CS-2009 EAc3: Enhanced Commissioning

  • NC, Schools, CS EAc3 & EAp1 Enhanced Cx Diagram
  • Benefits of commissioning

    You may think of commissioning, including hiring a commissioning agent, as an added cost—and it is. It’s likely to reduce your operational costs, however, by yielding 5%–10% improvements in energy efficiency and ensuring that facilities personnel know how to operate key building systems. It’s also a great way to catch mistakes like missing or incorrectly installed equipment, avoiding occupant complaints and callbacks, indoor air quality and thermal comfort problems, premature equipment failure, and litigation.

    Commissioning (Cx1. Commissioning (Cx) is the process of verifying and documenting that a building and all of its systems and assemblies are planned, designed, installed, tested, operated, and maintained to meet the owner's project requirements. 2. The process of checking the performance of a building against the owner's goals during design, construction, and occupancy. At a minimum, mechanical and electrical equipment are tested, although much more extensive testing may also be included.) is the process of verifying that the building’s systems operate as intended, according to the owner’s requirements as set forth in project documents. Commissioning helps fill the gap between the design team, whose members usually aren’t meant to be responsible for checking minor construction details, and subcontractors, who may inadvertently err on key items like fan power settings or sensor locations. The commissioning agent (CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements.) also  provides the owner with the expert oversight of an engineer.

    What is fundamental vs. enhanced commissioning?

    Fundamental Commissioning is a LEED prerequisite, although there are different compliance paths available depending on the project’s size. For projects less than 50,000 ft2, the CxA may be involved in the project as an associate of the contractor, construction manager, architect, or engineer and may have other project responsibilities. For projects over that size, the CxA may be still be from the same firm as a project team member, as long as he or she is not otherwise involved in the project. In both cases an independent consultant contracted to the owner is also an option, and may bring more value by offering better objectivity and  a different perspective than someone associated with the design team.

    For the Enhanced Commissioning credit, an independent consultant is required to be the CxA. Enhanced commissioning can offer additional benefits by involving the CxA earlier during design (instead of at the bid stage), by requiring that the CxA develop an operations manual and verify that staff are trained with it, and by requiring the CxA to review operations within 8–10 months of substantial completion.

    On Core and Shell projects, the full scope of commissioning activities are required for all applicable systems installed, although some commissioning activities may be limited by the core and shell scope. Testing procedures in the commissioning plan may have to be changed or eliminated for incomplete systems, but should to be noted in LEED documentation.

    Scope of commissioning

    Include at least the following in the scope of commissioning:

    • Heating, cooling, refrigeration, ventilation systems and controls
    • Lighting and daylighting controls
    • Domestic hot water systems
    • Renewable energy systems

    Choosing enhanced vs. fundamental commissioning

    Mechanical system imageCommissioning agents discovered that the triple-duty valve (in white circle) for this condenser water system serving a chiller and cooling tower was 80% closed. This inappropriate solution to an oversized pump was costing over $6,700 per year in wasted pumping energy. Courtesy Portland Energy Conservation, Inc.

    LEED divides the commissioning process into two parts. Fundamental commissioning focuses on installation and verification of the mechanical and electrical systems during construction. Enhanced commissioning covers a broader scope of systems, and involves broader participation of the commissioning agent, beginning during construction documents and continuing through occupancy.

    The Enhanced Commissioning credit is open to any project, but project teams often choose not to pursue it due to the increased cost and uncertainty around its benefits. Enhanced  commissioning fees are  approximately $0.75/ft2 for Core and Shell projects. That represents a 25%–40% cost increase over fundamental commissioning, while providing almost double the scope of work. All projects benefit with the enhanced commissioning, though it is a must for large or complex projects. Projects can choose to make the decision for pursuing enhanced until after receiving the bid proposal, in order to evaluate the actual cost, but should hire a commissioning agent by the end of design development for enhanced commissioning.

Legend

  • Best Practices
  • Gotcha
  • Action Steps
  • Cost Tip

Pre-Design

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  • Owners' Project Requirements (OPROwner's project requirements (OPR) is a written document that details the ideas, concepts, and criteria that are determined by the owner to be important to the success of the project.) are developed and signed off on by the owner with assistance from the CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements., or developed by the CxA for owner approval. The OPR works as the guideline to develop a design that meets the owner’s requirements. See the Documentation Toolkit for a template and sample OPR


  • Spray painted photocell.In commissioning a new facility, the commissioning agent discovered that this outdoor photocell controlling the exterior and parking lot lighting had been sprayed with paint and did not function properly. Courtesy Portland Energy Conservation, Inc.The project will benefit from the Owner’s active role in developing the OPROwner's project requirements (OPR) is a written document that details the ideas, concepts, and criteria that are determined by the owner to be important to the success of the project. with specific goals for energy efficiency and other systems. Owners often find it helpful to state goals in terms of a minimum acceptable level and a specified payback period, for example, “The building is aimed to save 20% energy as compared to a code compliant building with a total payback of less than 5 years. Our goal is to provide a comfortable space with user controlled lighting and ventilation to minimize waste and maximize comfort. The operations and maintenance staff are to be aware and able to support the intent of smooth controls. Owners typically work with the architects to put the project goals on paper. Revisiting meeting notes from initial project discussions can be helpful in assimilating client goals.


  • Commissioning generates an average savings of 28 percent of predicted annual energy use, according to the 2004 study, “The Cost-Effectiveness of Commissioning New and Existing Commercial Buildings: Lessons from 224 Buildings.” (See Resources.)

Schematic Design

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  • Develop the Basis of Design (BODBasis of design (BOD) includes design information necessary to accomplish the owner's project requirements, including system descriptions, indoor environmental quality criteria, design assumptions, and references to applicable codes, standards, regulations, and guidelines.), working with the design team, including at least the architect, mechanical, electrical and plumbing engineers with lighting designer. Along with the OPROwner's project requirements (OPR) is a written document that details the ideas, concepts, and criteria that are determined by the owner to be important to the success of the project., the BOD facilitates constant discussion on realistic owner’s goals and the team’s input in addressing them. The architect, owner, and engineer update the OPR and BOD throughout the project to maintain accuracy for the CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements., and they are used as benchmarks during cost estimating and value engineering. The BOD also has a general role in project development, beyond its use in commissioning requirements. Items like water conservation, renewable energy and indoor air comfort goals should be included although it is not a common practice. See the Documentation Toolkit for a template and sample BOD.


