Building Management

Valves Deserve Some TLC

The purpose of a building management system is to control and adjust the environmental systems to achieve a desired state while minimizing energy consumption. Variables such as changing occupancy, load on the building system, and seasonal changes require that critical components like valves adjust appropriately and accurately under varying conditions.

Valves are constantly working and are subject to wear, as well as to damage from chemicals or debris. Making maintenance a priority for these venerable and undervalued BMS components is a must to ensure operational and cost efficiency.

Whether a valve falls victim to a physical or system problem, either can result in wasted energy, unnecessary equipment wear, and poor occupant comfort.

Case in point – a 41,000 square meter research lab in the greater Boston area used building analytics to identify and repair faulty valves. Results included:

  • A leaking cooling valve in an air handler was causing simultaneous heating and cooling of air supplied to the building during heating season. Replacing the unit has saved more than $62,253.04 per year.

 

  • A preheating coil valve was put into manual override during the summer months. Once the heating season began, the overridden valve began to cause simultaneous heating and cooling. Correcting the valve controls as has saved $139,829.62 per year.

 

  • Nearly 200 of the building’s terminal unit reheat valves were found to be leaking, caused by unfiltered hot water during the building startup. Replacing the faulty valves and actuators has saved $78,708.66 per year.

 

Read more about how Schneider Electric’s valves deliver value to the BMS in the white paper: Valves and Actuators: Maintaining the Foundation of a High Performance Building.


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