If you are a business or commercial property owner in Houston, it’s time to start thinking about your winter projects and maintenance. While the weather is still mild, now is a good time to make sure that your building is prepared for the colder months ahead.
One of the most important things you can do is have a regular maintenance schedule for your entire building. Create a guideline for yearly routine checks to keep your building healthy and your business on track. These checks can uncover areas that need work in order to avoid costly repairs in the future.
How to Keep the Heat On
Last winter’s widespread power outage was a tragedy and brought about major disruptions to large areas in Texas. There are some steps to prepare for this type of emergency if it happens in the future.
Having a backup supply of energy, whether you have a generator or some other method of energy capture, such as solar energy, will help you get through widespread power losses. Take the time now, if you haven’t done so already, to draft an emergency preparedness plan to have energy sources in place along with other supplies to get through any difficult situations.
In addition, make sure your building is well maintained to withstand the elements and get safely through an emergency. Steps to ensure your building can withstand future stress include having your HVAC system serviced by a licensed professional, keeping the windows and doors sealed properly, and cleaning out your building’s vents and ducts.
Taking these steps while the weather is relatively mild can ensure your equipment and building are in the best working condition. This can help avoid putting stress on your system potentially causing the need for costly repairs or replacement.
Make sure to replace the air filters and check your humidifier settings. Doing so will help you be best prepared for any cold-weather emergencies that may occur.
Keep Utility Costs Low
Another important task is to make sure that your building is properly insulated. This includes insulating the walls, ceilings, and floors. You can also install insulation in the windows and doors to keep the heat from escaping.
Older buildings that have not been retrofitted may need additional insulation to keep the heat in. Adding insulation is a cost-effective way to help your building stay warm during the winter months and can also help reduce your energy bills.
If you’ve decorated your building for the holidays, you may want to invest in smart plugs or timers for your lighting. This will keep your building festive while keeping the electricity bill low. While you are decorating, check your fire alarm system and smoke detectors to ensure they are working properly.
Outdoor Winter Precautions
The exterior of your building and the areas surrounding it will take the hardest hit when it comes to any season and the weather that accompanies it. As winter settles in, caring for and having a plan in place for specific areas will mean the difference between a safe building and one that is exposed to hazards.
Pavement and Parking Lots
If you have a parking lot or driveway, you will need to make sure that ice-melt or de-icer is used for safer footing in case of freezing temperatures. On top of that, you should also shovel your sidewalks and walkways to avoid any hazards for your building’s inhabitants.
Keeping parking lots and driveways plowed by using a local service or with shovels and a maintenance crew is key in keeping your building’s exterior walkways safe. You may even consider updating the markings on your pavement to ensure that people know where to park and can easily see walkways with posts and signs.
Roof Maintenance and Inspections
A well-maintained roof will keep your building warm and dry during the winter months. Make sure to check for leaks, damaged shingles, and other issues. If you have a flat roof, ensure every layer of your roofing system is in pristine shape so that water will not accumulate. For sloped roofs, make sure to keep the gutters clear so that the water doesn’t freeze and damage the roof.
One thing we can be sure of is that winter weather in Houston can be unpredictable. Planning for the unforeseen and uncommon ice and snowstorms that may come our way is important, but these regular maintenance routines are helpful regardless of harsh weather or other emergency situations.
By following these tips, you can get your building ready for winter and prepare yourself for the coming weather. For more information on how Streamline Painting can help you prepare for the winter months, contact us and let our team of professional contractors help you prepare for every season.