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Self-Storage Maintenance Retains Customers and Property Value

Elaine Foxwell Comments
Continued from page 1

Fencing needs to kept in good repair at all times, May says. “Damaged fencing automatically makes tenants think that the security of their units are compromised. So does a gate that does not work as it should.”

For gates, check tracks, wheels, chains, lift mechanisms, rust and paint, May advises. “Logic and manufacturers’ instructions are the best guidelines to follow in establishing inspection or service frequency. Vendors and service providers are generally very helpful in answering questions regarding maintenance.”

Paving and Parking

Asphalt paving is prone to weed and water damage. Materials growing up through asphalt must be “nipped at the bud” by using topical weed killers, May says. Cracks and holes from vegetation, water damage and stress should be sealed annually. “When asphalt loses its color and small surface crumbles appear, it needs to be seal-coated,” May says. “If it is damaged more extensively, it probably needs to be replaced.”

The weight of concrete drives as compared to the weight of slabs and buildings causes them to heave at different rates when affected by moisture, according to May. Prevent moisture from getting into the ground beneath buildings and drives as much as possible, particularly where there is expansive soil or freezing. Sealing all joints and abutments can prevent moisture-related unsightly buckling or uneven concrete drives. Keep parking stops in good repair. They are not expensive and make parking areas look shabby when broken.

Roadways should be clean. Also, repair low places where water collects, which will increase the asphalt’s lifespan significantly, Stefano says. Asphalt should be sealed within three months of completion, then every other year for lasting results. If you want to control traffic patterns, paint the roadways.

Posts and Bollards

Steel bollards can protect the storefront, storage units and landscaping from accidents. But steel bollards require considerable maintenance to keep them looking fresh. Over time, they will need scraping to remove rust, and a coat of fresh paint.

One solution is to cover posts with sleeves that are water- and chemical-resistant, can withstand extreme temperatures and are treated with UV and anti-static additives. “By covering bollards, the bumper-post sleeve improves a storage facility’s appearance,” says Chris Parenti, vice president of Ideal Shield in Detroit.

Since post sleeves never need to be painted, they can save man-hours and eliminate the cost associated with the continual need for painting. The sleeves are easily cleaned with industrial strength soap and water solutions.

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