NC-2009 EAp1: Fundamental Commissioning of Building Energy Systems

  • 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 and 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.

    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.

    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 the CxA to 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.

    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 or fundamental commissioning

    LEED divides the commissioning process into two parts, with the commissioning process for both enhanced and fundamental starting at or before design documents. 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 CxA, 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 typically $0.90–$1.20/ft2 for LEED-NC and LEED for Schools projects. These fees represent a 25%–40% cost increase over fundamental commissioning, while providing almost double the scope of work. All projects benefit with enhanced commissioning, though it can be more obvious for large or more 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.

    Scope of work for LEED Commissioning credits

  • FAQs for EAp1

    For a building with individual systems per unit, does every single system need to be commissioned?

    ASHRAE Guideline 0 and 1 provides information about the use of sampling in such a case to balance commissioning rigor with cost-effectiveness.

    Can the CxA authority be a member of the design or construction team?

    For fundamental commissioning and project area less than 50,000 ft2, the commissioning agent can be an employee of the design or construction firm. For enhanced commissioning and projects larger than 50,000 ft2, CxA must be independent of both teams. The CxA must be appointed by the Owner.

    What type of certification is the commissioning agent required to have?

    USGBC does not require any certifications at this time. The commissioning agent must demonstrate experience on two prior projects.

    What level of authority does the CxA have towards correcting inaccurate or erroneous construction?

    The CxA cannot directly authorize construction change orders or changes to the design documents. The commissioning agent’s responsibility is to inform the project Owner of findings and their effect on building performance. The Owner will choose a proper course of action.

    The comissioning process turned up a few issues with the commissioned systems that should be corrected. Do we have to correct these issues and include documentation of that as part of our LEED documentation?

    According to GBCI, any significant issues uncovered during the commissioning process should be noted in the required commissioning report. A narrative and/or supporting documentation must be provided to summarize the corrected issues and outline any outstanding issues, as well as include detailed information on the plan for correcting any outstanding issues. However, evidence that the follow-up was completed and systems corrected is not be required.

    Our project is considering LEED after construction has begun. Can we meet the EAp1 requirements and thus be eligible for LEED certification?

    Maybe. LEED Interpretations #2389 issued 1/23/2009,  #2401 issued 2/9/2009, and #5277 issued 9/18/2007 all speak to this, and projects in this situation should review them for details. Some projects have been able to “fast track” fundamental commissioning, while other projects may be too far along.

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.)


  • The cost of fundamental commissioning services may vary from $0.35/ft2 to $0.75/ft2 depending on project type, variety of uses, complexity of systems and location of the project to name a few parameters. You may find it most helpful to get multiple proposal of fees and compare the scope to make sure everything required by LEED is covered without additional tasks.

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.

Design Development

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  • 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.

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.

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.

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 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.


  • 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. 

  • USGBC

    Excerpted from LEED 2009 for New Construction and Major Renovations

    EA Prerequisite 1: Fundamental commissioning of building energy systems

    Required

    Intent

    To verify that the project’s energy-related systems are installed, calibrated and perform according to the owner’s project requirements, basis of design and construction documents.

    Benefits of commissioning include reduced energy use, lower operating costs, reduced contractor callbacks, better building documentation, improved occupant productivity and verification that the systems perform in accordance with the owner’s project requirements.

    Requirements

    The following commissioning process activities must be completed by the project team:

    • Designate an individual as the 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 the 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 project’s design and construction management, though the CxA may be an employee of any firms providing those services. The CxA may be a qualified employee or consultant of the owner.
      • The CxA must report results, findings and recommendations directly to the owner.
      • For projects smaller than 50,000 gross square feet (4,500 gross square meters), the CxA may be a qualified person on the design or construction teams who has the required experience.
    • The owner must document the owner’s project requirements. The design team must develop the basis of design. The CxA must review these documents for clarity and completeness. The owner and design team must be responsible for updates to their respective documents.
    • Develop and incorporate commissioning requirements into the construction documents.
    • Develop and implement a commissioning plan.
    • Verify the installation and performance of the systems to be commissioned.
    • Complete a summary commissioning report.
    Commissioned Systems

    Commissioning process activities must be completed for the following energy-related systems, at a minimum (if they are installed as part of the core and shell project):

    • Heating, ventilating, air conditioning and refrigeration (HVAC&R) systems (mechanical and passive) and associated controls.
    • Lighting and daylighting controls.
    • Domestic hot water systems.
    • Renewable energy systems (e.g. wind, solar).
    Credit substitution available

    You may use the LEED v4 version of this credit on v2009 projects. For more information check out this article.

    Potential Technologies & Strategies

    Engage 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. as early as possible in the design process. Determine the owner’s project requirements, develop and maintain a commissioning plan for use during design and construction and incorporate commissioning requirements in bid documents. Assemble the commissioning team, and prior to occupancy verify the performance of energy consuming systems. Complete the commissioning reports with recommendations prior to accepting the
    commissioned systems.

    Owners are encouraged to seek out qualified individuals to lead the commissioning process. Qualified individuals are identified as those who possess a high level of experience in the following areas:

    • Energy systems design, installation and operation
    • Commissioning planning and process management
    • Hands-on field experience with energy systems performance, interaction, start-up, balancing, testing,troubleshooting, operation and maintenance procedures
    • Energy systems automation control knowledge

    Owners are encouraged to consider including water-using systems, building envelope systems, and other systems in the scope of the commissioning plan as appropriate. The building envelope is an important component of a facility that impacts energy consumption, occupant comfort and indoor air quality. While this prerequisite does not require building envelope commissioning, an owner can achieve significant financial savings and reduce risk of poor indoor air quality by including it in the commissioning process.

