Manufactured Homes and Silver CSA Labels
Posted by David Parry on
Manufactured Homes can offer offer many benefits over single family property here in the Victoria area. These homes often come with a level of affordability unheard of in comparison with standard single family units. Many of our area’s manufactured home parks are well kept, clean and tidy communities with sensible restrictions insuring that residents can enjoy peaceful living. Additionally, most parks carry a 55 plus age restriction allowing for a more mature lifestyle all around.
Manufactured homes are not built like conventional single family homes; rather, they are constructed in a factory then shipped to the site and placed on a concrete block foundation. This type of assembly and delivery of a completed product is not much different to the manufacture of consumer goods. The key difference is that unlike a conventional construction, building permits and multiple ongoing inspections of the various home systems such as electrical and gas are not performed by a municipal inspector. Instead, all the systems are assembled in the factory to a strict, approved design and given a CSA approval before a home is delivered to its site. This approval is physically represented on the manufactured home as a silver CSA approval label. If you are looking for one, they are typically located outside and near to the front or rear door, in one of the kitchen cabinets, or affixed to the electrical breaker box.
The silver CSA approval label is very important. In British Columbia, you are not allowed to sell a Manufactured Home without one. Never remove it. Do not let a handyman or painter get rid of it, deface it, paint over it or otherwise. Doing so is a costly mistake!
What happens if the label has been removed or defaced? In this situation, if the home has had no alterations to the electrical system since its manufacture (this includes bump-outs & sun-rooms) then you must contact the BC Safety Authority and a BCSA inspector will inspect the electrical systems in the home and affix a new silver label which will replace the original CSA label.
What if additions or alterations of the electrical systems have been made? In this case, if the CSA label is missing, a manufactured home owner is required to contact and hire licensed electrician. The electrician has to first pull an electrical permit through BC Safety Authority to begin the inspection. During the course of this inspection, the additions and/or alterations may be found to be up to code or may not. The electrician will (if necessary) do any work required to meet code. Once the work is complete, the electrician will request a final inspection from a BC Safety Authority inspector. BCSA will inspect the manufactured home, and a new silver label will be affixed replacing the original CSA label.
An important distinction regarding additions to manufactured homes is that even though a building permit is required though your local municipality for the structure, they have nothing to do with the approval of electrical systems for Manufactured Homes. Permits and inspections are needed from BCSA for electrical systems, not the municipalities.
If you have any questions about CSA labels and the re-sale or purchase of a Manufactured Home, feel free to contact us.