- Project plans
- Project activities
- Legislation and standards
- Industry context
Last edited 13 Jul 2018
In the United States, a building inspector (also known as a construction inspector) are responsible for ensuring that building codes, zoning regulations and contract specifications are met by construction works. Building inspectors are usually employed by local government departments or agencies and certified by the State or the International Code Council (ICC).
The inspections are carried out in order to assure that the relevant codes are compliant with the construction and an inspector may issue violation notices or stop-work orders until they are satisfied that they are.
Typically, building inspectors carry out the following tasks:
- Review and approve building plans prior to construction.
- Monitor construction sites at different intervals (an initial check, follow-up inspections throughout works and a final inspection).
- Undertake detailed inspections using survey instruments and test equipment.
- Maintain detailed logs including photographs and written documentation.
There are several different types of building inspector including:
- Structural inspector: Focus on the structural quality of buildings.
- Coating inspector: Examine and ensure proper paint coatings of bridges, pipelines, tanks, and so on.
- Electrical inspector: Examine and ensure electrical systems and installations comply with the relevant codes and standards.
- Elevator inspector: Inspect lifting and conveying devices (i.e. lifts, escalators, lifts, hoists, etc.).
- Home inspector: Inspect homes before they are put on the market to evaluate the general condition. (While they look for building code violations, they don’t have the authority to enforce compliance.)
- Mechanical inspector: Examine HVAC systems, kitchen equipment, boilers and other appliances.
- Plumbing inspector: Focus on the installation of plumbing systems, wastewater disposal, piping, and so on.
- Public works inspector: Inspect works to federal, state and local government public works projects such as highways, sewers, bridges, dams, and so on.
- Specification inspector: This type of inspector is appointed by the owner (and occasionally insurance providers) to ensure that works are carried out in accordance with design specifications.
It is common for states and local jurisdictions for expect building inspectors to be licensed or certified to carry out inspections. These can be independently issued by particular states or issued by associations such as the ICC, International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials, International Association of Electrical Inspectors, National Fire Protection Association, and so on.
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