Retrocommissioning RCx

Retrocommissioning (RCx) is changing the face of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

What is Retrocommissioning at Illinois?

Retrocommissioning is an in-depth analysis of a building's HVAC systems and controls with a view to restoring or optimizing conditions for energy conservation, sustainability, and client comfort satisfaction.

Why is Retrocommissioning important?

Deferred maintenance is taking a toll on campus buildings and this backlog of maintenance is proven to waste energy and consume university finances. RCx is a dedicated effort to help the campus address this formidable challenge.

What has Retrocommissioning done?

Since August of 2007, the RCx team has accomplished system updates and upgrades in 60+ campus buildings for an average energy reduction of 27%. As of June 201​5, RCx work has covered approximately 8 million gross square feet at a cost avoidance of $30 million. Click here for the RCx Project Summary. Check out our latest RCx Project Summary.

Retrocommissioning Process

The retrocommissioning process on the Urbana campus is focused on reviewing and improving building mechanical systems, while maintaining or improving occupant comfort.
  • Engineers undertake a thorough investigation of available building documentation, energy usage history, and similar pertinent data, while conducting meetings with building staff.
  • Field technicians and tradesmen gather data regarding operating conditions, sensor accuracy, equipment condition, and historic maintenance data from the field and current maintenance staff.
  • The composite teams discuss findings and then look to restore mechanical systems to their original design while implementing energy saving improvements.
  • The teams take the lead in making small changes and recommending larger capital projects, which require more funding, to Engineering or Maintenance for augmenting and sustaining the building's energy saving strategies.
  • Building system control experts implement modern methods of control, monitor energy usage after changes, review actual metered data, and verify the savings.