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Friday, August 29, 2014
Inspection Services: FAQ

Q: When can I get an inspection?
A: Inspections may be scheduled immediately after a permit has been issued.

Q: How do I schedule an inspection?
A: There are three ways in which you may schedule your inspection:
Online – Our Construction Services Online website allows scheduling for almost all types of inspections and is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  Options include scheduling for up to five days in advance, leaving messages or instructions for inspectors, and requesting morning or afternoon inspections.  You must have your permit number to schedule inspections online.
Automated Phone SystemConstruction Services Voice may be used to schedule most types of inspections and is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  Options include scheduling for up to five days in advance, leaving voice mail for inspectors, requesting morning or afternoon inspections, and automatic notification when the inspection has been resulted.  You must have your phone system number to use this fast and easy service.  Call (702) 455-3000, option 1, option 1, option 1.  
At our office – Technicians are available to assist inspection scheduling or cancelling at the Field Services counter of our office located at 4701 W. Russell Road, during regular hours.

Q: What clearances do I need before I can get my Building Final?
A:
Each permit has unique clearance requirements.  Most permits for new construction will require approval from the agencies listed below.  For requirements specific to your permit, access Construction Services Online, Inspection Scheduling screen and click on the Required Inspections link that displays on the page.

Drainage Compliance Report
Section I or II, Section III
Clark County Development Services (702) 455-3000
Landscape Maintenance Agreement Commercial Landscape Certificate Clark County Development Services (702) 455-3000
QAA Clearance/QAA Final Report Clark County Development Services (702) 455-3000
Clark County Fire Department Clearance Clark County Fire Department (702) 455-7317
Civil Engineering/Development Review Clark County Public Works
Development Review Division
(702) 455-4600
FEMA Certificate Clark County Public Works
Development Review Division
(702) 455-4600
Sanitation/Sewer Clearance Clark County Water Reclamation District (702) 434-6600
Water Clearance Las Vegas Valley Water District (702) 870-2011
Septic Clearance Southern Nevada Health District (702) 759-0660
City Sewer City of Las Vegas (702) 229-6251
Off-sites Clark County Public Works
Development Review Division
(702) 455-4600

Q: How can I cancel my inspection?
A: There are three ways in which you may cancel your inspection:
Online – Our Construction Services Online website allows cancellation of inspections and is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  You must have your permit number to schedule inspections online.
Automated Phone SystemConstruction Services Voice may be used to cancel inspections and is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  You must have your phone system number to use this fast and easy service.  Call (702) 455-3000, option 1, option 1, option 2. 
At our office – Technicians are available to assist inspection scheduling or cancelling at the Field Services counter of our office located at 4701 W. Russell Road, during regular hours.

Q: How do I get a Fire Department clearance or Fire Alarm Final?
A: Fire Department clearances and Fire alarm final inspections may be scheduled using Construction Services Online or Construction Services Voice.  These inspection requests will be automatically dispatched to Fire Prevention Inspection staff.  For additional information, you may also contact Fire Prevention at (702) 455-7316.

Q: Can I get my inspectors name and phone number?
A: To determine the name and phone number of your inspector, you may use our automated phone system, Construction Services Voice, by dialing (702) 455-3000 (option 1, option 1, and then option 3) anytime after 7:30 a.m. on the morning of your scheduled inspection.   Have your phone system number in hand when you call.  You phone system number is located at the top of your permit.

Q: When does my permit expire?
A: Permits expire 180 days from the date of issuance or last approved inspection.  Each permit stands alone.

Q: Can my Electrical or Plumbing permit be reopened for meter tags?
A: Electrical or Plumbing permits may only be re-opened for meter tag inspections within one week of final inspections.

