The problems with deferred maintenance are well-documented, and knowing what to do in order to prevent deferred maintenance during the winter is crucial to continued productivity. During the winter, spikes in plumbing repairs or other facility assets that are susceptible to damage from cold temperatures can be mitigated through an effective plan for winter facilities management maintenance. To reduce your facilities management costs this winter, follow these steps.
1. Create a Winter Facilities Management Maintenance Checklist
Winter’s extreme temperatures will push your facility assets to their limits. Systems may overheat. Electrical wiring will feel the strain of a greater load. Other problems may become clear. These issues can be prevented by creating a winter facilities management maintenance checklist and carefully reviewing each item and asset for potential problems before the next Arctic Blast arrives. As explained by Steve Fountaine of Facility Executive, common elements of your winter weather maintenance checklist must include the following:
- Inspect the HVAC system.
- Check for drafts, leaks and cracks.
- Inspect gas lines for signs of corrosion.
- Inspect the roof.
- Place absorbent rugs at entrances.
- Inspect grounds for potential dangers, such as ailing or dying tree limbs.
2. Envisage Potential Problems in Vacant Spaces
Your facilities management checklist must also go further than just addressing the issues present in areas of your facility that are commonly used. Vacant spaces, especially among corporate real estate providers, can be especially susceptible to damage from prolonged freezing temperatures. Consider the potential impact from wintry weather events in vacant spaces. Winterize all pipes, and eliminate sources of heat loss.
3. Store Facilities Management Data Off-Site
If a major winter storm hits, your facility could be faced with a complete loss of centralized power for days, if not weeks. The memories of this past year’s hurricane season serve as a warning to secure facilities management data and systems off-site. This will help ensure data integrity and longevity if an adverse event occurs.
4. Review Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Plans
Reviewing your emergency and disaster preparedness plans are a last step in preparing for winter facilities management maintenance. The disaster preparedness plan should dictate who handles system access, shuts off potentially hazardous utility lines, notifies building occupants, and reports all necessary precautions and actions to the authorities. Review these plans with your employees, and make copies of immediate disaster preparedness plans readily available throughout your facility. Choose a centralized location in each building to house a hard, printed copy of your disaster preparedness plan as well.
Use These Best Practices to Perfect Asset and Facility Management This Season
Winter facilities management maintenance is stressful. No one wants to work in the cold, and if something goes wrong, it could spell disaster for your company. Instead of waiting for the problems to begin, follow these best practices to prepare your team for winter. For help in creating your winter facilities management maintenance checklist, as well as help in addressing other facilities management needs, look at partnering with a partner who can aid you in getting the data you need to better manage assets and reduce costs.