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LEED v4 Commissioning Changes

LEED v4 Commissioning Changes

by Will Mak

November 10, 2016

Any project registered today will now need to be registered under the LEED v4 rating system. LEED v4 has significant changes in the categories and credit requirements. This blog will discuss the changes to the Fundamental Commissioning and Verification (EAp1) and Enhanced Commissioning (EAc1) requirements as well as the new options that are now available.

Fundamental Commissioning and Verification (EAp1)

Qualified Commissioning Authorityimg_4390

In LEED v4, any project larger than 20,000 square feet must have a Commissioning Authority (CxA) who is not a member of the design/construction team. In previous versions of LEED, this requirement was set at 50,000 square feet or larger.

Design Phase On-Boarding

One of the big changes for the Commissioning prerequisite is the requirement that the CxA must now be brought on board before the design development phase is complete. In previous versions, the CxA could be brought on after the design phase and during the construction phase.

Design Review

In previous versions of LEED, a review on mid-design documents was only required if the project was pursuing Enhanced Commissioning. A design review is now required on all projects during the project’s mid-design stage (i.e. Design Development).

Envelope

One new section that must be covered in the Owner’s Project Requirements (OPR) and Basis of Design (BOD) is the envelope. This may include envelope performance and specific manufacturer requirements. A design review is also required for the project documents that are related to the envelope systems. However, full envelope commissioning is not required.

Plumbing and Electrical Scope

Plumbing scope has been expanded to include pumps and controls, including booster pumps. Electrical distribution and service is also now included in the required scope to be tested.

Current Facility Requirements and Operation and Maintenance Plan

Another new requirement in LEED v4 Fundamental Commissioning is the development of a Current Facility Requirements and Operations and Maintenance Plan at the end of the project. This plan contains the documents to operate the building properly and efficiently. The plan includes: sequence of operations, occupancy schedules, HVAC equipment setpoints, preventive maintenance plan, and a mechanical, electrical, and plumbing systems narrative.

Enhanced Commissioning (EAc1)

Enhanced Commissioning Pointsimg_4415-edited

Enhanced Commissioning is now worth 2-6 points on a LEED project. Previously, Enhanced Commissioning was only worth 2 points.

On-going Commissioning Plan

One of the problems that can develop after occupancy is that systems and equipment may drift away from design intent settings and operation. Because of this, the development of an On-Going Commissioning plan is now required. This should be developed before or as part of the 10-month warranty review. The On-going Commissioning Plan contains blank commissioning functional performance test scripts and recommended schedules for recommissioning.

Monitoring-Based Commissioning

Enhanced Commissioning now includes an option to pursue Monitoring-Based Commissioning (MBCx). MBCx must be pursued with the Enhanced Commissioning scope. MBCx includes developing measurement requirements, understanding what control points need to be tracked and how often, and identifying and correcting operational errors and deficiencies through an action plan. The Enhanced Commissioning and MBCx option allows the team to achieve a total of 4 points.

Envelope Commissioning

Enhanced Commissioning now also includes an option to pursue Envelope Commissioning, but it is not required. As mentioned in the previous section, however, Envelope Commissioning must be pursued with Fundamental Commissioning and Verification (EAp1). Envelope Commissioning scope includes following the National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS) Guideline 3-2012 Exterior Enclosure Technical Requirements for the Commissioning Process. This option is worth 2 points if pursing with EAp1 but can be worth a total of 5 points if conducted with Enhanced Commissioning, or 6 points if conducted with Enhanced Commissioning and Monitoring-Based Commissioning.

Summary

Fundamental Commissioning and Verification (EAp1) changes include:
  • Any project larger than 20,000 square feet must have a CxA that is not a member of the design/construction team.
  • CxA must be engaged before the design development phase is complete.
  • Design review must be complicated in Fundamental Commissioning.
  • Envelope systems must be included in the OPR, BOD and design review.
  • Plumbing scope has been expanded to include pumps and controls.
  • Electrical distribution and service has been added to the testing scope.
  • A Current Facility Requirements and Operation and Maintenance Plan is now required.
Enhanced Commissioning (EAc1) changes include:
  • Enhanced Commissioning credit is now worth 2-6 points.
  • An Ongoing Commissioning plan must be developed before or as part of the 10 month warranty review.
  • Monitoring-based commissioning and building envelope commissioning credits options are now available.

Have more questions about Commissioning? Want to know more? Email us at workwithus@cyclone.energy or call us at 312.945.8443 for information!

 

Sources: LEED v4 Reference Guide for Building Design and Construction, LEED v4 Reference Guide for Interior Design and Construction