Below is a checklist for the general signage in new buildings as required by the 2018 edition of the International Building Code (IBC) and 2021 edition, International Fire Code (IFC).
This checklist includes the type of signs required, a description of what the sign should say, details about locations of the sign, and the code sections requiring each sign.
This is intended as a guide, as not all signage will be required on all projects and additional signage may be required that is not listed below. If you need assistance determining if the signage is required or other pertinent details, please contact your Building Inspector or Fire Marshal.
ACCESSIBILITY DIRECTIONS (IBC 1111.1 & 1111.2)
Directional signage indicating route to nearest accessible elements. Directional signs shall include the International Symbol of Accessibility. Locations include the following:
•Inaccessible building entrances •Inaccessible public toilets and bathing facilities
•Elevators not serving an accessible route
•Exits serving required accessible spaces that do not have approved accessible means of egress
DELAYED EMERGENCY EXIT DOORS IBC 1010.1.9.8
"PUSH UNTIL ALARM SOUNDS. DOOR CAN BE OPENED IN __ SECONDS” Approved delayed egress locks are permitted to be installed in some buildings when equipped with approved fire protection systems.
ELECTRICAL CONTROL IFC 603.4.1
Doors into electrical control panel rooms shall be marked with a plainly visible and legible sign stating ELECTRICAL ROOM or similar approved wording. The disconnecting means for each service, feeder or branch circuit originating on a switchboard or panelboard shall be legibly and durably marked to indicate its purpose.
ELEVATOR EMERGENCY SIGNS IFC 604.4
"IN FIRE EMERGENCY, DO NOT USE ELEVATOR. USE STAIRS" Standardized design of approved picture and text is to be posted next to every elevator call station.
ELEVATOR EQUIPMENT IFC 604.8
New and existing buildings with an elevator shall have an approved, visible sign located next to the elevator key box stating the location of the elevator equipment room and elevator power shut-off.
EXITS IBC 1013.1
Exits are to be marked by an approved exit sign visible from any direction of egress travel. Intervening means of egress doors within exits shall be marked by exit signs. Exit sign placement shall be such that no point in an exit access corridor or exit passageway is more than 100 feet from the nearest visible exit sign.
FIRE DEPARTMENT CONNECTIONS IFC 912.5
"AUTOMATIC SPRINKLERS" or "STANDPIPES" or "TEST CONNECTION" A metal sign with raised letters is to be mounted on all building fire department connections.
FIRE DOORS IFC 705.2.2
Where required by the fire code official, a sign shall be permanently displayed on or near each fire door in letters not less than 1 inch (25 mm) high to read as follows:
1. For doors designed to be kept normally open: “FIRE DOOR—DO NOT BLOCK.”
2. For doors designed to be kept normally closed: “FIRE DOOR—KEEP CLOSED.”
FIRE HOSE CABINETS IFC 705.2.2
Fire cabinet equipment identified by approved signage. Sign is to be permanently attached with letters not less than 2 inches high in a color that contrasts with the background color.
FIRE PROTECTION AND UTILITY EQUIPMENT SIGNS IFC 509.1
Fire protection equipment shall be identified in an approved manner. Rooms containing controls for air-conditioning systems, sprinkler risers and valves, or other fire detection, suppression or control elements shall be identified for the use of the fire department. Approved signs required to identify fire protection equipment and equipment location shall be constructed of durable materials, permanently installed and readily visible.
STAIR / FLOOR IDENTIFICATION IFC 508.13.4
Minimum 12" X 18" sign shall indicate: floor level, direction to exit discharge, stairway info, extent of stairway, & roof access info. Signs are required at 5 ft off floor at each floor landing of interior exit stairways connecting more than 3 stories.
FIRE COMMAND CENTER IFC 508.1.7
The fire command center shall be identified by a permanent, easily visible sign stating “FIRE COMMAND CENTER” located on the door to the fire command center.
HAZARD INDENTIFICATION IFC 5003.5
hazard identification signs as specified in NFPA 704 for the specific material contained shall be placed on stationary containers and above-ground tanks and at entrances to locations where hazardous materials are stored, dispensed, used or handled in quantities requiring a permit and at specific entrances and locations designated by the fire code official.
