item is reviewed with all involved parties at the start of the project in the form of a commissioning kick off meeting. The commission- ing plan, along with the project manual requirements for equipment and systems are reviewed and discussed at length with the engineer of record, facility operators, contractors, project management team, and school representatives. Question and answer sessions are included in these meetings as well, and minutes from the meeting are distributed for record afterward. Phase II: Construction During construction, the commissioning engineer ensures that the equipment purchased by the school district is installed properly, and that the specification requirements are being met throughout the en- tire process. This includes the verification that startup paperwork is submitted for record and that warranties aren’t started until the school district accepts the newly installed equipment. Equipment warranty is another area with which the commissioning engineer can assist the school district. Contractors want to turn equip- ment over to the school the minute the equipment is started, and do not want postpone the initial effective date of those warranties. Com- missioning engineers help write the specifications, and commissioning engineers that have been around K-12 projects before know to write in the specification that equipment warranties will not be started until the equipment has been properly commissioned by the owner’s representa- tive. This is critical to protecting the owner from damaged equipment that may have been operating improperly after start up. Specifically, when newly purchased equipment is used for temporary heating and cooling during construction. Phase III: Functional Testing After all equipment is properly started and the test and balance on the systems are complete, the commissioning engineer can functionally test the systems with the controls contractor. Recall that, during the design phase of the capital improvement project, the commissioning engineer helped write the specifications and reviewed the sequence of New boiler installation. Replacement of low effecient boilers with high effeciency boilers allows for better turn down ratios during shoulder seasons.
operations with the facility operators. At this point of the project the commissioning engineer is holding the systems to those standards and making sure they operate to design. All open issues are tracked and bird-dogged by the commissioning engineer to completion. At the end of the project, the school district receives the final commis- sioning report, which outlines all of the work that was done during the project. Depending on the scope of work that was purchased by the school, the commissioning engineer may even perform energy assess- ments of the newly installed equipment. Doing so can provide a direct comparison between the old- and new systems as well as a payback analysis for the school. In Conclusion Retro-commissioning provided the assessment of existing conditions and a pathway forward for the capital improvement project. The retro- commissioning process ensures that the capital improvement project addresses all or most of the mechanical, electrical, and plumbing sys- tem issues. The new construction commissioning process ensures that the owner receives all the deliverables that were purchased with the project. The commissioning process also ensures that the systems are operating as per design, and that the end user can operate and maintain the systems long after the capital improvement project has been completed. Existing pump tested during retro commissioning. The pump was kept in the new project. This saved the district money.
CHRIS DURANCEAU, Senior Engineer, has over 15 years of experience design- ing, operating, maintaining and troubleshooting mechanical systems. His professional history includes managing the construction process, formulating and executing testing procedures for small and large unitary equipment, and overseeing the commissioning process for various projects. Mr. Duranceau specializes in system operations and has experience working in all aspects of mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems.
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