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DDC Controls Make Retrocommissioning Easier, More Essential
October 1, 2010 - Contact FacilitiesNet Editorial Staff »
Today's topic is retrocommissioning.
The move to direct digital controls (DDC) has made retrocommissioning more important. As controls have become more complex, the chances for things to go wrong have increased. At the same time, however, DDC systems are easier to commission than their pneumatic predecessors.
For one thing, it can be more cost effective to work on buildings with DDC than with pneumatic controls. For example, a commissioning agent can use the trending capability of a building automation system rather than work with data loggers. And it's easier to make changes in software than to tear out hardware.
Software-based controls also make it possible to make changes and note what happens. A control sequence or setpoint could be adjusted on screen, and the results observed. When changes like those are made, it's essential that someone from facility operations be involved. The retrocommissioning agent might recommend a change, but it’s up to the facility staff to approve and implement the action.