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Retro-Commissioning Delivers Significant Energy and Performance Gains According to U.S. Department of Energy

Retro-commissioning is the process of optimizing and fine-tuning existing building systems to improve overall performance and efficiency. By analyzing mechanical, electrical, and control systems integration and function, retro-commissioning can realize significant operating cost savings while meeting the facility’s environmental parameters and enhancing occupant comfort.

The need for retro-commissioning arises when buildings suffer from issues like high energy consumption, poor indoor air quality, temperature control problems, or inefficient equipment operation. Even well-designed and constructed facilities can develop these problems over time due to factors like deferred maintenance, system degradation, or changes in how spaces are utilized.
The benefits of retro-commissioning are substantial. A U.S. Department of Energy analysis of retro-commissioning projects for existing buildings revealed an average heating and cooling cost savings of 15%, with a simple payback period of less than a year. Additional benefits include prolonged equipment lifespan, control system manageability, improved documentation, and 

maintenance staff training, and better indoor air quality. Most of these improvements can be implemented inexpensively along the way, often through controls changes alone. 

For buildings suffering from performance issues or high operating expenses, retro-commissioning can be a highly cost-effective process to rightsize systems, replace Band-Aid fixes with long-term solutions, and ensure operations align with current occupant needs. The long-term benefits of an optimized, integrated building environment make retro-commissioning a worthwhile investment.

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