BuildingOS Alerts help you minimize costly peak demand charges and discover when systems stray from optimum settings

June 30, 2014

We live in an era of constant, instantaneous alerts. Your phone alerts you when you’ve nearly reached your minutes limit, or when you’ve been tagged in a photo on Facebook. Your computer alerts you as soon as a new security update is available. And even seemingly dumb devices such as clothes dryers and microwaves emit a few beeps to alert you as soon as they’re done doing their job.

Yet, most of the world’s buildings are completely mute. In fact, 94% of commercial buildings in the U.S. cannot afford advanced building technology, such as a building automation system, meaning that they usually don’t have the ability to generate alerts of any kind.

What if the individuals responsible for managing the electricity, water, and natural gas in these buildings could receive an email as soon as their building’s rate of electricity consumption reached the threshold that caused the price they pay for electricity to increase? What if they knew as soon as a building hit 75% of its budgeted spend for the month? And what if they were able to identify suspiciously high rates of electricity consumption during times when their building is typically unoccupied, such as midnight to 6am, instantaneously instead of having to wait days or weeks?

BuildingOS Alerts is an incredibly flexible and easy to use tool that allows you to do just that. To create an alert, users simply:

  • Choose a meter
  • Specify an alert condition, such as demand exceeds __ kW or demand exceeds forecast by __%, or total daily use exceeds __ gallons
  • Specify the months, days of the week, and times of day during which the alert should be in evaluated

When the condition is met during the specified time window, the user will receive an email letting them know
When the condition is met during the specified time window, the user will receive an email letting them know

The following is a short tour of the ways that BuildingOS users can put Alerts to use to help them rein in resource costs and waste:

Reduce your peak demand charges

Peak demand charges on your electricity bill could be as much as 40% of your total spend. Set up a Demand exceeds Alert to notify you when you approach or hit your rate’s peak demand threshold during times when peak demand tariffs are in effect.

Quickly catch malfunctioning equipment and leaks

Identify expensive problems such as water leaks, malfunctioning equipment, or something as simple as an open basement window. Set up Demand exceeds and/or Total daily use exceeds Alerts to warn of high consumption when you expect it to be low, such as nights and weekends.

Facilitate preventative maintenance

Set up Alerts that notify you of conditions that require preventative maintenance.

Learn when your building has veered off track

Discover when a building’s resource use has deviated from typical consumption over the last month by setting up a Demand exceeds load profile alert.

Stay under budget & keep your CFO in the know

Set up Total monthly spend exceeds Alerts to make managing your utility budgets a breeze. And when a record-breaking heatwave, cold-snap or other unexpected event comes your way and numbers are looking like they’ll be coming in above budget, give your CFO or finance director an early heads up so.

Now get started creating your own alerts! Log into BuildingOS, choose a meter, and click Alerts.