FDD, Maintenance, Fault Impacts
Maintenance strategies currently used for commercial building rooftop units (RTU) can be classified into two categories: reactive strategies and proactive strategies. In reactive strategies, maintenance and service is performed only when needed, e.g. when a system is unable to maintain setpoint. In proactive strategies, maintenance is scheduled at routine intervals to avoid service interruptions regardless of whether the system actually needs it. While these strategies could not be more different, it is unclear which strategy is more optimal. Moreover, whether one strategy is more optimal than the other more than likely depends on the application – contributing to much uncertainty. A third category of maintenance has been enabled by automated fault detection and diagnostics (AFDD) technologies that aims to provide building operators and service providers more detailed information about the actual state of equipment in the field. This third strategy, called condition-based maintenance, aims to optimize service and maintenance decisions throughout the life of equipment based on updated measurements of performance and service costs. In this work, these three types of maintenance strategies are compared using a commercial building simulation model utilizing a fault impact equipment model. Along with comparing different strategies under the same fault scenario, ambient conditions, and loads, optimal maintenance schedules are generated using dynamic programming. Benefits of a condition-based maintenance approach utilizing a suite of AFDD methodologies are highlighted with respect to reducing operating costs.