How to get the most out of your HVAC service contract without spending more

How much do you actually get for your HVAC preventative maintenance? Are you able to measure the savings versus not having a service contract at all? What can you do to start reducing HVAC related tenant complaints and get a handle on your energy bills?

How much do you actually get for your HVAC preventative maintenance? Are you able to measure the savings versus not having a service contract at all? What can you do to start reducing HVAC related tenant complaints and get a handle on your energy bills?

Evolving your HVAC service contracts to curb complaints and high energy bills!

By: Zach Denning

Preventative maintenance was originally designed to reduce emergency failures and ultimately HVAC related tenant calls. Most studies conclude that there are 12-15% maintenance savings in preventative over reactive service from proper inspection and upkeep of units – Much like maintaining a car!

As with HVAC service, we take our car in for oil changes at least once a year and have the added value of a mechanic checking other components to see if they’re failed. Or, at least that’s what we like to believe.

The reality is that we settle on the $19.95 oil change, drive away with brakes worn to the rotor, and get angry that the “mechanic” forgets to put back the oil plug. Why do we risk so much? Without understanding the actual risk of brake failure or how much you save with every oil change, preventative maintenance is like buying insurance – We only know the value when something goes wrong! Until then, we’ll settle on the cheapest provider.

Breaking down your preventative maintenance:

  • In our studies, we found the average 60k sq. ft. office building to cost between $2,500.00 – 3,200.00 annually for preventative maintenance
    • Technicians do visual and auditory inspection at least 6-8 hours per quarter.
  • The average office building operates a minimum of:
    • 55 hours per week
    • 220 hours per month
    • 2,640 hours annually

This means technicians are only onsite 8/660 hours per quarter – Or 1% of the total operating time of the building. How much can actually be accomplished in that amount of time? The extent of preventative maintenance you’re actually paying for is equivalent to a SpeeDee oil change! Technicians barely have enough time to replace filters, oil units and maybe check on a few lingering issues. Altogether, they’re missing about 55-60% of potential failures that directly lead to your tenants’ being impacted!

Using service to reduce tenant complaints and energy costs – Finding a solution!

The solution isn’t finding a new service provider or increasing existing contract amounts, it’s utilizing existing building technology to increase proactive management and realize savings.

With the advancements in building technology like automation and 24/7 monitoring managers can now get actionable data straight from the building without needing to extend existing service contracts. You still need somebody onsite for some visual and auditory analysis, but most buildings have the technology to notify managers about impending problems before they affect tenants.

The true value of preventative maintenance is finding and repairing issues before they lead to tenant impact and higher energy bills. Emerging building technologies are able to predict and quantify failures before they occur giving you the ability to prioritize repairs as an investment rather than cost impact – At a fraction of the cost of traditional onsite service! Managers and owners can now utilize technology to manage HVAC costs and budget upgrades in order to become proactive instead of reactive with their investments.

My name is Zach Denning and I’m the CEO and owner of EnerDapt, Inc. We’re an HVAC engineering firm that utilizes cloud-based technology to bridge the technical and financial gaps commonly found in HVAC management. Our OCMS EnerVise platform keeps customers knowledgeable about their building including HVAC life-cycle costs, forecasted maintenance & upgrades, and equipment replacements.   You can reach me at [email protected] or visit our website at www.enerdapt.com

OCMS; Building Operating Cost Management

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