Major Changes to 2017 NEC Covered with IEEE/IAS

Major Changes to 2017 NEC Covered with IEEE/IAS

This piece was originally published in the April 2017 issue of electroindustry.

Mike Stone, West Coast Field Representative, NEMA


I addressed changes to the 2017 National Electrical Code® (NEC) at the January meeting of the Oakland/East Bay Chapter of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers/Industry Applications Society (IEEE/IAS).

 The 2014 NEC has only been in effect in California since January 1, 2017, and the 2017 NEC will likely not be in effect until January 2020. The IEEE members, however, were interested in the 2017 NEC changes since they reflect a lot of new technologies that industry is seeing.

According to Jim McGeough, western region drives sales manager for Eaton in the Northern California area, “The topics have far-reaching considerations for everyone in the electrical industry.”

In this two-hour presentation, I covered several major topics:

  • New articles in the 2017 NEC, including Article 691, “Large Scale PV Electric Power Production”; Article 706, “Energy Storage Systems”; Article 710, “Stand Alone Systems”; and Article 712, “DC Microgrids”
  • New areas in the code that require the calculation and documentation of available fault
  • Two new sections in Article 110 regarding reconditioned, refurbished, or remanufactured equipment (110.3 and 110.21)
  • A new exception for the calculation of lighting loads (220.12) and another lighting load exception in the 2014 NEC, which just went into effect in California
  • The elimination of the temperature adder Table 310.15(B)(3)(c) for raceways or cables on or above rooftops
  • Changes to 404.2(c) regarding the requirement to have a grounded conductor present at switch locations to allow for the operation of lighting controls
  • Requirement in 408.3 for barriers to cover live service parts in service panelboards
  • New requirements in 725.144 for power over Ethernet cables

The presentation was well received. There was interest expressed for more detailed presentations on solar and energy storage.


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