Many people enjoy swimming for sports and recreation but may not be aware of the unique HVAC systems that keep swimmers comfortable. Buildings that contain a pool room are called natatoriums. Examples of natatoriums are commonly found in hotels, sports and recreation facilities and fitness centers.


How are Pool Rooms Conditioned?

Pool rooms are conditioned differently from most buildings with the goal of maintaining adequate swimmer comfort and reducing condensation on building surfaces. Pool rooms are usually kept warm and humid since swimmers may feel cold if the room humidity is too low and may feel hot and stuffy if the humidity is too high. Humidity fluctuations can come from multiple sources such as heated pool water, fountains, hot tubs and occupants. These typical pool details should be considered for proper HVAC system selection and sizing.

HVAC Solutions for Swimmer Comfort

Many simple HVAC systems only dehumidify during air conditioning and ventilation. Some complex HVAC systems are capable of precision dehumidification; however, they may not be suitable for the pool room environment. Dedicated pool HVAC equipment is known as a pool dehumidification unit–or PDU for short. PDU’s are capable of dehumidifying pool room air continuously even when there is no need for heating or cooling within the space.

Exposed HVAC duct work materials such as fabric, aluminum and stainless steel are commonly used for air distribution. PDU’s may contain combinations of fiberglass parts, smooth epoxy surfaces and stainless steel materials. Corrosion resistant equipment and air distribution systems must be adequately sealed to reduce duct leakage where necessary.

How Can Allegheny Design Services Help You?

Pool dehumidification HVAC systems can be costly to purchase and operate therefore it’s important to select the best system for each specific application. Allegheny Design Services is committed to helping provide practical solutions to address client needs. Click here to see what others have to say about our work, and make sure to take a look at some of our other MEP projects!

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Written by David Cotton, PE, LEED AP BD+C, Senior Mechanical Engineer

david-cottonDavid is a resident of Morgantown, W.Va. He graduated from the Leonard C. Nelson College of Engineering & Sciences at the West Virginia University Institute of Technology with a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering and later obtained professional engineering licensure in the State of West Virginia. He is an active member of ASHRAE West Virginia Chapter, NFPA AEBO Section and USGBC West Virginia Section. He has experience with design and construction administration of MEP building systems for commercial, educational and industrial building projects. Additional experience includes LEED project administration, building systems commissioning and Revit building information modeling (BIM).

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