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

    • Owner’s project requirements
    • Basis of design
    • Commissioning plan
    • Commissioning specification
    • Performance verification documentation
    • Commissioning report

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.


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)


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.


ASHRAE Journal, February 2000: Establishing Commissioning Fees

This article, featured in ASHRAE Journal, February 2000, reviews the costs associated with commissioning of new building mechanical and electrical systems, using data from 19 facilities. Its purpose is to provide a means to estimate and justify commissioning costs.

Technical Guides

Whole Building Design Guide (Building Commissioning Association)

This webpage provides an overview of commissioning drivers, benefits, goals, and principles and general commissioning guides, standards, and resources.


Applications Team, Energy-Efficiency Design Applications: Measurement & Verification Documents

This website provides a list of resources to help teams implement an M&V program, the content ranges from guidelines to checklists.


International Performance Measurement & Verification Protocol, Volume I

IPMVPThe International Performance Measurement and Verification Protocol (IPMVP) provides best-practice protocol for measurement and verification of new construction. This standard is referenced in LEED's measurement and verification credits. is the standard in which this credit is based on and these documents should be used in designing the M&V system and plan.


ASHRAE Guideline 0-2005, The Commissioning Process

This technical guideline was put together by technical committees at ASHRAE.


International Performance Measurement & Verification Protocol, Volume III

IPMVPThe International Performance Measurement and Verification Protocol (IPMVP) provides best-practice protocol for measurement and verification of new construction. This standard is referenced in LEED's measurement and verification credits. is the standard in which this credit is based on and these documents should be used in designing the M&V system and plan.


Building Commissioning Handbook, 2nd Edition

The handbook on best practices to follow during commissioning is published by the Building Commissioning Association.


M&V Guidelines: Measurement and Verification for Federal Energy Projects

These M&V guidelines are written for federal buildings but could be helpful for many projects.

Web Tools

Cx Assistant

A commissioning tool from Energy Design Resources that can estimate costs and develop sample scopes, 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. documents, BODs, and specifications.


California Commissioning Collaborative

The CCC develops cost effective programs, tools, techniques and a service delivery infrastructure to encourage the use of the building commissioning process in new and existing buildings.


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 Toolkit for Small Buildings

A free resource from the State of California, with commiissioning templates you can use.

Organizations

Building Commissioning Association

The Building Commissioning Association makes available a number of publications on commissioning.


Oregon Department of Energy, Conservation Division

The Oregon Dept. of Energy has assembled commissioning case studies of a number of Oregon buildings.


The National Environmental Balancing Bureau

NEBB offers publications, seminars, and certification of commissioning agents.


The AABC Commissioning Group

AABC offers training and certification of commissioning agents and publishes 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. Journal.

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 Agents

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

Construction Submittal

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

LEED Online Forms: NC-2009 EA

The following links take you to the public, informational versions of the dynamic LEED Online forms for each NC-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.

Version 4 forms (newest):

Version 3 forms:

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."

241 Comments

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Rory Cousino Commissioning Group Manager Four Seasons Environmental
Aug 22 2014
Guest
36 Thumbs Up

Contract through Design Team - conflicting information

I am going to ask a question that is probably been answered before - but I cannot find the simple answer. Can 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 through / to the Design Team? It appears from the FAQs section on this page (Second Question Titled: “Can the CxA authority be a member of the design or construction team?”) I see the statement that “the CxA must be appointed by the Owner.”

However, I also read on page 221 of the LEED Reference Guidebook Edition 2009 (Timeline & Team section of EAc3 – Enhanced Commissioning STEP 2 – directly above Table 2) the statement ““For projects pursuing EA Credit 3, Enhanced Commissioning, the CxA may not be an employee of the design firm but may be contracted through this firm.” This appears to be conflicting information. Can the CXA be contracted to the design team or not?

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jorge torres coto Building Systems Commissioning Engineer, Empirical Engineering, LLC Aug 22 2014 LEEDuser Member 353 Thumbs Up

We have been employed through various entities on projects (owner, design firm, even contractor). To avoid any confusion we do a small write up with the entities involved (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. firm, Owner, and holder of CxA contract) and have all of them sign the document stating that for contractual simplicity X company subcontracted the CxA firm, but that the "direct line of communication" is between the CxA firm and the Owner. This has worked with the GBCI previously. This clearly meets the intent of the credits in question. Though you never know with the GBCI, ha ha!

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Scott Bowman Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Aug 25 2014 LEEDuser Expert 5389 Thumbs Up

Yes, 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. can be contracted through the design team, normally the architect. A recent LI also allows contract through a contractor if the owner requires a single contract (reversing an earlier interpretation).

Jorge, you are doing exactly what I have recommended several times. Clearly diagraming the relationship is a great idea and including the contract that states the communication goes direct to the owner.

It has been on my to-do list to talk with Tristan to update the FAQ, as I agree it can cause confusion.

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André Harms Ecolution Consulting
Jul 14 2014
LEEDuser Member
10 Thumbs Up

CxA Experience and energy systems

Hello, I would greatly appreciate some guidance on the below four queries:

Can 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. currently on the second required project under the supervision of a suitably experienced senior CxA take on a third project as the main (or only) CxA if the second project has not been completed but is scheduled to be completed well in advance of the third one?

