Symphony® and the Environment: Microventing
Wallcoverings with Microventing from Symphony®
About three-fourths of the earth is water... so it’s inevitable that you will specify wallcoverings for damp areas where harmful mold and mildew may grow. That’s why Symphony® offers a beautifully functional solution called microventing that combats moisture and helps prevent mold and mildew.
Non-permeable (non-breathable) wall surfaces can block the exchange of humid air, creating condensation that provides an environment for mold and mildew growth. Symphony’s innovative microventing technology creates invisible perforations that allow moisture to pass more easily through walls, reducing the build-up of condensation. Outside laboratory tests confirm that Symphony’s microvented product works to prevent build-up and achieved a perm rating average of 16 using the ASTME 96-05 dry cup method procedure A.
Microventing is an optional feature that does not in any way adversely affect the beauty, strength or performance of Symphony® wallcoverings.
The Cause and Control of Mold and Mildew
The first line of defense against mold and mildew is to deflect the majority of moisture outside of a building using exterior surfacing and vapor barriers. But there is always going to be some degree of moisture between the outside and inside walls. The most common cause of wetness is water seepage from pipes, roofs, windows and walls.
Outdoor temperature and humidity can make matters worse. This is especially true in southern climates where high temperatures and high humidity often force water vapor to move from the outside of buildings to the cooler air-conditioned inside. A degree of planned permeability (breathability) will permit trapped moisture to escape the wall cavity and allow the HVAC system to efficiently remove the moisture and mitigate the conditions that contribute to the growth of mold and mildew.
There are many other conditions that affect your building’s ability to allow moisture to escape, including interior wall substrates, primers, paint, sealers and vapor barriers to name a few. Microvented Symphony® vinyl wallcoverings can eliminate or minimize one of the main contributors to mold growth, although alone it can’t completely prevent a mold and mildew situation if the cause for excess moisture isn’t corrected.
Symphony’s vinyl wallcoverings, which have been microvented, will continue to meet either Type I or Type II specifications per G.S.A. Federal Specification CCC-W-408D using test procedures detailed in Federal Specifications CCC-T-191-B. The appearance of the wallcoverings will not be affected by the perforations. Since the perforations allow moisture to pass through the wallcoverings from both sides this may not be suitable in such areas as clean rooms, bathrooms and rooms where anti-bacterial conditions are required i.e., hospital rooms.