WATER FIXTURE REPLACEMENT MANDATE - COMPLY BY 2019
A bill passed into law nine years ago, SB 407 (Padilla; Chapter 587, 2009), requires “non-compliant” plumbing fixtures to be replaced with water conserving plumbing fixtures when a property is undergoing additions, alterations or improvements. Applicants seeking to obtain permits for any of these types of work will be required to replace non-compliant fixtures prior to final permit approval or issuance of a certificate of occupancy by the local building department.
This law applies only to properties built on or before January 1, 1994, and by January 1, 2019, ALL those pre-1994 buildings must comply with these requirements, regardless of whether or not you are planning to renovate the space.
The California Association of Local Building Officials (CALBO) has worked with some of its local building official members to clarify the requirement. Here is an info sheet from the City of Santa Clara that will help you determine if your building is in compliance or not (but the general rule of thumb is that if it was built after 1994, or has been renovated since then, you will most likely be in compliance)
The law does have the following exceptions; per Civil Code Section 1101.7, this article shall not apply to any of the following: a) Registered historical sites; b) Real property for which a licensed plumber certifies that, due to the age or configuration of the property or its plumbing, installation of water-conserving plumbing fixtures is not technically feasible; c) A building for which water service is permanently disconnected; d) Building was built and available for use on or after January 1. 1994
The original bill gave our industry 10 years to comply with this measure, at our request (the bill originally only gave five years to comply). We still believe that is a reasonable time horizon set by the state and continue to encourage our members to make sure you have completed this work within the allotted time frame.