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 kinds of projects must the CxA demonstrate experience on?

    This has not been defined by USGBC. In practice, you must simply write down the names of two projects, and we have not seen LEED reviewers raise questions about the nature of the projects.

    Ideally, experience on a LEED project is helpful, and if the CxA does have LEED experience, put the identification number of the project on the LEED form.

    Size is one aspect of experience, but system types are arguably more critical. If you are working on a project with large air handlers, chillers, and boilers, then a person with only unitary equipment or roof top units might not be the right fit. Similarly with market: if the project is a large hospital, then someone with only experience on schools may not be appropriate.

    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 GBCIThe Green Building Certification Institute (GBCI) manages Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) building certification and professional accreditation processes. It was established in 2008 with support from the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC)., 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

Sample LEED Online forms for all rating systems and versions are available on the USGBC website.

340 Comments

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Omar ElRawy Building Engineer, LEED AP BD+C EA Building Consultants
Aug 29 2016
Guest
1196 Thumbs Up

Commissioning using generator

Dear all,
I have a case where project team suggests running all Cx1. Commissioning (Cx) is the process of verifying and documenting that a building and all of its systems and assemblies are planned, designed, installed, tested, operated, and maintained to meet the owner's project requirements. 2. The process of checking the performance of a building against the owner's goals during design, construction, and occupancy. At a minimum, mechanical and electrical equipment are tested, although much more extensive testing may also be included. activities on the building's emergency generator, in addition to an external generator. I do not prefer this option as I didn't do it before. At the same time I can't find a requirement that is directly rejecting this option.

I need to know if anyone did this experience before, and if it do preclude compliance at any stage?

Thanks

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Scott Bowman LEED Fellow, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Aug 29 2016 LEEDuser Expert 9577 Thumbs Up

That would be extremely unusual. You also call it an "emergency" generator, and often they are not what is called duty rated. They can run for extended periods, but are not intended to generate power for beyond typical emergency situations. If a generator is to be used for co-generation, or as the main source for the building, it would have a different specification and built differently.

Now, the emergency generator system should be tested, that is for sure. There are many times that the transfer does not result in the outcomes desired or required. It is important to find this out before there is a true emergency.

So, my recommendation would be to do all testing of all systems under normal power. Test as many sequences related to emergency operation (under the generator) as you can without using the generator. Then organize and manage a true blackout test. Cut the utility power from the building and test that all required operations are transferred and functional.

All hands should be on deck for this kind of test, and it has to be planned very carefully so the right people are on site to ensure there are no issues that cannot be addressed immediately.

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Aishwarya Balagopal Research Assistant. Sustainable Design Consulting
Aug 15 2016
LEEDuser Member
9 Thumbs Up

Approach for documentation with 2 Commissioning Agents

Project Location: United States

The project is registered as a Campus project with a Master Site including 4 new buildings, an underground parking structure, and landscape improvements. There are a number of existing buildings within the master site boundary as well. There is going to be a new central plant supplying all the new and existing buildings. The owner has appointed 2 commissioning agents 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. process, one for the central plant and one for the rest of the new buildings. We are evaluating what is the best approach for documentation. We are proposing the commissioning for the central plant to be documented using the master site commissioning credit and the individual buildings to be documented on a per building basis. This will allow for the separation and autonomy of the two commissioning agents. We will be noting at the special circumstance section of the letter template to see the master site for central plant information to close the loop between the two. Is this an acceptable approach for documentation?

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Scott Bowman LEED Fellow, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Aug 15 2016 LEEDuser Expert 9577 Thumbs Up

This appears very reasonable. At most, you might get a question about the central plant 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. and have to provide the report in answer. Remember, I am not an employee of GBCIThe Green Building Certification Institute (GBCI) manages Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) building certification and professional accreditation processes. It was established in 2008 with support from the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC)., but I have found that if not fully laid out, proceeding in this logical manner will bring the most success.

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Amy Harmon Scheeser Buckley Mayfield
Jul 21 2016
LEEDuser Member
154 Thumbs Up

Design Engineer for EAp1 and CxA for EAc3

Project Location: United States

I've got a new building that is less than 50,000 SF. Just wondering, can the design engineer provide the EAp1 Fundamental Commissioning and a separate firm be hired to do the EAc3 Enhanced Commissioning? Has anyone come across this before?

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Scott Bowman LEED Fellow, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Jul 22 2016 LEEDuser Expert 9577 Thumbs Up

Yes, you can have two firms doing commissioning, and I have been on both sides of that situation. However, the firm doing the EAc3 must be reviewing and directing ALL commissioning activities, so often there is an increased cost because of some overlap, and sometimes that can be good...the overlap I mean.

If you want to do this because you think it will save money...it is false economy. You pursue Enhanced Commissioning because it will improve outcomes, not to get a point or two. Typically hiring one firm to do all the commissioning scope will be the most cost effective, and simplest way to go.

However, if you have a highly qualified design firm that has significant commissioning experience, or even a department, but you want that additional set of eyes and quality assurance that you find with Enhanced, then getting another highly qualified commissioning firm can add value to the overall process.

Caution: make sure both firms check their egos at the door. The goal is not for one to "out commission" the other, but to provide service that is more than just the addition of two firms. In the cases where I was involved in these situations, the other firm was great, and the relationship was synergistic with both firms wanting the best for the owner and design team. Add in a motivated set of contractors and temperature controls, and incredible things can happen to ensure operation of high performance buildings.

