Anyone can sell you an energy performance strategy along with smart building controls and tell you that their system will provide AI intelligence and save you money. The issues I see with these types of claims time and time again, is the failure of these firms in understanding your existing building energy assets and the history of how these energy assets have operated over the last three years, prior to installing their systems. In most cases this leads to poor energy performance outcomes and unhappy customers.
Setting the right expectations for improving building energy performance is key to a successful outcome. Therefore, what are the necessary steps?
1. Analyze and review current & past building utility data over the last 3 years. Collect design and operating data to create a building baseline to perform against. This includes a site building walkthrough to determine existing energy assets, controls and operating conditions.
2. Use the collected data to benchmark the building to provide a clear comparison between your building’s energy performance and similar buildings. Once you have determined a utility reduction strategy exists, move to the next step.
3. Prepare ASHRAE level 2 or 3 energy audits. Analytical data from benchmarking will indicate what level of effort is needed to effectively improve energy performance. Complete energy measures recommendations (i.e. Cost, utility incentives, savings & payback) for all energy assets to improve energy performance and reduce climate impact.
4. Once recommended energy measures are installed, conduct proper commissioning of all energy asset systems and controls, to effectively ensure that the performance goals will be met and maintained.
5. Continue to provide ongoing monitoring and verification of systems to ensure performance standards meet performance goals.
6. Finally, the controls installation (i.e. BAS-IOT system) should have a user-friendly dashboard for tracking building energy asset performance, training building operating staff, and planning for continual performance improvements.