With mold, mildew, and humidity-related problems occurring all over the United States, ASHRAE is examining the impact of its two main building standards on moisture. Moisture problems have increased in facilities located in humid climates, such as the Southeast and coastal areas, as well as non-humid areas, such as the Midwest, Southwest and West Coast states.

"These problems have prompted concerns relative to the levels of ventilation required in ASHRAE Standard 62 and the ability of single-component, high-efficiency hvac systems required in ASHRAE Standard 90.1 to adequately dehumidify the air being supplied to commercial, institutional and industrial buildings," said Terry Townsend, P.E., a member of ASHRAE's Board Policy Committee on Standards.

The committee is sponsoring a seminar, "The Impact of Standards 62 and 90.1 on the Moisture-Related Problems in Facilities," at ASHRAE's 2002 Annual Meeting, June 22-26, Honolulu, HI. The seminar will be held from 8-10 a.m., June 25, at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Hotel. ASHRAE meeting registration is required to attend.

"We will evaluate claims that more efficient buildings in conjunction with higher ventilation rates are the causes for moisture problems," Townsend said. ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 62-2001, Ventilation for Acceptable Indoor Air Quality, sets minimum ventilation rates and other requirements for commercial and institutional buildings. ANSI/ASHRAE/IESNA Standard 90.1-2001, Energy Standard for Buildings Except Low-Rise Residential Buildings, provides the minimum requirements for the design of energy efficient buildings.

Speakers, who represent manufacturers, consultants and researchers who are involved in moisture-related engineering activities, and topics at the seminar will be:

  • "ASHRAE Has Created This Mess," Rodney Lewis, P.E., of Rodney H. Lewis Associates Inc. (Houston).
  • "Standard 90.1 Is Not the Culprit," Steve Taylor, P.E., of Taylor Engineer (Almeda, CA).
  • "Nothing Is That Simple," Dennis Stanke, of The Trane Co. (La Crosse, WI).
  • "Latent Performance of Unitary Equipment," Karim Amrane, Ph.D., of the Air-Conditioning and Refrigeration Institute (Arlington, VA).

The ASHRAE Board Policy Committee on Standards has oversight of ASHRAE's high-profile standards, which include Standards 62 and 90.1. The seminar will seek to determine if there is an inter-relationship in the requirements of Standards 62 and 90.1 that should be given greater attention in the continuous maintenance efforts of these two standards, according to Townsend.

"The seminar hopefully will clarify misconceptions while providing credible information regarding compliance with standards without producing moisture and mildew problems," Townsend said.