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Increase drying procedures with number crunching.

by Jeremy Reets

train leaves Chicago for

water damage restoration contractors vapor pressure of the liquid is greater
Indianapolis (approximately (remove excess moisture), evaporation than the vapor pressure of the air.
185 miles) at 9 a.m. One hour plays a major role. The higher the vapor pressure in the
later, a train leaves Indianapolis for As the experts, we are expected to water at the surface and the lower the
Chicago. They meet at noon. make educated decisions when it comes vapor pressure in the air at that surface,
If the second to removing excess moisture from a the faster evaporation takes place.
train had started at structure. This is nothing new. Henri Le
9 a.m., and the first That means that you should be able to Châtelier first put this principle into
train at 10:30 a.m., provide an equipment plan that is based writing in 1884.
they would still on a credible evaporation calculation.
have met at noon. Don’t confuse this with the dehumid- Evaporation calculation
Can you find the ifier calculators that we are currently Calculating evaporation potential (EP)
speed of each Reets using. That calculator does not tell you is very easy. We just need to measure the
train? If you can, how effective you have set up your dry- vapor pressure of the liquid on or in the
please e-mail it to me for verification. ing system for evaporation; instead, it wet surface, and compare it to the vapor
There is enough information in the provides a guideline for how many dehu- pressure of the air at the wet surface.
above problem to tell you the speed of midifiers you might use to control the (Continued on page 18)
the trains. You just have to know what vapor you have due to evaporation.
information is important and what to do
Moisture motivation
What is
with it once you have it.
The force that motivates moisture is vapor pressure?
Evaporation application both defined and measured as vapor Vapor Pressure: A measure of a
When it comes to the speed of evapo- pressure. substance’s propensity to evaporate…
ration, the same is true: We have enough If you have high vapor pressure in It increases exponentially with an
information, we just need to know what one room and lower vapor pressure in increase in temperature.
information is important and what to do the room next to it, which way will — US Environmental Protection Agency
with it. vapor move?
This is very important, because when It will move from higher vapor pres- This definition shows exactly why we
you look at what we are hired to do as sure to lower until there is an equaliza- would want to understand and control
tion of the pressure. vapor pressure.
The same thing is true of evaporation. It is a “measure of a substance’s propen-
Moisture always moves toward lower sity to evaporate!”
Visit www.cleanfax.com and type in keywords:
Water damage. pressure, if it can. The greater the differ- If we can understand this measurement
For more information on related products, visit ence in the pressures indicates the speed and control the vapor pressures in our dry-
www.cleanfax.com, select Supplier Search from moisture will move. ing environments, we will be drying giants.
the site menu, and enter keywords: Water damage.. Evaporation takes place when the — J.R.
(Continued from page 16) You only need three pieces of informa- temperature.
If we were to write that out it would tion to calculate evaporation potential: Without surface temperature, you
be: “Vapor Pressure of the Wet Surface(S) 1. Temperature of the air cannot be sure whether you are creating
minus Vapor Pressure of the Air(A) at the 2. Relative humidity of the air evaporation.
Wet Surface equals Evaporation 3. Temperature of the wet surface The math that you put those numbers
Potential(EP).” You will need to have an infrared through to get vapor pressure is pretty
S – A = EP thermometer in order to get the surface complicated but, fortunately, all the
hard work has been done for you.

Le Châtelier’s principle The higher the EP number, the greater

the potential is for structure evaporation.
If stress is put on a system by raising the temperature then, according to Le Why do we use the term “evapora-
Châtelier’s principle, the rate of evaporation will exceed the rate of condensation until tion potential” and not “rate of evapo-
a new equilibrium is established. ration”? There are some factors that
At the new equilibrium point, a greater proportion of molecules will exist in the cannot be accurately measured yet,
vapor phase. like airflow.
He suggests in his principle that by adding heat to water we will create evaporation. Airspeed will be very different in
This is because of there being a greater differential between the vapor pressure of every location of the room that you take
the water and the vapor pressure of the air directly above that water. a reading, and you will not get an accu-
This will continue until there is an equilibrium achieved again (equal vapor pressures rate answer.
in both air and water).
At that point, there will be more water in the vapor phase (more water is supported
Creating vapor
as vapor at higher temperatures).
pressure differential
As long as we continue to supply heat and dehumidification, high speed evaporation As you already know, vapor pressure
will continue until there is no excess water. as a measurement is another specific
— J.R. humidity reading.

Vapor pressure differential

Vapor pressure measured in kPa

As you can see, heating a wet surface from 80 degrees Fahrenheit to 130 degrees Fahrenheit increases the vapor pressure exponentially.
This is now possible to achieve without overheating the rest of the structure.
New drying technology and processes that focus heat to the wet surface make it possible to heat water to this range of temperature with-
out ambient temperatures increasing above conventional drying temperatures.
— J.R.
Other specific humidity readings including wet surface temperature. You will probably realize that drying
include grains per pound and dew Using the evaporation calculator to knowledge has changed significantly in
point. figure out the best way to set equipment the last year.
The only way to lower specific is simple. There is so much new information in
humidity is to dehumidify or remove Once you put in your baseline read- our industry that this is a great time to
vapor from the drying environment. ings, you can project how your efforts get an education update. n
On a surface that is saturated, we read will affect the environment. ___________________________________
the relative humidity as 100 percent. • To what temperature will you Jeremy Reets operates Sharpsburg, GA-
If you get a psychrometric chart, you potentially heat the surface? based Champion Construction Systems
will see that the only way to increase the • To what can you possibly lower the Inc. He is also the innovator behind the
vapor pressure of a wet surface is to heat specific humidity? Reets Evaporation Method, the
that surface. • What is the EP of that equipment Evaporation Potential Formula, and the
You can create very high vapor pres- configuration? TES drying system distributed by
sure when you heat a wet surface. • How will heating the surface affect Interlink Supply. Reets teaches his “Ultra
Heating air does nothing unless you the EP? High Speed Drying System” at the Reets
are transferring that heat into the water. • How will lowering the specific Drying Academy and can be reached at
(See “Vapor pressure differential” on humidity affect the EP? rda@championcsi.com. For information on
page 18.) Take some time with the evaporation the TES drying system, contact
calculator and try many different sce- Bridgepoint Systems or your local
Application of narios. Interlink Supply distributor. You can get
evaporation calculation You might be amazed at what this tool access to a free evaporation calculator at
On your next job, take some readings, opens your mind to. www.tesdryingsystem.com.