In the young history of building commissioning, we’ve already witnessed a surge of under-qualified firms that suffer from what I like to call the “I can figure that out” fallacy.
Yet, building commissioning is more than filling out and submitting paperwork to meet code requirements. It is a detailed process of analyzing complex building systems, ensuring they were installed correctly and are operating at optimal efficiency, and evaluating how the systems are operating holistically.
When conducted properly, building commissioning — be it retro-commissioning, re-commissioning or ongoing commissioning — can benefit building owners for many years to come. Expect lower operating costs, extended system and equipment lifespans, fewer maintenance or failure issues, and substantially more money in your pocket. That sounds good, right?
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But how do you know that you’re hiring the commissioning agents who will help you save the most money over the long haul of your building?
The following are some clear indicators that your commissioning firm is looking out for your best interests.
1. The Firm Is a Dedicated Team of Building Commissioning Agents
Many firms have designers who “switch hats” to offer building commissioning services when the need arises. The firms that will provide you the most value, though, have a dedicated team. These commissioning agents are knowledgeable on the latest industry trends, Cx tools and training, and are focused on providing expert commissioning services, nothing else. This results in a streamlined commissioning process that yields a more value-added commissioning service.
2. The Building Commissioning Firm Has Extensive Experience
It’s one thing to understand and implement the Commissioning Process on a project — it’s another thing to understand how the many building systems operate. Rarely do you find there is one commissioning agent who knows everything from mechanical to electrical to plumbing. You don’t want a mechanical commissioning agent commissioning your UPS emergency power system on your data center.