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To Chinese Who We Are

[For Frequently Asked Questions, click here.]

ICC-ES is a nonprofit, limited liability company that does technical evaluations of building products, components, methods, and materials. The evaluation process culminates with the issuance of technical reports that, because they directly address the issue of code compliance, are extremely useful to both regulatory agencies and building-product manufacturers. Agencies use evaluation reports to help determine code compliance and enforce building regulations; manufacturers use reports as evidence that their products (and this is especially important if the products are new and innovative) meet code requirements and warrant regulatory approval. ICC-ES evaluation reports are public documents, available free of charge on the worldwide Web, not only to building regulators and manufacturers, but also to contractors, specifiers, architects, engineers, and anyone else with an interest in the building industry. All of these people look to ICC-ES evaluation reports for evidence that products and systems are code-compliant.

ICC-ES also has growing programs for evaluation of plumbing, mechanical, and fuel gas products, and of "green" building products.

ICC-ES Board of Managers

ICC-ES Evaluation Committee


A New Organization, A Long History

ICC-ES came into being on February 1, 2003, when America's four building-product evaluation services officially combined their operations. The four "legacy" evaluation services that came together to form ICC-ES were the National Evaluation Service, Inc.; BOCAI Evaluation Services; ICBO Evaluation Service, Inc.; and SBCCI Public Service Testing and Evaluation Services, Inc. Through the legacy evaluation services, ICC-ES has a history that goes back more than eighty years.


Our Technical Staff

ICC-ES employs highly experienced evaluation specialists, licensed architects, and professional engineers with expertise in such specialized fields as civil, structural, fire protection, and mechanical engineering. Collectively, the ICC-ES technical staff has literally centuries of experience in evaluating construction products and technology.


Help Promote Safety and Building Innovation

ICC-ES has made a webpage available to Jurisdictions, ICC Chapters, and organizations that would like to incorporate direct recognition of ICC-ES Evaluation Reports, the PMG Listing Program, and the SAVE Program into their existing website. The page has been designed to offer easy access to important information on the ICC-ES website in reference to ICC Evaluation Service. To view instructions and download the webpage for building departments click here or for chapters click here.


The Report Process

The report process begins when a company submits an application for an evaluation report. The application is normally submitted with supporting data such as product information and test reports, along with appropriate fees to cover the cost of the evaluation. Once the application is received, ICC-ES assigns a member of its technical staff to evaluate the data and work with the applicant to make sure compliance is proven, before a report is issued, with either the building code or an ICC-ES acceptance criteria. (The latter documents are approved by an ICC-ES Evaluation Committee that is made up of building officials from across the United States.) Once the applicant has satisfactorily answered all questions raised by ICC-ES staff, and has fulfilled other applicable requirements, an evaluation report is issued and posted on the worldwide Web—where it may be referenced by thousands of building departments and other interested parties.

New reports are issued for one year, after which they may be renewed at one- or two-year intervals, depending on the applicant's preference. Of course, report holders can apply at any time to have their reports revised.


What ICC-ES Can Do for You


Contact Us Directly

To better serve our clients and the public, ICC-ES maintains three regional offices. Click for contact information.


Frequently Asked Questions

Click for questions about the following topics:
- General Questions
- Legacy Reports
- ICC-ES Evaluation Reports
- ICC-ES Building Products Listing Program
- Testing Laboratories and Inspection Agencies


General

  1. Question: What is ICC Evaluation Service (ICC-ES), and what is the purpose of its work?

    Answer: ICC-ES is a nonprofit, limited liability company that does technical evaluations of building products, components, methods, and materials. If it is found that the subject of an evaluation complies with code requirements, then ICC-ES publishes a report to that effect, and makes the report available to the public. ICC-ES evaluation reports are intended mainly to aid agencies that enforce building regulations, by assisting them to determine code compliance. On the other hand, companies that hold evaluation reports find them to be of great value, because their products have been recognized as code-complying by an organization known for its independence, impartiality, and technical expertise.

    ICC-ES also has growing programs for evaluation of plumbing, mechanical, and fuel gas products, and of "green" building products.

  2. Question: What is an evaluation report?

    Answer: An evaluation report presents the findings of ICC-ES as to the compliance with code requirements of the subject of the report—a particular building product, component, method or material.

  3. Question: Who uses evaluation reports?

    Answer: ICC-ES evaluation reports are aimed particularly at making it easier for those charged with enforcing code—building officials, building departments, building inspectors in the field—to determine the compliance of products with code. Evaluation reports are also used extensively by architects, engineers, contractors, specifiers, and others in the building industry who have an interest in making sure products and systems meet building-code requirements.