  • Projects with district energy systems must commission, for the prerequisite, all “downstream” equipment—systems installed for the building’s use and included in the project costs. Downstream equipmentDownstream equipment consists of all heating or cooling systems, equipment, and controls located within the project building and site associated with transporting thermal energy into heated or cooled spaces. This includes the thermal connection or interface with the district energy system, secondary distribution systems in the building, and terminal units. may include air handling units, variable-air-volume (VAVVariable Air Volume (VAV) is an HVAC conservation feature that supplies varying quantities of conditioned (heated or cooled) air to different parts of a building according to the heating and cooling needs of those specific areas.) boxes, duct work, pumps, controls and fans. “Upstream” district energy equipment, such as chillers, boilers, cogenerationThe simultaneous production of electric and thermal energy in on-site, distributed energy systems; typically, waste heat from the electricity generation process is recovered and used to heat, cool, or dehumidify building space. Neither generation of electricity without use of the byproduct heat, nor waste-heat recovery from processes other than electricity generation is included in the definition of cogeneration. equipment and other components of a district heating and cooling plant that serve the project building may need to be commissioned for the Enhanced Commissioning credit.


  • Making project intent clear and specific in writing the OPROwner's project requirements (OPR) is a written document that details the ideas, concepts, and criteria that are determined by the owner to be important to the success of the project. and BODBasis of design (BOD) includes design information necessary to accomplish the owner's project requirements, including system descriptions, indoor environmental quality criteria, design assumptions, and references to applicable codes, standards, regulations, and guidelines. pays off in numerous ways. The CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. is better able to accurately bid on the job, and better establish a clear commissioning plan. The more vague the project goals, the less effective commissioning presence will be.


  • The architect, mechanical and electrical engineer, and lighting designer describe the standards, goals and performance levels of the designed building systems in the BODBasis of design (BOD) includes design information necessary to accomplish the owner's project requirements, including system descriptions, indoor environmental quality criteria, design assumptions, and references to applicable codes, standards, regulations, and guidelines..


  • The owner can include additional building systems in the commissioning scope, such as the building envelope, fire and safety systems, and water collection systems.


  • Financial incentives for energy efficiency, including commissioning as an integral component may be offered by state and local agencies. For example, New York State pays a portion of a commissioning agent fees and provides further incentives if some energy efficiency recommendations are implemented. See Resources for more information on incentives.


  • Commissioning costs per square foot for multifamily or similar buildings may be higher than open-floor commercial spaces due to the number of systems to be installed and the higher sampling rate of commissioned systems.


  • Payback may be faster for commissioning of systems-intensive facilities such as healthcare facilities and laboratories. A lot can go wrong in the complex controls and building management systems in these facilities, and because of the level of energy consumption involved, those mistakes can be expensive. Commissioning activities like testing and balancing, functional performance testingThe process of determining the ability of the commissioned systems to perform in accordance with the owner's project requirements, basis of design (BOD), and construction documents., and sequence verification are particularly useful here while enhanced commissioning activities of staff training verification and manual development highly valuable.


  • If properly implemented, commissioning will pay for itself within a year of operation, or even during design.  Savings are likely to be realized from:

    •   Reduction or elimination of change orders
    •   Reduction or elimination of requests for information
    •   Proper system and component selection
    •   Improved performance.

  • The cost of commissioning Core and Shell spaces is typically less than New Construction because the installed systems would be limited to base building and may not include detailed fit out with controls, demand controls, pumps or VFDs.

Design Development

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  • For best value the CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. hiring process should start during design development when mechanical systems are identified and the CxA should hired by the end of design development.  Put together the Cx RFP and select the CxA. This is more critical if the project is pursuing the Enhanced Commissioning credit. The process may include soliciting proposals from independent parties. See the Documentation Toolkit for help in writing the Cx RFP and hiring the right CxA


  • ASHRAE Guideline 0 and most commissioning guidelines and process handbooks suggest hiring a CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. before the MEP engineer, if possible, in order to kick off the commissioning process at the beginning of the project, and ensuring the OPROwner's project requirements (OPR) is a written document that details the ideas, concepts, and criteria that are determined by the owner to be important to the success of the project. is adhered to throughout design development. However, most RFP processes for commissioning agent begin after the architect and MEP engineer have been hired. The RFP process should involve the architect and mechanical engineer to be sure that it accurately reflects the project’s requirements. The mechanical engineer lists all the building systems equipment to be commissioned and identifies the required sampling rates in the RFP. If the systems are not yet defined, a description of the mechanical design direction would be included in the project intent and RFP.


  • Request that proposals provide fee breakdowns for fundamental and enhanced commissioning. This would allow the owner to know the cost differential between the services and consider enhanced commissioning.


  • The CxA’s main role is to provide third-party verification that the design is installed and operating as per construction documents. The CxA is not meant to fill the role of the MEP engineer, but rather to be a technical expert in the owner’s team. It is in the owner’s or client best interest to hire a CxA by design development and introduce the project goals, team and schedule.


  • Although the CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. is not expected to deliver much during design, the presence of the CxA in the team meetings and drawings development is more integrated into the process. The team also gets to learn more about the commissioning activities and tailor the drawings based on what the CxA is looking for during document review.


  • Early hiring and meeting attendance by the CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. during Enhanced Commissioning may be perceived as high cost, but should allow reduced on-site presence during construction and reduced errors during design and installation. It facilitates a preventive rather than reactive involvement.


  • Choose your CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements., depending on the size of your project, the owner's preferences, and whether you are attempting the enhanced credit or simply the prerequisite.
 

    Who can the the Commissioning Agent?


  • An independent consultant, as compared to one from the same firm as the design team, is in the best position to truly represent the owner’s interests during design and construction, including installation of key systems. As commissioning agents are often experienced mechanical engineers, they can provide input into the project design and any recommendations on improved project efficiency.

     

    Commissioning Authority QualificationsFrom the LEED Reference Guide ©USGBC


  • Enhanced commissioning fees are typically 20%-30% more than fundamental commissioning while providing double the benefits. The return on investment is substantially more when the commissioning agent is involved early and is committed to revisit the project in operation.


  • Include commissioning costs during initial project budgeting to avoid later surprises.


  • Wait until receiving bids to decide whether or not to pursue EAc3: Enhanced Commissioning. If you request two different fees for the two scopes, you can easily assess the cost and benefits of Enhanced Commissioning.


