date of installation.|
|No visible smoke rule||Wood burner users are to manage their smoke emissions through regular maintenance of their wood burner, using dry/seasoned wood and operating their burner to ensure there is no visible smoke most of the time.|
|Low-emitting wood burner||Use is allowed for 15 years and can be installed up until 1 January 2019. Replacement burners must be an ultra-low emission wood burner, pellet fire or other source of heating from 1 January 2019.|
Guidance on Licensed Building Practitioner (LBP) supervision
Following recent hearings by the LBP Complaints Board, we will be providing some guidance soon on the requirements surrounding supervision by an LBP.
New permitted activity wastewater discharge declaration form
Have you seen our new form for permitted activity wastewater discharge declaration?
With the changes to ECan's process we now have a new form included in our application pack that you can complete and submit if your effluent system meets the permitted activity criteria.
To check your application against the permitted activity criteria please visit the Environment Canterbury website.
Development Contributions, did you know?
If you build on a section within one year of removing an existing dwelling, you do not have to pay development contributions.
Learn more about Development Contributions
What's coming up...
We are currently reviewing and republishing all of our public information guides.
Keep an eye out for a new inspection guidelines booklet coming soon.