Commissioning is possibly the most important activity in the construction process which enables the Mechanical and Electrical Services installation to achieve the environmental conditions desired by both the designer and end user.
The purpose of commissioning is to ensure that the completed installation is inspected, ‘set to work’, tested, adjusted and regulated so that when handed to the client, the services of the building are working in accordance with the design specification and provide the conditions intended by the designer.
It will also demonstrate that the installed equipment complies with the design intent, as outlined in the design specification.
If the commissioning has been correctly carried out, on the day of handover the client is presented with a full, operational building with all test results documented and witnessed, full operating and maintenance instructions available and the client’s maintenance staff fully trained in efficient operation and maintenance of the building.
Any subsequent defects can quickly be identified and remedial action taken by reference to the operating and maintenance manuals and test results.
From a programming point of view, commissioning and balancing activities have to be carried out in a strict sequence which cannot easily be varied.
Commissioning activities therefore, are less flexible than any other part of the installation, where alternative sequences can be adopted to provide maximum usage of labour resources, or the availability of materials and equipment.
Over a number of years we have developed a standard approach to commissioning to ensure not only the minimum overall quality on a project, but improved performance on all our projects by staff familiarisation. Standardisation enables us to resource more efficiently and to cover unforeseen absences due to sickness, holidays etc. with minimum disruption to both client and project.
More recently we have collaborated with services contractor Michael J Lonsdale and main contractor Mace to produce a “Commissioning Template” which has been integrated into an overall management document with the intention of implementing on all of their projects.
The purpose of this template is to set out the philosophy and procedures to be adopted to “manage” the testing and commissioning process. The narrative, together with check lists and procedures provides a minimum standard which can be adapted to cater for all projects from small tenant fit-outs to large multi-service structures more akin to Mace’s core business.
A comprehensive list of our Commissioning Services is as follows:
• Commissionability Appraisal
• Systems Validation
• Commissioning Advisory Service
• Commissioning Management and Supervision
• Commissioning Testing and Balancing
• Commissioning Documentation
• Pre-Commissioning Checks and Fault Finding
• Plant Functional Analysis
• Environmental Monitoring
• Plant Operation
• Plant Inspection and Testing (Site or Works)
• Site Supervision
• Staff Instruction and Training
• Systems Development, Design Evaluation