Winter protection and maintenance

All too soon, the winter months have arrived and with them comes unavoidable harsh weather. This can definitely be a potentially expensive situation for anyone running a business with premises to keep an eye on. Harsh weather can be tough on shopfronts – especially those incorporating curtain walling. As curtain walling is not a source of support to a building, several issues can arise as a result of tough weather conditions, such as loose panels and glass. To ensure that your curtain walling is going to be safe and effective as a barrier all through the winter months ideally it should be inspected annually to decrease the chances of weather damage – however there are a couple more essentials to bear in mind which could save your shopfront this winter:

Routine maintenance

Proper maintenance of curtain walls should be carried out at least once a year to ensure that any problems which could occur can be quickly and safely attended to before they escalate. Maintenance includes thoroughly reviewing the air seal to ensure there is no loose fitting in case of possible water leakage, important health and safety issues, looking for possible weather damage to the curtain walling (especially during winter months, as this projects the possibility of more weather damage with weaker curtain walling) and establishing the overall effectiveness of the rain screen, as this is designed to allow air into the grazing cavity whilst keeping as much water out as possible.

Cleaning

Keeping your curtain walls clean and unblemished can make a significant contribution to sales, yet this is not the only reason to give your walling a proper wash this winter. It’s no secret that dirt and grime can greatly affect the performance of your curtain wall’s defences. If drainage is open to blockage by dirt window drainage routes can become blocked, resulting in expensive remedial work – and this can be avoided by regular, thorough cleaning throughout the year. Not only is drain blockage a danger, but the entrapment of grime in between loose fitting glass and aluminium can also be unsightly which inevitably impacts on the overall impression clients and passers-by develop of your company. A clean with either some fine steel wool or a fine brass wire brush (not including the glass) and some cleaning solvent to remove any trapped dirt can undoubtedly contribute to strong and fine looking curtain walls all year round. Although with smaller installations you may be able to do this yourself, it’s often advisable to invest in specialist cleaning services – especially when tackling larger buildings.

For more information on improving and taking care of your commercial property keep following the blog and take a look at the services we offer.