San Diego

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Electrical Permit

Electrical permits ensure projects comply with the minimum standards that help safeguard life or limb, public health, property and welfare. No electrical wiring, device, appliance, or equipment shall be installed within or on any structure or premises nor shall any alteration, addition, or replacement be made in any existing wiring, device, appliance, or equipment unless an Electrical Permit has been obtained for the work, except as exempted as stated below.

Municipal Code:

PDF icon Electrical Permit Procedures

  1. Who may prepare Plans, Reports, Calculations, etc?

    • Electrical plans and calculations shall be stamped and signed in accordance with the California Business and Professional Code. The electrical plans and calculations shall be signed by a licensed electrical engineer. An architect, civil engineer can sign the Title 24 energy standards as the responsible designer of the electrical system. An electrical contractor can sign and stamp the electrical plans and calculations and/or Title 24 energy compliance for the lighting system only if he/she is responsible for both the design and installation of the system. PDF icon Project Submittal Requirements, Section 2

    • Solar Photovoltaic Systems (PV) plans may be stamped and signed by a California registered Electrical Engineer, a licensed Electrical Contractor (C-10 License) or a licensed solar contractor (C-46 License) who is responsible for the design and installation of the system. A California registered electrical engineer or a C-10 must sign and stamp plans when an electrical panel upgrade is proposed. A California licensed general contractor (B-License) may sign and stamp the plans if the PV panels are installed as a part of a permit for a new building or an addition to an existing building. PDF icon Information Bulletin 301

  2. PDF icon Electrical Permit Expiration and Extension


Exemptions from an Electrical PermitAn Electrical Permit is not required for the work listed below. However, exemption from an electrical permit does not authorize any work to be done in any manner in violation of the provisions of the Electrical Regulations or any other applicable local or state regulations.

  1. Minor work such as replacing fuses, replacing or repairing switches, circuit breakers, lampholders, luminaires, ballasts, or receptacles where the replacement is the same size and general type as the original equipment and the work is done in accordance with the provisions of this article.

  2. The replacement of lamps or the connection of portable appliances to suitable receptacles that have been permanently installed.

  3. Installation, alteration, or repair of wiring, devices, appliances, or equipment that operates at a voltage not exceeding 25 volts between conductors and not capable of supplying more than 50 watts of energy.

  4. Installation of remote-control switching devices on privately owned appliances when the devices are installed by the SDG&E or its authorized agents as part of the Peak-Shift energy conservation program, provided that specifications for the installations are approved in writing by the Building Official;

  5. Work done by employees of the City on City-owned or leased buildings.

  6. Repair or replacement of hardwired appliances such as dishwashers, garbage disposals, cooking appliances and similar fixed appliances located within dwelling units that do not impose additional electrical load to the existing circuit impacted by the work.

  7. Exemption from the permit requirements of the Electrical Regulations does not authorize any work to be done in any manner in violation of the provisions of the Electrical Regulations or any other applicable local or state regulations.

Submittal Requirements:

  • Single Dwelling Unit/Duplex: Electrical plans are not required for electrical wiring in one- and two-family dwellings or townhouses, as defined in the California Residential Code, and their accessory structures, unless they are connected to on-site alternative power production. PDF icon SDMC Section 129.0307, (c), (1)

  • All Other Buildings and Structures, PDF icon Construction Permits – Structures, Section 2: Electrical plans and calculations are required for all buildings and structures other than one-and two-family dwellings except when the installation qualifies for a no-plan permit (Simple Permit).  See Simple Permit website for further information.

Fee Schedule:


Publications and Resources: