Fundamental commissioning and verification | U.S. Green Building Council
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LEED BD+C: New Construction | v4 - LEED v4

Fundamental commissioning and verification



To support the design, construction, and eventual operation of a project that meets the owner’s project requirements for energy, water, indoor environmental quality, and durability.


Commissioning Process Scope

Complete the following commissioning (Cx) process activities for mechanical, electrical, plumbing, and renewable energy systems and assemblies, in accordance with ASHRAE Guideline 0-2005 and ASHRAE Guideline 1.1–2007 for HVAC&R Systems, as they relate to energy, water, indoor environmental quality, and durability.

Requirements for exterior enclosures are limited to inclusion in the owner’s project requirements (OPR) and basis of design (BOD), as well as the review of the OPR, BOD and project design. NIBS Guideline 3-2012 for Exterior Enclosures provides additional guidance.

  • Develop the OPR.
  • Develop a BOD

The commissioning authority (CxA) must do the following:

  • Review the OPR, BOD, and project design.
  • Develop and implement a Cx plan.
  • Confirm incorporation of Cx requirements into the construction documents.
  • Develop construction checklists.
  • Develop a system test procedure.
  • Verify system test execution.
  • Maintain an issues and benefits log throughout the Cx process.
  • Prepare a final Cx process report.
  • Document all findings and recommendations and report directly to the owner throughout the process.

The review of the exterior enclosure design may be performed by a qualified member of the design or construction team (or an employee of that firm) who is not directly responsible for design of the building envelope.

Commissioning Authority

By the end of the design development phase, engage a commissioning authority with the following qualifications.

  • The CxA must have documented commissioning process experience on at least two building projects with a similar scope of work. The experience must extend from early design phase through at least 10 months of occupancy;
  • The CxA may be a qualified employee of the owner, an independent consultant, or an employee of the design or construction firm who is not part of the project’s design or construction team, or a disinterested subcontractor of the design or construction team.
    • For projects smaller than 20,000 square feet (1 860 square meters), the CxA may be a qualified member of the design or construction team In all cases, the CxA must report his or her findings directly to the owner.

Project teams that intend to pursue EA Credit Enhanced Commissioning should note a difference in the CxA qualifications: for the credit, the CxA may not be an employee of the design or construction firm nor a subcontractor to the construction firm.

Current Facilities Requirements and Operations and Maintenance Plan

Prepare and maintain a current facilities requirements and operations and maintenance plan that contains the information necessary to operate the building efficiently. The plan must include the following:

  • a sequence of operations for the building;
  • the building occupancy schedule;
  • equipment run-time schedules;
  • setpoints for all HVAC equipment;
  • set lighting levels throughout the building;
  • minimum outside air requirements;
  • any changes in schedules or setpoints for different seasons, days of the week, and times of day;
  • a systems narrative describing the mechanical and electrical systems and equipment;
  • a preventive maintenance plan for building equipment described in the systems narrative; and
  • a commissioning program that includes periodic commissioning requirements, ongoing commissioning tasks, and continuous tasks for critical facilities.
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