The outside of your building takes a beating in the winter, from the strong winds to the freeze-thaw cycle and ice accumulation. Many times, outdoor maintenance means landscaping and groundskeeping, but there are some simple things you can do in the winter to help protect your property from damage in the colder months.
From the façade to your roof, take steps to maintain and protect the exterior of your building this season:
- If water enters your building through a hole, condensation and mould can be created, and that void could grow as the water thaws and refreezes. Assess your building and repair any visible holes in the brick, cracks in the façade, or entry points into your building. In a pinch, a low-expanding foam can serve to address these issues temporarily.
- Take care when cleaning the outside of your building, as certain practices can cause damage during the winter months. For example, avoid using water to clean your brick because it can freeze in cold temperatures and damage the brick.
- To help avoid condensation and moisture entering your building, check windows to confirm that gaskets are working and are in place. Also, check for missing or cracked sealants that need replacing.
- If your roof is visible, look for debris blocking the drain and any unsealed penetrations that may be allowing water to enter the building. Call in a professional to address any issues on your roof.
- Assess your drainage, making sure that eavestroughs are clear and water is draining away from your building.
- Keep an eye on your plumbing, paying special attention to exterior pipes or pipes that are exposed to cold weather (like in a warehouse or bay) to stay on top of their condition. You may want to consider insulating these for protection and to help keep them from bursting through the winter, potentially causing interior and exterior damage to your property.
Extreme winter weather poses a risk to the exterior of your building, creating the potential for unexpected expenses, work stoppage, and safety hazards. Including your building’s exterior as part of your maintenance plan will help you protect your property through the winter and beyond.