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Mar 23, 2022 | Blog

What are the Responsibilities of a Commercial Building Engineer?

A commercial building engineer is responsible for maintaining the mechanical systems at industrial and commercial buildings. Here's an explanation of what this position entails.

What are the Responsibilities of a Commercial Building Engineer?

A commercial building engineer is responsible for maintaining the mechanical systems at industrial and commercial buildings. Here’s an explanation of what this position entails.

A commercial building engineer is one of the most important people in your facility. They maintain and repair the building’s major operating systems and address any arising issue that poses risks.

They keep your clients happy and improve your bottom line, efficiency, and safety. 

How can the services of a commercial building engineer best suit your needs? Find out in this article.

What Does A Commercial Building Engineer Do?

Building engineers are responsible for maintaining and performing regular repair services for office buildings, factories, warehouses, apartments, and healthcare facilities. They can also be hired by schools and retail malls to take care of the building in general.

Building engineers make sure the workplace is following OSHA building codes and government regulations. In the case of apartments, they ensure the building is safe, livable, and meets all legal requirements. 

In most cases, they perform a wide variety of maintenance functions. They are also responsible for overseeing contractors that complete a particular job outside their purview.

Preventative maintenance and repair are some of the major tasks of a building engineer. This means that they need to regularly inspect HVAC units, water heaters, lighting, plumbing systems, electrical systems, smoke detectors, and other physical aspects of the building. 

The repairs made by the building engineer in most cases are usually at the request of tenants, condo/apartment owners, and workers. They are required to get approval from the facility manager or the building manager when repairs reach a particular dollar amount.

Certain building engineers learn their craft while on the job, while the rest get a proper bachelor’s degree and license. It is best to work with a commercial building maintenance engineer that is certified and qualified to carry out the job responsibilities.

Why A Commercial Building Engineer Is Needed?

Building engineers play a critical role. The major functioning systems of the building are maintained and repaired by them, and include:

  • Support and foundation structures;
  • Exterior structures, such as parking lots and roofing;
  • Damp proofing;
  • Interiors, such as floors, walls, offices, bathrooms, and other similar areas;
  • Plumbing;
  • Electrical systems;
  • HVAC systems.
  • Life safety systems (such as fire alarms and sprinklers)

Building engineers manage operations to keep renters happy while also ensuring that the property runs smoothly. Their activity strongly supports the building owner’s financial success.

The responsibilities and duties of a building services engineer also vary on the type of building being maintained.

For instance, the building engineer for a food manufacturing facility will be required to maintain and perform repairs to the refrigeration equipment. 

Responsibilities Of A Commercial Building Engineer

Have you ever wondered what are the exact responsibilities of a commercial building engineer?

Commercial building engineers are needed for identifying the most significant issues that could eventually cost property owners extensively in terms of repairs. 

Here are their main tasks:

1. Investigate Building Problems

The primary and one of the most important responsibilities of any commercial building or structural engineer is to ensure legal compliance with all regulations and codes. 

They need to identify and investigate building problems before they turn into major concerns. The commercial building engineer should make routine and regular rounds of the building to look at the various components. 

They should fix the issues that are within their power and alert the concerned authorities of things that cannot be fixed by them. 

2. Repair Or Replace Failing Systems

All building systems should be timely repaired or replaced. Special attention must be paid to life safety systems since their improper functioning is a breach of legal compliance. 

They should also ensure HVAC systems and other major investments are properly maintained and timely repaired. Proper ventilation is a major concern in all buildings with the spread of the Coronavirus and other contagious viruses.

3. Monitor Energy Consumption

Utility bills besides ongoing repairs are one of the primary expenses in any facility, whether they are new building projects or old ones. By having a responsible and trained expert, you can ensure that your utility consumption is kept to a minimum. 

HVAC systems are one of the major contributors to the utility bill. You can reduce the energy consumption by a long way if you have the system maintained and kept properly running at all times. 

The commercial maintenance engineer should also be able to hire an HVAC contractor with all the necessary certifications for carrying out preventative maintenance programs.

