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Old 07-07-2009, 10:27 AM   #1
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Do most towns have separate inspectors for electric, plumbing and construction?


Just curious, I want to get a plumber in to do some work but I don't have a permit for the electrical I'm adding(licensed electrician doing it just no permit*) so I don't want the inspector to come in for the plumbing work and bust me on the electrical work not having a permit. I'm guessing even if they are separate they would still talk so either way I'm screwed if the plumber has to pull a permit.

*He says it such a pain to pull permits for small things(adding two outlets on a wall that should have been there) so he doesn't bother pulling permits for small jobs.

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Old 07-07-2009, 10:43 AM   #2
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Do most towns have separate inspectors for electric, plumbing and construction?


Our electric Inspector is seperate from the plumbing & building
BUT, our building Inspector will check & verify that all other permits have been pulled & signed off

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Old 07-07-2009, 10:44 AM   #3
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Do most towns have separate inspectors for electric, plumbing and construction?


I cant speak for the rest of the country, but most muni's in my area generally have 1 inspector for residential work in towns of 25000 or less. Often times they have another inspector for commercial, sometimes even for specialties like plumbing or electrical. A town with over 50000 people (again, in my area) generally has 3-5 different inspecters. It really depends on the size of the city & what the main inspecter is qualified to inspect himself. Some have all credentials, some don't. Is there any way you can make the electrical "look" like it was existing?
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Old 07-07-2009, 10:48 AM   #4
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Do most towns have separate inspectors for electric, plumbing and construction?


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I cant speak for the rest of the country, but most muni's in my area generally have 1 inspector for residential work in towns of 25000 or less. Often times they have another inspector for commercial, sometimes even for specialties like plumbing or electrical. A town with over 50000 people (again, in my area) generally has 3-5 different inspecters. It really depends on the size of the city & what the main inspecter is qualified to inspect himself. Some have all credentials, some don't. Is there any way you can make the electrical "look" like it was existing?
That seems to be my only option. Basically what I've done is removed the walls that where there and replaced them correctly. They were really poorly done and were not even close to code so I ripped them down and rebuilt them including adding the correct electrical(25ft wall not one outlet). The plumbing I need done is moving the washing machine to another room in the basement so it seems I'm going to have to finish up the wall, paint it and put everything back the way it was and then have the plumber come in and move the washer which sucks because with the wall fully built back there is very little room for the washing machine to move. That or find a plumber that will work without a permit(like the electrician)


What I'm also wondering is if the plumbing inspector will wonder how the 240V outlet was put in for the dryer.
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Old 07-07-2009, 10:52 AM   #5
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Do most towns have separate inspectors for electric, plumbing and construction?


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What I'm also wondering is if the plumbing inspector will wonder how the 240V outlet was put in for the dryer.
Could cause a problem
Our electrical Inspector is pretty sharp
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Old 07-07-2009, 10:56 AM   #6
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Do most towns have separate inspectors for electric, plumbing and construction?


And I'm guessing the trick "It was already there when we moved in" will probably not work? :-)
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Old 07-07-2009, 01:03 PM   #7
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Do most towns have separate inspectors for electric, plumbing and construction?


The time spent on writing this thread would have produced a filled out electrical subcode form.

I think your electrician is lying to you. An electrical permit is literally 10 minutes at the counter, and any legit contractor knows all the people in his area and how to efficiently pull and drop off permits. I think he's hiding something, like maybe he got dinked one too many times by the inspector in your town, or worse, like he has no insurance or he lost his registration, or hasn't paid for his local license.

It's just my opinion, but I would say to him "I want the permit to be pulled," and see what his response is. I don't think the hassle excuse carries any weight. Cripes, around here you can download the forms from the state's web site and fill it out in your underwear at the kitchen table while eating a donut and drinking coffee.
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Old 07-07-2009, 01:13 PM   #8
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Do most towns have separate inspectors for electric, plumbing and construction?


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The time spent on writing this thread would have produced a filled out electrical subcode form.

I think your electrician is lying to you. An electrical permit is literally 10 minutes at the counter, and any legit contractor knows all the people in his area and how to efficiently pull and drop off permits. I think he's hiding something, like maybe he got dinked one too many times by the inspector in your town, or worse, like he has no insurance or he lost his registration, or hasn't paid for his local license.

Or he's a union electrician "moonlighting", or he works for someone else, who holds the master elec. license.

It's just my opinion, but I would say to him "I want the permit to be pulled," and see what his response is. I don't think the hassle excuse carries any weight. Cripes, around here you can download the forms from the state's web site and fill it out in your underwear at the kitchen table while eating a donut and drinking coffee.
If he has good credentials & you trust him, I wouldn't be too concerned at this point.
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Old 07-07-2009, 01:15 PM   #9
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Do most towns have separate inspectors for electric, plumbing and construction?


