Your building’s exterior façade or “envelope” contributes to your building’s appearance as well as the interior comfort level. It consists of cladding materials on the outer layer that help protect the insulating layers and interior below. Because your façade also acts as a barrier you must ensure it maintains its integrity. Here we offer five tips for effective maintenance of exterior façades to increase the value, energy efficiency and appearance of your building.
1. Conduct Detailed Inspections
Detailed inspections of your building identify issues such as runoff, uniform dirt, and localized stains. These aesthetic anomalies result from a lack of effective maintenance such as thorough surface cleaning or repainting of worn surfaces. Most anomalies are discovered early before they compromise the façade’s integrity and safety. As a result, you can implement a corrective maintenance plan for your façade. By avoiding further degradation, you reduce the risk of incurring major costs for repairs and replacements.
2. Water Leakage Investigation
A water leakage investigation is an important element of your inspections. Investigations detect the source of leaks to ensure you invest in the proper façade repairs to resolve water infiltration issues.
3. Avoid Reactive Interventions
Reactive interventions address issues too late. The damage addressed with reactive interventions is typical age-related issues such as:
- Falling materials
- Failing envelope material
- Water damage due to water infiltration
- Interior comfort issues caused by air leakage
- Energy efficiency issues due to air leakage
- Discovery of mold growth
When your maintenance only occurs when issues arise, you face far more costly repairs. The anomalies are deeper affecting expensive components of your insulation as well as interior damage.
4. Take a Preventative Maintenance Approach
Preventative maintenance addresses regular repairs of your exterior façade. This type of maintenance helps postpone the need for major interventions such as replacing curtain walls before their time. Preventative maintenance strategies anticipate degradation, so you act before the damage becomes significant.
Regular maintenance of the façade elements most likely to contribute to further damage helps prolong the life of expensive building elements. Some ongoing façade maintenance steps WellDone recommends include:
- Tuckpointing repairs
- Stonework repair
- Shelf-angle repairs
- Caulking and sealants
- Metal refinishing
- Masonry and concrete sealers
- Curtain wall repair
- Backpan modification
- Gaskets and weather-stripping replacement
These repairs protect your building envelope, help improve energy efficiency, and reduce damage from water infiltration.
5. Consider Proactive Interventions
More building owners recognize the benefits of proactive interventions for effective exterior façade maintenance. In hand with inspections and preventative maintenance, you remain forward-thinking with a well-timed façade replacement.
- Curtain wall replacement/repair/upgrade
- Brick/block replacement
- Stonework replacement
- Door and window replacement
- New painting/wall coating
A new exterior façade provides a clean slate. From there you can adopt a detailed inspection schedule based on your restoration company’s recommendations. In hand with your preventative façade maintenance plan, you help improve your building’s longevity.
If you would like more information about proper façade maintenance speak to the experts at WellDone Inc. a building restoration company specializing in building improvements for commercial and multi-unit residential buildings throughout the GTA.