4. Keep Staff Safe

There are a lot of things that can go wrong with a building. If not maintained or taken care of, your building can turn into a potential hazard for guests, workers, and staff. 

This is another major responsibility of a commercial building engineer. They need to ensure that everything is in shape to prevent hazards. 

For instance, cracks in the sidewalk may become a tripping hazard. Similarly, a leaky faucet can cause the bathroom floor to become wet, which may cause a potential slipping accident.

5. Ensure Compliance with Building Codes

The government has strict compliance codes whenever buildings are concerned. The building engineer is responsible for identifying structural and other defects on the premises. 

They should also be able to offer reasonable solutions for fixing the problems. Commercial building supervisors should work with inspectors every time they perform a routine check.

6. Maintain the Facility

Your commercial building engineer can be made responsible for ensuring the general upkeep of your facility. They should carry out all necessary repairs in time and ensure that preventative maintenance and scheduled maintenance are carried out. 

Another aspect of maintenance that often gets overlooked is carpentry. Make sure the professional building engineer that you hire has the necessary skills to overlook woodwork repairs and maintenance.

7. Preventive Maintenance to Reduce Repairs and Reduce Costs

Preventive and predictive maintenance of equipment is one of the most important tasks of a building supervisor. This doesn’t just reduce costs in terms of reduced repairs, it also ensures higher energy efficiency

Scope Of Responsibility

As a facility manager, it is extremely important to have a clear understanding of the commercial building engineer’s responsibilities:

1. HVAC (Heating, Ventilation, And Air Conditioning)

The HVAC system in your building must be thoroughly inspected at least once before the cold season sets in. This is besides having the air filters changed every 2 – 3 months. Your commercial building engineer can take care of routine HVAC maintenance tasks. 

The maintenance engineer should be able to retain the services of a commercial licensed technician for diagnosing and resolving potential problems that might keep your system from running efficiently. 

Routine maintenance can play a vital role in reducing energy bills and keeping your tenant and staff happy and safe. It can also prevent major breakdowns that cost a lot of money. 

2. Electricity and Plumbing

The building engineer should check all electronic appliances and components for potential problems. They should ensure that everything is in good working condition.

A commercial building engineer is also responsible for checking backup generators and smoke detectors. You can consider hiring a licensed technician to carry out annual inspections and maintenance work. 

However, we recommend keeping the building engineer responsible for avoiding emergencies by maintaining the entire electrical system – it is easier, and if you collaborate with the right professional, a lot of issues will be prevented.

3. Elevators, Escalators, And Conveyors

Elevators, conveyors, and escalators should be inspected daily. And, they should be maintained on a bi-annual basis. Poorly maintained elevators cause significant damage to life and property. 

Commercial building engineers with the right licenses and certifications can carry out inspections and minor repairs. 

4. Check Plumbing

Generally, building owners need a licensed plumber to take a look at the entire plumbing system, especially exposed pipes. However, when you have a commercial building engineer overseeing the maintenance, you don’t need to worry about routine repairs with faucets, pipes, and irrigation systems. 

They can ensure that the pipes are well insulated to prepare for the colder season. Pipes that are not properly insulated can expand and burst because of frozen water when temperatures reach below zero. 

This can cause extensive water damage to your commercial property which will cost a fortune to fix. 

5. Check the Foundation of the Building

Your facility engineer is primarily responsible for all components of the building, including the foundation and roof. You can ask them to look for visible cracks in the structure and any damage signs.

They should also check all doors and windows to ensure that everything is working as it should. The smallest details, if overlooked, can turn into major problems and expenses.

Call Today for Commercial Building Engineers You Can Trust

As a commercial property manager, you must know that your building is running in good condition at all times. We understand that and we are here to support you. 

Our commercial building engineers at Servi-Tek Facility Solutions are trained and qualified to inspect the functioning of various systems and components of a building. 

You can trust us to create a detailed building audit report that keeps you apprised of impending repairs and necessary solutions required for keeping the building running at peak efficiency. 

Give us a call today or use our online form to schedule a free consultation!

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