  • Core and Shell projects may have a limited scope of work and lower commissioning fees as the building systems to be commissioned are limited to the base building equipment. However efficient equipment installation and operations of base building is as important for achieving energy savings as it is for a complete fit out spaces.


  • New construction projects had median commissioning costs of $1.00/ft2 (or 0.6% of average total construction costs) in a 2004 study of 224 buildings, and yielded a median simple payback period of 4.8 years from energy-efficiency improvements (and excluding quantified non-energy impacts).

Construction Documents

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  • Incorporate commissioning specifications in Division 1 for general information and commissioning notes into mechanical and electrical specifications. See the Documentation Toolkit for a sample specification.


  • The commissioning agent develops a commissioning plan based on the OPROwner's project requirements (OPR) is a written document that details the ideas, concepts, and criteria that are determined by the owner to be important to the success of the project., BODBasis of design (BOD) includes design information necessary to accomplish the owner's project requirements, including system descriptions, indoor environmental quality criteria, design assumptions, and references to applicable codes, standards, regulations, and guidelines. and commissioning meeting. The commissioning plan works as the guidebook of commissioning for the rest of the team. It demystifies the process and lists the responsibilities of the design and construction team. The plan discusses the roles of key team members, includes the latest versions of the OPR and BOD, specifies system sampling rates, anticipates pitfalls, and provides a commissioning schedule. In addition, the commissioning agent provides a general commissioning schedule based on the design and construction schedule that may or may not be defined at that moment.


  • A good commissioning specification clarifies subcontractor responsibilities associated with verification and testing. Doing so eliminates any potential change orders associated with “extra” work required for systems commissioning.


  • Dedicate a project team meeting to commissioning process to review each team member’s role and scope and to ensure they know what is required for LEED certification.


  • Specifications need to include commission details. If the CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. is not on board by this point, refer to standard commissioning specifications to ensure it is included in the bid package.


  • Refer to the commissioning plan regularly throughout the project to understand the roles and responsibilities of all team members relative to completing a quality project. It is a valuable document and is regularly under-utilized. Additionally, the commissioning plan should be updated to include contractor information and a more specific and accurate scope once equipment has been selected during the design phase (if previously not defined).


  • Specifications eliminate potential change orders associated with “extra” work required for systems commissioning by sub contractors. These specifications inform the commissioning agent’s responsibility and how it will impact the sub-contractors presence on site. Poorly written specifications that do not include details would leave uncertainties and gaps in contractor’s expectations.


  • The CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. meets the design team to explain the commissioning scope and collaboration with the design and construction team. The CxA provides commissioning specifications to be included in the specification book and reviews 50% Construction Documents and specifications to make sure they are aligned with the OPROwner's project requirements (OPR) is a written document that details the ideas, concepts, and criteria that are determined by the owner to be important to the success of the project. and include commissioning activities. The CxA reviews the construction bid submittals by prospective contractors.


  • Even after the 50% construction documents review, CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. will not be required to meet again. Even then, it is useful to let the CxA know of the design progress. Include them on the weekly meeting-minutes mailing lists. Design changes may affect the commissioning plan, to be commissioned equipment list, and probably the commissioning scope.


  • Construction documents review by the CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. is a great opportunity to get a third-party technical assessment on the design. The CxA works on behalf of the owner to match up the design with the OPROwner's project requirements (OPR) is a written document that details the ideas, concepts, and criteria that are determined by the owner to be important to the success of the project.. During the design review, the CxA may be able to identify an over-sized system, for example, or limited controls or incorrect fan unit location.




  • The CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. is involved in the bid selection process, after approving the specifications and bid package.


  • Clarify the involvement of contractors in the commissioning process during bid meetings to avoid padding of fees. Contractors may increase their bids because of seeing the commissioning specifications and being unfamiliar with expectations around their level of involvement.

Construction

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  • CxA with air handling unit.A CxA checks filter placement on a newly installed air handling unit. YRG PhotoThe CxA stays abreast of construction progress by attending at least some meetings and receiving updates. As equipment is installed, the CxA verifies installation of equipment to be commissioned, and performs functional testing in collaboration with subcontractors, including running the duct system under performance specifications and ensuring that they are balanced as required. The CxA runs the heating and cooling systems to ensure there are no installation problems, and the subcontractor corrects any defects or leaks.


  • Normal subcontractor testing can often be performed in coordination with commissioning.  Proper coordination of these activities can reduce total commissioning time and reduce system problems. The commissioning process may require additional coordination time for subcontractors, which can result in additional contract costs. During the construction team bidding phase, include Cx1. Commissioning (Cx) is the process of verifying and documenting that a building and all of its systems and assemblies are planned, designed, installed, tested, operated, and maintained to meet the owner's project requirements. 2. The process of checking the performance of a building against the owner's goals during design, construction, and occupancy. At a minimum, mechanical and electrical equipment are tested, although much more extensive testing may also be included. coordination (at a minimum) in the scope of the mechanical, electrical and controls subcontractors.


  • The CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. develops a commissioning report for the owner and project team including reports on all visits, observations and recommendations. A Cx1. Commissioning (Cx) is the process of verifying and documenting that a building and all of its systems and assemblies are planned, designed, installed, tested, operated, and maintained to meet the owner's project requirements. 2. The process of checking the performance of a building against the owner's goals during design, construction, and occupancy. At a minimum, mechanical and electrical equipment are tested, although much more extensive testing may also be included. Report is the final deliverable. It lists all of the activities carried out, testing results and recommendations. Typical recommendations may refer to misbalanced vents, incorrect fan power, incorrect system sizing, dampers not present where specified, and incorrectly installed switches. The CxA is available for a final meeting and to discuss all recommendations for clarifications. Note that the commissioning process is not completed until all open items or deficiencies have been corrected or accepted by the owner. Finally, the CxA completes the LEED Online documentation and uploads all required documents.


  • The commissioning agent’s involvement in team meetings, both in pre-construction and construction, provides the subcontractors the chance to understand the role, tasks and expectations of a CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements.. Construction teams benefit from learning how the commissioning activities help their job, decrease their onsite presence by taking responsibility for quality control, and reduce contractors’ liability. For example, a malfunctioning air vent, if not commissioned, will eventually be found after months of fault finding and may cause out of pocket expenses for the sub-contractor.