Q: Why can’t I find the inspection I want to schedule online?
A: Not all inspection types are accessible for online or phone system scheduling due to special conditions, pre-requisite or clearance requirements.  The system will only display the inspection options that are currently available for scheduling on your permit.  For requirements specific to your permit, access Construction Services Online, Inspection Scheduling screen and click on the Required Inspections link that displays on the page to check for pre-requisite or required clearances that may be prohibiting your request.

Q: Can I request an A.M. or P.M. inspection time, or make an appointment with an Inspector?
A: You may request an a.m. or p.m. inspection time, but it does not guarantee that the inspection will occur at the requested time.  The assigned inspector will try to honor the request; however, workload demands and routing may prevent it from occurring.  It is recommended that you contact your assigned inspector directly on the morning of your scheduled inspection to discuss time constraints.  To determine the name and phone number of your inspector, you may use our automated phone system, Construction Services Voice, by dialing (702) 455-3000 (option 1, option 1, and then option 3) anytime after 7:30 a.m. on the morning of your scheduled inspection.   Have your phone system number in hand when you call.  Your phone system number is located at the top of your permit.

Q: Can I request a same day or over-time inspection?
A: Special inspection requests may be directed to the building inspector supervisor; however, such services are very limited, if possible at all, due to the high number of inspections performed each day.  Justification for such service is required.

Q: I plan on building my own house and would like to make an appointment with an Inspector to show me how to construct the wood framing and where I have to place the electrical wiring.  May I request this kind of appointment?
A: The Building Division cannot tell you how to build or recommend construction methods or materials to be used on your specific project.  The building inspector’s responsibility is to inspect completed work to verify compliance to the approved plans and the adopted codes of Clark County.

Q: I disagree with the code interpretation that my inspector used to disapprove my inspection.  May I get a second opinion?
A: Yes! The Building Division has a Second Opinion Program.  We guarantee a second opinion upon request.  Ask for a second opinion on the spot or call Inspections at (702) 455-8040 and ask to speak with a supervisor.  We will provide you a second opinion by the end of the following work day.

Q: The result of my last inspection was a DP.  I am now unable to request any further inspections.  What is a DP and how do I resolve the problem?
A: A DP is an abbreviation for an inspection result of “Disapproved with Penalty.”  The inspector results an inspection with a DP only when an inspection is recalled and previous corrections have not been completed.  The penalty is a $105.00 fee that must be paid at our 4701 W. Russell Road office prior to scheduling any further inspections on that permit.  If you do not understand the reason for the disapproval or think that the re-inspection fee is unjust, you may call and speak to the area supervisor.  To find out who the supervisor is, call (702) 455-8040 and provide your permit number and address to our office staff and you will be forwarded to the appropriate supervisor.

Q: The perimeter block walls are shown on the approved building plans.  Is a separate permit required for the walls?
A: The building permit may be issued with or without the block walls, depending upon the request at time of application.  The scope of work of your permit will specifically state that the walls are part of your permit if they have been included.  If not, an additional permit will be required.

Q: Electrical service is not available at the project site.  Are generators acceptable to be used?  Is a permit required for use of a generator?
A: Yes, generators may be approved for use.  A permit for the generator installation is required.  Zoning approval must be obtained and special installation provisions must be met when using non-portable generators.  For more detailed information concerning generator requirements, please reference FIG-E-005.

Q: Where may I get a copy of the current Southern Nevada amendments to the adopted codes?
A:
The Current Adopted Local Code Amendments are available on our Web site.

Q: How do you access the Clark County approved third-party inspection listing?
A:
The approved third-party inspection listing is available on our website.

Q: Do I need to call to make an inspection appointment with your department for my new business?
A:
No. Your business license application will be forwarded to our department automatically from the Business License Division.  When received, our building inspector will conduct the inspection as soon as possible.  If the business cannot be accessed for inspection for any reason, the inspector will leave instructions and contact information for re-scheduling the inspection.