KEY LOCKS ON EGRESS SIDE OF DOORS IFC 1010.2.4.3.3.2
"THIS DOOR TO REMAIN UNLOCKED WHEN BUILDING IS OCCUPIED” Sign is to be posted on the egress side of, or adjacent to, the door with letters at least 1 inch tall.
NO SMOKING IFC 310.3
"NO SMOKING” Signs are to be posted in conspicuous locations in each location in which smoking is prohibited.
EMERGENCY PROCEDURES IFC 2304.3.5
An approved emergency procedures sign, in addition to the signs required by Section 2305.6, shall be posted in a conspicuous location and shall read:
IN CASE OF FIRE, SPILL OR RELEASE
1. USE EMERGENCY PUMP SHUTOFF
2. REPORT THE ACCIDENT!
FIRE DEPARTMENT TELEPHONE NO. ______
FACILITY ADDRESS _____________________
COOKING IFC 3305.8
Cooking shall be prohibited except in approved designated cooking areas separated from combustible materials by a minimum of 10 feet (3048 mm). Signs with a minimum letter height of 3 inches (76 mm) and a minimum brush stroke of 1/2 inch (13 mm) shall be posted in conspicuous locations in designated cooking areas and state:
DESIGNATED COOKING AREA
COOKING OUTSIDE OF A DESIGNATED
COOKING AREA IS PROHIBITED
COMMERICAL COOKING AUTOMATIC FIRE EXTINGUISHING SYSTEMS INSTALLED WITHOUT FIRE ALARM IFC 904.13.6
Signage shall be installed in a location approved by the Fire Code Official, typically in the kitchen.
OCCUPANT LOAD IFC 1004.9
Every room or space that is an assembly occupancy shall have the occupant load of the room or space posted in a conspicuous place, near the main exit or exit access doorway from the room or space. Posted signs shall be of an approved design.
PREMISES IDENTICIATION IFC 505.1
Buildings shall have address numbers in a plainly visible and legible location that contrast with their background. Address and exterior suite numbers shall be Arabic numbers or letters sized per this table:
Section 505.1. Add table.
Minimum Height and Stroke Width a,b,c,d
- Exterior suite identification, minimum height shall be 4 inches and stroke width shall be ½ inch.
- Interior suite identification, minimum height shall be 3 inches and stroke width shall be ¼ inch.
- Measurements to determine the minimum number or letter size shall be measured from the approved address location to the center line of the street for which the premise is addressed.
- Minimum height and minimum stroke may be increased by the Fire Code Official.
RATED BARRIERS IBC 703.7
"FIRE AND/OR SMOKE BARRIER PROTECT ALL OPENINGS” Any wall required to have protected openings or penetrations is to be permanently identified with signs.
ADDRESSES FOR BUILDING UNDER CONSTRUCTION IFC 505.3
Upon permit issuance, all new commercial and residential buildings under construction shall have plainly visible addresses from the street. Additional address signage may be required at the discretion of the Fire Code Official.
TWO-WAY COMMUICATION SYSTEM IFC 1009.8.2
Directions for summoning assistance and written identification of the location to be posted next to any 2-way communication systems.
AREAS OF REFUGE (IFC 1009.9)
"AREA OF REFUGE” Each door providing access to an area of refuge from the adjacent floor is to be identified by a sign. Where EXIT sign illumination is required, the sign is to be illuminated.
Signage indicating special accessibility provisions shall be provided as shown: IFC
1. Each door providing access to an area of refuge from an adjacent floor area shall be identified by a sign stating: “AREA OF REFUGE.”
2. Each door providing access to an exterior area for assisted rescue shall be identified by a sign stating: “EXTERIOR AREA FOR ASSISTED RESCUE.”
Signage shall comply with the ICC A117.1 requirements for visual characters and include the International Symbol of Accessibility. Where exit sign illumination is required by Section 1013.3, the signs shall be illuminated. Additionally, visual characters, raised character and braille signage complying with ICC A117.1 shall be located at each door to an area of refuge and exterior area for assisted rescue in accordance with Section 1013.4
BULK INSULATED CO2
-Inside Room of Detection
-Outside room of detection
-Class K Signage placard
GAS EMERGENCY GAS SHUT-OFF
-Gas feed appliances
HIGH PILE STORAGE
MANAUL SMOKE VENTILATION
STATIONARY BATTERY SYSTEMS
Additional signage may be required based on the code during plan review. For more information, contact the Tiffin Fire Department Fire Marshal's Office.