A new standard that establishes minimum requirements for performing load calculations has been published by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE). The standard was developed in conjunction with the Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA).
ANSI/ASHRAE/ACCA Standard 183-2007, Peak Cooling and Heating Load Calculations in Buildings Except Low-Rise Residential Buildings, is available for purchase at www.ashrae.org/bookstore.
Proper load calculations are the first step in any design process, said Chris Wilkins, chair of the committee that wrote the standard. “Efficiency and comfort are only possible if the equipment is selected to match the load.”
The standard establishes minimum requirements for building loads that are inclusive of as many procedural methods as possible while identifying core elements that impact heat loss and gains. Requirements are non-prescriptive and are aimed at ensuring that developers of load calculation methodologies observe recognized good practices. The specifics in undertaking a load are left to the discretion of the industry professional by their selection and application of load methodologies that meet the standard.
The need for the standard was driven largely by the desire of the code enforcement community. Code references to the ASHRAE Handbook existed, making it the de facto standard.