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Functions and Benefits of a Building Control System

9/30/2013 3:33:39 PM | by Anonymous

Controls: Building

Many of us spend a lot of time inside buildings, be it your own home, your office or shopping malls. However, what most people don’t know is behind all the facilities of a building lies a control system. A building control system is a scheme that manages monitors and controls the electrical and mechanical equipment of a building. This includes equipment such as security systems, ventilation systems, lighting systems, fire systems and power systems.


Building control systems are most typically installed in larger buildings with extensive plumbing, mechanical and electrical systems. This kind of systems take up about 70 percent of the buildings energy usage; out of this 70 percent, lighting makes up about 30 percent. It is important to properly configure the building control system to efficiently manage the energy usage of the building.


Furthermore, some building control systems are also linked to access control systems or other security systems such as a motion detector or CCTV. Other systems include elevators and fire alarm systems for monitoring purposes. For example, if a fire was detected, the fire alarm system linked with the building control system could shut off ventilation systems to stop smoke from reaching other areas and the also the building control system could cut the power supply to elevators to prevent people from taking them.


Functions of a building control system


There are four basic functions building control system which effectively manages the various systems that can be found in a building. The four functions are controlling, reporting, monitoring and optimizing.


The first function is controlling, which refers to the planning, directing and organizing of the operations going through the system. Controlling is important as it helps to check and locate for errors so that it can make corrections in order for the building control system to effectively manage the operations.


The next function would be monitoring, which is to be constantly aware of the current state of a building. Some people think that the monitoring function is not important until a failure occurs. Therefore, it is always important to collect and store the data in order to prevent any failures from occurring as prevention is less costly and less troublesome than rectifying the error.

The third function would be optimizing. Optimizing refers to make a machine better and more efficient by constantly finding ways to improve the techniques the building control system runs its operations or processes. By constantly improving the building control system, it makes the system better each time. This helps reduce the chances of failures from occurring by optimizing the building control system, it helps make the system more efficient and conserve on energy usage.


The final function would be reporting. This function plays a crucial role in building control systems as it would be useless to monitor or track the building but not report it. Reporting is useful for maintenance staff as it gives them the information needed for them to maintain the building equipment to ensure that they are in a good working condition.


Benefits of having a building control system


Basically 3 parties benefit from having a good building control system. The first group would be the occupants or tenants of the building. The benefits are that they can enjoy with greater comfort and greater control of the internal conditions of the building. The more advanced building control system is, the more occupants or tenants are able possibly control individual rooms. If the buildings are used as a work place, then the productivity will definitely increase as well. It also allows for time and costs to be saved during maintenance.


The second group of people who can benefit from a good building control system would be the building owner. As the building control system is considered as part of the building, the value of the property will increase. When charging tenants, the owner is also able to charge them based on the usage, as it can be tracked. A good building control system also provides useful information to help the owners decide whether they should renovate or improve the building.


The last category of people that would benefit from a good control system would be the maintenance staff. As a good building control system allows the maintenance staff to easily obtain information and locate errors. Furthermore, the system also allows for the early detection of problems. This increases efficiency as time is not needed to manually locate the errors.


Overall, building control systems are more important than most people think. Without them, the places we visit, work or stay in will not be as comfortable as they should. Building control systems are the brain of the building giving us ultimate control over the many operations and thus increasing the efficiency of our lives.

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