Joints design considerations in indoor high humidity conditions

IRG/WP 22-40950

A Lozano, D Lorenzo, M Alonso, F Álvarez, J E Martínez

In recent years, a number of cases of degradation by wood destroying fungi have been detected in covered timber structures such as pools, wineries, bathrooms, etc. – in fact, any building where indoor air may reach high humidity values during certain periods of time. The origin of this kind of decay was not related to water leaks, but to the condensation of the water vapor over the steel connections and other construction elements with low thermal insulation. Most of the times, damages were hidden and only were observed when some of the structural elements have already failed. This paper shows different examples of severe damages in different glulam covered structures under high humidity conditions, due to the condensation and the consequent retention of water in certain steel joints. The work includes the results of the experimental study, which explains the origin of this kind of problem; and also, some considerations that may be taken into account during the definition of the project, in order to design these joints properly and reduce the risk of fungal attacks.

Keywords: wood destroying fungi, humidity, condensation, damage

Conference: 22-05-29/06-02 Bled, Slovenia

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