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INES DAHMOUNI Architect urban designer MDarchitectes
Jun 16 2016
Guest
13 Thumbs Up

Eligibility for LEED V4 fundamental Cx

Hello everyone,
we are looking 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. for a LEED project .
We contacted an office specialized in energy and environmental studies. The office have more than 20 years experience including 3 leed projects (certification assistance) and many commissioning for BREEAMBuilding Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method, the first widely used green building rating system, developed in the U.K. in the early 1990s, currently used primarily in the U.K. and in Hong Kong. certified projects.
Could this office be eligible for LEED CxA ?

Thank you

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Paul Swierc Commissioning Engineer, YR&G Jun 17 2016 LEEDuser Member 26 Thumbs Up

Ines,

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. requirements are outlined a bit more clearly in LEED v4 than in previous versions. Here are some things you'll need to verify with the firm:

1. Who from the firm lead the commissioning process during the 3 LEED projects? At what stage in the project did the CxA become involved and how long did he or she remain involved?

LEED v4 requires that a qualified CxA have experience on at least 2 projects where they were involved prior to the completion of design development and continued work on the project through at least 10 months of building occupancy and operation.

2. What types of projects were the 3 LEED projects that the CxA completed? What was the scope of work, the type and complexity of the systems commissioned, the size and use of the building?

Qualifying CxAs should have experience working on projects that are similar to the project you will be hiring them to commission. Hiring an individual experienced in commissioning relatively simple systems serving schools or small offices is likely not the right fit to commission critical systems in hospitals and data centers.

3. Is the firm involved in the design and construction of your project? Is the firm a subcontractor of the design and construction firms? Is the potential CxA on a team directly involved in the design and construction of your project?

For the fundamental scope, the CxA could be a qualified employee of the design or construction firms who is not directly involved in the design or construction process, or a disinterested subcontractor of the design or construction firms. The only exceptions to this are if the project is under 20,000 SF or the project is a space requiring specialized knowledge of the included systems. If you were to pursue the enhanced credit for your project, then the CxA must be completely independent of the design and construction firms. The purpose for all of this is to avoid conflicts of interest and provide objective leadership of the commissioning process.

Please let me know if you have additional questions regarding this and good luck in your search for a CxA.

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Scott Bowman LEED Fellow, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Jun 24 2016 LEEDuser Expert 9577 Thumbs Up

Paul is mostly correct, but I would like to point out that the experience of the CxAThe commissioning authority (CxA) is the individual designated to organize, lead, and review the completion of commissioning process activities. The CxA facilitates communication among the owner, designer, and contractor to ensure that complex systems are installed and function in accordance with the owner's project requirements. does not have to be on a LEED project. Any project where the scope of the service is similar or aligned with that is required with LEED is appropriate. I am going to disagree with Paul a little, as the stated requirements have not changed significantly in v4, and currently the amount of scrutiny by reviewers of the qualifications of a CxA is unknown at best. In the case of Commissioning, look for qualifications for that service related to the type of project you are working on, and do check references. The actual performance and scope of work of a CxA varies widely in the industry, so look for someone with a proven track record.

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Joyce Kelly Consultant Architectural Fusion
Jun 14 2016
LEEDuser Member
305 Thumbs Up

Campus PV dedicated - not connected - to building requires Cx?

Project Location: United States

A portion of a nearby, existing campus PV system has been dedicated - not connected - to our building. Reviewer suggests this should be commissioned as part of our submittal to comply with this prereq but it's outside our building's scope of work. Do we need to dig up any documentation to prove this or should we simply state the PV install preceded and is independent of our building?

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Scott Bowman LEED Fellow, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Jun 14 2016 LEEDuser Expert 9577 Thumbs Up

Interesting. I have been involved in a project where the campus had a central power plant and used biomass, so the university calculated a percent renewable for each kWhA kilowatt-hour is a unit of work or energy, measured as 1 kilowatt (1,000 watts) of power expended for 1 hour. One kWh is equivalent to 3,412 Btu. used, but there was no requirement to show the central plant was commissioned.

In your case, I think it depends on if you are claiming any of the PV under EAp2 and EAc1, and really EAc2 as well. In that case, you are using the PV to reduce the energy use of the building, thus it becomes one of the energy systems that requires commissioning. Being connected to the building is not the trigger. I have to agree with the reviewer, you need to have the PV commissioned, then hold onto that, as I am assuming it is being dedicated to other buildings too. Normally the commissioning would hold for 3 to 5 years.

Do you see how it is different than my example? In mine, we were claiming renewable energy, but it was not reducing the use of the building, it was a fuel choice for the boilers making steam to make electricity. You installed PV which reduces the use of your building.

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Joyce Kelly Consultant, Architectural Fusion Jun 14 2016 LEEDuser Member 305 Thumbs Up

Sigh... I see your point, but wish I could keep my rose colored sunglasses on. This PV installation was probably not commissioned when it completed 2 yrs ago. We may be able to send our company's Electrician, who specializes in electrical systems & PV systems 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., to do it. He was not involved in the design of this project or the solar installation so is independent.

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Scott Bowman LEED Fellow, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Jun 24 2016 LEEDuser Expert 9577 Thumbs Up

I always try to give answers that are needed; not always the ones wanted! The good news is that commissioning PV is fairly straightforward and should not be very time consuming. It also gives good assurance that metering and reporting is working as intended.