Also, will the manufacturing refrigeration systems for an ice cream factory undergoing LEED certification and Cx have to be commissioned; I ask as these are very bespoke and specialised systems but obviously they are a huge energy consumer with probably potential for savings and improved quality.

Then I wanted to know how a PV plant, supplying three projects of a district certification will need to be handled in terms of its Cx. The three buildings/projects are commissioned by different parties; will only one of them have to handle the PV system?

Lastly, will the water conservation at a project undergoing LEED certification and Cx have to be commissioned due to their energy systems, pumps and controls?

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Scott Bowman Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Jul 14 2014 LEEDuser Expert 5389 Thumbs Up

Lots of questions, so in order:

I think that 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. that has been working with a mentor on two projects, perhaps doing most of the hands on activities under the direction of the more experienced person, would be fine to then submit those two projects on a third to take on the role.

No, the ice cream production systems would not need to be included 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. for the project, as it is totally process oriented. Typically these systems are already heavily commissioned since they want the product to be right! While the energy model must include this load, the scope of the Cx does not.

The district PV plant is kind of unique. In a way it could be defined as a DES, which does require the “plant” to be commissioned within 5 years of the project (but I am saying that from memory, so would need to be confirmed). My recommendation would be for each project to Cx the connection to the plant, which I assume will be pretty darn simple. Then someone will need to commission the PV plant and inverters and distribution system, and all three projects can then submit that or at least have it ready in case there is a question.

Yes, any water conservation system or rainwater capture, even automatic faucets, needs to be commissioned. If there is any pumping or controls related to this, then it really needs to be reviewed. My experience with these systems for rainwater capture is they can be fairly complex and need adjustment to function properly to maintain water quality and pressure as the system is very dynamic based on use.

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André Harms Ecolution Consulting Jul 14 2014 LEEDuser Member 10 Thumbs Up

Hello Scott,

Thanks so much for the prompt and detailed reply.

I just wanted to clarify the first point:
Whilst I agree with you that it should be fine, is the timing not possibly an issue? The second project still being ongoing as the third commences with the mentor not being available for the third at all; is there a way for me to confirm that this is acceptable or do you think the risk is minimal?

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Scott Bowman Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Jul 17 2014 LEEDuser Expert 5389 Thumbs Up

Anything could be a possible issue, but I have not seen significant verification from GBCI at this point. You can certainly request a conference call with GBCI reviewer team. That can take a week or so, but they could very well give you direction.

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jorge torres coto Building Systems Commissioning Engineer, Empirical Engineering, LLC Aug 22 2014 LEEDuser Member 353 Thumbs Up

If the process equipment part of the energy simulation, AND there is an attempt to acquire savings from this process, then it has to be commissioned since every has to be equal through ALL credits. If that is the case, I suggest you stick with whomever is doing start-up and adjusting of the refrigeration, utilizing their process documentation. This should cover you, and save the contractors from doubling efforts. Scott is correct in stating that these process systems have extensive testing and adjusting (most of the time).
We have done many 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. projects at industrial facilities and talk with whomever is doing the energy simulation and facilities to make sure we are all on the same page regarding what is included in each credit.

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André Harms Ecolution Consulting Aug 25 2014 LEEDuser Member 10 Thumbs Up

Thanks for the clarification Jorge, I will check that with the energy modeller about this.
It has also become apparent that a secondary circuit of the process refrigeration plant will provide the chilled water through a heat exchanger to the HVAC distribution system for space cooling.
Do I now have to commission the refrigeration as you suggest?
Similarly with the generation of hot water for processes provides warm water via a hear exchanger to the HVAC distribution for space heating system. How would you proceed there?

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jorge torres coto Building Systems Commissioning Engineer, Empirical Engineering, LLC Aug 25 2014 LEEDuser Member 353 Thumbs Up

If no savings is being claimed on the generation side of the HX (cooling and/or heating) I would look at the heat exchanger similar to a Chiller and/or Boiler. Make sure it meets mandatory requirements (balancing valves, motorized isolation valves, etc. if you have more than one unit in parallel), and only 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 HVAC side of the HX. I would at least make sure the connections have everything necessary on the process side to be able to start-up, balance, test & troubleshoot, since the primary side will have an impact on the secondary side.
Now, if savings are being claimed on the primary side (process) I would include it as part of the Cx Process. If that is the case, your best option is to work in unison with the Process side Contractor. It is possible that the refrigeration system may be taking credit, since baseline criteria exists for refrigeration systems in the LEED for Retail Guide.

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Scott Bowman Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Aug 25 2014 LEEDuser Expert 5389 Thumbs Up

I mostly agree with Jorge, but from an energy modeling stand point, you may have just defined a District Energy System, ie the chiller or refrigeration equipment that is making the "cold" is no longer in the building part of the system. This could have significant ramifications on the savings. The input of cold water is now the same for both the baseline and design cases, so if you were using a chiller that is better than what Appendix G requires, you could be leaving some savings on the table.

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Felipe Martinez
Jul 11 2014
Guest
4 Thumbs Up

CxA in projects over 50000

Can 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. in a project over 50000 ft^2 be someone from the MEPFP design team?

Thank you in advance.

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Scott Bowman Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Jul 11 2014 LEEDuser Expert 5389 Thumbs Up

Kind of...I need to talk to Tristan about clarifying the above FAQ a little, as the big issue related to the Design Firm doing 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. between over 50k is responsible design on the team.

