Building Management Systems (BMS) is a great tool to reduce energy consumption; minimal investments in the right places bring immediate results. However, most BMS systems do not run smoothly, but cause much headache and are perceived as a cost driver only. This article evaluates why it is worthwhile to evaluate who is in control of the BMS and how it is run.
Building Automation is the brain of the building. It is designed to maintain comfort levels, manage power consumption and give control to those who need it, such as the building manager. To get on top of this confusing issue it is important to understand HOW the system is running and WHO is running it.
“HOW is the system running?” sounds like a straightforward question. The main goal of running a BMS is to ensure the people in the building are comfortable and safe. There will always be some who are too hot or cold. What matters is to get as close to 100% as possible with an effort that is manageable. This means building automation should run exactly as its name indicates: AUTOMATIC. Manual overdrives are emergency buttons designed for emergencies only. Regular testing of all equipment, replacement of faulty hardware, software updates and review of energy performance are crucial. Once it can be determined if the system should be indeed an automated system step two can be approached.
“WHO is running the system?” The Building Management System is the brain of the building. A myriad of data is collected, analysed and processed. Building managers as well as air conditioning technicians may do their utmost to manage and control the BMS. With the right support, training and tools, daily management is possible, but not always the best solution. To expect professional staff trained in other areas to fine-tune BMS systems and rectify complex issues is unreasonable and often a waste of time. On the other hand the industry has provided questionable service in the past and even more questionable rates with little regards to customer’s needs and requests.
Today we have the help of big data, measurement tools and performance optimisation algorithms. These tools can be used to optimise your buildings to achieve real energy conservation today. Let's use them today and stop the waste.