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André Harms Ecolution Consulting
Jun 08 2016
LEEDuser Member
183 Thumbs Up

Commissioning required for a CHP?

Project Location: South Africa

One of our factory projects is planning on installing a CHPCombined heat and power (CHP), or cogeneration, generates both electrical power and thermal energy from a single fuel source. (combined heat and power) plant, with natural gas as the fuel source. Does this system require commissioning? We are speculating that the fuel source excludes this system as being defined as a "renewable energy system", and that the heating component would not necessitate commissioning as the steam is exclusively used for process loads.

While we believe that it would be prudent to commission the system, is it required by EAp1?

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Scott Bowman LEED Fellow, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Jun 10 2016 LEEDuser Expert 9577 Thumbs Up

You might say "prudent", and I might say "vital." The magic of a CHPCombined heat and power (CHP), or cogeneration, generates both electrical power and thermal energy from a single fuel source. is the improved fuel to energy efficiency, so while still using fossil fuels, the conversion is more than twice the efficiency of conventional power production, so is still a great way to improve both energy efficiency and environmental impact. But the systems are complex, and require significant controls...that black box stuff that is terribly hard to see when you just look at it. The only way to know if it is working is to test it and test it.

Enough lecture, but since I am old, I get to do that. In my opinion, this system is required to be commissioned under EAp1 because the electricity is being used by the building. Now, the downstream steam equipment from the CHP that is only supporting the process loads would probably not be required.

There is another great reason for including the process loads, and I hope that one of Marcus Sheffer's incredibly talented colleagues will chime in. The CHP is a significant investment with a return precisely because it reduces source energySource energy is the total amount of raw fuel required to operate a building; it incorporates all transmission, delivery, and production losses for a complete assessment of a building's energy use.. It is reducing the overall fuel use of the plant. So, in the energy model for the facility, you can include savings in the process loads over a more conventional design where you consume electricity from the grid and make steam with the natural gas.

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Jutta Berns-Mumbi principal ecocentric cc
Apr 18 2016
LEEDuser Member
1983 Thumbs Up

commissioning of outbildings

we have a campus project where currently only the main building is undergoing certification. There are however some building services housed in the adjacent outbildings, which support the building functions. This raises the question whether these buildings need to be commissioned and subjected to other relevant prerequisites and credits, eg IEQ and EA credits.

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Gustavo De las Heras Izquierdo Arch. Eng. LEED AP BD+C; O+M; CxA: Green Rater in Training, Revitaliza Consultores Apr 18 2016 Guest 1746 Thumbs Up

It is not mandatory to certify every building in your campus. Therefore I think it is also NOT mandatory to do perform commissioning activities in the non-certifying buildings.

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Scott Bowman LEED Fellow, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Apr 25 2016 LEEDuser Expert 9577 Thumbs Up

Jutta, it all depends on what you mean by "building services." If there is a boiler plant (for example) in another building that is feeding yours, that is fine. However, this then becomes a DES system. The energy model will need to follow the guide for DES, as will the commissioning. In this case, the commissioning would apply only to the equipment feeding the building being certified. The guide says that the system must have been commissioned in the last 2 years (I think). If you can tell me what services are in the adjacent buildings, I can give better guidance.

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Jutta Berns-Mumbi principal , ecocentric cc Apr 26 2016 LEEDuser Member 1983 Thumbs Up

Specifically the following buildings are being referred to;
1. Small guard house x3 (24 hour occupancy, for full campus)
2. Utility plant (with boiler but only for process load, not regularly occupied)
3. External warehouse (storing mainly pallets, not regularly occupied)

And for our further understanding if we can exclude them is it only because the project is registered as a campus?

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Scott Bowman LEED Fellow, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Apr 27 2016 LEEDuser Expert 9577 Thumbs Up

I am not as familiar with using the campus registration, so we may need someone else to chime in, but my understanding was that you work on campus wide credits, then you use them on individual projects for certification. Each project has a specified boundary and the boundaries are to join in a logical way.

However, if you are just doing NC for a single building on the campus, and not doing the campus certification process (confusing I know), you evaluate the scope based on the boundary. So, I doubt if the guard house would have to be commissioned. Same with the warehouse.

The utility plan BUILDING would not have to be commissioned, but if the plant develops hot water, steam, or chilled water for your building project, then those systems would need to have been commissioned per the DES guidelines. You also use the word "process", which can mean something used only for a manufacturing use, that would not be part of a LEED commissioning scope. Because language can mean a lot, I may not fully understand your situation.

Remember that you can always ask for a conference call with GBCIThe Green Building Certification Institute (GBCI) manages Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) building certification and professional accreditation processes. It was established in 2008 with support from the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). for a more in depth discussion.

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John Wood
Mar 09 2016
Guest
36 Thumbs Up

Re-commisioning

Project Location: United States

I am a PE who has been approached by a building owner with a request to have the building "re-commissioned." I have designed LEED projects before, and participated in the original commissioning, but never re-commisioning. The building earned LEED Silver in 2012, but I was not involved. I don't know at this point if it was 2.2 or 2009. Does re-commissioning require any submission to USGBC for review? If I don't need to go through USGBC red tape, I can do the consulting for a fraction of the fee and the owner has more money left to make improvements.
If USGBC does not get any documentation for re-commissioning is there any consequence such as rescinding of certification? I have heard that there may be a mechanism for rescinding certifications in version 4, but there has been none in earlier versions. Is there any truth to that?