Under 50k, an employee with design responsibilities (and required experience of course) can do the Fundamental Cx. Over 50k, an employee of the architect or engineer can do the Fundamental Cx, but must be "disinterested"

Coincidentally, KJWW just had this come up on a project, and we were asked to document that the person we had doing the Cx was indeed disinterested, i.e. had no design role. It was easy for us to show this because of our separate commissioning team, but that was the first time I can remember even being asked.

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David Hubka Director - Operations Transwestern Sustainability Services
Jun 23 2014
LEEDuser Expert
813 Thumbs Up

What sets precedence - project role of owner or designer?

The project is over 50,000 square feet and we are the owner and commissioning authority and designer of record.

What commissioning services are we allowed to provide, fundamental or enhanced?

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David Hubka Director - Operations, Transwestern Sustainability Services Jun 26 2014 LEEDuser Expert 813 Thumbs Up

found it!

LI #10278 answered my question.

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Scott Bowman Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Jun 26 2014 LEEDuser Expert 5389 Thumbs Up

Sorry David, have not been keeping up! If you are the owner, and have qualified staff, then you can certainly do enhanced commissioning. Our firm project was not as large, but I performed those functions.

The fun part is one Principal (me) telling another Principal (the CFO) that changes should be made!

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David Hubka Director - Operations, Transwestern Sustainability Services Jun 26 2014 LEEDuser Expert 813 Thumbs Up

No worries Scott, I am sure you are plenty busy, (quite honestly I do not know how Marcus Sheffer keeps up with all the energy modeling questions).

You hit the nail on the head with the Principal to Principal comment. This specific project is our 50,000+ sf corporate office that pursued LEED CI. We needed to be very delicate when delivering our design review comments to our executive team. :)

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Melissa Elkins Sustainability Coordinator Community Food Co-op
Jun 12 2014
LEEDuser Member
17 Thumbs Up

clarification question on credit

Our Engineering firm didn't include our water heating system in the original commissioning report, so our credit needs to be clarified - they did conduct a functional test so I'm wondering if I just need to attach a receipt from the installer for the credit? The functional test is already uploaded. Thanks!

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Scott Bowman Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Jun 13 2014 LEEDuser Expert 5389 Thumbs Up

So, I am going to assume that you submitted and got a request from the reviewer to clarify this item. The Commissioning Agent then did commission the Domestic Hot Water heater, and has updated the report accordingly.

Loading the test should be sufficient, but adding a narrative of the corrective action taken would be good as well.

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CT G
Jun 03 2014
LEEDuser Member
118 Thumbs Up

Electric instantaneous water heater

Hi,

The design team is specifying an electric instantaneous water heater on a project we are working with. The project is located in Argentina.

Does this kind of water heater have any minimum performance requirement?

Any hints are welcomed.

Regards,
Anderson

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Scott Bowman Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Jun 05 2014 LEEDuser Expert 5389 Thumbs Up

This is actually more complex that it might appear. The savings on instantaneous heaters is related to the reduction in standby storage losses, and can reduce costs related to piping and other costs. However, there are very specific performance requirements for every model, and some are better than others. There are so many coming into the market, I fully expect some advances in technology and controls, but one thing to consider is "you get what you pay for." If you can get an example, or find one that is installed, take a look.

So, there are two factors that must be commissioned. First, the flow of the lavatory or sink must match the heater. There have been several instances where the aerator does not match the flow requirement, ie too low, and the unit either does not work or the temperature is way too high.

That comes to the second factor, temperature. There are some industry standards, and often the AHJ will have criteria too. Some units are adjustable and control the output to the lav (good) and others are dependent on the flow and cold water temperature, so will not always have a consistent temperature (bad).

If you have one heater with one sink/lav, it is easy, and while a little more first cost, this is my current recommendation based on past experience.

But if you have one heater for multiple outlets, and there are some manufacturers that say they can do this (to reduce costs), the complexity increases dramatically, as does the functional testing. Our experience with this has not been good, either from a design side or a commissioning side.

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CT G Jun 27 2014 LEEDuser Member 118 Thumbs Up

Dear Scott Bowman,
Thanks for your reply.

Our doubt is if the electric instantaneous water heater, or the electric boiler water heater, have to comply with ASHRAE 90.1-2007 or are exempt?

Regards,
Anderson

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Scott Bowman Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Jun 27 2014 LEEDuser Expert 5389 Thumbs Up

I do not have 2007 handy, but took a look at 2004. These would fall under Service Water Heating. There are required efficiencies listed for instantaneous water heaters, and they reference National Appliance Energy Conservation Act of 1987. There are required controls for all heaters, and defined temperatures.

So the answer is yes, they must comply with 90.1. I think you should get a copy of the standard and go from there.

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CT G Jul 02 2014 LEEDuser Member 118 Thumbs Up

But it seems that the standard does not require any efficiencies for Electric instantaneous or boiler, just for fossil fuel ones.

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Scott Bowman Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Jul 07 2014 LEEDuser Expert 5389 Thumbs Up

That could sure be true, I do not have the standard handy. Basically, electrical heaters are by definition 100% efficient, although there are still standby losses and true conversion of electricity into hot water sure is not 100%. My recommendation would be to focus on the controls, that is what makes or breaks an instantaneous heater.

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Catalina Caballero Sustainability Coordinator JALRW Eng. Group Inc.
Apr 24 2014
LEEDuser Member
2259 Thumbs Up

Healthcare vs NC - Fundamental Commissioning

Hello,

I'm looking into the difference between Healthcare and New Construction Fundamental Commissioning for a project but I have not been able to find anything related to that. Can you help me find this information?