Q: What are the inspection requirements prior to the issuance of a business license?
A:
The inspection will consist of a visual observation of the building for any structural or other defects affecting the safety of the occupants.  The condition of exit doors, panic free hardware, stairs, ramps and guardrails will be observed.  Exit signs and emergency lights (when provided) must be in proper working order.  All components of the electrical system must be in safe condition, including cover plates over switches and receptacles.

Q: I live in an apartment complex and the air conditioner does not work.  I have told the apartment manager and the maintenance people, but the problem has not been resolved.  I would like a building inspector to come over and make them fix my air conditioner.
A:
The Building Division is not responsible for maintenance issues within existing structures, nor does the Clark County Building Code have a minimum code requirement for the cooling of a building. Your attorney or the Neighborhood Justice Center may be of help.

Q: What must be completed to receive a Temporary Certificate of Occupancy (TCO) for a building?
A:
First, the building is required to be a commercial or multi-tenant residence to apply for a TCO, as single-family residences and town-homes are not authorized for such temporary use.  All life-safety elements required in the building shall be complete, tested and approved by the applicable department.  When required, the structural QAA final report shall be complete, submitted and approved.  All required clearances from agencies and other departments must be approved or partially approved.  All the associated sub-trade permits must be approved or partially approved for the areas that are requested for use.  The area of use must be separated from any ongoing construction and have safe access and egress.  These are the minimum requirements, with many more possible based upon the specific project and area(s) requested to be used.

Q: I applied for a Temporary Certificate of Occupancy.  Does this mean I can move in?
A:
No, a request is not authorization to occupy.  Final or partial final inspection approvals must be obtained for all permits and for any special reports or certifications and clearances obtained from other designated county departments and agencies.  Following such approvals, a conditions letter will be issued with the Temporary Certificate of Occupancy.  This document authorizes occupancy and use of the building, provided it is in compliance with the conditions letter.

Q: Can I get a Temporary Certificate of Occupancy for a shell building?
A:
No, shell buildings may not be issued a TCO or a Certificate of Occupancy, as the building is not considered to be a usable structure without further interior work.  A Certificate of Completion is issued upon completion of a shell building.

Q: My shell building is currently not complete, so it can not receive final inspections.  However, one of the interior tenant improvement projects is complete, which is under its own permits.  Can I receive final inspections of the tenant improvement permits and be issued a Certificate of Occupancy or Temporary Certificate of Occupancy before the shell building is completed?
A:
No, a Certificate of Completion must be obtained for the shell building, meaning all associated permits to the shell building have received approved final inspections, prior to authorizing any occupancy or building final inspection approvals on the tenant improvement permit.

Q: I received a letter stating that my TCO is about to expire.  What are my options?
A:
Your first option is to complete all unfinished work and obtain final inspection approval of all open permits for the project.  If you are unable to fully complete the work, you may apply for a TCO extension at the Permit Application Center, 4701 W. Russell Road.  There is an additional administrative fee required for the extension.  Please note that a TCO will not be extended for unlimited time.  Please review the specifics of your project with the building inspector supervisor.

Q: Can “one-side” drywall be placed on stud walls prior to framing inspection?
A:
No, this is not a typical construction practice.  Prior authorization is required to do so, and only with justification.

Q: What are the code requirements for acoustical tile and lay-in panel ceilings?
A: The installation requirements for such ceilings are listed in the Interior Finish chapter, Section 803.8.1.1, of the 2000 Edition of the International Building Code.

Q: May the lay-in ceiling panels be placed on the metal grid suspension system prior to rough electrical, plumbing or mechanical inspections and ceiling grid inspection?
A: No, in nearly all instances the ceiling panels are not to be installed until after the required rough and ceiling grid inspections are approved, as the panels significantly restrict inspection access.

Q: Are plans required for low voltage permits?
A: 
Plans are required and plans exam fees will be charged.

Q: Do low voltage plans require a detail of the supporting means?
A: 
No. The supporting means must be a product listed for the purpose, listed for the type of cable and installed per its listing.