Sorry if this is a double post. The first time it did not show up. Thank you.

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Tristan Roberts LEED AP BD+C, Editorial Director – LEEDuser, BuildingGreen, Inc. Mar 14 2016 LEEDuser Moderator

John, USGBC would only be involved if the project were pursuing LEED for Existing Buildings certification or wanted to get a LEED dynamic plaque. And there is no impact relative to the status of the existing certification. If anything USGBC would encourage an honest assessment at this stage of how a project is doing.

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Scott Bowman LEED Fellow, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Mar 14 2016 LEEDuser Expert 9577 Thumbs Up

Right Tristan. Re-commissioning should be part off the plan for every building, and is a great way to ensure proper operation AND improve operation over time. This sets up the owner for EBOMEBOM is an acronym for Existing Buildings: Operations & Maintenance, one of the LEED 2009 rating systems. and Dynamic Plaque as well.

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Jack Schirpke Manager - Commissioning, CCP, CxA, LEED AP BD+C, O+M, Transwestern Sustainability Services Mar 14 2016 LEEDuser Member 14 Thumbs Up

John, as Tristan points out since nothing is being submitted, there will be no direct involvement with the USGBC. I am curious as to what the LEED red tape includes. I commission using ASHRAE, NIBS, BCA and the ACG for documentation guidance and have not had to modify my reports for LEED purposes.

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Scott Bowman LEED Fellow, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Mar 14 2016 LEEDuser Expert 9577 Thumbs Up

Great point Jack, documentation is the foundational to commissioning, providing that trail to be used for operations going forward. If anything, I have found that USGBC requires much less documentation than what I feel is the standard of care in the industry.

Also, to comment on "rescinding certification". LEED for New Construction is a design standard and is intended to be the first stop for a building. The expectation is that within a couple of years of being certified, an owner would pursue EBOMEBOM is an acronym for Existing Buildings: Operations & Maintenance, one of the LEED 2009 rating systems. to measure the operation of the building as well as the design. Then EBOM is re-certified on a regular basis.

There is a process for challenging the certification, and USGBC has a means of removing certification, but the process is complex and has built in reviews and appeals...and to my knowledge has been instigated once, and the project kept its certification. If anyone knows different, I would like to learn it. This is built into the agreement owners commit to when registering a project, and when submitting for certification. It is not specific to one version or an other, but has been refined as time goes on.

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John Wood Mar 14 2016 Guest 36 Thumbs Up

Thank you, all. You have been most helpful.

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Giuseppe Medeghini Rethink Energy
Feb 26 2016
LEEDuser Member
14 Thumbs Up

Cx Authority

LEED manual states that: "The commissioning agent must demonstrate experience on two prior projects." the two project have to be LEED certified or they can be even no certified but with similar size?

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Scott Bowman LEED Fellow, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Feb 26 2016 LEEDuser Expert 9577 Thumbs Up

I could have sworn that I have answered this before, but not in some time apparently, at least on this thread. There is very little guidance on this, which is why you are asking I am sure. While I cannot give you an authoritative answer (I do not work for GBCIThe Green Building Certification Institute (GBCI) manages Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) building certification and professional accreditation processes. It was established in 2008 with support from the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC).), I am not hesitant in my answer.

First, the project do not have to be LEED, but obviously that would be a positive. 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. has done a LEED project, and it is applicable, then I will put in the identification number, in case the reviewer wants to take a look.

Second, while size is one aspect of experience, I feel that system types are more of an indicator. If you are working on a project with large air handlers, chillers, and boilers, then a person with only unitary equipment or roof top units might not be the right one. Size is not always the indicator.

Same goes for market. If the project is a large hospital, proposing someone that has only done schools may or may not be appropriate...it all depends on the systems. In this case size has little to do with it, as an OR or an isolation room is a very special animal, so systems are more important in this case.

All this being said, and this is my opinion only, I have not seen much questioning by GBCI on this point. You only are listing a project, with out much detail, so it is difficult to really tell based on the submittal.

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Tristan Roberts LEED AP BD+C, Editorial Director – LEEDuser, BuildingGreen, Inc. Feb 29 2016 LEEDuser Moderator

Very thoughtful and well put, Scott. I've distilled this down a bit and made it an FAQ in our guidance above on this page. Thanks!

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John Wood Mar 14 2016 Guest 36 Thumbs Up

Thank you all. You have been most helpful.

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Steve Valev
Feb 18 2016
Guest
46 Thumbs Up

Two Commissioning Agency

Project Location: United States

We are documenting a project where a roof-mounted PV system was installed after the building was occupied and the original commissioning process was complete. Can we submit two separate commissioning reports from two separate agents - one original for the building and one for the PV system? Or do we need to have the original agent for the building go back now and commission the PV system in order to modify the original report.

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Scott Bowman LEED Fellow, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Feb 24 2016 LEEDuser Expert 9577 Thumbs Up

My recommendation would be to get the original 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. back as additional service to add the PV to the existing report. The scope is not typically huge for these systems, and often has more to do with how the energy is recorded or monitored. Bringing in another person would not be rejected in my opinion, but I think it would be more expensive, and would require some explanation.