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Scott Bowman Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Apr 26 2014 LEEDuser Expert 5389 Thumbs Up

You need to purchase the HC Supplemental Guide for v2009, and it has specific information that is either changed or different for HC.

Under EAc1, there really is no difference for Fundamental. There is some language encouraging expanding the scope to include the complex and critical systems that are typical for this kind of building, which we encourage as well. They do not mention the electrical and emergency power systems, and we have found that is super critical in a hospital…we recommend doing black out tests before opening as the only real way to know that everything is doing what it is supposed to.

The big change for v2009 and HC is in EAc3, Enhanced. This is the first introduction to envelope commissioning that is now included in v4. In this case you must do the building systems portion, then you can get an additional point for envelope. In my opinion, and we do not offer the service so this is not self-serving, envelope commissioning is incredibly important and should be used on all projects!

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Mohamed Abd ElHameed
Apr 09 2014
Guest
45 Thumbs Up

Contract between the Owner and the CxA

For pursuing EAc3, the contract between the owner and 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. ensuring CxA involvement in post-construction shall be uploaded through LEED Online credit form. In case that the CxA is a qualified full-time employee of the owner, is it suffecient to upload the CxA resume?

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Scott Bowman Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Apr 13 2014 LEEDuser Expert 5389 Thumbs Up

This question comes up quite often, and the solution is quite simple. Since the template for EAp1 already requires 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 enter the required experience, you do not HAVE to submit a resume. Under EAc3, for the contract, I would upload a letter from the Owner, very short, saying that the CxA is a full time employee, that they comply with the required experience, and that they will conduct the 10 month warranty review. Done! Basically this is a commitment on the part of the Owner to do the 10 month review, just like a contract is a commitment that an independent CxA was hired to do the review.

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Jatuwat Varodompun Dr Green Building Soultion
Apr 04 2014
LEEDuser Member
1172 Thumbs Up

Commissioning of a factory machine

Does it need to include Machines (to produce goods) in the scope LEED 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.? Such machines is complex and not considerred as typical energy related system of a building like HVAC, lighting, PV, and DHWDomestic hot water (DHW) is water used for food preparation, cleaning and sanitation and personal hygiene, but not heating..

Thanks

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Scott Bowman Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Apr 13 2014 LEEDuser Expert 5389 Thumbs Up

No, process equipment or manufacturing machines do not need to be commissioned. While they definitely use energy, they are not part of the building systems. They are systems contained within the building. Most of the industrial clients we work with do commission their process equipment to an extreme level anyway…they have to!

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Omar Katanani
Mar 28 2014
LEEDuser Member
7772 Thumbs Up

Commissioning stand-by energy sources

Dear All,

Do stand-by electricity generators need to be commissioned as part of this prerequisite? Note that these aren't modeled in the Energy Model of EAprerequisite2 since they are not the principal source of electricity.

Thanks!

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jorge torres coto Building Systems Commissioning Engineer, Empirical Engineering, LLC Mar 28 2014 LEEDuser Member 353 Thumbs Up

Only systems that are working or would work under NORMAL OPERATION are required to be commissioned.

Though if any equipment (HVAC or other-wise) is required to operate under emergency power it should be under the functional testing as so (i.e. stairwell pressurization fans, smoke evacuation fans, etc.)

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Scott Bowman Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Mar 31 2014 LEEDuser Expert 5389 Thumbs Up

Just to put a finer point on this, if there is a system that ONLY runs during an emergency situation, then LEED would not require it to be testing. Frankly these systems must be commissioned, normally as a requirement of the AHJ, and we always tell our clients this is the one system that you do not drop out of a scope of work! If a system or unit is required to have a mode of operation during emergency, then that mode must be tested as part of the FPT.

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Rick Alfandre Principal Alfandre Architecture
Dec 20 2013
LEEDuser Member
302 Thumbs Up

Fundamental Commissioning Rainwater Harvesting System...

Our current project will have a rainwater containment system that will be connected to our domestic water supply to provide water for toilet flushing and irrigation.

Under fundamental commissioning, would this system be required to be part of the commissioned systems?

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Scott Bowman Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Dec 20 2013 LEEDuser Expert 5389 Thumbs Up

Yes, I believe so. While it is not expressly listed in EAp1, there is mention in the WE credits that these kinds of systems do use energy and should be included in the commissioning scope. Take a look at the Reference Guide.

Also, these kinds of systems can be complex, and there are regulatory issues related to water quality and all sorts of controls that must work together. This is why we commission buildings in the first place, so we always include this in our scope when we are 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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Rick Alfandre Principal Alfandre Architecture
Dec 13 2013
LEEDuser Member
302 Thumbs Up

Commissioning Agent Qualifications

Qualifications for 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. state they must have documented commissioning authority on at least 2 building projects.

Is there any commissioning authority experience outside of LEED CxA experience that can qualify a person to commission a project under 50,000 sf?

We are looking for guidance as to the extent of experience required to perform fundamental Commisioning services for our project.

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Scott Bowman Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Dec 13 2013 LEEDuser Expert 5389 Thumbs Up

The wording is “commissioning authority”, not that it has to be a LEED project. Our firm does a lot of commissioning, and still only a little over half are on projects that are also seeking LEED certification. So we have staff work on several projects, both LEED and not, under an experienced 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., then when they are ready, we name them as the CxA, and they can show the requisite qualifications.

