Building commissioning gets a boost

Standards Australia has published SA TS 5342:2021 – Technical specification for building commissioning.

The document has been developed to provide industry with a common framework and consistent minimum requirements for commissioning buildings, and related activities. It has been many years in the making, with representatives from the Australian Institute of Refrigeration, Air Conditioning and Heating (AIRAH) originally proposing the project to Standards Australia in 2017.

Paul Jackson, F.AIRAH, is Associate Director of Engineering Commissioning Services and was part of the committee that developed the technical specification.

He says that although commissioning is a vital process, it is often done in a haphazard and siloed way. This in turn can lead to problems with building performance and reliability.

“For years now end-users have been complaining about and putting up with issues within new buildings or assets,” he says. “You don’t buy a car and spend the first 12 months trying to make it work, so why buy or lease a multi-million-dollar asset and accept the current project outcomes?”

The technical specification is an attempt to address these issues. It is aimed at building owners, designers, contractors, installers, commissioning technicians, inspectors, regulators and facilities managers.

In Standards Australia parlance, a technical specification is a guidance document that does not go through the same full consensus process as an Australian Standard. It may, however, eventually form the basis for a standard.

Over the past year or so, National Manager – Commissioning Management for John Holland, Robert Simic, M.AIRAH, led the Australian Standards committee behind the technical specification. He will be speaking at AIRAH’s Commissioning Virtual Forum on June 3 about the new document.

“With the release of the Technical Specification for building commissioning we are well on the way for the building industry to improve consistency, awareness and outcomes of the building commissioning process,” says Simic.

“Release of the publication as a Technical Specification supports initial and flexible adoption by industry with the view that industry feedback and continual improvement could transform this publication into an Australian Standard in the future.”

For more information about the Technical Specification, click here.

For more information about AIRAH’s Commissioning Virtual Forum, click here.

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