Unusually hot and humid temperatures coupled with a 25-year-old HVAC system created the perfect storm to cause extensive damage in a 650 seat college auditorium. The elevated relative humidity (RH) levels in the theater were reading 70-75%, far greater than the ideal 40-50% for health and comfort. The dewpoint, the temperature at which the air becomes saturated, was in the mid 60s, well above the recommended 55 degrees or lower. The air temperature in the room ranged from the upper 60s to the low 70s.
The high dewpoint combined with the high RH caused water to accumulate on surfaces, which led to a serious mold outbreak on upholstered chairs, carpet and sensitive audio and video equipment in the hall.
ATI’s course of action included a highly complex diagnostic and dehumidification plan. Special drying equipment was used to remove moisture, and air-filtration devices were installed to promote air circulation and prevent additional microbial growth. ATI used state-of-the-art thermography equipment and moisture meters to monitor and maintain progress.
Within five days, the dewpoint was decreased, contents were dried and the auditorium was stabilized. After two months, ATI removed its equipment, salvaging the acoustical treatment and sound reinforcement systems in the theater, avoiding expensive replacement costs.