Performance Metrics

July/August 2008
A version of this article appears in the July/August 2008 issue of Home Energy Magazine.
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July 01, 2008
It is time to completely rethink the way we measure home and building efficiency. We hear a lot these days about buildings being certified as “green” or about major infrastructure changes intended to make them “efficient.” But truly conserving energy is a matter of results—it means analyzing the daily performance metrics, tweaking the building functions as needed, and rewarding those individuals who are actually driving the building to peak operating efficiency. Whether we are talking about a single-family house, apartments in multifamily buildings, or a large corporate facility, in each case a particular individual (or team) is making decisions about the HVAC system. It might be a homeowner with limited knowledge, an HVAC contractor, a building manager, or a facilities director. In each case, it is important for that person or that team to see himself, or themselves, as active drivers steering the home or building daily toward specific goals and seeking to reach defined key performance metrics. This is not a passive activity in which you can fall asleep at the wheel. Whoever does it must be vigilant in tweaking the system daily toward peak operating efficiency. For years, single-family homes have used ...

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