  4. Question: What is the relationship between the International Code Council (ICC) and ICC-ES?

    Answer: ICC-ES is a subsidiary of ICC, but is a separate company and has its own management, staff, rules, and procedures.

  5. Question: Why would I want to apply for an evaluation report?

    Answer: An ICC-ES evaluation report provides evidence that a building product complies with code. This can make it easier to get the product accepted by regulators, and by the building industry in general.

  6. Question: What is the process for obtaining an evaluation report?

    Answer: The "Application Information" section of this web site contains documents that explain the process in detail.

  7. Question: How much does it cost to get an evaluation report?

    Answer: Fees may vary. Contact us for a Statement of Work and/or an initial estimate.

  8. Question: What is an "additional listee?"

    Answer: An additional listee is a company, in addition to the company that has been issued an evaluation report, that is also shown in the report as producing or distributing products under the report. The report holder must formally request to have additional listees included in the report.

  9. Question: What is the ICC-ES Evaluation Committee?

    Answer: The Evaluation Committee is made up of code officials from across the United States who volunteer their time to help ICC-ES. Three times a year, the committee holds public hearings to consider acceptance criteria and other items related to ICC-ES operations. Where code requirements are not clear, ICC-ES may use committee-approved acceptance criteria to perform product evaluations.

  10. Question: What are the "legacy" evaluation services?

    Answer: Prior to February 1, 2003, there were four different building-product evaluation services in the United States: the National Evaluation Service (NES), BOCA evaluation services (BOCA ES), ICBO Evaluation Service (ICBO ES), and SBCCI Public Safety Testing and Evaluation Services, Inc. (SBCCI PST & ESI). On February 1, 2003, these four "legacy" services combined their operations as ICC Evaluation Service.

  11. Question:  How are acceptance criteria put in final form and approved for use?

    Answer:  ICC-ES has two methods by which acceptance criteria are approved.  Most criteria, as noted above, are subject to public hearings of the Evaluation Committee; but criteria falling into selected categories are considered and approved through an alternative acceptance criteria process that includes posting of the proposed criteria to the ICC-ES web site for public comment, and electronic balloting by the Evaluation Committee.  In general, the alternative process provides a quicker way to develop and approve simpler items that, in the opinion of ICC-ES management, do not require consideration at Evaluation Committee hearings.

  12. Question:   How can I find out which criteria are on the agenda for any given public hearing, and which criteria are being considered using the alternative acceptance criteria process?

    Answer:  To keep interested parties informed about proposals for new or revised acceptance criteria, ICC-E sends an e-mail notification when the agenda is set for each Evaluation Committee meeting, and six times a year it posts an agenda on its web site for the alternative process.  If you would like to be added to the list of persons notified by e-mail about committee meetings, please contact us at es@icc-es.org. If you would like to be notified about criteria being considered under the alternative process, please click here.

  13. Question: I am looking for a specific evaluation report. How do I find it?

    Answer: All current and valid evaluation reports are available on this web site, and you can search for reports by the product name, the name of the product manufacturer, or the type of product. If you search and still can't find it, it may be that there is no current report; or call any of the ICC-ES offices for assistance.

  14. Question: Can I be sure that my ICC-ES report will be accepted by regulatory agencies?

    Answer: Evaluation reports are only advisory. The authority having jurisdiction is always the final decision-maker with respect to acceptance of the product in question.

  15. Question: Where are the offices of ICC-ES?

    Answer: ICC-ES has a Chicago regional office, a Birmingham regional office, and a Los Angeles regional office. The Los Angeles office is also the business office.

  16. Question: Is there some easy way for interested parties to receive regular updates on the ICC-ES evaluation program, ICC-ES reports and criteria, and so on?

    Answer: This web site is the major source of information on ICC-ES, and is updated regularly. ICC-ES also publishes an electronic newsletter that is both posted on this web site (see the "ICC-ES News" section) and disseminated by e-mail.

  17. Question: Is ICC-ES accredited?

    Answer: Yes, ICC-ES is accredited by the American National Standards Institute and by the Standards of Council of Canada under ISO/IEC Guide 65, General Requirements for Bodies Operating Product Certification Systems.

Legacy Reports

  1. Question: What is a legacy report?

    Answer: A legacy report is an evaluation report that was originally issued by BOCA ES, ICBO ES, NES or SBCCI PST & ESI, and that was in good standing at the time these organizations came together to form ICC-ES; or may be an evaluation report issued as a result of an application received by one of the above-noted organizations prior to March 1, 2003, with the application being approved by March 1, 2004.

  2. Question: What is the status of legacy reports?

    Answer: Any legacy report that appears on the ICC-ES web site is a valid report.

