NFPA 72 Code - Prior Editions

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Item #: NFPA_72_PRIOR
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Code Formats Available:

Handbook Formats Available:

Spanish Code Formats Available:

Current Edition 2019 Edition
2016 Edition 2016 Edition
  • Description

    NFPA 72®, National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code® evolves to help you save lives with fire detection, signaling, and emergency communications systems that function as intended.

    NFPA 72 provides requirements for the design, application, installation, performance, testing, and maintenance of protective signaling systems and their components. The Code was expanded and renamed for the 2010 edition to include requirements for Mass Notification Systems (MNS) used for weather emergencies; terrorist events; biological, chemical, and nuclear emergencies; and other threats. Fire protection engineers, designers, installers, contractors, maintainers, electricians, Authorities Having Jurisdiction (AHJs), manufacturers, facilities operators, and anyone involved with fire alarm or emergency communications needs NFPA 72 to work confidently with these life-saving early warning systems.

    The 2013 NFPA 72, National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code features significant revisions that clarify fire alarm and emergency communications systems rules and enhance usability. New Chapter 7 consolidates all documentation provisions into one location, helping Code users and AHJs improve efficiency and save time. Other major changes include a reorganized inspection table with specific inspection methods; a new testing table that merges two previous tables into one -- with both test methods and frequencies side by side for improved usability; revised supervising station transmission methods; and new requirements for audible and visible occupant notification.

    The 2010 NFPA 72, National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code presents the most extensive change to the Code since the 1993 edition, with a new scope and revised organization. Besides the core focus on fire alarm systems, this edition adds requirements for Mass Notification Systems (MNS) used for weather emergencies; terrorist events; biological, chemical, and nuclear emergencies; and other threats. NFPA 72's broader coverage is reflected in a new Code title. In addition to updating rules for in-building fire emergency voice/alarm communication systems, a new Emergency Communications System chapter addresses in-building and wide-area MNSs.

    The 2007 NFPA 72, National Fire Alarm Code presents technology- and research-driven changes that offer improved egress time and system reliability. A new Mass Notification Systems Annex developed at the request of the U.S. Air Force provides guidelines to facilitate fast, safe evacuation in emergency situations such as fire, terrorist attack, biological and hazardous chemical incidents, accidents, and natural disasters. Added requirements for new technology equipment include new rules for video image smoke and flame detection, detectors that use multiple sensing inputs, fire extinguisher monitors, and directional appliances.

    The 2002 NFPA 72, National Fire Alarm Code offers comprehensive requirements to support your work with the design, application, installation, performance, testing, and maintenance of protective signaling systems and their components. This edition provides additional coverage of performance-based detection and visible signaling systems, and new requirements for integrating fire alarm systems with other building systems.

    The 1999 NFPA 72, National Fire Alarm Code is a trusted guide to the design, installation, maintenance, testing, and use of fire alarm systems. Separate groupings for system inputs, systems outputs, system functions, and general requirements enhance the Code's user-friendly design. This edition of NFPA 72 introduces a new requirement to synchronize the temporal-three standard evacuation signal within a notification zone, increased audibility requirements for emergency voice/alarm communications systems, and qualification requirements for fire alarm systems designers.


    Interested in older editions of NFPA 72? Use the drop down menu above to select the edition year you need. The 2016 edition can be found here.

  • How the NFPA Handbooks Differ from Codes and Standards


    Ever wonder what the difference is between an NFPA® handbook and a code or standard? We’re glad you asked.

    NFPA codes and standards both provide requirements for achieving outcomes. Handbooks take a deeper dive, providing the full text of a code or standard as well as expert commentary and features such as graphics, decision trees, testing procedures, case studies, sample forms and checklists, and other helpful aids to give a better understanding of the reasoning behind the requirements and how to apply them.


    • A code or standard is a framework—a set of rules to follow with a goal to achieve a certain result
    • A handbook is a connector—linking requirements to application by helping you understand the reasoning behind a code or standard

    The simplest way to think about it is that codes and standards list the technical requirements while handbooks explain those requirements to clarify how to apply them.

  • NFPA eBooks and PDFs

    NFPA® eBooks and PDFs can be downloaded immediately after purchase for quick, easy access.

    Upon purchase of an NFPA eBook or PDF, you will be prompted with instructions for downloading and accessing.

  • What is a Redline PDF?

    NFPA®'s Redline PDF contains both the current NFPA document and a Redline version of the document which shows changes from the previous edition marked in color. With the Redline you can quickly spot changed sections and tell specifically what has been changed from the previous edition, saving time and confusion.

    • Changed sections are marked with a vertical rule.
    • Deleted material is shown in red strikethrough type.
    • New material appears in blue underscored type.


    Sample (NEC® 2014)

    411.2411.3 Definition. Low-Voltage Lighting Systems.


    (A) General. Lighting Ssystems Ooperating at 30 Volts- volts or  Less. A lighting system consisting less shall consist of an isolating power supply, the low-voltage luminaires, and associated equipment that are all identified for the use. The output circuits of the power supply are shall be rated for not more than 25 amperes and  operate at 30 volts (42.4 volts peak) or lessmaximum under all load conditions.


    (B) Class 2. Listed Class 2 lighting equipment shall be rated in conformance with Chapter 9, Table 11(A) or Table 11(B).


    411.3411.4 Listing Required. Lighting systems operating at 30 volts or less shall comply with 411.3(A)411.4(A) or 

    411.3(B).411.4(B). Class 2 power sources and lighting equipment connected to Class 2 power sources shall be llisted.

  • Also in NFPA 72, National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code