Prepare Your Building for Extreme Warm Weather (and Keep Its Occupants Cool!)

In summer, the Chicagoland area is often forecasted to experience extremely hot temperatures with high humidity that will test the limits of the air-conditioning capabilities of building cooling equipment.

In advance of this and other extreme weather events, it is important to make sure buildings are prepared to provide comfortable conditions for their occupants. We recommend taking the following steps to ready your building, as applicable:

  • Override unoccupied and overnight setbacks to occupied
  • Avoid scheduled shutdowns of systems
  • Avoid turning cooling related equipment off
  • Maintain continuous operation of all cooling related pumps
  • Minimize infiltration by keeping doors, windows and other openings sealed and shut
  • Keep blinds and shades closed on windows during the day to avoid direct sunlight
  • Perform a system check of all air-conditioning critical equipment
  • Verify the operation of all backup or redundant air-conditioning equipment not normally operated
  • Ensure make-up water feeds to cooling towers are fully functional and water levels are able to be maintained
  • Ensure condensate drains and traps have been checked and are functional
  • Proactively change filters in fan coils and air-handling equipment
  • Enhance dehumidification by lowering cooling coil discharge air temperatures and slowing down fan speed, where necessary. Ensure equipment is operating within manufacturer guidelines. Adjustments to DX equipment should be made by a service contractor authorized by the manufacturer
  • Set all thermostats to typical design indoor conditions of 74°F-75°F
  • Sub-cool event spaces and venues prior to scheduled events

City of Chicago and City of Evanston Energy Benchmarking Verification Due In June

Elara Engineering would like to remind our clients that Energy Benchmarking for the City of Chicago and the City of Evanston are due this June. For more information about the ordinance and required compliance actions please see below and click here. Additionally, Kelsey Dale would be happy to answer any of your questions and assist in verification of your building’s data. She can be reached at 708.236.0300 x147 or


City of Chicago Benchmarking Verification Due June 1st

The City of Chicago requires owners of commercial, residential, and municipal buildings over 50,000 SF to track and verify (every third year by a professional) their building’s energy consumption using the Energy Star Portfolio Manager Tool. The deadline to update and verify your building’s data is June 1, 2021.


City of Evanston Benchmarking Verification Due June 30th

The City of Evanston requires owners of commercial, residential, and municipal buildings over 20,000 SF to track and verify (every third year by a professional) their building’s energy and water consumption using the Energy Star Portfolio Manager Tool. This includes apartment buildings, strip malls, schools, churches, hospitals, and condominium buildings. In addition, city-owned buildings, 10,000 SF or greater in size are required to comply. It should be noted that condominium buildings 20,000 SF to 50,000 SF are exempt from the ordinance. The deadline to update and verify your building’s data is June 30, 2021.