  3. Question: What happens to an expired legacy report?

    Answer: ICC-ES notifies report holders of the need to renew their legacy report prior to its expiration date. Should a report holder wish to renew a legacy report without change or with editorial change only, ICC-ES rules allow this. On the other hand, should a technical change to the report be desired or necessary, an application for a new ICC-ES report (or conversion of the legacy report to an ICC-ES report) is required, and all rules and procedures of ICC-ES apply.

  4. Question: Can I make changes to my legacy report?

    Answer: The only changes permitted to legacy reports are those considered editorial in nature, such as a change of name or address, or deletion of a product or listee. When technical changes are desired or necessary, an application for a new ICC-ES report (or conversion of the legacy report to an ICC-ES report) is required.

  5. Question: Can I add new products to my legacy report; or change the products already covered in the report?

    Answer: No. This would constitute a technical change to your report, and an application for a new ICC-ES report (or conversion of the legacy report to an ICC-ES report) would be required.


ICC-ES Evaluation Reports

  1. Question: How do I apply for an ICC-ES report?

    Answer: The necessary application forms, instructions, and procedures are posted on this web site. See especially the "Application Information" section of the web site, and the Rules of Procedure for Evaluation Reports.

  2. Question: Where should I send my application for a new ICC-ES evaluation report?

    Answer: Applications for ICC-ES reports should be sent to the Los Angeles Business/Regional office. Work on individual reports is then assigned to the regional offices based on applicant location, staff workload, and staff experience.

  3. Question: What is the cost of securing a new ICC-ES evaluation report?

    Answer: Fees may vary. Contact us for a Statement of Work and/or an initial estimate.

  4. Question: How long does it take to get an ICC-ES evaluation report?

    Answer: The length of the evaluation process depends on such factors as the complexity of the product under consideration; whether an acceptance criteria needs to be developed and approved; and the applicant's promptness and thoroughness in submitting data. Every evaluation is different.

  5. Question: Does a new ICC-ES report have to include coverage under the International Codes?

    Answer: Yes, all ICC-ES reports include review under the International Codes.

  6. Question: Does a new ICC-ES report have to include coverage under the legacy codes; i.e., the National Codes, the Standard Codes, or the Uniform Codes?

    Answer: No. The decision to add recognition under the National, Standard or Uniform Codes is strictly up to the applicant. The legacy codes are little used these days, however, so few applicants ask for their inclusion.

  7. Question: Does ICC-ES have provisions for revising approved evaluation reports?

    Answer: Report holders can apply at any time for revisions. Of course, data and fees must be submitted.

  8. Question: What are acceptance criteria?

    Answer: An acceptance criteria is developed when an application is received for an ICC-ES report on a product that is an alternative to what is specified in the code, and there is no existing criteria that would apply to the product. Acceptance criteria may also be developed when the codes are not clear in a particular area or on specific issues related to a product; when industry raises concerns regarding report requirements; or when a new criteria is deemed necessary by the report applicant, ICC-ES staff, or the ICC-ES Evaluation Committee.

    Click here for current acceptance criteria.

  9. Question: What processes are used to develop ICC-ES acceptance criteria?

    Answer: ICC-ES acceptance criteria are developed cooperatively between ICC-ES staff and report applicants, and are discussed and approved, usually in open hearings with public input, by the ICC-ES Evaluation Committee.

  10. Question: What is the meeting schedule for the ICC-ES Evaluation Committee?

    Answer: The committee's schedule is available in the "Criteria Development" section.

  11. Question: Do manufacturing plants have to be inspected prior to issuance of a new ICC-ES evaluation report?

    Answer: ICC-ES requires qualifying inspections at manufacturing plants in conjunction with initial report applications, addition of new products to existing reports, or where new manufacturing facilities are added to a report.

  12. Question: How many inspections are required?

    Answer: For products subject to regular, ongoing follow-up inspections, the required number of inspections is noted in the approved quality documentation. For products that do not require regular ongoing inspections, there must be a qualifying inspection of the manufacturing facility before the evaluation report is issued, and an annual follow-up inspection thereafter.

  13. Question: Is the cost for manufacturing plant inspections included in the basic fee for service, or are there separate charges based on the number of plants inspected, the travel costs, etc.?

    Answer: Information regarding fees is available upon request.

ICC-ES Building Products Listing Program

  1. Question: What is the ICC-ES Listing Program?

    Answer: The ICC-ES listing program offers a fast and cost-effective way for building product manufacturers to show their product's compliance with consensus standards referenced in the building codes.

  2. Question: Who can apply for an ICC-ES Listing?

    Answer: Manufacturers who wish to show their building product’s compliance with code-referenced consensus standards may apply for a listing. The Product Categories covered by the ICC-ES listing program are shown on the ICC-ES website.

