BEMS commissioning: 4 reasons to reconsider it this Autumn

Why it’s time to reconsider your BEMS commissioning

We’ve had our ‘summer’ and autumn is very much in full swing, which means the nights will soon start drawing in and temperatures will soon start plummeting. This is why we’ve been taking lots of calls from businesses experiencing problems with the transition from cooling to heating their buildings. Which has prompted us to remind you to make sure your BEMS knows what is required of it this autumn!

Here are four key points to reconsider your BEMS commissioning:

Control zones

Multi-tenanted buildings typically look after various businesses with separate needs on each floor, at times having more than one business on each floor. Times this need by 20 floors or more and there are tons of considerations and combinations to make sure that occupancy comfort is balanced with energy efficiency. For example, a company on one floor could possibly be in 1-3 days a week, and on another floor, 5-7 days per week. An experienced BEMS engineer will be skilled in optimising multiple control zones or putting in new monitoring measures to control spaces on use rather than time schedule.

Staff training

Not to sound preachy but your BEMS controls are only as good as the operators. Are your BEMS controls located on the front desk? Often reception will have access to them to control the buildings lighting, heating, and cooling for the entire building. If one of the floors in the building is complaining, anyone working in front of house might feel under pressure to decrease or increase temperatures. However, users in such circumstances might have fewer permissions than a fully trained BEMS engineer, but considerable damage can still be done to the welfare of the building’s occupants, energy efficiency and in turn, your bottom line. Understanding how to manage building needs and still keep the overall balance is key.

Fabric protection

You need to protect pipework and plant from freezing temperatures. When the ambient air temp falls below 2 degrees, the BEMS will begin to run frost protection routines which are critical to protecting the mechanical and electrical infrastructure and the fabric of the building. When was the last time you checked to see if your frost routine worked?
“Some buildings, particularly older structures, can be affected by damp which often leads to a deterioration in the building fabric.” (Carbon Trust).

Side note – pipe lagging can often be removed for reactive works or become damaged and not replaced, even if you think this is already in place, it’s worth a quick inspection to make sure your pipework is wrapped up nicely as this has a huge impact on cost.

Demand led strategies

Timing is dead, long live demand! It’s time to move away from timing strategies and move towards a demand-led strategy! Countless BEMS controls are set to heat/cool between two time frames, for example, 6 am and 6 pm. However, weekends and bank holidays can often be overlooked causing wasted energy when your building is empty with no one in it. Thermatic Energy Services recommends that businesses should adopt a demand-led strategy to promote absence protection, which essentially means that sensors will pick up on zero occupancies and automatically adjust parameters that have been agreed in advance by the BEMS engineer and your buildings operator.

For further information on BEMS commissioning, give Thermatic Energy Services team a call on 0161 543 4161 or email:

About Thermatic Energy Services

We work with end-user clients to help them achieve their energy management targets. Our main focus is giving our customers visibility to their systems and data to allow them to make actionable decisions to reduce their energy consumption, improve their building operation and achieve their sustainability targets.