Facility Equipment

The study team should review the operation, age, and condition of equipment on-site and, if available, historical and maintenance and operational records. This begins the development of perspective for the number and types of measures that may be applicable. Replacement for conservation purposes is always more financially acceptable if the equipment is a known maintenance problem or is scheduled for replacement. Determination of whether new equipment is required for replacement purposes, expansion, or simply for operating cost savings will impact the financial analysis of the potential application.

The initial equipment inspection should include observation of the conditions and operations of major systems and their primary components. Examples are:

• Lighting systems: Lamp/ballast types, condition, efficiency, light levels, color rendition, etc.

• Cooling towers: Capacity, cold basin water conductivity, current load, projected load, condition of structure, fill, fan drive, water temperature (fan) controller, water chemistry controller, and hot basin water distribution.

• Distribution systems: Chilled water, condenser water, hot water and steam, electricity, compressed air and distribution temperatures, pressures, volumes and voltages, and control schemes for each major system.

• Pumps: Service, basic type, design point (head and flow), observed pressure drop, fixed speed or variable speed, method of flow control for part-load conditions.

• Electric motors: Efficiencies, loads, service.

• Boiler, chiller, and compressed air systems: equipment condition, capacity vs. maximum and minimum loads, standby capacity, leaks and losses, environmental concerns, end-use load reduction opportunities, configuration vs. optimal resource use, backup and inter-changeability, energy recovery, and thermal storage.

• Process systems: Equipment condition, method of operation, capacity vs. current and anticipated loads, end-use reduction opportunities, and fuel substitution.

• Control and monitoring systems: Type of system, active control enhancements and potential for expansion to control and/or monitor new systems, compliance with current codes and standards, and existing energy management strategies.

• Air handling systems: Type, capacity, age, typical operating settings and positions, condition, configuration, zoning, and ability to meet loads and maintain required environmental conditions.

• Unitary HVAC equipment: Equipment condition, capacity vs. maximum and minimum loads, environmental concerns, load reduction opportunities, configuration vs. optimal resource use, energy recovery, and control system improvements. The make, model, and serial number of all primary equipment under study should be obtained during the site visit. Often, the serial number is most important for larger equipment, since most manufacturers are able to supply the original design specifications of a particular unit. Copies of representative on-site logs and records of checking and testing by maintenance personnel should be obtained and reviewed to gain understanding of operations and condition.

In addition to the equipment review, the study team should collect and review information on existing operations and maintenance contracts for the equipment. Compliance with current or pending equipment and operational standards and codes should also be considered. This may include, for example, air or effluent emissions, safety, and minimum outside air requirements.

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