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Valentin Grimaud Thermal Engineer TERAO Green Building Engineering
Dec 02 2013
LEEDuser Member
962 Thumbs Up

LEED consultant as CxA?

Dear all,

A simple question: we are the LEED consultant for a project, which is larger than 50000sqft. But we are directly contracted by the Owner. We solely manage the certification, thus are independant from the design team and the construction team.
Can we also do 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.?

Thank you,

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Scott Bowman Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Dec 02 2013 LEEDuser Expert 5389 Thumbs Up

LI 5479 made 02/07/2005 addressed this and indicated that LEED Consultants can be 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., at least for v2.0 and v2.1. As far as I know, there have been many LEED Consultants that have done the commissioning if they have qualified staff, since you must meet the experience requirements.

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Valentin Grimaud Thermal Engineer, TERAO Green Building Engineering Dec 03 2013 LEEDuser Member 962 Thumbs Up

Thanks Scott for this confirmation.

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Catalina Caballero Sustainability Coordinator JALRW Eng. Group Inc.
Nov 25 2013
LEEDuser Member
2259 Thumbs Up

Commissioning on Multi-Family Building (Residential)

How does the commissioning process work on a multifamily residential building? Does each residential unit have to be checked? or is it just the a certain number of them? Should only the shared equipment be commissioned?

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Scott Bowman Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Dec 02 2013 LEEDuser Expert 5389 Thumbs Up

I do not have direct experience in this area, but the use of random sampling is an accepted method of commissioning. The more “packaged” the systems, the more conducive to sampling it is, especially if the installation has limited impact on performance. However, we have had some systems that required significant adjustment to ensure performance (such as lighting controls), and recommend 100% testing on those systems. We have also see some equipment have more “out of the box” failures, so at a minimum make sure they heat, cool, and turn on, and we do that for all units. Then more complete testing is done on a sampling of units. Another example would be something like an air handling unit, which can require significant programming and should have testing on 100% of the units.

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Catalina Caballero Sustainability Coordinator JALRW Eng. Group Inc.
Nov 25 2013
LEEDuser Member
2259 Thumbs Up

53000 SF in LEED Boundary

We have been contracted to do the fundamental commissioning for a college building that we also designed. However it took a long time for the architect to give us the LEED boundary and recently checking the boundary it comes up to be 53000 SF. 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. at our firm had already setup many meetings and visits, so since we have been contracted for that should we continue with the commissioning or USGBC would blindly reject it even though it's only 3000 SF difference?

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Scott Bowman Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Nov 25 2013 LEEDuser Expert 5389 Thumbs Up

Victor: Please look at Table 2 in EAp1 of the Reference Guild. This is a much more detailed table of required qualifications for who can be 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.. The EOR can always be the fundamental CxA, but the size determines if they can be an employee WITH design duty (under 50k SF) or a DISINTERESTED employee with no design duties (equal or greater than 50k SF). Of course, enhanced must be a separate subconsultant.

Tristen; perhaps the FAQ above should be worded a little different. Here is what I would suggest:

“For fundamental commissioning and project area less than 50,000 ft2, the commissioning agent can be an employee of the design or construction firm, even if they are directly doing design or construction management. For fundamental commissioning and project area equal or greater than 50,000 ft2, the commissioning agent can be a disinterested (NO design or management duties) employee of the design or construction firm. For enhanced commissioning the CxA must be independent of both teams. The CxA must be appointed by the Owner. No matter what, the CxA must meet the qualification requirements of the prerequisite and credit.”

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Catalina Caballero Sustainability Coordinator, JALRW Eng. Group Inc. Nov 25 2013 LEEDuser Member 2259 Thumbs Up

Can you tell me exactly where did you get this excerpt? Just to back up our info. Thanks very much.

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Catalina Caballero Sustainability Coordinator, JALRW Eng. Group Inc. Nov 25 2013 LEEDuser Member 2259 Thumbs Up

I'm looking at the reference guide and I quote:

"For projects larger than 50000 SF the individual serving as 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. on a LEED project must be independent of the projects' design and construction teams."

" For projects smaller than 50000 SF, the CxA may be qualified staff member of the owner, an owners consultant to the project, or an individual on the design or construction team and may have additional project responsabilities beyond leading the commissioning services."

Thus I am confused at this point with your previous comments. Thanks for the assistance.

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Scott Bowman Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Nov 25 2013 LEEDuser Expert 5389 Thumbs Up

Look to Page 221 of the Reference Guide, leading up to Table 2 (on the same page). The very next paragraph after the one you quote explains what it means being “independent of the project’s design and construction teams”. It goes on to say 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. may be a qualified staff member of the owner, an owner’s consultant to the project, or an employee of a firm providing design and/or construction management services. The CxA may not, however, have responsibility for design (e.g., be the engineer of record) or for the construction.”

Then it goes on about projects smaller than 50k. We have been the CxA on several large projects where we were also the EOR, but we assigned qualified staff that were not on the design team, and typically were part of our dedicated commissioning team or from another office.

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Catalina Caballero Sustainability Coordinator, JALRW Eng. Group Inc. Nov 25 2013 LEEDuser Member 2259 Thumbs Up

Totally understand now. However, the bird's eye view in this credit makes it confusing. Under FAQ, it says

"Can 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. authority be a member of the design or construction team?

