Codes & Regulations

Proposed Addendum to ASHRAE 189.1-2017 Impacts Local Jurisdictions

A proposed addendum to the “ASHRAE 189.1-2017 Standard for the Design of High-Performance Green Buildings Except Low-Rise Residential Buildings” identifies requirements from Section 8 about shading devices for façades that are appropriate for local jurisdictions to consider excluding from their adopting ordinances.

The proposal suggests adding the abbreviation “JO” to Section 8.4.1.3 “Shading for Offices” to indicate that it is a jurisdictional option. This means jurisdictions have the option to follow this part of the code or opt out of it.

The code requires that for office spaces larger than 250 square feet, each façade be designed with a shading projection factor (PF) that should not be less than 0.5 for the first story above grade and 0.25 for other aboveground stories. Shading can be external or internal using the interior PF. According to the “User’s Manual for ANSI/ASHRAE/IE Standard 90.1-2010,” the PF is “the ratio of the horizontal distance that the overhang projects from the surface of the window to the vertical distance from the windowsill to the bottom of the overhang.”

Shading devices are limited to:
• Louvers;
• Sun shades;
• Light shelves;
• Building self-shading through roof overhangs or recessed windows; and
• Any other permanent device.

The code also specifies that any vertical fenestration with a combination of interior and external shading can be separated into multiple segments for compliance purposes. Each segment must comply with the requirements for either external or interior PF.

There are also several exceptions to 8.4.1.3, which include the use of dynamic glazing. The exceptions are:

• Facades facing within 45 degrees of true north in the northern hemisphere or facades facing 45 degrees from true
south in the southern hemisphere;
• Translucent panels and glazing systems with a measured haze value greater than 90 percent when tested according to ASTM D1003 or other test method approved by the authority having jurisdiction (AHJ), and that are entirely 8 feet above the floor do not require external shading devices;
• Where equivalent shading of the vertical fenestration is provided by buildings, structures, geological formations or permanent exterior projections that are not horizontal, as determined by sun-angle studies at the peak solar altitude on the summer solstice and three hours before and after the peak solar altitude on the summer solstice;
• Vertical fenestration with automatically controlled shading devices in compliance with Exception (2) of Section 7.4.2.5;
• Vertical fenestration with automatically controlled dynamic glazing in compliance with Exception (3) of Section 7.4.2.5; and
• Existing buildings undergoing alteration, repair, relocation or a change in occupancy.

A 30-day public review for the proposed addendum ended April 7.

Installing Committee Addresses Code Changes

Energy codes were at the top of the Installing Committee meeting agenda during the 2019 Building Envelope Contractors  (BEC) Conference. The event, which took place in March in Las Vegas, was sponsored by the newly combined National Glass Association and Glass Association of North America. Code consultant Tom Culp’s presentation, “Energy and Green Building Codes, Need-to-Know Changes Affecting Contract Glaziers,” looked at recent and upcoming code changes.

U.S. Codes

Culp pointed out that it takes a while for states and jurisdictions to adopt new energy codes. As a result, the industry is now seeing the adoption of the 2018 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) and ASHRAE 90.1-2016. The latter could be adopted for new federal buildings soon.

ASHRAE 90.1-2019 is being finalized this year and will be published in October while hearings are being set up for the 2021 version of IECC. California Title 24 will also have a new edition in 2019.

“We’re seeing a continued increase in stringency,” said Culp.

He did point out that the industry is still defending against reductions to the window-wall ratio area and that no changes will be made in the ASHRAE 90.1 update. However, there is a new requirement for increased envelope inspections of building air leakage testing.

“It’s not just about having an air barrier … somebody is taking a closer look to make sure there’s air continuity,” said Culp.

ASHRAE 90.1 will contain a 5- to 17-percent reduction in U-factors and only modest reductions to solar heat gain coefficients, with the biggest change happening in zone 1. Culp described the changes from the 2016 to 2019 versions as a zone shift.

“[The requirements for what] was in zone 7 will move to zone 6, zone 6 to zone 5, etc. It’s shifting to be more stringent further south,” he said.

The product categories in ASHRAE 90.1-2019 will match those in the IECC.

Culp explained that two items did not make the 2019 update: trade-off limits and thermal bridging, saying that the industry needs to be careful about trade-off limits.”

Culp also said that thermal bridging could come into play in that future edition of the code. He said that metal penetration can reduce the effective R-value of insulation by 20 to 40 percent. The code could address how to prevent bypass of insulation without having a negative impact on structure.

While ASHRAE 90.1 could adopt thermal bridging requirements in the future, Culp said they would need to come up with something more simplified that can be applied to every building in the U.S.

ASHRAE 90.1 just approved a proposal for a new prescriptive requirement for the minimum amount of on-site renewable energy on all new buildings. It will continue to push photovoltaics (PV) on rooftops and in building integrated photovoltaics on other areas of the building such as the spandrel area.

“PV is starting to become mainstream as prices have dropped,” said Culp.

