Lighting Compliance Certificate Question

calettso

Member
Location
USA
Occupation
Engineer
Hello,

I received comments from a city reviewer. The city reviewer wants me to add a lighting compliance certificate:
  1. Does anyone know what happened to comcheck (https://www.energycodes.gov/comcheck)? When I go to the page I get "Page not found". How can I access the software?
  2. When are the lighting certificates required? I have done projects before and have never been asked to complete one.
  3. If a municipality requires a lighting certificate, what do you charge your customer to complete one? Please tell me your state and city also so I can determine how much to charge.
Thanks in advance
 
Location
Oklahoma, United States
Occupation
Lighting Specification Sales
  1. When are the lighting certificates required? I have done projects before and have never been asked to complete one.
  2. If a municipality requires a lighting certificate, what do you charge your customer to complete one? Please tell me your state and city also so I can determine how much to charge.
2. When the local municipality you're designing for requires it (in my experience it's always been the city gov't, could be statewide requirements somewhere, but I haven't run into that). If you're designing for a jurisdiction you're not familiar with, you'll need to check the applicable codes online, or call the city you're doing work in and ask. I typically call the city rather than trying to navigate through their websites.

3. Typically I don't charge for restaurants, retail spaces, schools etc. If it's going to be for something massive like a skyscraper, or new hospital complex, etc., I just estimate how many hours it will take to complete and build that into the base design fee. IMO, if you don't have it included in your initial fee b/c it was overlooked that the jurisdiction requires it, that cost should not be passed on to the owner.
 

petersonra

Senior Member
Location
Northern illinois
Occupation
engineer
JMNSHO.

Anything that takes your time up has to be covered somehow. No one can afford to do free work. You can hide some costs in overhead if that makes sense to you, but that just makes your overhead more.
 

calettso

Member
Location
USA
Occupation
Engineer
2. When the local municipality you're designing for requires it (in my experience it's always been the city gov't, could be statewide requirements somewhere, but I haven't run into that). If you're designing for a jurisdiction you're not familiar with, you'll need to check the applicable codes online, or call the city you're doing work in and ask. I typically call the city rather than trying to navigate through their websites.

3. Typically I don't charge for restaurants, retail spaces, schools etc. If it's going to be for something massive like a skyscraper, or new hospital complex, etc., I just estimate how many hours it will take to complete and build that into the base design fee. IMO, if you don't have it included in your initial fee b/c it was overlooked that the jurisdiction requires it, that cost should not be passed on to the owner.
Hi Kansas Mountain,

Thank you for your input. I have done a number of projects in this municipality including others this year. This is the first time I have been asked to submit a lighting compliance certificate. Obviously this is outside of NEC requirements (and state amendments) and based on previous experience with the municipality, it is an unforeseen expense. My contract that the client signed allows for further charges for unforeseen expenses. I want to be fairly compensated but I am not trying to hurt the client. I could do this based on my engineering per hour rate but I just wanted to see if there was an industry standard for calculating the cost. This company, New York Engineers - https://www.ny-engineers.com/mep-engineering-services/electrical-services/lighting-comcheck, charges a flat $500 rate for a building but this is not a building. This is just for a restaurant.

Perhaps you have a point though. This is not a massive skyscrapper, or new hospital complex. If this were you, how long do you think it would take you to do this for a 5000+ sqft restaurant?

Thanks again for your input.
 

calettso

Member
Location
USA
Occupation
Engineer
JMNSHO.

Anything that takes your time up has to be covered somehow. No one can afford to do free work. You can hide some costs in overhead if that makes sense to you, but that just makes your overhead more.
Hi Petersonra,

Thank you for your input. I don't like doing work for free. I agree. I guess in this case I have to weigh the approximate cost (aka time) vs. the relationship with the client. I mentioned a bit earlier, New York Engineers - https://www.ny-engineers.com/mep-engineering-services/electrical-services/lighting-comcheck, charges a flat $500 rate for a building but this is not a building. This is just for a restaurant. If you were in my shoes, how long do you think it would take you to do this for a 5000+ sqft restaurant?
 
Location
Oklahoma, United States
Occupation
Lighting Specification Sales
For that I'd estimate about 2 hours.

I totally understand not wanting to do free work. Like you, I just meant weighing it against potentially irritating a client. And with this being a repeat jurisdiction for you, and this being a true unforeseeable circumstance, I certainly agree that this would be a justifiable request for additional funds. Good luck!
 

dkidd

Senior Member
Location
here
Occupation
PE
It would depend on the number of rooms and fixture types.
 

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petersonra

Senior Member
Location
Northern illinois
Occupation
engineer
Hi Petersonra,

Thank you for your input. I don't like doing work for free. I agree. I guess in this case I have to weigh the approximate cost (aka time) vs. the relationship with the client. I mentioned a bit earlier, New York Engineers - https://www.ny-engineers.com/mep-engineering-services/electrical-services/lighting-comcheck, charges a flat $500 rate for a building but this is not a building. This is just for a restaurant. If you were in my shoes, how long do you think it would take you to do this for a 5000+ sqft restaurant?
I am not a lighting designer so I have no idea what such a job is worth. I think you have to weigh what not doing it for free gets you versus what doing it for free gets you.

If doing it for free gets you a bunch more jobs that you end up giving away more work, what have you gained?
 
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