O&M Best Practices

Operations and Maintenance in Federal Facilities

The Federal Energy Management Program’s (FEMP's) operations and maintenance (O&M) resources provide federal agencies technology- and management-focused guidance that can improve energy and water efficiency and assure safer and more reliable operations.


Composite image by Kelly Machart | Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

O&M Resources

Best Practices for Equipment O&M
Consult equipment maintenance summaries that provide technology descriptions and actionable steps to assure your site is applying current best practices.

O&M Best Practice Challenge Discussions
Review briefs that address and identify potential solutions to issues facing O&M programs at federal facilities.

Best Practices for Equipment O&M

At the heart of all O&M lies the equipment. Across the federal sector, this equipment varies greatly in age, size, model, condition, etc. FEMP’s efforts focus on some of the common and emerging types of equipment applied across the federal sector, including:

  • Presenting general equipment descriptions and operating principles for these equipment types
  • Highlighting important safety issues
  • Providing recommended general O&M activities in the form of checklists
  • Discussing the key maintenance components of that equipment.

For additional O&M best practices on program management, strategies, approaches, and equipment best practices, consult FEMP’s Operations & Maintenance Best Practices – A Guide to Achieving Operational Efficiency (Release 3.0)

O&M Best Practice Challenge Discussions

O&M is an evolving field. Examples include: new technologies (high performance and renewable energy) require new maintenance procedures; "smart" technologies that increase the gathering and analysis of performance data; and federal and agency requirements that require more efficient and resilient operations. The challenge discussions intend to provide a clear explanation of the issues and provide a path forward for users in working with new procedures, capabilities, and policies.

The intended audience of these Best Practices are the O&M and Building Management staff to provide a general introduction and overview of the topics presented.

These Best Practices are NOT presented to replace activities specifically recommended by your equipment vendors or manufacturers. These Best Practices intend to represent industry best practices for operation and maintenance. They are presented here to supplement existing O&M procedures or serve as reminders of activities that should be taking place. The recommendations in these Best Practices are designed to supplement those of the manufacturer, or, as is all too often the case, provide guidance for systems and equipment for which technical documentation has been lost. As a rule, these Best Practices will first defer to the manufacturer’s recommendations on equipment operations and maintenance.

Published December 2020