The 5-foot set back commonly called for in codes, is based on studies at IBHS and other labs. When we know that embers can travel 1-5 miles, the 5-foot setback may appear inconsistent with that risk. Post fire event investigations have concluded that some home ignitions were attributed to attached wood fences, fire wood storage and other combustible elements or structures in close proximity to the home. While the 5-foot set-back may be established in code, remember that code is a minimum standard of care and that a best practice may call for a set-back of 10 feet or more.
What’s the Basis for the 5′ Set Back Around Homes?