  • Functional testing, in which the whole system, and depending on scope, individual components are tested, is a critical part of commissioning. Observations range from larger scale to very basic, such as diffusersIn an HVAC context, diffusers disperse heating, cooling, or ventilation air as it enters a room, ideally preventing uncomfortable direct currents and in many cases, reducing energy costs and improving indoor air quality (IAQ). In light fixtures, diffusers filter and disperse light. supplying more than 10% of the recommended fan rate, outside air enthalpy sensor placed in a return air flow instead of supply flow, or incorrect temperature sensor settings.


  • LEED documentation can be submitted prior to the final commissioning report being completed, including verification of commissioned systems. A contract to complete these items is sufficient.


  • The CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. develops a systems manual for the commissioned systems in collaboration with the facilities management—carrying the design intentA written document that details the ideas, concepts, and criteria that are determined by the owner to be important to the success of the project. into building operations. Before occupancy, the CxA verifies the facilities staff is trained to operate the building systems as intended by the designer. CxA is the only person who has attended design meetings and is continuing their contract into operations to communicate how the controls work and the strategies identified to save energy. For example, if the designer and owner have agreed on a specific heating set point that needs to be communicated to the operator. The CxA also reviews all equipment warranties and verifies that all requirements to keep the warranty valid are clearly stated.


  • The CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. documents system startup procedures and operations as part of the training manual. While this may seem like a basic step, it is not standard practice, and is essential for when the facilities staff changes or is absent. Specific measures such as set points, setbacks, controls, and part-load adjustments are can mean the difference between energy efficiency and wastefulness.


  • Enhanced commissioning extends into the system startup phase, bridging the gap between design into the operations hand-over. Design and installation is only the first part of running an energy-efficient building. The real benefits are realized during operation. The CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. provides a common link between the design team, installation contractors, and the operations team, providing added value at all steps of the process.

Operations & Maintenance

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  • The CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. develops commissioning report including all testing and observations. A Commissioning Report is the final deliverable for the commissioning prerequisite. It lists all the activities carried out, testing results and recommendations. The CxA is available for a final meeting and to discuss all recommendations for clarifications.


  • LEED compliance does not require the implementation of commissioning report recommendations, but after having paid the commissioning exercise, not implementing the recommendations would be a waste of money.


  • Commissioning agent with facilities personnelWith enhanced commissioning, the CxA ensures that an operations manual is developed and staff training takes place after installation. YRG PhotoThe CxA oversees the staff training on equipment operation. During the first several months of occupancy, conduct as many training sessions as necessary with the CxA to ensure correct operation by the staff.


  • Stagger equipment training to allow staff to become familiar with the systems. Make sure that this is reflected in contracts because typically the training is scheduled for same time to reduce the contractor’s presence on site. This stagger might delay the payment to the contractor and conflict with the contract, but provides the owner with a conformation of smooth operation


  • Commissioning agent with BAS metersThe commissioning agent checks the meters installed on the building monitoring system. YRG PhotoCommissioning supports a smooth transition from design into operations by avoiding future change orders. It ensures the equipment is installed per manufacturer’s instructions and aligned with the design intentA written document that details the ideas, concepts, and criteria that are determined by the owner to be important to the success of the project.. It reduces waste of energy and money due to incorrect control settings or system settings that aren’t fully optimized.


  • Meet training requirements for facilities staff and occupants, with verification by the CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements..


  • CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. to revisit the project after 8–10 months of occupancy. Facility managers and owners can use this opportunity to discuss challenges and issues that arose since construction completion. The CxA reviews the maintenance log and confirms the operations and maintenance manual matches with the actual operations.


  • If pursuing IEQc7.2: Thermal Comfort—Verification, including a user survey on thermal comfort issues, the results can be discussed with the CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. to identify any problems. The user survey can be scheduled before the CxA visits to get the results available on time. 


  • Maximize the value of the CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements.’s 10-month visit by having the facilities personnel thoroughly prepare a detailed agenda developed in collaboration with the CxA. Among other things, this will make sure the CxA completes the commissioning plan’s full scope within one visit.

  • USGBC

    Excerpted from LEED 2009 for Core and Shell Development

    EA Credit 3: Enhanced commissioning

    2 Points

    Intent

    To begin the commissioning process early in the design process and execute additional activities after systems performance verification is completed.

    Requirements

    Implement, or have a contract in place to implement, the following additional commissioning process activities in addition to the requirements of EA Prerequisite 1: Fundamental Commissioning of Building Energy Systems and in accordance with the LEED Reference Guide for Green Building Design and Construction, 2009 Edition:

    • Prior to the start of the construction documents phase, designate an independent commissioning authority (CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements.) to lead, review, and oversee the completion of all commissioning process activities.
      • The CxA must have documented commissioning authority experience in at least 2 building projects.
      • The individual serving as the CxA:
        • Must be independent of the work of design and construction.
        • Must not be an employee of the design firm, though he or she may be contracted through them.
        • Must not be an employee of, or contracted through, a contractor or construction manager holding construction contracts.
        • May be a qualified employee or consultant of the owner.
      • The CxA must report results, findings and recommendations directly to the owner.
    • The CxA must conduct, at a minimum, 1 commissioning design review of the owner’s project requirements basis of design, and design documents prior to the midconstruction documents phase and back-check the review comments in the subsequent design submission.
    • The CxA must review contractor submittals applicable to systems being commissioned for compliance with the owner’s project requirements and basis of design. This review must be concurrent with the review of the architect or engineer of record and submitted to the design team and the owner.
    • The CxA or other project team members must develop a systems manual that provides future operating staff the information needed to understand and optimally operate the commissioned systems.
    • The CxA or other project team members must verify that the requirements for training operating personnel and building occupants have been completed.
    • The CxA must be involved in reviewing the operation of the building with operations and maintenance (O&M) staff and occupants within 10 months after substantial completion. A plan for resolving outstanding commissioning-related issues must be included.

    Potential Technologies & Strategies

    Although it is preferable that the CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. be contracted by the owner for the enhanced commissioning credit, the CxA may also be contracted through the design firms or construction management firms not holding construction contracts.

    The LEED Reference Guide for Green Building Design and Construction, 2009 Edition provides detailed guidance on the rigor expected for the following process activities:

    • Commissioning design review.
    • Commissioning submittal review.
    • Systems manual

Publications

Best Practices in Commissioning New Construction

The New Construction Building Commissioning Best Practice is intended to cover the general new construction commissioning process that is applicable to most systems. It is necessarily non-specific in most cases, but where a practice seems unclear by its varied application, more detail is given.


