Make sure your California construction projects conform to the California construction codes. Having your own copies of these California Construction Codebooks is your first step toward that goal.
If your work is being done in California, then it must comply with the applicable codes. It is much more cost-effective to have the codes on hand through all phases of the project than to do the rework required to bring it into compliance later.
No More Confusion
Confused by California construction code requirements? The solution is to obtain and study the codes relevant to your project. This is much more efficient than trying to argue with an inspector or attorney after you've already completed work that violates one or more code provisions.
Area: 411,470 Square Km (158,869 Square miles); rank: 3d.
Largest city: Los Angeles.
Elevations: highest: 4,418 m (14,494 ft), at Mount Whitney; lowest: -86 m (-282 ft), at Death Valley.Government
Electoral college votes: 54.
State legislature: 40 senators, 80 representatives.
How California became a state
We don’t know much about the non-European occupants who were in California when the Spaniards arrived. We do know theirs was a a stable and peaceful culture. Various tribes lived in the region, each in its own distinct area. The tribes spoke different languages, which put them at a disadvantage in the face of European colonialism.
Spain claimed and occupied California with the goal of spreading their kingdom and their Catholic religion. This ultimately met with failure, as centralized planning has throughout history (reference to "the Clintonistas" is a play on what happened with central planning in California’s early years).
War in Mexico (1810–1821) slowly pushed Spanish rule from North America. But Californians were in the dark about the war, because the Spanish government censored what little news that came with infrequent government supply ships. Californians thought the revolution was a minor spat soon to fade away. In 1822, they were shocked to learn they had been Mexican citizens for nearly a year!
When Mexico gained independence from Spain, California became an isolated community, with no support from Spain. Mexico declared California a territory (rather than a state) and left it low on the priority list.
Citizens spent three decades with no clear political direction. In 1825, Mexico City began sending governors to California, but Californians simply didn’t respect these people—especially since Mexican force was hardly a threat. Between 1831 and 1836, California government had 11 different administrations.
The power base in California transferred to a few families descended from the Spanish soldiers. They became owners of permanent and large ranchero grants. The richest families sold hides and tallow from the free cattle that roamed huge ranchos. These families intermarried, and the ties meant the battles between them seldom resulted in casualties.
To increase the non-Indian population, foreigners of all types were admitted. Soon a sizable minority of Yankees grew, dominating the merchant class and entering into important positions in the political and social structure. Yankees also found a new industry in California: beaver fur.
Jedediah Strong Smith led a small party from the Great Salt Lake overland to Mission San Gabriel in 1826. Upon returning to Utah in July, he became the first person known to cross the Sierra Nevadas. He brought both news of a trail a beaver trapper's paradise. Another trapper, James Pattie, entered California in the Fall of 1826. Trappers continued to come to California from the East, developing an immigration route that would be key, twenty years later.
In 1824 ,the Chumash Indians revolted and temporarily controlled three missions (Santa Barbara, Santa Ines, and La Purisima). In 1829, Estanislao organized Miwok tribes into a band that successfully fought off the Californians for the rest of the Mexican era. One guerrilla band after another wore away at Mexican influence and the existence of the Spanish Missions.
The 1830s were seminal to California’s becoming a state, and several key players arrived during that time. They include: Thomas Larkin (1832), Jacob P. Leese (1836), John Marsh (1836), and John Sutter (1839). These people helped form the culture that eventually made Californian successful and predominantly "Yankee."
The United States wanted San Francisco, because of its reputation as the best harbor on the Pacific coast. Americans remembered how weak Mexico was in the War of 1812, and started licking their chops at acquiring California. Several attempts to purchase the territory failed because of one fiasco or another, and making Texas a state exacerbated difficult relations between the U.S. and Mexico.
The two landmark events were the Bear Flag Revolt (an uprising precipitated by a clashing of egos and authorities) and the Mexican American War, taking place in 1846. At that time, California was very weak militarily—the vaious Presidios were either unmanned or so low on arms and ammunition as to be useless. Yankees made up a rapidly-growing portion of the population, and held key positions in business and government.
While the Bear Flag Revolt was raging, the U.S. was at war with Mexico over Texas. The Californians didn’t know the two nations were at war. The Bear Flag Republic cast out the Mexican Authorities, and proclaimed themselves free of Mexican rule. The U.S. decided to take California from the Mexicans. On July 7th, the U.S. Navy raised the U.S. Flag at Monterery. On the 9th, they raised it at Yerba Buena, and on the 11th they raised it at Sutter’s Fort. So, American possession displaced the Bear Flag Republic less than a month after the birth of that republic.
Initially, Californians resigned themselves to accepting the long-expected takeover by the U.S. But, when Commodore Robert Stockton took over, he and his cronies acted with arrogance and unfairness. This led to further rebellion, which was doomed because of both logistic and organizational reasons. However, the rebellion did gain respect for their property rights.
On to statehood....
In 1848, with Mexico defeated, California became a U.S. Territory on 2 February. On 11 February, an employee discovered some flakes of gold at Sutter's Mill. The political honchos helped engineer the subsequent gold rush, which brought a flood of people into this land so removed from the rest of the U.S.
With a huge Yankee population dwarfing the original residents, political leaders had the clout to ratify a Constitution in November, 1849. The U.S. Congress recognized this Constitution in 1850. The disillusioned miners turned to trade, farming, and other forms of business. Wages were high.