For fundamental commissioning and project area less than 50,000 ft2, the commissioning agent can be an employee of the design or construction firm. For enhanced commissioning and projects larger than 50,000 ft2, CxA must be independent of both teams. The CxA must be appointed by the Owner"

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Scott Bowman Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Nov 25 2013 LEEDuser Expert 5389 Thumbs Up

Yes, I agree. The FAQ should be changed, which is what I suggested for Tristan Roberts, who moderates LEEDuser.

By the way, it was great to see you again and talk at Greenbuild Tristan!

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Rick Alfandre Principal Alfandre Architecture
Nov 08 2013
LEEDuser Member
302 Thumbs Up

Commisioning Exemplary Performance...

If we pursue fundamental commissioning, but not enhanced commissioning, can we still submit for an innovation in design or 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. credit if we pursue a comprehensive envelope commissioning?

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

No. An EP point  can only be earned when the "base credit" is earned, which in this case is 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..

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Scott Bowman Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Nov 11 2013 LEEDuser Expert 5389 Thumbs Up

I agree Tristan.

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Heather Holdridge Sustainability Coordinator Lake/Flato Architects
Oct 22 2013
LEEDuser Member
1286 Thumbs Up

Who is the Commissioning Authority?

We have one firm performing 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 and another firm performing enhanced Cx services. Which consultant would be designated the "commissioning authority?"

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Michelle Rosenberger Partner, ArchEcology, LLC Oct 22 2013 LEEDuser Member 5093 Thumbs Up

Hi Heather,
We have this situation also and are designating the Fundamental 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.. I'm interested though in how this will be perceived when only one form asks for experience and each form will have a different signator (at least if they still have signators by the time I submit this).

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Scott Bowman Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Oct 23 2013 LEEDuser Expert 5389 Thumbs Up

We have been in both positions, as the firm doing only Fundamental with another firm as Enhanced, and as the firm doing the Enhanced and the EOR doing the Fundamental. As I read EAc3, the firm doing the Enhanced commissioning must be the overall 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., with some sort of oversight or review of the performance of the Fundamental. In many ways this is semantics, but the scope should be clearly defined that way, such that the Enhanced CxA has the ability and responsibility to confirm that the scope and results of the Fundamental are appropriate.

So, what we did was the firm doing Fundamental fills out EAp1, with their experience and confirming results, with the required signatories. Then the firm doing Enhanced filled out EAc3 along with required signatories, provided the scope of work to show the overall responsibility AND we include something related to the experience for that firm.

We have probably been over documenting the commissioning credits, but I sure try not to generate questions or comments from reviewers, and we have had pretty good results with our commissioning work and acceptance. Typically, the comment we get is the Owner has not completed their signatories on EAp1, which automatically bounces EAc3.

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Michelle Rosenberger Partner, ArchEcology, LLC Oct 24 2013 LEEDuser Member 5093 Thumbs Up

Thanks, Scott. That is helpful. I agree 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. reads like the oversight CxA. I was thrown by the experience only showing up on the Fundamental form, and the fact that our Fundamental is doing the commissioning plan and report, while the Enhanced is doing 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. Sounds like your approach has worked. Thanks for the response.

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Nicole Kimoto Architects Pacific, Inc.
Aug 14 2013
LEEDuser Member
445 Thumbs Up

Do you submit form during Design or Construction Review phase?

For the EAp1 form, I'm confused as to whether I am supposed to fill out this form for the design preliminary review, because this is a Construction credit? Can someone please clarify? Same applies to other "Construction" review credits. What is the typical method for this?

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Michelle Rosenberger Partner, ArchEcology, LLC Aug 14 2013 LEEDuser Member 5093 Thumbs Up

Hi Nicole,
If you are doing a split submittal, than no you don't. You only fill out the Design credits for the Design submittal. You will do a secondary Construction review for all of the Construction credits and whatever was deferred from Design.

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Courtney Royal, LEED AP BD+C Sr. Sustainability Consultant Taitem Engineering
Jul 31 2013
LEEDuser Member
968 Thumbs Up

Cx for an addition

Are you required 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. the systems only within the project scope and LEED boundary? This was our thinking so we didn't Cx the existing boiler system or existing DHWDomestic hot water (DHW) is water used for food preparation, cleaning and sanitation and personal hygiene, but not heating. system in the main building because it was not included in the scope of our project or LEED boundary. We Cx all new equipment that was installed in the addition, which was within the LEED boundary. However, we received a review comment only about the DHW system. Saying that we need to Cx the DHW system. Would this be required even though it is not within the LEED boundary? Thanks!

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Scott Bowman Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Jul 31 2013 LEEDuser Expert 5389 Thumbs Up

I would agree with your interpretation. In some instances when you are using a DES, there would be some requirements outside of the boundary, but if you are dealing with those systems at the boundary line (not claiming any efficiencies at the generation) that would not apply.

My recommendation would be to contact the reviewers and making it clear the system is out of the scope. Post the results of that conversation, it should be enlightening.

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jorge torres coto Building Systems Commissioning Engineer, Empirical Engineering, LLC Nov 04 2013 LEEDuser Member 353 Thumbs Up

We feel obligated to commission systems (or parts of systems) that are out of the project boundary. If they serve anything in the project boundary we have to make sure it: meets all the mandatory requirements (NC projects) and/or prescriptive requirements (CI projects). We also need to make sure they comply with prerrequisites and/or other related credits attempted.

