I have a customer that will be making a set of high end exterior doors
using Ipe'. He made a great looking garage door using Ipe' and this
last winter noticed that frost was forming on the inside of the door.
I assume that, because of the density of Ipe', the doors were
transfering the cold to the inside and causing condensation in the
heated space. Now he needs to make entry doors (5 of them)to a pool
area that is going to be very high humidity. Does anybody have any
suggestions on how to build these doors so that the frosting does not
occur? They are frame and panel doors and I originally suggested that
he make the front and back sides relatively thin and make a center
frame that would hold some type of foam insulation.
Construction methods won't alter the thermal conductivity of the wood. It
can change the characteristics of the assembly though. Insulation as you
suggest (even an air gap) would help. Making a hollow core with panels on
the outside would work but the style may be kind of clunky looking. Is he
getting frost at the thicker section of wood also? Only sure way to
eliminate it entirely is to make a layered assembly.
I was thinking of doing something similar -- making an entry door. Can
you tell me what climate you are in that you saw the frost ? I have seen
plenty of wooden doors and never thought there would be an issue.
I have faced this problem making exterior doors for my sauna. I used one
inch white cedar on the inside and outside with a two inch insulation space
(rigid blue sheet) between. Around the edges there is a solid wood heat
path; outside piece of cedar, two inch spruce spacer and inside piece of
cedar. The humidity in the sauna is incredible; with outdoor temps in the
teens, I have never seen condensation on the inside surfaces. Photo on
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