New ASHRAE standard guides designers in moisture control measures 

May 14, 2009 |

Moisture and mold don’t make the headlines the way they once did, but they are still problems in some structures.

Guidance on how to best design buildings with adequate moisture control features is contained in a new standard from ASHRAE. ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 160, Criteria for Moisture Design Analysis in Buildings, formulates design assumptions for moisture design analysis and criteria for acceptable performance. 

“If the designer elects to perform a design moisture analysis, the standard requires he or she to think about the interior conditions that will be maintained in the building and the effect that may have on building envelopes,” Anton TenWolde, chair of the committee that wrote the standard, said.  “The standard provides a methodology for the first time to make consistent design recommendations, such as the need, type and placement of vapor barriers in any climate.’

The standard introduces criteria to handle rain, wind and other exterior moisture weather loads.

The cost of ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 160-2009, Criteria for Moisture-Control Design Analysis in Buildings, is $39 ($33, ASHRAE members). To order, contact ASHRAE Customer Service at 1-800-527-4723 (United States and Canada) or 404-636-8400 (worldwide), fax 404-321-5478, or visit

ASHRAE, founded in 1894, is an international organization of some 50,000 persons. ASHRAE fulfills its mission of advancing heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration to serve humanity and promote a sustainable world through research, standards writing, publishing and continuing education.

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