Q: Are details required for penetrations of low voltage cable through rated walls?
A: 
No, penetrations shall be done by an approved manufacturer’s assembly instructions. If a detail is provided, the penetration must be done per the detailed method. 

Q: Are rated walls required to be detailed on the low voltage plans?
A: 
Yes, the electrical inspector needs to be made aware of the location of the rated walls since he may have sole responsibility for inspecting the penetrations.  

Q: Are non-metallic low voltage cables required to be plenum-rated?
A: 
Yes, if they’re concealed in Type I or Type II construction. The IBC Southern Nevada Amendments (717.5) prohibit combustible materials in concealed spaces of Type I & II construction. Plenum-rated will be considered to be non-combustible per the smoke and flame spread rating. 

Q: Are low voltage plans required to be stamped by a professional engineer?
A: 
No, but if the submitted plans were stamped by an engineer, then any changes would need to be approved by that engineer. 

Q: How often are low voltage cables required to be supported in vertical chases?
A:
Cables in vertical chases are required to be riser-rated and spacing between supports will be listed in the manufacturer’s installation instructions.

Q: Am I required to install low voltage wiring in a raceway?
A:
The Southern Nevada Amendments to the NEC require all wiring be installed in a raceway (or cable tray system), with the following exceptions:
1. MI, MC, and AC cable;
2. Special alarm sensing cable;
3. Where NM cable is permitted by this code;
4. Low voltage wiring exposed (visible) on walls and ceilings;
5. Not applicable to low voltage wiring.
6. Not applicable to low voltage wiring.
7. Not applicable to low voltage wiring.

NOTE #1: Raceway systems for buildings and structures of Type I and Type II.A construction shall be metallic and cable trays shall be of the fully enclosed type, except non-metallic raceways encased in concrete or liquid-tight flex not longer than 6 feet.
NOTE#2: Low-voltage wiring is not required to be in raceways in the 2008 NEC Southern Nevada Amendments.

Q: Is the grounding electrode conductor to a Ufer (Concrete-Encased Electrode) required to be larger than #4?
A:
NEC 250.66(B) states the maximum grounding electrode conductor required is #4, if it is the sole connection.  However, if you have engineered plans requiring a larger size, you must install per the plans or submit an engineered revision.

Q: Are all ground clamps approved for attachment to rebar?
A:
No, the UL Equipment Directory states: “Clamps intended for use with rebar are marked with the size of rebar with which the clamp is intended to be used.”  If the clamp does not list rebar and the size of rebar, it is not intended for that use.

Q: What is required to get an electric meter tag?
A:
The electric meter tag is issued by the building inspector upon completion of an approved final building inspection.  To receive a meter tag prior to this time requires approval of a Temporary Power Application.

Q: What are the requirements to obtain temporary power?
A:
Please see the Temporary Construction Power Permit Guide for specific requirements and application form.

Q: Why must a manufactured home be inspected by Clark County and the State of Nevada?
A:
The two agencies inspect different aspects of a manufactured home installation.  The state inspects the set up of the manufactured home and all systems within the unit.  The county inspection is limited to the site where the manufactured home is placed, verifying compliance with zoning requirements and utility connections made outside of the unit, such as electrical, gas and sewer connections, to the fixed utility service at the site.

Q: What is Clark County’s standard design specification for adding a permanent foundation to a manufactured home?
A:
Clark County does not provide a standard design for manufactured home foundations.  A Nevada licensed structural engineer or contractor must provide a foundation design to obtain a building permit for a permanent foundation.

Q: Is there any restriction on the age of a manufactured home that is being installed in Clark County?
A:
Clark County has no restriction on the age of a manufactured home; however, some home parks or communities may have such restrictions.

Q: If I am changing out equal equipment, i.e. a 4-ton unit for a 4-ton unit, do I need to obtain a permit for the installation?
A:
Yes.  All change outs require a permit and inspection of the final installation.  Access shall be provided by the permit holder.