An example would be a C&S AHU1.Air-handling units (AHUs) are mechanical indirect heating, ventilating, or air-conditioning systems in which the air is treated or handled by equipment located outside the rooms served, usually at a central location, and conveyed to and from the rooms by a fan and a system of distributing ducts. (NEEB, 1997 edition) 2.A type of heating and/or cooling distribution equipment that channels warm or cool air to different parts of a building. This process of channeling the conditioned air often involves drawing air over heating or cooling coils and forcing it from a central location through ducts or air-handling units. Air-handling units are hidden in the walls or ceilings, where they use steam or hot water to heat, or chilled water to cool the air inside the ductwork. that does not have a damper that closes when the unit turns off, does not have enough OSA, does not have a scheduled control, etc., etc.

We do most of our work out of the USA, so these are issues commonly overlooked by both designers and installers.

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jorge torres coto Building Systems Commissioning Engineer Empirical Engineering, LLC
Jul 10 2013
LEEDuser Member
353 Thumbs Up

VAV terminal unit modulation

I have a Tenant Improvement that has 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. terminal units connected to an existing VAV AHU1.Air-handling units (AHUs) are mechanical indirect heating, ventilating, or air-conditioning systems in which the air is treated or handled by equipment located outside the rooms served, usually at a central location, and conveyed to and from the rooms by a fan and a system of distributing ducts. (NEEB, 1997 edition) 2.A type of heating and/or cooling distribution equipment that channels warm or cool air to different parts of a building. This process of channeling the conditioned air often involves drawing air over heating or cooling coils and forcing it from a central location through ducts or air-handling units. Air-handling units are hidden in the walls or ceilings, where they use steam or hot water to heat, or chilled water to cool the air inside the ductwork.. The contractor and owner decided to save money and utilize stand alone control. Though the problem with their solution is that the thermostats only have ON-OFF function and cannot modulate between dead band and full cooling (since the project does not have re-heat). I have looked and cannot find much, aside from ASHRAE 90.1-2007 Addendum h, that states that a VAV TU has to modulate. I do not think I am wrong in assuming this control logic, since the opposite is both uncomfortable for occupants and a waste of energy for the tenant.
Thanks

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Tristan Roberts LEED AP BD+C, Editorial Director – LEEDuser, BuildingGreen, Inc. Nov 03 2013 LEEDuser Moderator

Jorge, I am no expert on the systems you're describing but your logic sounds reasonable.

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Scott Bowman Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Nov 07 2013 LEEDuser Expert 5389 Thumbs Up

I would have to agree, to spend the money required for the 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. terminal, then turn it into an on/off device is terrible! There would also be an issue with ventilation and compliance with ASHRAE 62.1 as well, since ventilation would be shut off if the terminal is closed.

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Michelle Rosenberger Partner ArchEcology, LLC
Jul 08 2013
LEEDuser Member
5093 Thumbs Up

Signatories

With LEED 2009 came mandatory online signatories for Owner, 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., Contractor, etc. Now that we are in version 4.0 and 5.0 forms, many of those signatories remain on the credit forms but are no longer designated "mandatory" nor do they indicate who is supposed to sign them.

When I queried GBCI about these new form signatory blocks, I received the following response: "If there is a signatory box on a prerequisite or credit form, you need to have a project team member initial it. If the role of the project team member is likely to raise questions among the review team, you should explain the rationale."

EApr1 is one of these forms. It has three signature blocks on it. Historically, two of them were assigned to the CxA and one of them was assigned to the Owner. The Owner was signing off that they had actually reviewed 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. document. Many of my CxAs tended to sign off all the boxes, even when one of them was clearly marked for the Owner. That was easy enough to fix.

So now is it okay for the CxA to sign this block affirming that the Owner reviewed the OPR? Or not? Would the CxA initials "raise questions" in this case? And how would you define a situation where the team member initialling would raise questions?

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Scott Bowman Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Jul 09 2013 LEEDuser Expert 5389 Thumbs Up

I was hoping that some of the GBCI that haunt the forum would answer you. I have not used the v4 forms yet, so took a look at the sample. In my opinion, as 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., I am supposed to be seeking this document from the Owner and making sure that it represents their goals and criteria for the project, so I would be willing to initial that box in our process. I could also see the LEED Administrator or Prime initially that block, as they are typically heavily involved in 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. development as well.

Now, on projects where we are the EOR, I would sure think the owner should initial this, or at least the prime. That is my opinion.

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Michelle Rosenberger Partner, ArchEcology, LLC Jul 09 2013 LEEDuser Member 5093 Thumbs Up

Thanks, Scott. I appreciate the response. It is a little aggravating to have to use a trial and error approach to things like this to find out what will work and what won't, especially after a direct question to GBCI. We very much prefer to get things right the first time, and clear direction is obviously a big part of that equation. I'll post what happens on the next project going thru review.

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Sara Heppe Senior Sustainable Designer, Clark Nexsen Oct 23 2013 LEEDuser Member 460 Thumbs Up

I'm also finding that I am questioning exactly who is supposed to sign their initials in the template. Did you ever figure out what was acceptable?

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Scott Bowman Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Oct 23 2013 LEEDuser Expert 5389 Thumbs Up

Sara. I answered your other question as well (see http://shar.es/ImcX3), but to me it is pretty straight forward. The person that signs should be the one that is required to answer the question. I am guessing you are wondering if someone other than the owner can answer the approval of 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 that is an open question. The Owner would be for sure, but the question of if the LEED Administrator or 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. can initial that is probably still open. With the new option to gain that approval using a separate document, it seems like you should be able to get the Owner without requiring them to log on and do it themselves (which I understand could be an issue with some clients).

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