What is commissioning of a building automation system (BAS)? When a new BAS is installed, or an existing BAS is renovated, the control contractor is responsible to install, setup and test the control system. The Commissioning Agents job is to follow up behind the controls contractor and insure that the entire system was installed and is controlling properly. They can do this by testing the operation of points and various control sequences.
Why is commissioning a good idea? Hopefully the control contractor does a complete and accurate job with their commissioning. If not, the problems will likely turn up during the warranty period. It is likely that the owner may not be qualified, or have the time, to verify that 100% of the specified controls were installed correctly and are operational. This is where hiring a Commissioning Agent to represent the owner is needed. The Commissioning Agent will provide a report listing all of the systems that were tested. Some commissioning request that a random sample of systems are tested, perhaps 25% of all systems, so that the commissioning verifies how accurately the controls contractor has done their job. Schools and office buildings may utilize this partial commissioning. Another project may require all systems to be fully commissioned due to the importance of the systems and the function of the building. Data centers and hospitals would be examples of these types of buildings.
Who should you have do the commissioning? We recommend that you use an independent contractor that is well versed in controls. RVogt Energy Solutions, LLC would be a great example of this type of company. Using a Commissioning Agent that is separate from all parties involved in the project, insures that you should get an unbiased report.