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Steve Valev Mar 14 2016 Guest 46 Thumbs Up

Thanks Scott. We are proceeding with the option to have the original 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. go back and add the PV system. We are going after the Fundamental and Enhanced Commissioning credits. Are we going to have a problem with Enhanced Commissioning since we have missed the design and submital reviews on the PV system. We have everything related to the rest of the building.

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Scott Bowman LEED Fellow, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Mar 14 2016 LEEDuser Expert 9577 Thumbs Up

No you won't. Just explain the situation. The PV was not part of the original scope, but added by the owner. Best of luck!

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Ralph Bicknese Principal Hellmuth + Bicknese Architects
Jan 21 2016
LEEDuser Member
499 Thumbs Up

Duct Insulation to meet ASHRAE 90.1

We have a condition at where the contractor has asked to use blue duct for underground locations in lieu of Armaflex insulation and concrete encasement. We specified a perlite type product as backfill around the blue duct with an R value of 0.6 per inch.

The contractor is saying that perlite will not work structurally and wants to use sand. A field rep has said they typically do not insulate because the duct is equivalent to R10.

Since ASHRAE 90.1 requires insulation around the duct and meeting 90.1 is also a requirement for LEED, what type of options does the contractor have? Would armaflex without concrete encasement as the insulating material be acceptable? We have discussed with the project mechanical engineer who says insulation is really not necessary in this condition but is required to meet 90.1.

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Scott Bowman LEED Fellow, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Jan 22 2016 LEEDuser Expert 9577 Thumbs Up

Ralph...interesting place to ask! I do not have access to the standard, but that never stops me from giving my opinion, and maybe an idea to ask the engineer. First, insulated backfill is a unique application. What I have used in the past, but admittedly for chilled water and steam piping, is Gilsulate. This is a structural insulating fill that has a R value of 1.8 per inch at lower temperatures. It is structural so might solve your structural issue, however the ductwork itself may not allow the pressure and requires concrete.

Also, my memory is not that 90.1 requires "insulation", it requires an R value. Ductwork can be made of insulation and something other than galvanized metal, so I would say that if you can show performance that meets the required R value of insulation, that should be compliance with the standard. So parse the language carefully to see if it requires "insulation" or performance.

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Saju Varghese SUSTAINABILITY COORDINATOR JALRW Eng. Group Inc.
Dec 30 2015
LEEDuser Member
4618 Thumbs Up

New Building addition to existing

we have a new addition added to an existing facility. The consultant has decided to pursuit NC for this project, therefore the question comes if there is an existing area within the LEED boundary with existing AC units that wont be modified, do these units need to comply with the minimum OA required as well? Would a Test and Balance be necessary or only plans?
In the case that they take these existing areas out of the LEED boundary, only the new equipment will need to be Tested and Balanced, correct?

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Scott Bowman LEED Fellow, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Jan 01 2016 LEEDuser Expert 9577 Thumbs Up

As usual, your question has many dimensions, and layers...so not an easy answer. First, the LEED boundary has to be decided, and with additions, that is not always an easy answer. You need to review this portion of the standard carefully to make sure you meet the criteria.

You will discover if you have to certify the whole building, or just the addition. The core answer to your question rests on this determination. If the existing building is NOT part of the LEED project, then you will not need to do any work on those systems. If the existing units are going to be feeding the new addition, then all sorts of things are required, including proper ventilation and commissioning.

Commissioning is much, much more than Testing and Balancing, so your last sentence concerns me some, as all energy related equipment within a LEED project must be commissioned.

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jorge torres coto Building Systems Commissioning Engineer Empirical Engineering, LLC
Nov 13 2015
LEEDuser Member
597 Thumbs Up

Balancing Devices to meet ASHRAE 90.1 Mandatory Requirements

Project Location: Mexico

We have a project that is an industrial facility, it shares the CHW distribution piping between the comfort system and the process system.

We are informing the CxTeam that it is required to have balancing means at all connected devices, and/or at a minimum at all comfort devices and each branch going out to the process part of the CHW distribution piping.

The owner has CHW flow diagrams indicating the required gpm for their process, including future expansion. Our "requirement" to the owner is to install balancing or flow limiting devices at the process branch piping to be able to meet the requirements of section 6.4.5 and subsequently 6.7.2 of ASHRAE Standard 90.1-2007.

Any comment regarding our "requirement" is appreciated. We do not want to obligate the owner to do something that is not a Mandatory Requirement, but we also want to make sure that these are met.

Thanks
Jorge

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Jan Wei Director of Commissioning & Critical System, Edwards & Zuck Nov 13 2015 Guest 587 Thumbs Up

Hi Jorge,

Based on the information provided, my understanding of the question is if the balancing device is required on the process branch which is sharing the same system as the comfort system. In a hydronic system any modification or addition to the existing system will modify the system pressure dynamic, and all terminal devices should have balancing device, unless the entire system is a reverse piping configuration, to ensure proper flowrate. So I would recommend to the owner to investigate the terminal unit at the process equipment to ensure there are balancing devices so the entire system can be balanced during TAB phase.

