AAMA, NPEA and NSA Release Joint Specification Establishing Performance Requirements for Sunrooms
September 26, 2011

The American Architectural Manufacturers Association (AAMA) of Schaumburg, Ill., the National Patio Enclosure Association (NPEA) of Topeka, Kan., and the National Sunroom Association (NSA) of Cleveland have jointly released an updated specification establishing minimum performance requirements for sunrooms. It references the 2009 International Residential and Energy Conservation Codes, and contains a number of other necessary updates. The new specification replaces the original one that has been in use since it was released by the three organizations in 2002.

"Prior to the publication of this document, there were very few specific definitions and requirements in existence for sunrooms, solariums and screened porches or patio structures in general in the building code spectrum," says Allan Hite, director of engineering and product development at Comfort Line Ltd. in Toledo, Ohio, and a member of the AAMA Sunroom Committee. "The development of these specifications has been an ongoing process, and all three organizations hope that through this update, the construction community will better understand these products and their requirements in order to address consumer demands and code requirements."

Lyndon Johnson, senior architectural sales of Harvey Building Products Inc. of Waltham, Mass., and president of the NSA, agrees. "The document was originally developed to give building officials, contractors and manufacturers a common understanding of what is required by the codes for a given sunroom project," he says. "The variety of use - from year-round to seasonal - changes the code requirements for sunrooms significantly. The newly updated specification references the 2009 codes, which makes it immediately useful for the construction community."

Consisting of eight sections, the document includes references, definitions and terminology for the interpretation of various provisions. It also defines uses, occupancies and limitations for the types of construction covered. The minimum performance requirements for sunroom fenestration products, structural design criteria, thermal performance criteria and general requirements for sunrooms also are outlined.

"This specification is an essential document for the sunroom industry because it clearly defines the various use categories and performance requirements for these structures," Johnson says.

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