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Retrocommissioning for California State Buildings Energy Efficiency Forum Sheraton Grand Hotel, Sacramento September 27, 2006 What is Retro-commissioning?

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Retrocommissioning for California State Buildings

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Retrocommissioning for California State Buildings

Energy Efficiency ForumSheraton Grand Hotel, Sacramento

September 27, 2006


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What is Retro-commissioning?

Definition: Retro-commissioning (RCx) is a systematic method for investigating how and why an existing building’s systems are operated and maintained the way they are, and identifying ways to improve overall building performance.


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Core Elements of Retro-commissioning

  • Ensure that the building is performing as efficiently and as the owner expects

  • Recommend and implement measures that improve equipment performance

  • Verify that the building owner and staff receive

    • Documentation and assistance to implement improvements

    • Training on monitoring and maintaining the improvements

  • Provide documentation and tools to enhance O&M practices


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California State Facilities

California’s Public Facilities

State, Local Government, K-12 Schools and Community Colleges


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Building Commissioning Guides

  • Developed by the California Commissioning Collaborative (CCC) for the CEC

  • Two documents:

    • California Commissioning Guide: New Buildings

    • California Commissioning Guide: Existing Buildings

www.cacx.org


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California Commissioning Guide: Existing Buildings

www.cacx.org

Answers the following questions:

  • What is RCx and why should I use it?

  • What are the benefits and costs of RCx?

  • What happens during the RCx process?

  • Who should be a part of the RCx team?

  • How can the benefits of RCx persist over time?

  • How do I get started with a RCxproject?


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The Retro-commissioning Process

Phases

  • Planning

  • Investigation

  • Implementation

  • Hand-off

    Team

  • Retro-commissioning provider

  • Building owner or agent

  • Building manager and staff

  • System specialists


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Common RCx Findings

  • Variable speed drives that are not working

  • Controls that are circumvented or set up improperly

  • Equipment that is running more than necessary or running inefficiently because of improper control

  • Controls that were never tuned or need to be re-tuned to provide an appropriate response time or to avoid hunting


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Retro-commissioning Benefits

  • Assist owners and managers with long-term planning

  • Improve system operation beyond preventative maintenance

  • Improve equipment performance

  • Increase O&M staff capabilities and expertise

  • Increase asset value

  • Energy savings

  • Improved indoor air quality, comfort, productivity


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Retro-commissioning Costs

Costs depend on the size, complexity and scope of the project

  • Total costs$0.13 to $0.45/sqft Simple Payback 0.2 to 2.1 years(LBNL study of 106 RCx projects: “The Cost-Effectiveness of Commercial-Buildings Commissioning”, E. Mills et al.)

  • Benefits (same study):

    • Value of Energy Savings$0.11 - $0.72/sqft

    • Value of Non-Energy Savings$0.10 - $0.45/sqft

  • California Caveats:

    • Data is almost 3 yrs old

    • Only 14 CA buildings in study

    • Considerable pricing volatility in all A.E.C. areas at present


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Retro-commissioning and Regular Maintenance

  • RCx should become part of regular maintenance

    • The State will be recommisioning on a 5-year cycle

    • RCx pays for itself

    • Over time, in-house RCx capabilities should grow

    • RCx can separate the easily implemented improvements (in-house) from the capital retrofits require outside experts


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RCx Resources

  • California Commissioning Collaborativewww.cacx.org

  • For information on the Architectural Revolving Fund (ARF), contact Howard Sacks, DGS Retro-commissioning Unit, (916)376-1794, Howard.Sacks@dgs.ca.gov

Norman BourassaCalifornia Energy CommissionPIER - Buildings End-Use Program NJBouras@energy.state.ca.us

David BruderSouthern California EdisonDavid.Bruder@sce.com


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