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The moisture content of wood in buildings must be considered in terms of ranges likely to occur in different parts of buildings in different climatic areas. Accurate data are still insufficient to establish even ranges of moisture contents with certainty. The material presented here was pieced together from many fragmentary reports and is subject to revision as more complete data are secured. The actual moisture contents in a given building will depend on: (1) The moisture conditions inside as influenced by the amount of vapor released, ventilation, type of heating plant, and refrigeration, (2) The degree of moisture control in crawl spaces, attics, and walls by ventilation, vapor barriers, and thermal insulation, and (3) The amount of protection afforded the exterior from rain seepage by roof overhang, gutters, and the applications of water-repellent preservatives. Moisture contents can be greatly in excess of those in Table 1 when building design permits even, moderate rain seepage or condensation.
Verrall, A. F.
Chief, U.S. Department of Agriculture, New Orleans, La.