Thursday, December 1, 2016

NTA's Frequently Asked Questions

Members of the NTA staff are often asked about a variety of subjects, from, "What does NTA stand for?" to "What is the difference between Certification and Testing?” In this blog, NTA has compiled a list of some of our commonly asked questions. Take a look and let us know in the comments, or through our contact us page, if you have ever asked yourself the same question, or if you have a completely different question on your mind!

What does the NTA in NTA, Inc. stand for?
  • ·         The name of our company goes back to the original founding members, Dennis Norkus and David Tompos. They combined their names to create Norkus, Tompos and Associates, but NTA is much easier to say!

What if my product is not addressed by the building code, how do code officials approve it to be used?
  • ·         The International Building and Residential codes provide a path for alternate products not addressed by these codes.  NTA can help and provide certification or code reports to help you provide this documentation.

Why are ongoing audits required for certified products?
  • ·         A certification report is a detailed report on how the product meets the intent of a code or requirement on an ongoing basis.  Surveillance audits are used to help ensure implementation of the plants quality system which is one part to help support the report.  

Do the EPA Formaldehyde requirements apply to me?
  • ·         The EPA formaldehyde requirements apply to all manufactures who manufacturer composite wood products.  In addition the regulations apply to fabricators, distributors and retailers.  Contact NTA for how the requirements can affect you.  

What is the difference between Certification and Testing?
  • ·         Testing is a one-time event on how a product performed.  A certification of a product in the ongoing conformance on how a product meets requirements, codes or standards which usually includes surveillance audits and testing to help ensure ongoing performance.  

Do prescriptive braced walls work on all low wind speed (90mph Vasd or 115mph Vult) homes? 
  • ·         No, IRC section R602.10 has several different limitations for braced walls. For example, these range from maximum spacing’s, offsets and distances between braced wall lines, as well as minimum lengths required for a given wind speed and seismic zones. 

If NTA is our Third Party review agency/inspection agency can they provide us drawings or calculations?
  • ·         This depends on the jurisdiction having authority. In many states we can provide calculations for modular buildings even if we are the inspection agency. However, there are several that we cannot perform services as a design and review agency for modular buildings. It is a conflict of interest to do any design and review for manufactured housing. 

If headers, columns, and fasteners are prescriptive in the residential code, would it be beneficial to get calculations done? 
  • ·         While it isn't economical to get case specific designs done, it can provide a cost savings to have typical construction procedures designed. For example, the residential code only considers clear span trusses, therefore the headers and columns are designed with a larger tributary loading. Fasteners could also be reduced because of modular style building such as sheathing being lapped over the floor or truss rails.

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