Q: If I am relocating or adding mechanical duct work in my single family residence, do I need a permit?
A: 
Yes.  All relocation of duct work shall be permitted and inspected.  Access shall be provided and work left open until such inspection has been completed.

Q: How far does gas fired equipment that incorporates a product of combustion vent have to rise before termination?
A:
The vent shall rise a minimum of 5 feet above the collar or draft diverter of the appliance.

Q: I am placing my condensing unit on the exterior of my home.  How far above grade does the final installation have to be?
A:
The condensing unit shall be placed on a level non-combustible platform a minimum of three (3) inches above grade or flood level.

Q: What is the working clearance on the control side of a unit located in an attic?
A:
A minimum of a thirty (30) inch platform shall be placed on the control or working side of the unit that is placed in an attic.  A working light that shines on the control side and an electrical outlet shall also be installed for the mechanic or homeowner to safely work on the appliance.

Q: How far can a dryer exhaust vent be run?
A:
The minimum code requirement is 14 feet with a maximum of two 90-degree elbows.  Every additional elbow subtracts two (2) feet from the maximum distance.  The termination shall be in a non-screened eye-brow termination with a back draft damper. Note:  If you are installing a specific model of dryer and that dryer allows for a longer run of vent piping then that specific model has to be in place at final and the manufacturer’s installation instructs shall be on site for the inspector to verify.

Q: Can I terminate my dryer vent in the vertical position?
A:
Yes. The same length rules apply with the exception of the termination.  The vent will be terminated into a non-screened tee top and no back draft damper is required.  Back draft dampers are not listed to be placed in the vertical position.
     Note:  Vertical terminations should be cleaned or checked on a regular basis due to lint collection within the duct work, which could be a fire hazard.

Q: How close can I install my pool heater to my property line?
A:
Per the Pool Code of Clark County, a gas fired pool heater with an external or integral vent shall be placed no closer than four (4) feet to the property line.

Q: As a homeowner, can I replace my water heater?
A:
Yes.  You can as long as the location of the water heater is at your primary residence.  If you own rental property, you must use a licensed contractor for the replacement because rental property is considered commercial property. Water heater permits are available online.  See our water heater permit guideline for details for owner builders.

Q: Does the replacement of a water heater require a permit?
A:
Yes.  A permit shall be obtained through the Building Department in your jurisdiction.  If the work is to be done in Clark County’s jurisdiction, contact the Department of Development Services’ Building Division at 4701 W. Russell Road, Las Vegas, NV 89118.  These permits are also available start to finish online. See our guideline for details on residential or commercial installations.

Q: Are all water heaters required to be placed on an 18” stand?
A:
Where water heaters are placed within a garage, the installation shall include the placement of the unit on a minimum 18” stand measured from the garage floor to the burner or electrical element of the vessel.

Q: Do all water heaters have to be set in a corrosion resistant pan?
A:
No.  Those units located in areas that possibly cause damage to other parts of the building shall be installed with a pan under the unit, including second floor patio storage closets, furred areas and under the counter installations.  A separate minimum ¾-inch drain line shall be taken to the outside of the building.

Q: Are all water heaters required to be seismic strapped?
A:
Yes.  The strapping shall be in the upper 1/3rd and the lower 1/3rd of the vessel.  The strapping shall be secured to the structure’s framing elements.

Q: As a homeowner can I pull the permit for the water heater installation and hire a licensed contractor to do the work under my permit?
A:
Yes.  Purchasing your own permit makes you the responsible party for the installation of the unit.  You, as the permit holder, are now required to know and understand all the provisions of the adopted plumbing – and possibly the electrical codes – for the installation, inspections, and final approvals on the completed installation.  This requirement could include proper attachment of the water, gas, electric, venting of the appliance, and physical damage protection of the appliance.