Canadian Codes

Starting June 3, 2019 in Vancouver, British Columbia, all commercial buildings and high-rise residential buildings will have to meet the Zero Emissions Building Plan performance
limits, which push triple glazing. Culp explained that this could have an impact on weight, installation and installation equipment. Thermal bridging is also included in the plan, which requires project teams to look at every connection point. Culp said that the industry may need to hire consultants to figure out the details of these complicated systems which include Psi factors (linear thermal bridges) and Chi factors (point thermal bridges).

“There’s going to be a lot of scrambling,” he said. “Make sure to give yourself enough time to prepare for that if you’re in this area.”

Natural Resources Canada is proposing to regulate residential windows under Minimum Energy Performance Standards, which would impact small non-residential buildings as well. Culp said that right now, if someone doesn’t put in the correct product the building owner is liable. In this standard the manufacturer would be liable. This could impact commercial entrance doors and small, standalone retail projects. Culp said a comment has been filed to address this.

AAMA Updates Color Guidelines, Two Specifications
Related to Seismic Drift

The American Architectural Manufacturers Association (AAMA) updated a document providing guidelines for describing color measurement requirements for inclusion in its documents. AAMA CMR-1-18, Guidelines for Development of Color Measurement Requirements, was first released in 2016. This is its first update, and it accommodates changes made to measurement averaging and color difference equations.

“The CMR document is an excellent resource for identifying the six parameters that need to be called out or specified to properly and clearly measure and compare color,” says Doug Holmberg, co-chair of the AAMA Finishes Steering Committee. “This is important for both matching colors and measuring the amount of color change over time. Although the document was originally published in 2016, once in use and after additional research, the Finishes Steering Committee felt it was a good time to update the document.”

In addition to changes made to the document, a note was added to reference a visual correlation study conducted in 2016, the data from which did not provide a compelling reason to change from the Hunter color space in the documents referencing it.

AAMA also updated two documents for evaluating window wall, curtainwall and storefront systems when it comes to seismic drift. AAMA 501.4-18,“Recommended Static Test Method for Evaluating Window Wall, Curtain Wall and Storefront Systems Subjected to Seismic and Wind-Induced Inter-Story Drift,” and AAMA 501.6-18, “Recommended
Dynamic Test Method for Determining the Seismic Drift Causing Glass Fallout from Window Wall, Curtain Wall and Storefront Systems,” were first released in 2001 and were last updated in 2009. The two are now available as separate documents for the first time.

While AAMA 501.4 provides a means of evaluating the performance of windows, window wall, curtainwalls and storefront systems when subjected to specified horizontal displacements in the plane of the wall, AAMA 501.6 focuses on determining the horizontal racking displacement amplitude of exterior wall system framing members that would cause fallout of representative architectural glass panels under controlled laboratory conditions.

“The test methods described in both documents are important to the industry,” says Tanya Dolby, chair of the AAMA 501.4 and 501.6 Seismic Test Update Task Group. “Now, for the first time, those who need one or the other can conveniently access each individually, through the AAMA Online Store.”

ICC Enters U.S. Trade and Investment Strategic Partnership

T he International Code Council (ICC) entered into a formal strategic partnership with the U.S. Department of Commerce International Trade Administration (ITA) to raise awareness of international standards in  onstruction that are required across the globe.

With the shared goals of promoting the use of U.S. building codes and standards and ensuring worldwide public safety in construction and infrastructure, the partnership will encourage global use of the International Codes (I-Codes), which are widely used and adopted around the world.

ITA helps U.S. companies to succeed globally through international market analysis, trade and export assistance, and the enforcement of trade agreements to ensure a level playing field. The strategic partner designation is given to entities that have demonstrated the willingness and ability to work across ITA’s network to achieve the goal of export promotion.

The ICC is expanding its global footprint, positioning the organization to contribute to the advancement of ITA’s mission, according to the announcement. Under this agreement, the ICC will continue to collaborate with ITA on several global trade initiatives in the Middle East, India and Southeast Asia, as well as to facilitate transparency and harmonization in codes and standards that impact the built environment.

IGCC Introduces Guideline Changes

The Insulating Glass Certification Council (IGCC) is introducing several certification and guideline changes in 2019. These changes will include:

• Guideline G.8 – Internal Components (such as grids, blinds, etc.);
• Guidelines relative to moisture vapor transmission rate (MVTR) and sealant dimensions (sightline);
• Changes to product generic descriptions;
• Clarification for the certification of VIG and VIG hybrids; and
• Guideline G.38—Inactive Certification (placing a certification on hold).

Additionally, IGCC’s interactive laboratory training exam, which was introduced in early 2018, was approved for implementation. All test operators at IGCC-approved laboratories will be required to complete the training exam annually to drive uniformity and competency in IGCC certification testing.

The next IGCC Certification Committee Meeting will be held May 7-8, 2019 in Tampa, Fla at the Double Tree Suites. IGCC will address implementation of the revisions to the ASTM E2188, E2189 and E2190 standards, which are expected to be publicly available in spring 2019, as well as many other topics.

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