  3. Question: How does the ICC-ES Listing Program differ from the evaluation report program?

    Answer: The listing program covers specific products which may meet consensus standards. Moreover, the program covers only specific aspects of the product as outlined in the standard and specific related code sections. The ICC-ES product evaluation process, on the other hand, is specifically formulated to address innovative products where code requirements are not clear and national consensus standards do not apply. Moreover, evaluation reports cover all aspects of the product, from components to installation.

  4. Question: How quickly can a manufacturer get an ICC-ES listing?

    Answer: After all required data is submitted, the listing can be published within eight weeks.

  5. Question: Where can I find more information about the program, and how do I apply?

    Answer: You can find program documents and an application at www.icc-es.org/listing or contact us directly at 1-800-423-6587. You an also send an email to Barry Johnson, Senior Staff Engineer, or Michael Temesvary, Director of Sales.

  6. Question: How many standards can I include in each listing?

    Answer: The number of included standards is only limited by the applicability to the product.

  7. Question: Why is an ICC-ES listing needed?

    Answer: Code officials routinely require proof of compliance of products with the applicable requirements of the International Building Code and International Residential Code. An ICC-ES listing simplifies the approval of products by code officials and reduces the burden on manufacturers.

  8. Question: What benefits are there to listing with ICC-ES?

    Answer: The International Code Council (ICC) has a membership of 50,000 building professionals, of which 15,000 are code officials. As a subsidiary of the Code Council, with expert knowledge of the I-Codes®, an ICC-ES approval gives code officials peace of mind that products can be safely approved for installation.

    Other benefits are:
    • Accelerated time to market on account of the efficient ICC-ES listing process.
    • The high quality of the listing reports.
    • A listing report from an entity that is accredited by both the American National Standards Institute and the Standards Council of Canada.

  9. Question: How much will an ICC-ES listing cost?

    Answer: For details regarding specific pricing, please contact us directly at 1-800-423-6587. You may also send an email to Barry Johnson, Senior Staff Engineer, or Michael Temesvary, Director of Sales.

  10. Question: Can I get a listing for a product that is already covered in an ICC-ES evaluation report?

    Answer: A listing may be obtained for components or subassemblies already covered by an existing evaluation report.

  11. Question: Can I have a listing for a standard that is not referenced in the International Codes?

    Answer: It is sometimes possible to obtain a listing to a standard not included in the codes. However, there will be no code reference in such listing reports.

  12. Question: My product has been tested to a standard referenced in the International Codes; however, my product is not specifically referenced in the codes. Can I still have my product listed?

    Answer: Please contact ICC-ES and we can discuss your situation. A listing may be appropriate, or you may need an evaluation report.

  13. Question: What will be included in my ICC-ES listing?

    Answer: The listing will include important product information, the applicable standards, and references to the relevant sections of the International Codes.

Testing Laboratories and Inspection Agencies

  1. Question: What are ICC-ES requirements for acceptance of data from testing laboratories and third-party inspection agencies?

    Answer: Generally, data that consists of laboratory test reports or inspection reports must be from agencies that are accredited for the work in question, either by the International Accreditation Service, Inc. (IAS), or by a party (for laboratories) that is a signatory to the Mutual Recognition Arrangement of the International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation; or (for inspection agencies) that has a Mutual Recognition Arrangement with IAS.

    See also the "Labs/Inspections" section.

  2. Question: What is the International Accreditation Service (IAS)?

    Answer: IAS is a member of the ICC family of companies. It accredits, under national and international standards, testing laboratories, calibration laboratories, inspection agencies, building departments, and other agencies. For more information, see the IAS web site.

  3. Question: What is the relationship between IAS and ICC-ES, and is IAS involved with the evaluation process?

    Answer: ICC-ES uses IAS to provide lists of accredited laboratories and inspection agencies. IAS may also provide services related to quality control issues. IAS is not involved with any decisions related to the issuance of ICC-ES evaluation reports.

  4. Question: What standards does ICC-ES apply for testing laboratories and inspection agencies?

    Answer: For testing laboratories, ICC-ES uses ISO/IEC 17025, General Requirements for the Competence of Testing and Calibration Laboratories. For inspection agencies, ICC-ES uses ISO/IEC 17020, General Criteria for the Operation of Types of Bodies Performing Inspection, and its own Acceptance Criteria for Inspection Agencies (AC304).

  5. Question: Does ICC-ES accept test data from nonaccredited test laboratories?

    Answer: In very special circumstances, ICC-ES may accept data from nonaccredited laboratories. Applicants interested in having tests performed by such laboratories should always consult with ICC-ES before contracting for the testing.