Thursday, November 12, 2015

Understanding the new ANSI A119.5

by Ryan VanArsdale

For the last several years, there has been a lot of talk regarding the definition of a park trailer. If you have been anxiously awaiting the updated ANSI A119.5, you are not alone. The latest version of this well-known standard brings some big changes. The first of which is easily seen, as it is in the title.  No more are they “Recreational Park Trailers”, but instead “Park Model Recreational Vehicles”. 

This simple change might lead you to think that park trailers are about to become mobile, but that is not the case.  The standard provides a list of Prohibited Installations in section 1-6 that make it clear that the “Park Model RV” is still the same “Recreational Park Trailer” we all know and love.  They start with stating that, “Park Model RVs shall not be equipped with gasoline or diesel fuel storage and fuel transfer or dispensing systems,” and follow that with “Park Model RVs shall not be equipped with internal combustion engine generators or preparations for the later installation of an internal combustion engine generator.” And just to make sure no one is confused, they add, “Park Model RVs shall not provide or promote the ability to store internal combustion engine vehicles within its gross trailer area.”  Park model RV’s are still stationary.

One of the biggest changes in the updated code is found in section 5-1.4 and states, “The manufacturer shall supply general set-up and consumer maintenance instructions with each Park Model RV.” This means each Park Model will come with an ‘owner’s manual’ describing general set-up (anchors, stabilizers, among others) as well as any special instructions.

A few other changes to note:
  •  Section 2-6.7: Requirements for curtains located within certain distance of flammable areas 
  • Section 3-1.1: Requirements for Interior Finish Flame Spread Limitations
    • Previously, Finish Flame Spread Limitation testing was in accordance with NFPA 255, the updated 2015 code states, “…  materials whose flame spread classification does not exceed 200 when tested in accordance with ASTM E84 or ANSI/UL 723.”
  • Section 3-4.1: When the Park Model is equipped with Fuel-Burning equipment, a fire extinguisher is required to be within 24” of the primary exit opening.
  • Section 4-6.2.3: Plumbing is now required to be supported at intervals no greater than 4’.
  • Section 4-7.6.1: Waterless traps are now allowed, and per Section 4.7.7.3, the distance between the trap and its vent has been increased.
  • Section 5-10.5.1: The weight limit for ladders to a loft has been increased from 200 to 300 lbs.
There are many other changes to be aware of in the updated code, and one blog isn’t sufficient to cover them all.  NTA’s certification specialists can help Park Model manufacturers ensure they are meeting or exceeding the 2015 Park Model Recreational Vehicle Standard. For more information on our Park Model Certification services, contact NTA today.


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