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Scott Bowman LEED Fellow, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Nov 19 2015 LEEDuser Expert 9577 Thumbs Up

I do not have a copy of 90.1 handy, so will take your word on that. However, you are also 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. to be guiding clients to best practices, and the use of balancing valves is best practice. There is debate in the industry on flow limiting devices, as they always impose a pressure dropPressure drop is a decrease in pressure from one point in a pipe or tube to another point due to a restriction or length or diameter of the pipe or tube (resistance to flow). no matter what, but do a great job of providing proper flow. But you have to have a means of balancing the systems, especially with a process load combined with future capacity built into the system. You are not asking or recommending anything that is outside the typical best practice of system installation for hydronic systems.

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Gustav Alfaro Mechanical Engineer
Jun 12 2015
LEEDuser Member
277 Thumbs Up

Installed HVAC equipment is less efficient than simulated.

Hi to all:

At the end of the project and after the leed design submittal was reviewed and approved, we found that some of the equipment that have been installed in our project are less efficient than what they should have been based on the approved construction submittals, and that issue reduces the cost savings calculated in the energy model. For this case, what happens now with the certification? We will be indicating 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. Plan this issue, but is this a reason for not earning the certification?

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David Hubka Director - Operations, Transwestern Sustainability Services Jun 12 2015 LEEDuser Expert 3146 Thumbs Up

Hello Gustov,

Design credits are not awarded during the design submission, rather they are anticipated - for instances such as this.

My advice would be to include this observation within the issues log and also address it within the resolution plan. If the owner is committed to resolving this issue in a timely manner.... the energy model will not need to be adjusted.

Scott, any additional comments/advice?
thank you.

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Scott Bowman LEED Fellow, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Jun 22 2015 LEEDuser Expert 9577 Thumbs Up

I agree with David, if there is a resolution that is being implemented to address this issue that was uncovered during 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.. What would concern me is how it happened in the first place. If approved submittals were not followed, is there some contractual clause that allowed this? Was a change order issued and accepted? Is there some design/build issue that allowed this to happen?

If the owner is not going to require contractors to comply with the design, then the energy model does need to be adjusted to meet as constructed conditions, and again David is right, EAc1 is a credit that will be reviewed during construction if you have changes.

Hopefully this can get resolved well for your project!

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Annalise Reichert Project Manager stok
Apr 09 2015
LEEDuser Member
407 Thumbs Up

Level of Participation by Enhanced CxA in Fundamental Cx Tasks

We are currently working on a project where an independent third party was contracted to perform Enhanced Commissioning tasks, and a disinterested employee of the General Contractor performed Fundamental Commissioning tasks. 

The independent third party 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. was involved in all fundamental commissioning tasks, however the disinterested employee of the General Contractor actually created the fundamental commissioning documentation and was listed as the fundamental CxA on LEED Online. 

The LEED reference guide states that the same CxA "overseeing" the enhanced commissioning tasks must also "oversee" fundamental commissioning tasks. What exact level of participation is required by the Enhanced CxA in fundamental Cx tasks? Can they simply review the fundamental documentation and witness FPTs, or do they actually need to create the documentation? Does the same CxA listed on EAp1 also need to be listed on EAc3?

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Michelle Rosenberger Partner, ArchEcology, LLC Apr 09 2015 LEEDuser Member 7976 Thumbs Up

Hi Annalise,
Yes, you need one guy to 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. for the docs. The enhanced guy can review and oversee fundamental stuff. But he should be signing off on all the docs.

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Annalise Reichert Project Manager, stok Apr 09 2015 LEEDuser Member 407 Thumbs Up

Thank you for the swift response Michelle!

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Scott Bowman LEED Fellow, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Apr 11 2015 LEEDuser Expert 9577 Thumbs Up

Michelle is correct of course. The only other thing I would recommend in the future, and I have been in this role of the overall 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., would be to have that person review the FPTs before they are done. Then there can be a discussion of how much the overall CxA has to be on site to observe the tests, preventing too much duplication of efforts.

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Robert Shields R.S. Mowery & Sons, Inc.
Apr 07 2015
LEEDuser Member
62 Thumbs Up

Sample LEED 2009 Basis of Design Document

Project Location: United States

I have a sample Basis of Design document that applies to LEED 2.2. Not sure if there are any differences in the requirements for the document required in LEED 2009. Would appreciate sample document for LEED 2009 or information on any changes made.

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Scott Bowman LEED Fellow, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Apr 07 2015 LEEDuser Expert 9577 Thumbs Up

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. is a foundational document that must address how a design team is responding to 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.. I strongly resist "samples" and "templates", as that turns the document into a checklist instead of a tool for deeper communication and collaboration in a design team. The basic requirements between v2.2, v2009, and even v4 are the same or the BOD. In v4 there is an added requirement to document requirements for the envelope, but frankly a good OPR and BOD should already address these things.

To me a good BOD is not a listing of equipment or materials or systems, it is a narrative telling a story of how the building is going to operate, and meet the needs of the owner. Listing how many chillers for example tells nothing, even if you give specific types and sizes. Telling that the chillers were selected to meet the energy model requirements to provide the performance desired AND how multiple chillers are intended to be operated as lead, lag or in a way matching the highest efficiency to the load at the time is what is needed.

For the MEP portion, I always ask engineers to write an introduction to the sequence of control for a unit, focusing on the overall intent, and less on specific components. Our owners are not normally design professionals, so we need to provide the information in a way they can understand.

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Panupant Phapant SCG Cement - Building Materials Co.,Ltd.
Mar 04 2015
LEEDuser Member
482 Thumbs Up

The overlap activities between CxA and CM Consultant

Project Location: Thailand

Hi
Can anyone share 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. practice for LEED project in USA or other countries as we see that there are the overlap activities between the construction management consultant and CxA for LEED projects in Thailand.