With the swelling of population, enormous herds of cattle valued at $4 a head in 1846 sold for as high as $500 a head in 1850. Irrigation plays a major role throughout California history, as it did then. It allowed the valleys to be the greatest food producing area on earth. Agricultural revenue quickly exceeded the value all the gold California ever produced. The Spanish and Mexican governments occupied California for 300 years, and it was an economic and cultural wasteland. Ninety years after California became a state, Ernest Lawrence split atoms at the University of California.
Code Compliance Tips
Obviously, you need to know what the regulations and requirements are. That's why you should buy this standard.
As you apply a requirement, look at the principle behind it. If you satisfy the principle, you won't be subject to "interpretation revisions" being forced on you later.
To understand a particular provision, understand its context. So rather than look up a sentence and try to parse out its meaning, look at the entire code and how it's arranged. Where does the provision fit within this framework, and what is that chapter or section trying to accomplish?
Remember that members of all code-making bodies write the codes in respect to the laws of physics, and to the body of knowledge in the respective trade or skill area addressed by the code. If you also understand these things, then you will be able to more properly apply a given code requirement.
Codes are nearly always written as minimum requirements. You may need to go beyond the code requirements for optimum operational efficiency or to satisfy engineering requirements based on best practices. The codes almost never limit you from going beyond the requirements.
The 2010 California Code of Regulations Title 24 on CD-ROM (Parts 1, 2, 2.5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12) contains the California construction codes (except Parts 3, 4, and 5) all on one CD-ROM (single user version). Not compatible with Mac/OSX Operating systems. Effect More Info
Stay on top of Title 24 and save money, when you order the 2010 California Title 24 Complete Set (looseleaf edition). You also receive a three-year subscription to provide all updates, errata, and supplements from the State of California. More Info
The 2010 California Building Code, Title 24, Part 2 provides building design and construction requirements relating to fire and life safety. It includes all nonstructural provisions, and those structural provisions necessary for field inspections. (Two Volumes - In More Info
Ensure your California residential projects conform to the 2010 California Residential Code, Title 24 Part 2.5 by having your own copy to use for bidding, planning, designing, and building your California residential projects. More Info
The 2010 California Electrical Code is fully integrated with the National Electrical Code, and contains the full text of the NEC with all California additions, changes, and deletions clearly shown. More Info
The 2010 California Mechanical Code, Title 24, Part 4 contains mechanical building standards and requirements for the installation and maintenance of heating, ventilating, cooling, and refrigeration systems. Looseleaf version. More Info
The 2010 California Plumbing Code, Title 24, Part 5, based on the 2009 Uniform Plumbing Code, has been assembled into a convenient, single publication. This includes a subscription for updates and errata pages. Hundreds of tables and diagrams are included. Looselea More Info
The 2010 California Energy Code, Title 24, Part 6, contains the building construction energy efficiency requirements of the California Building Standards Commission. Looseleaf version, custom binder included. More Info
The 2010 California Fire Code Title 24, Part 9 is a fully integrated code based on the 2009 International Fire Code. Included is a free subscription service for all state updates and supplements to this code. Looseleaf version with custom binder. More Info
The 2010 California Green Building Standards Code Title 24, Part 11 is part of the 12-part California Code of Regulations, Title 24. It contains regulations for energy efficiency, water efficiency and conservation, material conservation, resource efficiency, and en More Info
The 2010 California Referenced Standards Code Title 24 Part 12 contains minimum test and reference standards required by the California Building Standards Code. This reference helps you reduce cost over runs and prevent a common cause of completion delays. Now you More Info
The 2007 California Building Code, Title 24, Part 2 provides building design and construction requirements relating to fire and life safety. It includes all nonstructural provisions, and those structural provisions necessary for field inspections. More Info
The 2007 California Mechanical Code, Title 24, Part 4 contains mechanical building standards and requirements for the installation and maintenance of heating, ventilating, cooling, and refrigeration systems. Looseleaf version. More Info
The 2007 California Plumbing Code, Title 24, Part 5, based on the 2006 Uniform Plumbing Code, has been assembled into a convenient, single publication. This includes a subscription for updates and errata pages. Hundreds of tables and diagrams are included. Looselea More Info
The 2007 California Plumbing Code, Title 24, Part 5, based on the 2006 Uniform Plumbing Code, has been assembled into a convenient, single publication. This includes a subscription for updates and errata pages. Hundreds of tables and diagrams are included. CD ROM v More Info
The 2007 California Energy Code, Title 24, Part 6, contains the building construction energy efficiency requirements of the California Building Standards Commission. Looseleaf version, custom binder included. More Info
The 2007 California Fire Code Title 24, Part 9 is a fully integrated code based on the 2006 International Fire Code. Included is a free subscription service for all state updates and supplements to this code. Looseleaf version with custom binder. More Info
The 2008 California Green Building Standards Code Title 24, Part 11 is part of the 12-part California Code of Regulations, Title 24. It contains regulations for energy efficiency, water efficiency and conservation, material conservation, resource efficiency, and en More Info
Stop being blind-sided by surprise code requirements in California. This reference helps you reduce cost over runs and prevent a common cause of completion delays. Now you can have all references to other codes and standards in one handy volume for quick and method More Info
The California Code of Regulations (CCR), Title 24, also known as the California Building Standards Code, is a compilation of three types of building standards from three different origins:
Building standards that have been adopted by state agencies without change from building standards contained in national model codes.
Building standards that have been adopted and adapted from the national model code standards to meet California conditions.
Building standards, authorized by the California legislature, that constitute extensive additions not covered by the model codes that have been adopted to address particular California concerns.
Notwithstanding, the national model code standards adopted into Title 24 apply to all occupancies in California except for modifications adopted by state agencies and local governing bodies.