You may be aware that the American Lumber Standards Committee approved new design values for Southern Yellow Pine in all applications except #2 2×4. Their rationale is that the rapid-growth rate for modern southern yellow pine has reduced its load-carrying capacity.
The new standards reduce the distance spanned by the various lumber dimensions by as much as 15 percent and were set to take effect June 1. Click here to view the update conversion chart for Southern Yellow Pine.
However, your Home Builders Association learned today that the International Code Council has elected not to implement the new design values in the current code and will instead consider them for the 2015 building code. In addition, NAHB has continued its efforts to have the new design values reversed and is currently challenging the validity of the American Lumber Standards Committee’s findings.
Note however that the 2012 International Residential Code is scheduled to take effect in South Carolina on July 1. You may be aware that a provision of the new code includes an increase in the dimension of floor trusses, when a gas appliance is placed in the basement or crawl space, in order to avoid fire-proofing the floor above the gas appliance. Your Home Builders Association is working with the South Carolina Building Officials Association to develop a solution to this expensive new requirement. Stay tuned.