The Cost-Effectiveness of Commissioning New and Existing Building Commercial Buildings: Lessons from 224 Buildings

A meta-analysis of studies of a large sample of commissioned buildings, this paper, which is concerned with national-level energy goals, was presented at the 2005 National Conference on Building Commissioning, and is a shorter form of a study sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy.


Best Practices in Commissioning Existing Buildings

Published by the Building Commissioning Association, this report draws on a number of sets of guidelines to identify the key phases of the commissioning process, and provides a glossary of terms.


Costs and Benefit of Commissioning New and Existing Commercial Buildings

This presentation-format overview of commissioning looks at the reasons for and scope of commissioning, with a focus on the potential for cost savings and avoiding problems.


Stay On-line: Data Center Commissioning

An ASHRAE Journal article, this examines the special challenges of ensuring reliability in mission-critical systems supporting facilities such as data centers. (Mark Hydeman, Reinhard Seidl and Charles Shalley, 2005)


Establishing Commissioning Costs

Offering guidance for estimating commissioning costs during the design and construction phases of a project, this article addresses LEED requirements and special circumstances that can affect the cost of commissioning. (Portland Energy Conservation, 2000; revised 2002)

Web Tools

Establishing Commissioning Fees

This article, which appeared in the ASHRAE Journal, uses data for 19 actual projects to look at commissioning costs in various ways. (Ronald J. Wilkinson, 2000)

Commissioning Agents

Use these templates to find and assess a commissioning agent for your project.

Owner's Project Requirements (OPR)

The OPROwner's project requirements (OPR) is a written document that details the ideas, concepts, and criteria that are determined by the owner to be important to the success of the project. works as the guideline in development of a design that meets the owner’s requirements.

Basis of Design (BOD)

Prepared by the design team, the BODBasis of design (BOD) includes design information necessary to accomplish the owner's project requirements, including system descriptions, indoor environmental quality criteria, design assumptions, and references to applicable codes, standards, regulations, and guidelines. explains through narrative and documentation how the proposed design meets the OPROwner's project requirements (OPR) is a written document that details the ideas, concepts, and criteria that are determined by the owner to be important to the success of the project..

Commissioning Specifications

Incorporate commissioning specifications into Division 1.

Commissioning Plan

The commissioning plan works as the guidebook for commissioning, discussing the roles of key team members, and providing a commissioning schedule, among other requirements.

Commissioning Report

The commissioning report is the final deliverable from the CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements., including reports on all visits, observations and recommendations.

LEED Online Forms: CS-2009 EA

The following links take you to the public, informational versions of the dynamic LEED Online forms for each CS-2009 EA credit. You'll need to fill out the live versions of these forms on LEED
Online
for each credit you hope to earn.

These links are posted by LEEDuser with USGBC's permission. USGBC has certain usage restrictsions for these forms; for more information, visit LEED Online and click "Sample Forms Download."

The following links take you to the public, informational versions of the dynamic LEED Online forms for each CS-2009 EA credit. You'll need to fill out the live versions of these forms on LEED
Online
for each credit you hope to earn.

These links are posted by LEEDuser with USGBC's permission. USGBC has certain usage restrictsions for these forms; for more information, visit LEED Online and click "Sample Forms Download."

Construction Submittal

HardhatDocumentation for this credit is part of the Construction Phase submittal.

32 Comments

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Vivien Fairlamb
Nov 07 2013
LEEDuser Member
791 Thumbs Up

Timing of the post occupancy commissioning

Our project is a C&S project and we have a CXaThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. onboard overseeing the commissioning process during design and construction. However as its a core and shell building we do not yet have tenants who would be around in 10 months to undertake the post occupancy commissioning activities yet the LEED template asks for "Upload EAc3-2. Provide the contract between owner and CxA ensuring CxA involvement post-construction. Financial information may be redacted/omitted."

Is it sufficient to suggest the process that will be gone through once tenants are occupying the building ? - this could be between 2-5 years once the CS project is finished. Or are the USGBC expecting building owners to keep an open ended contract going with the CxA?

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Scott Bowman Principal - Corporate Sustainability Leader, KJWW Engineering Consultants Dec 26 2013 LEEDuser Expert 3760 Thumbs Up

These are two different concepts really. The CS commissioning is to stand alone from the Tenant infill commissioning. So for whatever systems were commissioned as part of the CS certification process, then 10 months after they are operational there should be a post-occupancy review.

Assuming that the Tenants pursue CI, then they would have their own Cx1. Commissioning (Cx) is the process of verifying and documenting that a building and all of its systems and assemblies are planned, designed, installed, tested, operated, and maintained to meet the owner's project requirements. 2. The process of checking the performance of a building against the owner's goals during design, construction, and occupancy. At a minimum, mechanical and electrical equipment are tested, although much more extensive testing may also be included. process to follow through.

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Bob Crowell Vice President / Principal, 2rw Consultants, Inc. Dec 31 2013 LEEDuser Member 21 Thumbs Up

Vivien,
I am working on a project in a similar situation. The owner has asked the CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. to suspend the 10 month review from their contract because the building systems (except electric heaters) are not expected to operate as the building sits largely unconditioned and dark waiting for a tenant.

I do not know the USGBC's stance, but he way I see it, what is the purpose of reviewing the operation of equipment that has been turned off for 10 months?

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Scott Bowman Principal - Corporate Sustainability Leader, KJWW Engineering Consultants Jan 02 2014 LEEDuser Expert 3760 Thumbs Up

Based on your comment Bob, then perhaps the 10 month review for your project could be a conference call related only to the heating. Being C&S is a little different than a typical NC project. The review needs to scale to the need and the systems, just like the Cx1. Commissioning (Cx) is the process of verifying and documenting that a building and all of its systems and assemblies are planned, designed, installed, tested, operated, and maintained to meet the owner's project requirements. 2. The process of checking the performance of a building against the owner's goals during design, construction, and occupancy. At a minimum, mechanical and electrical equipment are tested, although much more extensive testing may also be included. services themselves. Also, we are typically paid in full and come back to finish the review/meeting when appropriate, so the contract is not left open.