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If he has good credentials & you trust him, I wouldn't be too concerned at this point.
Yeah, he has a license but he works for another company and just does work on the side. I trust him, that's not the issue here.
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Old 07-07-2009, 05:25 PM   #10
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Do most towns have separate inspectors for electric, plumbing and construction?


Totally depends on your town. Some have specialized inspectors that just look at one trade, some have combination inspectors. Either way the new electrical will probably raise suspicion.

Can you pull the permit yourself where you live (as though you did the electrical work yourself)? If not, that's a real shame. Nothing worse than a town requiring tradespeople to do the work DIYers are often capable of...It all gets inspected to the same standard so who cares who does it!

Heck of a predicament you find yourself in! Too bad the electrician has to fly below the radar to avoid getting his work inspected to minimum standards. I inspect electrical and other trades for a living, and guys like that are almost always hiding for a reason.

Where I work it would most certainly be questioned. But you'd be able to pull your own permit so it wouldn't be a big deal.
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Old 07-08-2009, 01:06 AM   #11
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Do most towns have separate inspectors for electric, plumbing and construction?


The electrician may very well be right. Around here, generally speaking, if the work is valued at less that $500, no permit is required. There are exceptions, like a service change or a hot tub, but it's the general rule.

$500 isn't much when you're paying a contractor, but for DIY the value is generally considered the cost of materials.

According to state law in Nevada, a homeowner can have anyone help on a project, as long as no money changes hands. One of the inspectors I know, who helped get this law passed, said it was to encourage DIYers to get help from tradesmen who were friends, with no danger to the guy doing the side work.

I don't know if it works or not, but I see quite a bit of DIY that has obviously been done by a pro.

Rob

P.S. Getting a permit for anything around here is a LOT more than a 10 minute over-the-counter thing. In at least one jurisdiction, it's just about impossible for a homeowner to get a permit. And these idiots wonder why all this work is done without permits!
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Old 07-08-2009, 12:57 PM   #12
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Do most towns have separate inspectors for electric, plumbing and construction?


Cost basis for justification of a permit is a jurisdictional thing, and it is a poor idea. A $.69 lightswitch incorrectly installed will kill people or damage property as a $10,000 wiring job.

The National Electric Code requires a permit for wiring and device changes, period. Some jurisdictions amend that though.
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Old 07-08-2009, 01:08 PM   #13
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Do most towns have separate inspectors for electric, plumbing and construction?


Getting a permit here for small items generally takes 10 minutes
For larger projects it can take a week as long as Conservation Committe isn't involved
With a stream on the property anything large being built required Conservation Committee review & approval
So I put everything I wanted to do on one permit & proceeded
Due to my being new to the process & lack of any Town instruction it was a 5 month process
I ended up downloading the instructions off a web page from another town

Once approved I then had to file for a building permit with the Town
Conservation Committee permit expires 3 years after approval
So I had 3 years to START everything or it had to go back thru the process

I was able to start everything, now working on finishing things up

Electrical Inspector serves several Towns in the area
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Old 07-09-2009, 07:37 PM   #14
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Do most towns have separate inspectors for electric, plumbing and construction?


Quote:
Originally Posted by jomama45 View Post
I cant speak for the rest of the country, but most muni's in my area generally have 1 inspector for residential work in towns of 25000 or less. Often times they have another inspector for commercial, sometimes even for specialties like plumbing or electrical. A town with over 50000 people (again, in my area) generally has 3-5 different inspecters. It really depends on the size of the city & what the main inspecter is qualified to inspect himself. Some have all credentials, some don't. Is there any way you can make the electrical "look" like it was existing?
Here in Ontario, Canada the wire's date of manufacture is stamped on the sheath, so its difficult to say that it was wired previously!
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Old 07-09-2009, 10:47 PM   #15
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Do most towns have separate inspectors for electric, plumbing and construction?


Suck it up, call the city, explain your problem and make it right. DO IT tomorrow, you'll sleep better Saturday night.

Getting your inspections and permits does not necessarily mean it costs more money. I think my last permit cost me $45 for wiring three new circuits and something like 25 openings in my sunroom.

Our city uses a service for electrical inspections. Any homeowner who resides in the home and has done so for a minimum of 6 months may pull an electrical inspection and get permits.

Any plumbing that requires making a joint (soldering, glueing, etc) requires a master plumber to pull the permit.

My first job as an attorney was working at an insurance defense firm. Whenever we had a claim for damage under a homeowner's policy the FIRST thing we did was investigate to see if they had any un-permitted work. You best believe that the presence of un-permitted work will VOID many homeowner's insurance policies. And you best believe that the one neighbor who you pissed off last halloween will be more than happy to tell some lawyer who calls them that you were doing plumbing work.

Your house is likely your largest investment, why would you jeopardize it to save some minor dollars and minor hassle?

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