International Building Code IBC


The International Building Code (IBC) is one of the international codes (I-Codes) that deals with the construction, design and installation of buildings using requirements that emphasize performance. The IBC was designed to address these needs through model code regulations that are intended to protect the health, safety and welfare of the public.

International Code Council

  • The International Code Council (ICC) is a nonprofit membership organization association that was created in 1994 for the purpose of creating a single set of comprehensive and coordinated uniform model construction codes to be used throughout the United States. The founders of the ICC were the Building Officials and Code Administrators International (BOCA), the International Conference of Building Officials (ICBO) and the Southern Building Code Congress International (SBCCI).

    When BOCA, ICBO, and SBCCI joined to form the ICC, the three separate regional building codes of the three founding organizations were used to create the international codes.


  • The I-codes are the copyrighted uniform model codes that are published by the ICC. They are intended to provide minimum safeguards for the general public when they are at home, at school and in the workplace. The I-codes are a complete set of comprehensive, coordinated codes in one set without regional limitations. They include the International Building Code, the International Energy Conservation Code, the International Existing Building Code, the International Fire Code, the International Fuel Gas Code, the International Mechanical Code, the ICC Performance Code, the International Plumbing Code, the International Private Sewage Disposal Code, the International Property Maintenance Code, the International Residential Code, the International Wildland-Urban Interface Code and the International Zoning Code.


  • The IBC is a comprehensive building code that's designed to establish minimum regulations for construction projects that use prescriptive and performance-related provisions. The principles upon which it was founded made possible the usage of new materials and building designs. The IBC is the model code that develops a process that offers construction contractors and others an international forum based on international consistency.

IBC Chapter Layout

  • The chapters of the IBC include:

    Chapter 1 - Administration
    Chapter 2 - Definitions
    Chapter 3 - Use and Occupancy Classification
    Chapter 5 - General Building Heights and Areas
    Chapter 6 - Types of Construction
    Chapter 7 - Fire-Resistance-Rated Construction
    Chapter 8 - Interior Finishes
    Chapter 9 - Fire Protection Systems
    Chapter 10 - Means of Egress
    Chapter 11 - Accessibility
    Chapter 12 - Interior Environment
    Chapter 13 - Energy Efficiency
    Chapter 14 - Exterior Walls
    Chapter 15 - Roof Assemblies and Rooftop Structures
    Chapter 16 - Structural Design
    Chapter 17 - Structural Tests and Special Inspections
    Chapter 18 - Soils and Foundations
    Chapter 19 - Concrete
    Chapter 20 - Aluminum
    Chapter 21 - Masonry
    Chapter 22 - Steel
    Chapter 23 - Wood
    Chapter 24 - Glass and Glazing
    Chapter 25 - Gypsum Board and Plaster
    Chapter 26 - Plastic
    Chapter 27 - Electrical
    Chapter 28 - Mechanical Systems
    Chapter 29 - Plumbing Systems
    Chapter 30 - Elevators and Conveying Systems
    Chapter 31 - Special Construction
    Chapter 32 - Encroachments into the Public Right-of-Way
    Chapter 33 - Safeguards during Construction
    Chapter 34 - Existing Structures
    Chapter 35 - Referenced Standards
    Appendix A - Employee Qualifications
    Appendix B - Board of Appeals
    Appendix C - Group U - Agricultural Buildings
    Appendix D - Fire Districts
    Appendix E - Supplementary Accessibility Requirements
    Appendix F - Rodent Proofing
    Appendix G - Flood Resistant Construction
    Appendix H - Signs
    Appendix I - Patio Covers
    Appendix J - Supplementary Accessibility Requirements for Qualified Historic Buildings and Facilities

IBC Jurisdictions

  • The IBC has been adopted by the legislatures of all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. It's also used and enforced by several federal agencies and is used by the Department of Defense to build all of its military facilities throughout the world.

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