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Ronald Dean Sumac Inc.
Aug 12 2013
LEEDuser Member
808 Thumbs Up

Time for EAc3 submittal

Hello,

Is it possible to submit the EAc3 form with the other ones for the Design Review Phase and Construction Review Phase? Or do I have to wait 8-10 months after the building is built to submit it?

Please advice.
Thanks in advance.

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Ronald Dean Sumac Inc. Sep 03 2013 LEEDuser Member 808 Thumbs Up

Hello,
I've asked this question to GBCI, and their response is here:

''Yes, you can receive the LEED certification without waiting for the 8-10 months to pass. As noted in the wording of the Requirements for EAc3, "Implement, or have a contract in place to implement, the following...[emphasis added]" Thus, as long as you have addressed all the requirements that can be completed prior to submittal, you can simply confirm that there is a contract in place to address other (future) elements of the requirements of EAc3. Here is how it is addressed in the EAc3 form, with a checkbox/signatory statement confirming the following:

"The CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. was / will be involved in reviewing the operation of the project building with operations and maintenance (O&M) staff and occupants within 10 months after substantial completion. A plan for resolving outstanding commissioning-related issues was/will be included." ''

I hope this helps.

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Tristan Roberts LEED AP BD+C, Editorial Director – LEEDuser, BuildingGreen, Inc. Nov 04 2013 LEEDuser Moderator

Yes, fortunately, as with the comfort survey in LEED-NC, we don't have to wait for these things to be done to get our certifications!

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Ronald Dean Sumac Inc.
Apr 05 2013
LEEDuser Member
808 Thumbs Up

Contract between Owner and CxA for EAc3 Form in leedonline

From the EAc3 form: ''Provide the contract between owner and CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. ensuring CxA involvement post-construction. Financial information may be redacted/omitted''. So, I have to upload that document.
However, the company where I work (Sustainability Consulting for LEED) offers the Cx service as well, and we have a contract with the Owner for the whole service (LEED Consulting+Enhanced Cx), but we didn't specify who the CxA would be.
So, my question is:
Can I upload the contract we have already signed for the whole service? (btw, in this contract, it is stated the involvement post-construction by my company, but it is not specified who the CxA would be)

OR

Do I have to make a new contract to upload it, but only for the Cx services? (of course specifying who the CxA will be and his involvement post-construction)

Any response will be truly appreciated.
Thanks in advance.

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Tristan Roberts LEED AP BD+C, Editorial Director – LEEDuser, BuildingGreen, Inc. Apr 08 2013 LEEDuser Moderator

I think that your LEED reviewer should be satisfied by seeing the actual contract that is relevant to the project, not a Cx1. Commissioning (Cx) is the process of verifying and documenting that a building and all of its systems and assemblies are planned, designed, installed, tested, operated, and maintained to meet the owner's project requirements. 2. The process of checking the performance of a building against the owner's goals during design, construction, and occupancy. At a minimum, mechanical and electrical equipment are tested, although much more extensive testing may also be included.-specific contract drawn up just to have something for this upload. I would probably explain in a short narrative how this contract fulfills the upload requirement.

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Ronald Dean Sumac Inc. Apr 09 2013 LEEDuser Member 808 Thumbs Up

Thanks for the reply Tristan.
Actually, I also think that my current contract (for the whole service:LEED Consulting + Enhanced Cx1. Commissioning (Cx) is the process of verifying and documenting that a building and all of its systems and assemblies are planned, designed, installed, tested, operated, and maintained to meet the owner's project requirements. 2. The process of checking the performance of a building against the owner's goals during design, construction, and occupancy. At a minimum, mechanical and electrical equipment are tested, although much more extensive testing may also be included.) is OK to upload for EAc3, along with a short narrative specifying the name and the involvement post-construction of the CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements..

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Mike Kros Architect DLR Group
Apr 05 2013
LEEDuser Member
250 Thumbs Up

Multiple CxAs?

Can the commissioning agent listed on the form for EAp1 Fundamental Commissioning be different from the CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. listed on the form for EAc3 Enhanced Commissioning?

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Tristan Roberts LEED AP BD+C, Editorial Director – LEEDuser, BuildingGreen, Inc. Apr 08 2013 LEEDuser Moderator

Mike, that's a deceptively simple question. Nowhere in LEED does it say that your CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. should be the same for EAp1 and EAc3. So I think the correct answer to your quesetion is yes. However, I'd be careful that the tasks in these two credits were divided up carefully.

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Ronald Dean Sumac Inc. Apr 11 2013 LEEDuser Member 808 Thumbs Up

Hello,
I've read in the LEED reference guide, table 2 (page 221) the following: ''The same CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. overseeing the enhanced commissioning tasks must also oversee the fundamental commissioning tasks''.
So, what I understand is that the CxA must be the same for EAp1 and EAc3, even though the CxA name of the forms for these credits are not linked directly.
Hope this helps.

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Susan Walter Sr Project Architect, Wilmot/Sanz Apr 11 2013 LEEDuser Expert 12092 Thumbs Up

You can have two different Cx1. Commissioning (Cx) is the process of verifying and documenting that a building and all of its systems and assemblies are planned, designed, installed, tested, operated, and maintained to meet the owner's project requirements. 2. The process of checking the performance of a building against the owner's goals during design, construction, and occupancy. At a minimum, mechanical and electrical equipment are tested, although much more extensive testing may also be included. agents. We did a CIRCredit Interpretation Ruling. Used by design team members experiencing difficulties in the application of a LEED prerequisite or credit to a project. Typically, difficulties arise when specific issues are not directly addressed by LEED information/guide on this topic in the last year. The owner demanded that the building's design engineering firm's Cx department be involved in the project. They could not be the Enhanced Cx per LEED. The question wasn't if but how. The feed back was that the Enhanced CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. had to lead, review and oversee the other CxA. Set up the responsibility matrix to run things through the Enhanced CxA.

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David Edenburn ESD Consultant Commtech Asia
Oct 04 2012
LEEDuser Member
209 Thumbs Up

Enhanced Cx EP

For exemplary performanceIn LEED, certain credits have established thresholds beyond basic credit achievement. Meeting these thresholds can earn additional points through Innovation in Design (ID) or Innovation in Operations (IO) points. As a general rule of thumb, ID credits for exemplary performance are awarded for doubling the credit requirements and/or achieving the next incremental percentage threshold. However, this rule varies on a case by case basis, so check the credit requirements. for a CS project, we can commission the tenant spaces. We have a project where ALL of the tenant spaces may not be filled for up to 10 years but maybe 50% will be utilized within the first year or two. Is it still OK to upload a contract saying that we will be around to do the tenant Cx1. Commissioning (Cx) is the process of verifying and documenting that a building and all of its systems and assemblies are planned, designed, installed, tested, operated, and maintained to meet the owner's project requirements. 2. The process of checking the performance of a building against the owner's goals during design, construction, and occupancy. At a minimum, mechanical and electrical equipment are tested, although much more extensive testing may also be included. essentially forever? Can there be a cut-off saying we will do x% of the tenant spaces within the 3 years before it becomes an "existing building"?

