Prepare Your Building For Winter Weather
As per the last few years, it has been observed that winters can be a highly unpredictable time in the United States. Some years, it remains quite moderate with no or negligible snowfall, while other years are just freezing cold, with major blizzards and harsh windy weather. Irrespective of what winter decides to do, building managers and their maintenance staff must make sure that their buildings are fully prepared to embrace the coming winter. This implies taking care of winterizing activities before the harsh and cold weather hits. Following are some of the great tips to prepare your building for cold weather.
It is never too early to start
The winter is indeed the hardest season in terms of damages and wear-and-tear it brings to the buildings. Ice accumulates in spaces and cracks between masonry and bricks contribute to deterioration of a façade. The salt eats away the concrete and metal. Colder temperatures also bring higher electrical and heating bills. Due to these and other factors, it is advised that building managers must start early.
Windows are surely a weak point for loosing heat and letting in water. Window sashes and frames must be examined and fixed before winter comes, preferably in the fall season. Sealant and caulking must also be assessed, as it may become weaker with time. In addition, the steel lintel, which is a piece of metal on each window’s head that supports brick above it, must also be checked. If lintels are rusting, they will eventually buckle and fail, leading to weakening of the bricks above them and water penetration. To avoid associated damage, the lintel inspection should be made before the winter season since their repair can take some time.
Keep the heat in
Due to higher energy prices and building managers’ difficulty to keep pace with the tight budgets, conservation of energy has become a critical aspect for both building managers and occupants. A lot of measures can be taken by building staff and occupants to make sure that heat remains inside. Areas where heat is able to escape must be checked, such as outside doors and windows. Also, check the openings or gaps between the doors’ bottom and the saddle, and also the gap around the frame of the doors. For a few cents, you can weather-lock the doors, not just to save money, but to have better comfort level inside the building.
Don’t forget the basement! Check to ensure that no heat or air is escaping. If the building has boiler system, it must be checked and cleaned on an annual basis. The building staff should also monitor fuel consumption regularly.
Don't forget the roof
Another critical part of the building to resist the cold is its roof. Flat roofs must have an ultraviolet roof coating. This process should begin in October, since it takes time to apply. This petroleum based coating is relatively cheap as it’s simply painted onto the roof. This coating holds reflective silver additives that develops a barrier to insulate the building and protect it from ice and snow. In addition, roof drains must be cleared to avoid blockages that may lead to ice damming, icy build-up and leaks.
Along with building managers, the building occupants can also take few measures to better prepare the buildings for winters. They can lower the thermostats a few degrees to save significant energy, and alert the manager or staff of anything that needs to be fixed.
It’s wise not to wait until the harsh cold weather strikes to preparing your building for winter. These simple tips are great to keep your buildings protected against the harsh winter weather. If you experience any damage to your commercial building due to the harsh winter weather, call the expert home emergency restoration professionals at SERVPRO of East Meadow / Westbury right away.