How To Look At A House

McGarry and Madsen's home inspection blog for buyers of  

site-built, mobile/manfuactured and modular homes

When does code require an attic pull-down ladder to be installed?

Wednesday, September 23, 2020

There is no code requirement for an attic ladder, and having an appliance such as a water heater, furnace, or air handler in the attic does not change it. The code does, however, have requirements for the size of the access opening, minimum height above the opening, lighting, and a clear walkway to any appliances in an attic. The relevant sections of the International Residential Code (IRC) are R807.1 and M1305.1.3. See our articles What is the building code requirement for an attic access hatch, scuttle, or door? and Are attic pull-down ladders required to be code-approved? and What are the warning signs of a dangerous attic pull-down ladder? to learn more.  

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And here’s links to more of our articles about ATTICS:

Where is the attic?

Why is there no attic access hatch in the house? 

Why are most pull-down attic ladders not approved by building code for installation in a garage?  

 Is a house required to have an attic?

Should I buy a house with no attic access hatch? 

Does the code require a barrier/well around the attic access hatch for blown insulation?

• When is a house not required to have an attic access hatch? 

Does a mobile home have an attic? 

What is the minimum size for attic access opening? 

Can the attic access opening be outside the house according to the building code?

• Where should attic access be placed by code? 

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