I guess I don't get it...what are they trying to prevent by securing the windows/doors...someone getting in your pool that shouldn't be there, or someone falling out a second story window into the pool? (I'd rather that than hit the ground!)
Sounds like the next thing they'll want is a full time security guard.
Code doesn't have to make sense, but it does have to be followed. Anytime the wall of a residence is used as part of the barrier fence surrounding a pool, all operable doors and windows in that barrier must be equipped with an alarm. The code actually doesn't specify whether my third and fourth floor windows must also have these alarms, I'd think the fall onto a stone and concrete patio will be a bigger concern than drowning in a pool, if a child makes it out of one of those, but I guess I'll learn about that at inspection.
The goal is preventing child drownings, I suppose, which isn't a bad thing. But often code implemented for one purpose doesn't take all variables into consideration, such as the fact that we have no sash counterweights + very difficult storm windows, meaning there's no way any child could ever hope to get out of one of the windows in the old part of our house. They're honestly more a hazard for the obstacle they create in fire escape, than any child accidentally getting out of one.
When we moved in All the double hung windows were screwed closed. They had a nice counter bored hole and a screw that utilized a special square head security key that we found in the back of a random drawer. Windows were all painted closed too. Then there were the storm Windows that were installed backwards and could only be opened from the outside.
My point being some device that secures the windows closed and can not be operated by hand, I would think, would render the windows non operational.
Had the same setup on my last house. Splitting hairs here, a key required to back out a sash bolt, versus an allen wrench required to remove the set screws pinning the latches. Not sure what argument they'd make against either, as once you require a tool, there's little chance of a child getting out.
If they do make an argument that this is still an operational window, my follow-up question will have to be as to exactly how many tools or dollars are required to make any window from "inoperable" to "operable", as at some point any hole in a wall filled with glass can be converted from "inoperable" to "operable". Even a fixed plate glass window can be converted to an exit very quickly and cheaply, with a sufficiently heavy object thrown through it.
Are you adding a pool heater?
Of course! Heat pump, which really only pulls about 20A. Pool is fully insulated, so heat loss is minimal, especially if you throw a solar cover on them overnight.
Yes, but is there a lock on the gate in the fence around the pool? Or an alarm?
All gates require either an alarm or a latch that must be located on inside of gate and above a certain height. It must be unlatched by reaching over the gate, so even height-challenged adults likely have trouble getting in. Gates must be sprung auto-close with auto latch. All pretty standard for pool fences.
I'd be real surprised if that's true. I haven't read every local codebook everywhere in the country, but all that I have read indicate these same requirements, or more.
A closed window is the same as a gate without lock and without alarm, imo?
Yeah, you would think so, wouldn't you! I agree, but again... code doesn't have to make sense, it just has to be followed.
Are they requiring guardrails on the roof too?
This is where I start to wonder about windows more than 6 feet above the patio. The code says "any window with a sill less than 4 feet above interior floor must be fitted with an alarm conforming to UL 2017," or something similar to that. That would technically include all windows on 5 walls of my house, going up 4 stories! The township engineer verbally said "first floor windows and doors", so that's what I'm rolling with now.
Patio has 4 different elevations, comprising about 2000 sq.ft. In some areas, the floor we identify as our basement (which was the first floor of the oldest part of the house) has windows at patio level, and the floor we identify as our "first floor" has windows with sills a good 6 feet above the patio. I'm assuming those windows would not require alarms, as they'd be identified as "second floor" from the outside. But again, we will see.