When Building Permits are Required

R105.2 Work Exempt from Permit
 Exemption from permit requirements of this code shall not be deemed to grant authorization for any work to be done in any manner in violation of the provisions of this code or any other laws or ordinances of this jurisdiction. Permits shall not be required for the following:

Building
  • One-story detached accessory structures used as tool and storage sheds, playhouses and similar uses, provided the floor area does not exceed 120 square feet (11.15 square meters).
  • Fences not over 6 feet (1.829 meters) high.
  • Retaining walls that are not over 4 feet (1.219 meters) in height measured from the bottom of the footing to the top of the wall, unless supporting a surcharge.
  • Water tanks supported directly upon grade if the capacity does not exceed 5,000 gallons (18,927 liters) and the ratio of height to diameter or width does not exceed two to one.
  • Sidewalks and driveways.
  • Painting, papering, tiling, carpeting, cabinets, counter tops and similar finish work.
  • Prefabricated swimming pools that are less than 24 inches (61 centimeters) deep.
  • Swings and other playground equipment.
  • Window awnings supported by an exterior wall which do not project more than 54 inches (137.2 centimeters) from the exterior wall and do not require additional support.
Electrical
Repairs and maintenance: A permit shall not be required for minor repair work, including the replacement of lamps or the connection of approved portable electrical equipment to approved permanently installed receptacles.

Gas
  • Portable heating, cooking or clothes drying appliances.
  • Replacement of any minor part that does not alter approval of equipment or make such equipment unsafe.
  • Portable-fuel-cell appliances that are not connected to a fixed piping system and are not interconnected to a power grid.
Mechanical
  • Portable heating appliances.
  • Portable ventilation appliances.
  • Portable cooling units.
  • Steam, hot or chilled water piping within any heating or cooling equipment regulated by this code.
  • Replacement of any minor part that does not alter approval of equipment or make such equipment unsafe.
  • Portable evaporative coolers.
  • Self-contained refrigeration systems containing 10 pounds (4.54 kilograms) or less of refrigerant or that are actuated by motors of 1 horsepower (746 watts) or less.
  • Portable-fuel-cell appliances that are not connected to a fixed piping system and are not interconnected to a power grid.
  • The stopping of leaks in drains, water, soil, waste or vent pipe; provided, however, that if any concealed trap, drainpipe, water, soil, waste or vent pipe becomes defective and it becomes necessary to remove and replace the same with new material, such work shall be considered as new work and a permit shall be obtained and inspection made as provided in this code. The clearing of stoppages or the repairing of leaks in pipes, valves or fixtures, and the removal and reinstallation of water closets, provided such repairs do not involve or require the replacement or rearrangement of valves, pipes or fixtures.
R105.2.1 Emergency Repairs
Where equipment replacements and repairs must be performed in an emergency situation, the permit application shall be submitted within the next working business day to the building official.

R105.2.2 Repairs
Application or notice to the building official is not required for ordinary repairs to structures, replacement of lamps, or the connection of approved portable electrical equipment to approved permanently installed receptacles. Such repairs shall not include the cutting away of any wall, partition or portion thereof, the removal or cutting of any structural beam or load-bearing support, or the removal or change of any required means of egress, or rearrangement of parts of a structure affecting the egress requirements; nor shall ordinary repairs include addition to, alteration of, replacement or relocation of any water supply, sewer, drainage, drain leader, gas, soil, waste, vent or similar piping, electric wiring or mechanical, or other work affecting public health or general safety.

R105.2.3 Public Service Agencies
A permit shall not be required for the installation, alteration or repair of generation, transmission, distribution, metering, or other related equipment that is under the ownership and control of public service agencies by established right.