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David Hubka Director of Operations, Transwestern Sustainability Services Oct 10 2012 LEEDuser Expert 4069 Thumbs Up

C&S projects that require the full scope of Fund. & Enh. commissioning for all tenant spaces may be considered for an innovation point. I think the time frame cutoff, or % of tenant spaces, would be tough for a LEED Review Team to approve for innovation.

They'd most likely require you to be contracted to Cx1. Commissioning (Cx) is the process of verifying and documenting that a building and all of its systems and assemblies are planned, designed, installed, tested, operated, and maintained to meet the owner's project requirements. 2. The process of checking the performance of a building against the owner's goals during design, construction, and occupancy. At a minimum, mechanical and electrical equipment are tested, although much more extensive testing may also be included. (Fund + Enh) every tenant space. All LEED project work that will occur after project submission is considered on it's merits.

Hope this helps!
-dave

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Afonso Cardoso CxA Leaf
Aug 10 2012
Guest
57 Thumbs Up

high efficiency motors

I would like to know if high efficiency motor's verification is part of fundamental commissioning or even enhanced commissioning? If don't, where does it fit? Which credit?

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Tristan Roberts LEED AP BD+C, Editorial Director – LEEDuser, BuildingGreen, Inc. Aug 31 2012 LEEDuser Moderator

Afonso, I believe that something as specific as verifying the specs of a motor would be outside the scope of most Cx1. Commissioning (Cx) is the process of verifying and documenting that a building and all of its systems and assemblies are planned, designed, installed, tested, operated, and maintained to meet the owner's project requirements. 2. The process of checking the performance of a building against the owner's goals during design, construction, and occupancy. At a minimum, mechanical and electrical equipment are tested, although much more extensive testing may also be included. for LEED. The focus would generally be on controls and systems functioning as spec'd. There is not another credit where this fits.

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Magnus Stagnäs Life Cycle Engineer Finnmap Consulting Oy
Nov 29 2011
Guest
288 Thumbs Up

Commissioning innovation point

The reference guide states that CS projects requiring both fundamental and enhanced commissioning for all tenant spaces may be considered for an innovation point. However, the LEED Online form doesn't provide any options for this. Does this mean that we have to provide additional information in the Innovation in Design section to demonstrate the scope of the commissioning process? Also, since this is not an Exemplary Performace credit, we can still earn 3 credits for exemplary performace, right?

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Chris Ladner Partner, Viridian Nov 29 2011 Guest 2123 Thumbs Up

You are correct. The ID point will not be in the Cx1. Commissioning (Cx) is the process of verifying and documenting that a building and all of its systems and assemblies are planned, designed, installed, tested, operated, and maintained to meet the owner's project requirements. 2. The process of checking the performance of a building against the owner's goals during design, construction, and occupancy. At a minimum, mechanical and electrical equipment are tested, although much more extensive testing may also be included. credit form. You will enter it under the ID point section and it will need to comply with all of the ID point requirements.

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BH .
Mar 11 2011
LEEDuser Member
864 Thumbs Up

EAc3 Exemplary Performance

Thanks for all descriptions and comments related to differences beween EAp1 and EAc3. I`m still confused about Exemplary PerformanceIn LEED, certain credits have established thresholds beyond basic credit achievement. Meeting these thresholds can earn additional points through Innovation in Design (ID) or Innovation in Operations (IO) points. As a general rule of thumb, ID credits for exemplary performance are awarded for doubling the credit requirements and/or achieving the next incremental percentage threshold. However, this rule varies on a case by case basis, so check the credit requirements. and it`s "comprehensive envelope commissioning". I will greatefull if someone could describe it (how to achieve extra EP point and what CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. should do) in some other words than it has been written in LEED manual.

For now I`m guessing that its about enhancing the exterior thermography and heat flow control.

Thanks

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Tom Dietsche LEED Project Manager, Lilker EMO Energy Solutions Aug 16 2012 LEEDuser Member 138 Thumbs Up

Also posted in the NC forum for EAc3...
I found the following positive USGBC interpretation/ruling on envelope Cx1. Commissioning (Cx) is the process of verifying and documenting that a building and all of its systems and assemblies are planned, designed, installed, tested, operated, and maintained to meet the owner's project requirements. 2. The process of checking the performance of a building against the owner's goals during design, construction, and occupancy. At a minimum, mechanical and electrical equipment are tested, although much more extensive testing may also be included.. It is based on the NIBS Guideline 3 standard. https://www.usgbc.org/leedinterpretations/LISearch.aspx?liaccessid=2302

WWW search results included a case study: http://www.usgbc-illinois.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/09/USGBC-Cx-11_091...

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Tatjana Ernst LEED AP; Dipl.-Ing.
Dec 10 2010
Guest
555 Thumbs Up

required documentation

we have an CS-Building with an DES-System.

we want to submit CS-Certification in March 2011
the owner will transfer the Core and Shell building in March 2011
but all lot of technical devices will be install in the tenant construction phase.

Also the DES-System will be only finished after March 2011 and the Comissioning Phase for the system will be in Juli 2011. So do i understand it right that it is ok to upload a contract for the contractor for the DES-system that they will do the commissioning later. Actually they are really interested and also want to submit us the documentation and so on but they will only finish it in Juli 2011 and the owner wants to finish the certification earlier.
thanks a lot.

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Tristan Roberts LEED AP BD+C, Editorial Director – LEEDuser, BuildingGreen, Inc. Dec 28 2010 LEEDuser Moderator

Yes, your plan would work, to the best of my knowledge.

