The new 2019–2020 Wood Construction Connector catalog (C-C-2019) is the first in the industry with connector allowable load tables updated to meet the ASTM test standards in the 2015 International Building Code® (IBC®).
Both the 2015 and 2018 IBC and the International Residential Code® (IRC®) require manufacturers to test joist hangers and similar products to a new standard, ASTM D7147, Standard Specification for Testing and Establishing Loads of Joist Hangers.
Simpson Strong-Tie has re-evaluated all of its related wood connectors to meet the new test standard. This is reflected in 15 ICC-ES and 3 IAPMO UES evaluation reports covering 200 product series — the most in the industry helping ensure product compliance for specifiers. All of our connector IBC code reports have now been updated to the 2015 IBC, and 85% of the connector reports have been updated to the 2018 IBC.
This page features information and links to help you learn more about the changes to the test standards, how we re-evaluated all our hangers, and where to find out which I-Codes® are enforced in your jurisdiction.
The 2015 IBC changed the requirements for how allowable loads on some connectors are determined. Section 2303.5 of the 2015 IBC specifies that joist hangers shall be tested per ASTM D7147, Standard Specification for Testing and Establishing Allowable Loads of Joist Hangers. Previous versions of the IBC required testing to comply with ASTM D1761, Test Method for Mechanical Fasteners in Wood. Both standards determine a connector's allowable load as the lowest of the following:
The primary changes in ASTM D7147 are requirements to measure properties of the tested materials, such as steel strength, fastener strength and wood specific gravity. When tested material properties exceed the specified properties, report holders are required to adjust the tested ultimate loads to account for the material over-strength.
These requirements have been added to ICC-ES AC13 Acceptance Criteria for Joist Hangers and Similar Devices and IAPMO UES EC 002, Testing and Analysis of Joist Hangers and Miscellaneous Connectors.
When ASTM D7147 was first developed, we made the change to our testing protocols, essentially changing to the standards that are currently adopted. For years, however, the IBC continued to reference the older ASTM D1761 standard, so we maintained our existing testing and load ratings for our connectors that predated development of the new standards. For these connectors, we have been working diligently on re-evaluating construction connector loads to the new standard in order to update our product evaluation reports to the 2015 I-Codes. We are the first manufacturer to update all our connector allowable load tables to meet the new standards set by 2015 IBC. All of our connector IBC code reports are now updated to the 2015 IBC, and 85% of them are updated to the 2018 IBC. The new catalog reflects these changes.
In most cases, the changes were less than 5%. As an example, the allowable load for one of our most popular hangers, the LUS26, decreased by 1.3% or 15 lb. Any change greater than 5% is shown in red in the new 2019–2020 catalog.
Yes, this is an industry-wide change. We are the first manufacturer to completely update all our connector load values to the 2015 IBC. Construction professionals engaged in designing current and future projects in states adhering to the 2015 or 2018 I-Codes should check existing product load tables against our updated load values. While these load changes do not affect completed and permitted projects, Simpson Strong-Tie recommends using these new values going forward. Check with your local building officials to ensure acceptance.
If you have already designed a project and it is permitted, we stand behind the loads in our previous catalog (C-C-2017). If you're in the middle of designing a project, check the load table again for the updated load values.
These changes are applicable to jurisdictions that adhere to the 2015 or 2018 IBC, which is about half the country. Current projects in jurisdictions using 2012 or older building codes can reference the load values in our 2017–2018 Wood Construction Connectors catalog and use the current versions of our Connector Selector® software and Joist Hanger Selector web application. (Note: This software will be updated with the new allowable loads by the end of March 2019.) Check with your local building officials to ensure acceptance. You can check the ICC website map to see which edition of the building codes your state is following.
We are working on that now. These applications will be updated and available on strongtie.com by the end of March.
Although our database that pushes data to external, third-party software will be updated by the end of March, we've been informed that third-party software may not incorporate these changes until September.
It's important to understand that our products haven't changed; the building code requirements for how to evaluate joist hangers and similar products for wood construction are what have changed. Due to the time required for software and building plans to incorporate these allowable load changes, Simpson Strong-Tie will continue to support and stand behind the use of allowable loads published in C-C-2017 until October 2019. For building departments enforcing the 2015 or newer I-Codes, we recommend continued acceptance of projects utilizing these older load values through that same period, but ultimately acceptance is up to the authority having jurisdiction.
This comprehensive building code establishes minimum regulations for building systems using prescriptive and performance-related provisions.See the Free ICC Site
Use the ICC interactive map to select your state and view its currently adopted code title.View the ICC Map
This blog post provides in-depth background about how we re-evaluated our connectors to meet the new standards.Visit the SE Blog