As the energy and climate crises continue, optimising dynamic HVAC Systems will benefit building occupiers, owners and the planet
As the cost of living and energy bills continue to skyrocket, going back to working from the office this winter seems like a tempting way to save on energy bills. Uswitch estimates that office workers could save £131 on their monthly bill from this October by going back to the office.
While a return to the office will be welcomed by many commercial real estate (CRE) landlords, it will lead to an increase in their energy bills and that of their tenants. Recent rising energy bills and looming net zero targets are incentives for commercial real estate landlords to look at how they optimise their Heating, Ventilation & Air Conditioning (HVAC) systems, which are major contributors to energy waste and carbon emissions.
On average, 40% of an office building’s energy costs can be attributed to the cooling, heating and ventilation of space so that HVAC optimisation can see substantial energy savings.
However, fully optimising HVAC systems can also be time-consuming and difficult at scale.
Nevertheless, the pandemic has seen a rise in the implementation of IoT, we have more and more data that we can use in multiple ways. Space utilisation insights from one or multiple sources can be used not only to influence decisions on operational, design and cleaning requirements of the office but can also be useful in adapting HVAC schedules to a more demand-based system that is dynamic to the changing use of space.
Not only does this mean CRE landlords can reduce their soaring energy bills but they can also pass on cost savings to tenants, giving themselves a differentiator in an ever-competitive market.
What do we mean by dynamic HVAC optimisation?
Dynamic HVAC optimisation is a process of improving the performance of heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems based on real-time changes in a building’s use or environment. Ongoing adjustments better match performance to the ever-changing needs of a building. This not only makes for a more comfortable environment for occupiers but can also lead to significant cost savings.
Rather than having a building engineer continuously monitor how people are using a space and making adjustments periodically, software solutions that analyse real-time data sources can adjust HVAC performance to counter changes, such as rising temperature from an increase in bodies in specific rooms or zones. This means HVAC can be left in a low power state during working hours and automatically provides just enough airflow or cooling in the right place at the right time for optimal occupier comfort.
What’s the best way to start implementing dynamic HVAC systems?
The first step to implementing a dynamic HVAC system by combining data sources into one easy-to-read/view location. This data can include information about the system’s performance, your building’s energy use, space utilisation and environmental conditions, among other things.
The problem is most of this data is siloed on different platforms by different manufacturers and often in different formats. Ensuring a system is in place to consolidate and equalise the data sets is imperative to analysing that data as a whole rather than as individual disconnected data sets.
To effectively use data, you need to be able to see correlations and patterns. Data consolidation has traditionally been one of the industry’s biggest challenges, but now it’s becoming more accessible as more interoperable products and consolidated dashboards have hit the market.
To read the full post and learn about the analysis, action and return on investment, you can read the full feature by PBC Today here. Or read this feature and the more in November 2022’s edition of the PBC Today magazine.
To learn more about how to turn your HVAC system into a dynamic system and improve energy efficiency, book a call with us today: