• Document: Vestibule Case Study. Vestibule Requirement Intent [2003 IECC, 2006 IECC, 2003 IBC, 2006 IBC, , ]
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Vestibule Case Study [2003 IECC, 2006 IECC, 2003 IBC, 2006 IBC, 90.1-2001, 90.1-2004] Vestibule Requirement Intent http://resourcecenter.pnl.gov/cocoon/morf/ResourceCenter Page 1 of 14 The primary intent behind the requirement for a vestibule is to reduce infiltration into a space that includes doors with high volume of pedestrian traffic. These doors are typically used by the general public to access public areas and have a higher usage rate than a door classified for personnel use. Vestibules reduce the infiltration losses (or gains) from wind and stack effect by creating an air lock entry. The stack effect caused by naturally occurring warm air rising, is greater in taller buildings than in low rise construction but under the provisions of the 2003 and 2006 IECC no allowance is made for building height or number of stories. Wind exposure is dependant on the orientation of the building and greater infiltration driver in low-rise commercial buildings verses stack effect. When Is A Vestibule Required? Vestibules are required in Chapter 8 of the 2003 IECC (Section 802.3.6), Chapter 5 of the 2006 IECC (Section 502.4.6), ANSI/ASHRAE/IESNA Standard 90.1-2001 (Section 5.5.3.4), and Standard 90.1-2004 (Section 5.4.3.4). Essentially a vestibule is required on the primary entrance doors leading from spaces in a building greater than or equal to 3000 ft². Both the IECC and 90.1 have similar requirements for when a vestibule is required and the configuration of the vestibule. However, 90.1-2001 and 90.1-2004 exempt vestibules in buildings less than four stories. http://resourcecenter.pnl.gov/cocoon/morf/ResourceCenter Page 2 of 14 A lobby surrounded by floor-to-ceiling partitions, a roof/ceiling assembly and floor assembly could be considered a space. The lobby walls can contain operable windows and doors that isolate the space from the adjoining spaces or the exterior. The IECC, 90.1-2001 and 90.1-2004 [1] require vestibules for "spaces" that are 3000 ft² or greater. This is not the building area but a space within a building. For example, an entrance to a 2000 ft² retail store with a 1,500 ft² storage area, closed off by doors, would not require a vestibule. However, a 4000 ft² retail space with an entrance door to a sales area of 3000 ft² would be required to have a vestibule. In some circumstances, it is difficult to define where one space ends and another begins for the purposes of calculating whether the size of the space with an outside entrance door requires a vestibule. An example of this is a 2000 ft² lobby with one wall substantially open to a larger adjacent lounge. In such a case, the two areas should probably be considered a single space, and a vestibule should be required. The following definition is offered by 90.1-2001 and 90.1-2004 and provides some guidance: Space. The following definition is offered by 90.1-2001 and 90.1-2004: "A volume substantially surrounded by solid surfaces such as walls, floors, roofs and openable devices such as doors and operable windows." http://resourcecenter.pnl.gov/cocoon/morf/ResourceCenter Page 3 of 14 The word "substantially" must be interpreted for the purpose of determining the need for a vestibule. Unfortunately, the IECC has no such definition. Doors. Based on the exceptions that apply to the IECC, 90.1-2001 Standard and Users Manual, and 90.1-2004 Standard and Users Manual, the doors that are affected by this requirement are doors intended as entrances to the building that receive pedestrian traffic from both the general public and building occupants. For example, the doors leading into a public lobby would be required to have a vestibule where doors leading to service areas, mechanical rooms, electrical rooms or exits from fire stairways would be exempt. Personnel doors adjacent to doors used to facilitate vehicular movement or material handling are exempt. For example, a door adjacent to a loading dock would be exempt. http://resourcecenter.pnl.gov/cocoon/morf/ResourceCenter Page 4 of 14 http://resourcecenter.pnl.gov/cocoon/morf/ResourceCenter Page 5 of 14 If the building has more than one entrance into a space 3000 ft² or greater, each of the doors must have a vestibule. For example, a gas station/convenience store may include two entrances into the open store area. If the space is 3000 ft² or greater each of the entrances would be required to have a vestibule. http://resourcecenter.pnl.gov/cocoon/morf/ResourceCenter Page 6 of 14 http://resourcecenter.pnl.gov/cocoon/morf/ResourceCenter Page 7 of 14 The 2003 and 2006 IECC, and the 90.1-2001 and 90.1-2004 provide an exemption from the vestibule requirement in entrances that use revolving doors as they provide adequate protection against infiltration into the space. If a revolving door is used in place of a vestibule, the 2003

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