Delaware Current Building Codes

Current Commercial Code

Delaware Building Code

  • Base Code: 2018 International Building Code (IBC)
  • Effective Date: These codes have been in effect since April 1, 2021.
  • Adoption Reference: Delaware adopts the codes as published by the International Code Council (ICC) with state-specific amendments.

Delaware Residential Code

  • Base Code: 2018 International Residential Code (IRC)
  • Effective Date: Also effective from April 1, 2021.
  • Amendments: Includes modifications to address issues such as energy efficiency and structural safety, particularly considering local climate and geographic conditions.

Other Relevant Codes

  • Delaware Fire Code: Based on the 2018 International Fire Code (IFC), incorporating local amendments for fire safety measures.
  • Delaware Mechanical Code: Adopts the 2018 International Mechanical Code (IMC).
  • Delaware Plumbing Code: Based on the 2018 International Plumbing Code (IPC).
  • Delaware Electrical Code: Generally aligns with the 2017 National Electrical Code (NEC), including updates for safety and technology adaptation.

Energy Compliance

  • Delaware Energy Conservation Code: Adopts the 2018 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) with amendments aimed at enhancing energy efficiency in both residential and commercial buildings.

Current Residential Code

  • Base Code: Based on the 2018 International Residential Code (IRC)
  • Passed: Adoption dates vary by state, commonly around 2018-2019.
  • Effective: Effective dates also vary, with many states implementing the new code in 2020 or 2021.
Code Enforcement

Enforcement is the responsibility of local jurisdictions.

Climate Zone: 4A


Code Adoption and Change Process

Code Change Process

Regulatory: The Delaware Energy Office will adopt the latest versions of the IECC and ASHRAE Standard 90.1. It shall promulgate procedures for certification of compliance with these codes and standards to be utilized by respective local governments.

Code Change Cycle

Delaware’s Energy Conservation Code Act (16 Del.C. §7602) requires DNREC to adopt the most recent and/or highest available version of the IECC and ASHRAE 90.1. The regulations must also set out procedures for certification of compliance with these codes and standards to be utilized by the respective local governments.

Next Code Update

No update is scheduled, Title 16, Chapter 76 of the Delaware Code requires the Delaware Energy Office to review the Delaware State Energy Code every three years for potential updates to the most recent versions of the IECC and ASHRAE Standard 90.1.


History

May 12, 2020 Adoption of 2018 I-Codes Delaware adopts the 2018 editions of the International Building Code (IBC) and International Residential Code (IRC), effective from this date. These updates include state-specific amendments for local conditions such as wind and seismic requirements.
May 11, 2014 2012 IECC and ASHRAE 90.1-2010 become effective statewide. Delaware implements the 2012 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) and ASHRAE Standard 90.1-2010 across the state, enhancing energy efficiency requirements for buildings.
November 10, 2011 Delaware Energy Code Coalition Formed Following the BCAP’s DOE-funded Compliance Planning Assistance Program, the Delaware Division of Energy and Climate convenes the first meeting of the Delaware Energy Code Coalition, responsible for advising on energy code implementation and updates, ensuring greater compliance with the energy code. This coalition’s formation was a key recommendation from BCAP’s Delaware Gap Analysis Report.
July 2010 2009 IECC and ASHRAE 90.1-2007 become effective statewide. The Delaware Energy Office (DEO) partners with BCAP and Newport Ventures to provide training sessions across the state, facilitating the implementation of the 2009 IECC and ASHRAE 90.1-2007 that became effective statewide.
July 2009 Senate Bill 59 mandates statewide adoption of 2009 IECC and ASHRAE 90.1-2007. Delaware passes Senate Bill 59, requiring the adoption and enforcement of the 2009 IECC and ASHRAE 90.1-2007 across Delaware. Enforcement responsibilities are initially placed with local jurisdictions, with the Delaware Energy Office working on expanding state support for implementation.
July 2004 Adoption of 2000 IECC for new residential dwellings. Delaware adopts the 2000 IECC for new residential constructions of three stories or less in height, and for all other buildings, the 2000 IECC and its 2001 supplement, referencing ASHRAE 90.1-1999, come into effect.
1995 Adoption of the 1993 Model Energy Code (MEC) statewide. State Bill 83 adopts the 1993 Model Energy Code (MEC) across Delaware, setting a precedent for future updates to energy standards in building codes.
1979 Senate Bill 321 establishes a minimum code for energy conservation. The Delaware legislature passes Senate Bill 321, which sets a minimum energy conservation code that prohibits local counties or municipalities from adopting building or plumbing codes that contradict the Model Code for Energy Conservation in New Building Construction (MCEC), based on ASHRAE/IES 90-1975.

Contacts

Crystal Nagyiski
Energy Efficiency Program Manager
Division of Energy and Climate
Email: crystal.nagyiski@state.de.us

Bahareh van Boekhold
Sustainable Building and Community Planner
Division of Energy and Climate
Email: Bahareh.VanBoekhold@state.de.us

Carolyn Sarno Goldthwaite
Senior Program Manager
High Performance Buildings
Northeast Energy Efficiency Partnerships (NEEP)
Email: cgoldthwaite@neep.org


News and Events

BCAP Programs

Compliance Collaboratives
Compliance Planning Assistance


BCAP Resources

Helpful Links