There are a number of ways you can save money with a KNX system for building technology management.
KNX is completely open, allowing over 300 different manufacturers to create devices to gain full control of everything from the light, temperature, the washing machine and much more. With so many manufacturers, we will be able to integrate and take total management control both in the home and – not least – in the modern commercial buildings. KNX was formerly known as EIB (European Installation Bus).
Here are eight of the most important ways you can save money on KNX installation.
1. Cut energy costs: Use demand management
KNX’s biggest savings come from demand management. That means that we turn off the lights, heating and cooling when there are no people in the location. In office buildings, there may be as few as 40% of the usual occupants present, i.e., there are only people sitting in 4 of the 10 offices. And this only applies to the actual working hours; for 16 of the day’s 24 hours commercial buildings are usually empty. Turning off the energy-intensive and costly features will clearly make powerful inroads into the energy bill. Demand management is a central and elementary component of a KNX system.
2. Avoid wasting heat: Integrate systems
Many buildings have two systems that do not work together and must be integrated in order to achieve savings, namely, heating and cooling sources. We often have a cooling system that is trying to obtain a low temperature, at the same time as the heating system is working to obtain a higher temperature. In other words: you are paying for several kilowatt-hours to warm up a room, and at the same time, you are paying for even more kilowatt-hours to cool it down. This is money right out the window. And while we’re talking about windows: with KNX, we easily turn off the heat when they are opened – with KNX we don't waste heat.
3. Increased productivity: Have a better indoor environment
According toinneklima.com, research shows that poor indoor environment quality can reduce productivity by 15%. By coordinating heating, cooling, light, blinds and ventilation, we will easily obtain a better indoor environment. Increased productivity on the part of employees is pure profit for the company. In addition, individual employees will feel better after 7.5 hours in an optimal indoor environment. Healthy employees show up at work, thus you can also lessen expensive sick leaves.
4. Reduce irritation: Allow human overriding
Automated solutions may seem annoying to many people. It is annoying when the blinds close on the first sunny day of spring, for example. A good KNX installer lets people have the ability to override the automatic mechanism Controlling the blinds, lights and temperature. Satisfied users mean increased productivity!
5. Discover more new savings: Coordinate with a central operating control system
You can actively monitor and change preferences to realise new savings by coordinating a central operating control system (SD plant) with a KNX system. An SD facility is in essence a parent control of a building’s technical facilities. KNX systems allow themselves to be easily integrated into modern governing systems. The system provides extra savings via night lowering, for example, and can be set to go into save mode on weekends and holidays.
6. Make up for human failure: turn off projectors automatically
It is all too often that projectors are left fully on with hot bulbs after a meeting is over, because people forget to turn them off. However, KNX never forgets, and with the system you can automatically turn off the projector when everyone has left the meeting room. The automatic projector switch-off will reduce energy use while also cutting the expense of costly replacement bulbs. This solution can be easily applied by either integrating KNX with AV control systems such as Crestron and CUE, etc., or by using a direct connection from KNX to the projector.
7. Avoid replacing a whole system: mix vendors with extensions and additions
You don't have to replace the entire old unit when building a new wing, or making other changes. If you have an older KNX unit from 10–20 years ago, it can still be extended. You don't even have to stick to the previous supplier. KNX can freely mix different suppliers.
8. Optimise in terms of the life cycle: an open system gives freedom of choice
KNX is optimal to follow the life cycle of all plants and buildings. There are many manufacturers of the KNX system, and there are even more KNX-competent installers. Since the system is completely open, one is free to switch both suppliers and installers. You are therefore assured that the system can go on living together with the building.
Learn more about KNX and other automation systems >
Paul Haaland, Development manager, Building automation & Integrations