Energy Assessments for Small Commercial or Existing Multi-Family Buildings
There is an under-served segment of the market in buildings that are classified as “small”. Small buildings are approximately under 100,000 square feet and have traditionally been bypassed by organizations that serve larger clients only. These buildings though, have the potential both for enormous gains in energy efficiency and savings and environmentally focused improvements and solutions. The control systems that many larger buildings enjoy aren’t often present in smaller buildings. Smaller buildings are still faced with many of the same challenges of larger buildings.
EnergyLogic Energy Assessments are a comprehensive approach to working with building owners, operators, and tenants to find real world answers to improving their buildings. We assess the energy performance of buildings from top to bottom; mechanical systems, lighting, refrigeration, motors, and ancillary energy use. There are many levels of auditing commercial buildings, and of course, much depends on the size of the building as well. Below are three ‘Energy Study Levels’ of assessments, a set standard in which we follow. There are also environment studies that can be done.
Levels of Commercial Assessments
Level 1 Study – Light interview, inspection, and consulting.
The Level 1 Study identifies major areas of concern and opportunity. After a brief interview and introductory meeting, we will conduct a cursory building inspection, covering the major energy users, such as:
- Mechanical systems
- HVAC controls
- Visible ductwork
- General ancillary equipment
A report will be presented to the owner summarizing the findings, and highlighting the major areas for improvement. While this study is not intended to produce a decision making level of report, the report will provide you with:
- Guidance for where to begin making low-cost and no-cost improvements
- Indicate areas requiring further study
Energy and cost savings potential will be based on simple estimating methods and basic engineering calculations. More rigorous studies, described below, are available to provide you with the detailed savings calculations necessary for making more capital-intensive energy improvement decisions.
Level 2 Study – Secondary level of service.
The Level 2 Study is a more comprehensive study that will identify all the actionable energy users in the building. This study includes:
- An in-depth interview
- A detailed analysis of utility use over an extended period
- A comparison of results with similar buildings in the area
- Testing and measurement of systems and operating parameters on an as needed basis, depending on owner input and EnergyLogic’s past experience
- All of the readily apparent opportunities that a Level 1 Study would identify as well as the underlying inefficiencies of the major energy users in the building
The savings potential and simple payback for the each major energy saving opportunities is determined based on engineering calculations. This information provides the information necessary for clients to make decisions about the efficacy of energy improvements. This level of energy study is recommended for older buildings or in situations where utility expenses have increased suddenly or over time.
Level 3 Study – Intensive study, inspections and detailed cost analysis. The Gold standard with the highest ROI.
The Level 3 study provides the detailed information necessary to allow clients to weigh energy improvements against other priorities. This study includes:
- Everything that is included in a Level 2 study
- Every aspect of building operation including seasonal and other fluctuations in energy use
- An energy model of the building is created and calibrated against actual energy use to provide accurate predictions of how proposed improvements can be expected to perform.
The Level 3 Study provides clients with the gold standard in energy usage and upgrade efficiency information, enabling meaningful investment decision making.
EnergyLogic also works with clients to perform comprehensive environmental assessments to reduce the environmental impact of running any business in today’s competitive, but increasingly environmentally aware business climate.
Sustain 1 Study – Baseline Analysis
The Sustain 1 Study is a baseline analysis of the sustainability of a business’s operations. The Sustain 1 Study typically includes:
- A Level 1 Energy Study to assess energy use
- Examines every practice, procedure and operation inside an organization to determine where sustainability opportunities lie
Areas of study include:
- Use of energy
- Indoor air quality
- Reuse, reduction and recycling of materials both in production and consumption
- Reduction of pollutants
- Local material use
- Support of local economies.
Sustain 2 Study – Intensive Analysis
The Sustain 2 Study continues the Sustain 1 Study by creating an action plan with estimated costs and expected results based on key metrics. Examples of metrics are:
- Reduction in energy use or greenhouse gas emissions
- Improvement in indoor air quality
- Reduction in material use or increase in reuse/recycling
- Intangible aspects such as improvement in workplace environment and impact on local economies
The Business Case for Energy Studying
Every dollar that a business owner spends needs to have some sort of return on investment. The case for making energy improvements to a building is no different. The mission of EnergyLogic is to show you how you can achieve an acceptable return on investment for energy efficiency upgrades, through measurement, observation, and analysis. We tailor our services to our clients based on what they tell us, and on what the buildings tell us. In many cases, efficiency or comfort upgrades do not meet the owner’s investment criteria when taken alone, become attractive when bundled with upgrades having shorter payback.
Contact us to discuss your project by emailing Rusty Buick, or calling him at 720-305-8436.