In Thailand, we have construction management consultant who is engaged by the owner and act as the owner's representative for coordinating and facilitating the construction works. The construction management consultant also leads and oversees the prefunctional and functional tests. The consultant management consultant has its own engineers, inspectors and technicians for inspecting the installation and witnessing the functional test.

For the project that pursue LEED NC certification, the project have to engage CxA as per EAp1's requirement. The CxA also bring their engineers, inspectors and technician for inspecting the installation and witnessing the functional test. It seems that we have two parties perform the same works which we see little added benefit for this situation.

Can anyone share that there is any overlap activities between the construction management consultant and CxA for the LEED projects in other countries and how to resolve this overlap activities while maintaining the compliance with the EAp1's requirements.

Thank you very much
Panupant

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Scott Bowman LEED Fellow, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Mar 07 2015 LEEDuser Expert 9577 Thumbs Up

I do not have direct experience with your kind of delivery, but if the scope was written correctly, and the Construction Consultant was not in any way involved in the construction of the project and had prior experience doing commissioning, then they could be considered 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 other more extensive responsibilities. If the consultant has any involvement in the actual construction or directing construction, then there could be an issue.

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Panupant Phapant SCG Cement - Building Materials Co.,Ltd. Mar 09 2015 LEEDuser Member 482 Thumbs Up

Dear Scott
Thank you very much for your sharing.

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Tim Middleton Technical Manager, VILANDCO Aug 22 2016 LEEDuser Member 17 Thumbs Up

We have a similar situation in Vietnam.
We have a mixed use building of 81 stories and are having some problems convincing our client to hire 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..

The Project Manager is on site, coordinating and facilitating for the design team, coordinating selection of contractors and general management of the contractors on-site, but they are not a contractor.

Our client says there is an overlap of the PM's role and Commissioning works and that they are the ones who should do the Commissioning. They seem reluctant to hire another party to do the works. According to the PM, Commissioning is not in their scope, but they are also pushing the client to get a commissioning agent regardless of LEED.

We are advising the client to get an independent specialist anyway. If not, at least engage personnel from the Project Management firm who were previously not involved with the project. But technically, do you think the PM are "independent of the project’s design and construction management" as LEED requires?

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Scott Bowman LEED Fellow, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Aug 24 2016 LEEDuser Expert 9577 Thumbs Up

First of all, I do not feel that a PM is "independent of project's design and construction management". Also, I have a hard time understanding how the owner feels there is overlap, and am guessing they are not fully understanding the difference and go back to more overall thoughts that the PM is "supposed to make sure all things are right", or the old "didn't I buy a commissioned system?" argument we have been fighting forever.

Commissioning is a quality assurance process that overlays the construction process and is not represented in any of the current roles that traditional members of the design and construction team perform. The relatively modest investment in commissioning will be returned almost immediately in reduced energy use.

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Tim Middleton Technical Manager, VILANDCO Aug 24 2016 LEEDuser Member 17 Thumbs Up

Thanks Scott. That is a great and helpful answer. We will try and argue this with the client too. Another problem is, here in Vietnam they commonly have a contractor's check of the installed equipment which they call "commissioning" as well, so there is a gap of understanding.

We have been telling our client that the PM is not "independent" of the project's design and construction management. But the LEED Reference guide in table 2 for EAp1 does say that a "construction manager not holding constructor contracts" qualifies for Fundamental and Enhanced Commissioning.

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Scott Bowman LEED Fellow, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Aug 29 2016 LEEDuser Expert 9577 Thumbs Up

I suppose that if there is a true Project Manager that does not self perform any of the work AND only manages contracts that are between the owner and various constructors, they could be seen as outside the conflicted interests that typical PMs and GCs might have in a project. That kind of PM is rare in my experience. The absolute best situation is when 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. works directly for the Owner - my preference every time. The closer you can get to that kind of relationship, the better.

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Heather Anderson Robinson Hill Architecture
Feb 27 2015
Guest
22 Thumbs Up

Commissioning Documents

Project Location: United States

What documents are necessary to complete EA Prerequisite 1? So far, I have:
1. Fundamental Commissioning of the Building Energy System
(Found on the USGBC website)
2. Basis of Design
(USACE LEED template)

But the Fundamental Commissioning of the Building Energy System document says that I also need a summary of the Cx1. Commissioning (Cx) is the process of verifying and documenting that a building and all of its systems and assemblies are planned, designed, installed, tested, operated, and maintained to meet the owner's project requirements. 2. The process of checking the performance of a building against the owner's goals during design, construction, and occupancy. At a minimum, mechanical and electrical equipment are tested, although much more extensive testing may also be included. Report. Is this different than the Fundamental Commissioning of the Building Energy System document? If so, where can I find a template for the other documents I need?

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Scott Bowman LEED Fellow, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Mar 07 2015 LEEDuser Expert 9577 Thumbs Up

While I do not agree with this, the documentation for the credit is very simple. Listing 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 showing their experience, along with some confirmations of various tasks and documents having been completed. You do not have to upload any documents of substance for the prerequisite.

A CxA with experience can provide all the documentation you seek. You need to confirm an 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. as well. There is not really commissioning by template, the CxA provides all that guidance and then the fundamental commissioning. The CxA must have at least two projects of similar or more complex nature.

