Use electrical systems commissioning to boost reliability of your system

Electrical systems commissioning continues to grow and gain recognition. The latest National Electrical Code requires electrical systems commissioning for critical operations power systems under Article 708, and numerous governmental and municipal authorities — through local and regional building codes — health care centers, data facilities and private owners and entities call for electrical systems commissioning for various aspects of their projects.

This type of commissioning is important, because many times, electrical system failures are catastrophic events that may have resulted from undetected equipment defects, overlooked installation procedures or a combination of these circumstances in an electrical system’s structure from the time it was constructed.

The process of electrical systems commissioning can be applied to new construction (commissioning), existing facilities that have never been commissioned (retro-commissioning) or facilities that have been commissioned or retro-commissioned (recommissioning). New construction has an advantage: the contractor installing the systems usually is already on the construction site and is generally equipped to assist in the process of electrical systems commissioning, including functional performance testing. However, for retro-commissioning and recommissioning projects, the installing contractors are usually no longer working at the site, which means the commissioning party has to set up the execution of functional performance testing with a subcontractor.

Functional performance testing demonstrates the readiness of an electrical system and identifies potential points of failure that can be resolved before the system is placed into its intended operation. While helping minimize an electrical system’s potential failure points, electrical systems commissioning can enhance the knowledge base (e.g., identifying types of failure points that can be avoided in future systems), prove that integrated mechanical and electrical systems are properly communicating and executing commands and increase systems’ reliability after they have been installed and have undergone functional performance testing.

For more information about electrical systems commissioning, contact Danny Haughn at

Posted on August 17, 2017