Basic reasons behind keeping your guttering in optimum condition.
When considering the maintenance of our offices and commercial properties, the chances are that guttering and the associated piping is well down on the list of priorities; always assuming they’re considered at all.
The problem for the humble gutter is that it is largely a case of “out of sight, out of mind” and since it performs a very simple function without the need for any interaction from us on a day to day basis their ability to work as intended is essentially taken for granted or worse ignored.
However there are a number of reasons why keeping pipes and guttering well maintained and operating at optimal levels can be very important to any business, and failing to do so can be asking for all kinds of trouble in the longer term.
So what are the key things to look out for, and how can your business ensure that they avoid the pitfalls of neglect or poor upkeep of gutters?
Firstly let’s consider what all that guttering and pipework around your building is designed to do. Whilst it is a simple and well established system it actually fulfils a hugely important role in channeling water away from the structure itself. Whilst a building generally feels solid and dependable that can and would very quickly change if all that rainwater was left unchecked until it dissipated naturally one way or another..
So, most importantly guttering actually helps protect and safeguard the structural integrity of any building. Water will naturally try to flow downward by the easiest route possible, if guttering was missing or poorly maintained instead of being safely routed to the nearest drain water will pool round foundations or get into cracks and fissures in the building’s facade. This can lead to a gamut of problems such as damp, subsidence and other structural damage. These can be prove to be particularly destructive during winter when water freezes and expands with the potential to accelerate any effects to an alarming degree.
Larger structures such as factories and warehouses often require additional drainage channels between roof sections as well as those around the perimeter and if these are damaged or blocked water can easily leak down into the main body of the building itself which can create some serious health and safety issues, a small pool of water on a warehouse floor for instance can be a life threatening hazard if not dealt with quickly and effectively, so it is best not to run the risk.
Damp, caused by water ingress, is a well known issue for people with health concerns such as asthma and eczema. Nobody would choose to breathe in air containing water vapours which have been filtered through leaves, dirt, dust and even animal waste, but that in reality is what happens when gutters are not kept in proper working order.
In addition a blocked gutter will often cause water to back up and stagnate; blocked gutters and/or drains are not pleasant for anyone to contend with.
Perhaps worse still, wooden structures which are damaged by water will rot and the combination of damp and rotting wood is a haven for pests such as mice, rats and various insects. Not only will these vermin likely exacerbate the damage to your property but they also pose a health risk in their own right with the diseases they can transmit.
It goes without saying that any damage to a commercial property caused by the above factors can be hugely expensive to correct. Not only is there the basic cost of repairs to consider (as well as the potential for revenue loss due to injuries and illness), in all likelihood the businesses insurance premiums will be affected. Even assuming an insurer pays out for water damage caused by poorly maintained guttering, you can guarantee future premiums will be hiked to reflect any loss and worse still many policies will not pay out where the business is perceived to have failed in its commitment to maintain certain standards of care.
Just from the few brief points above it is easy to see why it is important to keep on top of maintaining the guttering for a commercial concern. Any company serious about the proper maintenance of gutters and pipework should employ a professional cleaning company, like Orca Cleaning, in the same way as they would for general internal cleaning and “housekeeping” and budget accordingly.
As with many things, prevention is infinitely better (and usually more economically sound) than cure and ensuring something as simple as the guttering is taken care of properly can go a long way towards maintaining a businesses’ integrity in more ways than one.