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Nina Starynina Jul 22 2015 Guest 54 Thumbs Up

Dear Scott, could you please clarify - does your state 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. must have at least two projects of similar or more complex nature" mean that if the CxA is having, for instance, an experience of two manufacturing buildings of 150 000 sf each, he can not be an CxA on the other project of other functionality and area (for example, for a residential building)? Thank you in advance.

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Scott Bowman LEED Fellow, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Jul 30 2015 LEEDuser Expert 9577 Thumbs Up

Again, I do not necessarily agree with how this is administered, but in my experience as long as there are two projects listed, you will not have an issue. In my opinion, and it is only that, the intent of this was to make sure that someone had experience with the systems of the project, not necessarily the building type. But that is difficult to express. In my mind, manufacturing and residential are not similar, so I would look for someone with different background. But someone that has done an office building of some size will be familiar with the kinds of systems you see in healthcare, K12, or higher education.

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Nina Starynina Aug 03 2015 Guest 54 Thumbs Up

I agree, thank you! Though it appears that formally 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 2 any projects is okay..

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KC Rat ESG
Feb 26 2015
LEEDuser Member
604 Thumbs Up

Domestic Hot Water System

Project Location: Sri Lanka

Is it a mandatory requirement to install a domestic hot water system in a LEED project?

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Scott Bowman LEED Fellow, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Feb 26 2015 LEEDuser Expert 9577 Thumbs Up

No, there are no mandatory systems that must be in a building. If it is normal and customary (and meets code) in your location, then it would not be required. Since you asked this under the commissioning credit, the scope is the requirement for what to commission if it is present, not a requirement to have the system.

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KC Rat ESG Feb 26 2015 LEEDuser Member 604 Thumbs Up

Thanks a lot.

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Allan Vásquez
Dec 09 2014
Guest
77 Thumbs Up

Who can be CxA?

Project Location: Costa Rica

Hi,
I’m looking for some help with the Commissioning Authority experience. The first question is:
How do I know which projects are similar managerial and technical complexity than the project I’m working?
Let me explain me better, I work for the Costa Rica Government. We have been doing commissioning for long time on the different electromechanical systems of a power houses on hydroelectric, geothermal, wind and solar plants, for example: turbines, powers generators, HVAC systems, high pressure pipe, gates, transformers, electrics substation, electric system (lighting and power), control system, etc. All of this experience is on a group dedicated to commissioning on all generator plants.
Now we are working on a Data Center and office building larger than 50.000 sf, and we want to know if we can designate this commissioning group to do the commissioning for LEED EAp1.
The commissioning group is not into the design or construction team. The commissioning belongs to the owner.
Thanks in advance

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Allan Vásquez
Dec 08 2014
Guest
77 Thumbs Up

Who can be CxA?

Project Location: Costa Rica

How do I know which projects are a similar managerial and technical complexity than the one I am working on? Let me explain me better, I work for the Costa Rica Government, where we have been doing Commissioning for long time but on a different kind of projects, mostly power house for hydroelectric, wind and solar plants.

Now we are working on a Data Center and office building bigger than 50.000 sf, and we want to designate 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. from our own department but the documented experience we have is on buildings with smaller area than 50.000 sf, but with more complex electromechanical systems than this project.

Then the last question: will USGBC accept this kind of experience as a similar managerial and technical complexity?

Regards

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Scott Bowman LEED Fellow, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC Dec 11 2014 LEEDuser Expert 9577 Thumbs Up

I wish that I could say that GBCIThe Green Building Certification Institute (GBCI) manages Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) building certification and professional accreditation processes. It was established in 2008 with support from the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). looks at the qualifications in as much detail as you are suggesting, but I do not think so. So it is really the honor system working here.

Based on your description, it is not so much that you do not know how to complete commissioning, but in the systems that are being commissioned. If you have someone that has experience with building systems, which would be different that what you have been doing, then pair them with someone that had done the commissioning part. They can work together.

You could also add a appropriate consultant for the peer review (as part of enhanced Cx1. Commissioning (Cx) is the process of verifying and documenting that a building and all of its systems and assemblies are planned, designed, installed, tested, operated, and maintained to meet the owner's project requirements. 2. The process of checking the performance of a building against the owner's goals during design, construction, and occupancy. At a minimum, mechanical and electrical equipment are tested, although much more extensive testing may also be included. which you can do as the owner), which would help you with some of the system questions.

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Allan Vásquez Dec 11 2014 Guest 77 Thumbs Up

Thank you for answer, it helps me a lot.

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andres ramirez integralDC
Nov 25 2014
Guest
60 Thumbs Up

cxa requirements

Project Location: Colombia

Hi I’m an arquitect and I just got the CPMP-commissioning certification from ASHRAE, I’ve been working already in 4 leed projects as a leed project manager. Last project was about 660000 sqft and I was also owner rep on the entirely cx1. Commissioning (Cx) is the process of verifying and documenting that a building and all of its systems and assemblies are planned, designed, installed, tested, operated, and maintained to meet the owner's project requirements. 2. The process of checking the performance of a building against the owner's goals during design, construction, and occupancy. At a minimum, mechanical and electrical equipment are tested, although much more extensive testing may also be included. process including all testing and verification of the equipment. My question is if I qualify as 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. for a project bigger than 50k

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