Q: What does the yellow energy sticker on the water heater mean to me?
A:
The energy sticker in the upper left hand corner has a number that relates to the first hour recovery rating of the unit.  That number shall be equal to or greater than a number in table 5-1 of the Water Heater Installations Guide relating to the number of bathrooms and bedrooms of the dwelling.

Q: Where can the temperature and pressure relief valve be terminated?
A:
The temperature and pressure relief valve (minimum 150 psi rated) shall be taken full size (minimum ¾-inch) to the exterior of the dwelling or building.  Most manufacturer installation instructions allow for a maximum 30 foot distance with no more than four 90-degree elbows in this line.  The temperature and pressure relief line shall be sloped from the vessel to the exterior at ¼” per foot using straight lengths of piping instead of coils.

Q: What type of materials can be used for the temperature and pressure relief line?
A:
Copper, galvanized or CPVC, minimum ¾” inch can be used.  The piping shall be in straight lengths instead of coils.

Q: I have a PVC gas line that was installed years ago.  Can I repair this line with new PVC or CPVC if the line is damaged?
A:
No.  There are no approved fittings (tees, elbows, couplings) approved under the ASTM-D2513 standard for making repairs or extending lines using these materials.

Q: Where can I find a qualified plumber to work on my house or commercial property?
A:
We can not recommend one contractor over another.  Your best references are:
• The yellow pages
• Plumbing and Mechanical Contractors Association of Nevada (PMCN): (702) 252-0166
• Plumbers and Pipe fitters Local Union 525: (702) 452-1520
• State Contractors Board: (702) 486-1100

Get references, use a Nevada licensed contractor, ask for a Clark County card carrying journeyman to do work or repairs in your home or business.  Obtain more than one estimate, get everything in writing, make sure permits are pulled and inspections are completed on the work.

Q: Do I need an approved set of plans for plumbing work being done on my residence?
A:
No, with the exception of an approved gas plan that shall be approved by the county and remain on site.
    Note:  Approved residential construction plans are not required for single family residences in the county.

Q: If I smell natural gas, what should I do?
A:
Immediately shut off the gas supply at the meter and ventilate the home by opening doors and windows.  Do not strike matches or turn light switches off and on.  After turning off the gas and ventilating the home, do one of two things:  

(1) contact a licensed plumbing company and have them complete an air test of your gas system, 
                                                   OR
(2) contact Southwest Gas Corporation and have a service technician turn your gas off.

Note #1:  If the plumbing company needs to make repairs to your gas system, they must pull a permit and have their work inspected by the building inspection department before the gas service is continued.

Note #2:  Southwest Gas will not make any repairs to your gas piping system.  The technician will turn your gas off and suggest you contact a licensed plumbing company.

Q: Do I need a permit to install a water conditioning system?
A:
Yes.  You as a homeowner can do your own installation of a water conditioning system as long as you obtain a permit from the county and have the work inspected, OR you may contract with a water conditioning company or plumbing company.  They also have to obtain a permit and have their work inspected. These permits are also available, start to finish online.  See our guides for residential or commercial installations.

Q: When is my secondary alarm required to be installed and inspected?
A:
Secondary alarms are required to be installed prior to filling the pool with water.  Inspection and approval is required at pre-plaster inspection since it will be the last inspection before being filled with water.

Q: When can I fill the pool and swim in it?
A:
The pool may be filled with water after the pre-plaster inspection has been approved and plastering has been completed.  Use of the pool for swimming is not approved until after the final inspection approval.

Q: Are there other precautions to be followed during the excavation and construction process?
A:
Yes, during the construction period temporary barricades are required to prevent access to the construction area, except for authorized personnel.

Q: What do you inspect and how do I know if the contractor is complying with code requirements?
A: The contractor will have a permit sign-off card posted at the job-site.  Inspection approvals will be recorded during the process and at required stages of completion.  A general list of common code items we check that apply to the majority of pools we inspect are contained in a Swimming Pool Inspection Checklist.