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What is building commissioning?

The Commissioning process applies to new buildings and major renovations (Cx) or to existing buildings (Retro-Cx).  Commissioning (Cx) is a systematic process for ensuring building systems (mechanical, electrical, plumbing, envelope, etc.) not only function and perform as intended, but will perform efficiently for the long term. Commissioning includes the review of designs, verification of equipment installation and validation of modes of operation.  Software data analytics can also be set up to continuously monitor operations and flag potential issues (Monitor-Based or Ongoing Cx).

ASHRAE Standard 202-2013, The Commissioning Process for Buildings and Systems, and ASHRAE Guideline 0, The Commissioning Process define commissioning as:

“A quality-focused process for enhancing the delivery of a project. The process focuses upon verifying and documenting that all of the commissioned systems and assemblies are planned, designed, installed, tested, operated, and maintained to meet the Owner’s Project Requirements.”

Benefits of commissioning
Commissioning benefits owners through improved energy efficiency, improved workplace performance due to higher quality environments, and prevention of business losses. In other words, commissioning minimizes costs of corrective maintenance and helps optimize the facility’s operation, benefits that continue long after the building is complete.

NWESI as a commissioning leader
Commissioning Portland, Oregon: NWESI has performed what is now referred to as commissioning for 25 years, proving equipment systems and facilities not only operate as designed but perform as required. The hands-on experience in fine-tuning and troubleshooting building systems, gained by our team through complex TAB projects, laid the foundation for what our Commissioning Services Division is today.

Our firm was among the first in the industry to join the Building Commissioning Association (BCxA), dedicated to advancing best practices and education throughout the building industry. Additionally, NWESI is a member of AABC Commissioning Group (ACG), which focuses on the advancement of independent third-party commissioning professionals, and which provides the Certified Commissioning Authority (CxA) and Certified Commissioning Technician (CxT) certifications for individuals.   Experience, dedicated professionals, coupled with industry training and certifications, set NWESI apart from other firms.

NWESI’s Commissioning professionals add value from design review through on-site, post-occupancy verification. In many cases and ideally, NWESI conducts an ongoing monitor-based commissioning program for the life of the building.  In Portland building commissioning has quickly become common practice as owners and developers demand more from their investments.