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Why Commission?
Why Commission?

In today’s complex buildings, systems are highly interactive. Increased system inter- activity, together with the nearly universal presence of sophisticated control systems,  results in a trickle-down effect on building operations — small problems have big effects on performance.

No matter how carefully a building is designed, if the systems, equipment and materials are not installed and operating as intended, the building will not perform well.

Now more than ever, effective operations require subsystems and components that work effectively and reliably and a building staff with the knowledge and resources to operate and maintain them. But in today’s construction environment, project team members are more cost-conscious than ever, and seldom is there adequate budget allocated to quality assurance processes.

The result of this situation? Poorly performing buildings where:

  • System and equipment problems result in higher than necessary utility bills.
  • Unexpected or excessive equipment repair and replacements due to premature failures cost the owner money and eat up staff time.
  • Poor indoor environmental quality causes employee absenteeism, tenant complaints and turnover, and in the most severe cases, leads to lawsuits and expensive retrofits.

Benefits from commissioning can be achieved no matter when the process begins.  With a potential savings of up to 20% in owning and operating cost, the earlier the commissioning process begins, the greater the benefits.
Commissioning benefits owners' through improved energy efficiency, improved workplace performance due to higher quality environments, reduced risk from threats, and prevention of business losses. Organizations that have researched the benefits of commissioning confirm that owners can achieve savings in operations of $4 over the first five years of occupancy as a direct result of every $1 invested in commissioning. Meanwhile, the cost of not commissioning is equal to the costs of correcting deficiencies plus the costs of inefficient operations. For mission-critical facilities, the cost of not commissioning can be measured by the cost of downtime and lack of appropriate facility use.


  • Reduction in design problems
  • Reduced project delays
  • Reduced change orders
  • Correct start-up requirements
  • Shorten building turnover period
  • Reduced post occupancy corrective work
  • Improved quality of indoor working environment
  • Increased building system/equipment reliability and maintainability
  • Reduced energy and operating cost
  • Increased value as a result of better quality construction


  • Incorrect heating and cooling sequence of operation
  • Lack of building control strategies for optimum comfort and efficient operation
  • Incorrect equipment installation
  • Malfunctioning economizer (free cooling) systems
  • Short cycling of HVAC equipment leading to premature failures
  • Missing specified and paid for equipment
  • O&M manuals not specific to installed equipment
  • Problems resulting from lack of training for staff maintenance personnel
  • Lack or documentation for equipment/systems problems during the warranty period


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