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Chris Ladner Partner, Viridian Dec 28 2010 Guest 2123 Thumbs Up

The key is to have all of the responsibilities of the Cx1. Commissioning (Cx) is the process of verifying and documenting that a building and all of its systems and assemblies are planned, designed, installed, tested, operated, and maintained to meet the owner's project requirements. 2. The process of checking the performance of a building against the owner's goals during design, construction, and occupancy. At a minimum, mechanical and electrical equipment are tested, although much more extensive testing may also be included., the scope of the Cx activities, and the timing of the Cx activities covered in the Cx contract and associated LEED templates. Make sure all of the systems to be commissioned are clearly defined.

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Xavi B
Nov 13 2010
Guest
2251 Thumbs Up

When to submit documentation

If you are enhanced commissioning a building, are you required to wait until the 8-10 months for the operation review, in order to submit the documents to GBCI?

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Tristan Roberts LEED AP BD+C, Editorial Director – LEEDuser, BuildingGreen, Inc. Nov 16 2010 LEEDuser Moderator

No, you're committing to following through on that but you submit the required documentation along with all other documentation for the final review.

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Regina Ng
Oct 07 2010
LEEDuser Member
930 Thumbs Up

Re: Enhanced commissioning for DES

In the latest guidance issued by USGBC on DES, enhanced commissioning is required for DES system even the upstream equipmentUpstream equipment consists of all heating or cooling systems, equipment, and controls that are associated with a district energy system but are not part of the project building's thermal connection or do not interface with the district energy system. It includes the central energy plant and all transmission and distribution equipment associated with transporting the thermal energy to the project building and site.. How can this be practically carried out in the event that the DES is operated by a third party operating the DES commercially. Does the enhanced CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. appointed by the building owner have to commission the equipment in the DES?

In my project, the operator of the DES is pretty secretive about the actual operating conditions of the DES. I just foresee that it will be really difficult to commission their system if I interpret the guidance requirement correctly.

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Chris Ladner Partner, Viridian Oct 17 2010 Guest 2123 Thumbs Up

The enhanced commissioning requirements for DES can be achieved if the DES has been commissioned in the past three years (carefully read the guidance on page 8-9 of http://www.usgbc.org/ShowFile.aspx?DocumentID=7671). If this is not the case, you can oversee the DES Cx1. Commissioning (Cx) is the process of verifying and documenting that a building and all of its systems and assemblies are planned, designed, installed, tested, operated, and maintained to meet the owner's project requirements. 2. The process of checking the performance of a building against the owner's goals during design, construction, and occupancy. At a minimum, mechanical and electrical equipment are tested, although much more extensive testing may also be included. activities that are performed by the owner. The word oversee is a bit loose and open to interpretation. This would probably still require you to assist with the OPROwner's project requirements (OPR) is a written document that details the ideas, concepts, and criteria that are determined by the owner to be important to the success of the project./BODBasis of design (BOD) includes design information necessary to accomplish the owner's project requirements, including system descriptions, indoor environmental quality criteria, design assumptions, and references to applicable codes, standards, regulations, and guidelines., review the Cx Plan, and review the functional testing and final report for the DES. That may be too much involvement for the DES operator.

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James Thornton Project Manager, Commissioning Group ccrd
Jun 30 2010
Guest
150 Thumbs Up

Enhanced Commissioning

I have a question and a comment. The question first:

Is the cost per square foot fee mentioned in the article for Enhanced Cx1. Commissioning (Cx) is the process of verifying and documenting that a building and all of its systems and assemblies are planned, designed, installed, tested, operated, and maintained to meet the owner's project requirements. 2. The process of checking the performance of a building against the owner's goals during design, construction, and occupancy. At a minimum, mechanical and electrical equipment are tested, although much more extensive testing may also be included. intended to represent a cost to do both, or just the added cost to do Enhanced? I am also curious what part of the country this fee is being obtained.

My comment:
Regarding the matrix graphic included in the article, Cx professionals typically do not perform the functional testing, though they may find themselves demonstrating how to do parts of a test to a installing contractor, if it has some particularly difficult requirements. They will typically verify the functional testing, once it has been initially completed by the installing contractors. This verification is usually done by witnessing a repeat of the tests, and in some instances directly participating in measuring the outcomes. The leading members of the committee which wrote ASHRAE Guideline 0-2005, "The Commisioning Process" expected the process be applied in this fashion.

I suppose one could have the CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. perform the functional testing, but there is a significant incentive lost if the installing contractor is not required to complete a successful testing cycle first. The incentive is simply that the installing contractor will want to only do the test once, and not be subjected to repeated callbacks because the installation is not working as the Engineer intended. If a third party is doing all of the testing without the contractor's involvement, there is no financial incentive for the contractor to make certain his installation works as intended. The retainage held on most projects is typically not enough to insure the contractor will return to correct problems. The Cx process applied with the oversight of a qualified commissioning provider limits errors in both design and construction by focusing the entire project team on delivering quality to the owner. That role does not exist in most project teams.

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Tristan Roberts LEED AP BD+C, Editorial Director – LEEDuser, BuildingGreen, Inc. Jul 01 2010 LEEDuser Moderator

James, I would think of enhanced Cx1. Commissioning (Cx) is the process of verifying and documenting that a building and all of its systems and assemblies are planned, designed, installed, tested, operated, and maintained to meet the owner's project requirements. 2. The process of checking the performance of a building against the owner's goals during design, construction, and occupancy. At a minimum, mechanical and electrical equipment are tested, although much more extensive testing may also be included. as including or subsuming fundamental Cx, so the fee quoted is for enhanced, but understand that it includes the key components of fundamental. The fee was found in a national study—I don't know which regions it covered.

Your comment on functional testing is a great one and a fair critique of the language we chose to use. I will modify it to be more nuanced.

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James Thornton Project Manager, Commissioning Group, ccrd Jul 05 2010 Guest 150 Thumbs Up

Tristan,
Thank you for your response. I appreciate the clarification.

We usually structure our fee proposals listing the LEED Fundamental Cx1. Commissioning (Cx) is the process of verifying and documenting that a building and all of its systems and assemblies are planned, designed, installed, tested, operated, and maintained to meet the owner's project requirements. 2. The process of checking the performance of a building against the owner's goals during design, construction, and occupancy. At a minimum, mechanical and electrical equipment are tested, although much more extensive testing may also be included. Services as a separate set of services from Enhanced Cx so the owner or architect understands he is receiving two distinctly different set of services. Depending upon the nature of the proposal request, we either provide a lump sum for both, or we provide separate pricing. Some owners do not understand the value of Enhanced Cx and just want what satisfies the LEED Cx prerequisite.

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