A building maintenance checklist contains all the building maintenance operations to be carried out. Find out how to draw up a good one
The maintenance of buildings and of their components is one of the longest and most complicated phases of the entire life cycle of the work. To ensure that the building continues to operate with the same potential in the long term, it is necessary that maintenance operations are constant and accurate.
To achieve this result, the team involved in this phase must necessarily use a facility management software to plan, track and monitor routine and extraordinary maintenance activities and numerous other tools and strategies, including the building maintenance checklist.
But how do you draw up a good “maintenance checklist”? Why is it so important? Let’s find out in this article.
What is a building maintenance checklist?
A building maintenance checklist constains all the maintenance operations to be carried out on the building and its parts. It is a sort of a calendar, which helps facility managers and maintenance supervisors to verify that all maintenance operations are performed correctly and on time, without leaving anything out.
In another article, we have seen the importance of Building Facility Management and how this discipline is fundamental to ensure the functioning of a building throughout its entire life cycle.
The building management checklist intervenes precisely to support the actors involved in building facility management, representing a valid tool to monitor the planning and implementation of maintenance operations.
How to create a good program for building maintenance?
To create a good building maintenance program, it is important to follow 4 steps:
- inspect the elements:
inspections and controls may take place daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly or annually. However, the aim will be to ensure that all parts of the building operate at maximum efficiency and durability;
- detect malfunctions:
the performance of routine checks makes it possible to detect malfunctions and faults that have not yet occurred. This should avoid the occurrence of much more serious problems whose solutions would be harder in terms of time and costs;
- correcting malfunctions:
it is important to fix the detected issue before it gets more severe and interferes with the normal functioning;
- prevent problems:
prevention, guaranteed by an adequate planning of inspections and controls, is of fundamental importance to allow the proper functioning of the entire work and its installation systems throughout the life cycle.
How to create a building maintenance checklist?
To ensure proper maintenance of the asset and its correct functioning throughout its life cycle, while ensuring safety and well-being for building users, it is necessary that the building maintenance checklist takes into account the following points for a good check:
- Check that safety signs, such as emergency exits and parking signs, are in good condition and easily visible.
- Make sure that the smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are working properly and the batteries are recharged/replaced regularly.
- Check that the fire protection equipment and systems are subject to periodic maintenance.
- Make sure that the first aid kits are stocked and that they are complete with everything one might need.
- Check the correct functioning of all indoor and outdoor lighting including common areas and parkings.
- Remove dust and debris from lamps and check that they illuminate the intended area.
- Evaluate incentives and credits offered to increase the plant energy efficiency and sustainability.
- Verify that all external signage – hardware, wiring, ground level signage, light poles, etc. – are intact and functioning.
- Check the heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems (they should be inspected twice a year before the beginning of summer and winter seasons).
- Test the right functioning of indoor and outdoor units, including all safety controls.
- Clean or replace the air filters, usually monthly or quarterly, depending on the level of use.
- Check the coolant and oil levels.
- Check the condensate collection tray.
- Check piping and insulation, inspect compressed air lines and check for leaks around pipes and fittings.
- Clean the air intake and air duct when necessary, checking the flexible connectors of the duct.
- Check exhaust fans, electrical capacitors and all electrical and hardware connections.
- Inspect plumbing on a regular schedule, for example before periods of heavy summer use or preventive maintenance before the beginning of winter season.
- Inspect internal and external water pipes for leaks that could cause structural damage to the building and also lead to water waste.
- Test water heaters and boilers on residential and commercial properties.
- Lubricate the circulating pump bearings, then check the system by performing control tests.
- Check the conditions of interior finishes including paint, floors, and lighting equipment.
- Examine hydraulic lines for leaks that could cause mold growth or other types of damage.
- Ensure that toilets, sinks, showers and bathtubs are in good condition and work properly.
- Test the internal fire alarm and smoke detector systems, replacing the batteries if necessary.
- Inspect electrical outlets and light switches.
- Check timers and photocells.
- Check door locks and window closures for proper operation. Ensure that the exits are not partially blocked or obstructed.
- Inspect the entire external area of the property for any safety hazards.
- Check paint and wall conditions, locate broken windows or doors, and examine the conditions of stair railings and fences.
- Remove weeds and debris around the building, along with and any branches of trees that seem ready to fall.
- Examine the condition of sidewalks, driveways and parking.
- Inspect the roof, clean the gutters and verify that they are firmly anchored. Also test the correct operation of the downpipes.
What are the benefits of a building maintenance program?
We know that proper maintenance, both ordinary and extraordinary, is essential for the building to function throughout its life cycle with the same performance with which it was designed and built.
The answer to the questions “when to inspect?” and “what to inspect?” is often very complex and thus needs planning. For this reason, a good building maintenance program is a very useful tool, indispensable to be honest, for the correct and efficient management and maintenance of an asset.
There are many advantages to drawing up a maintenance plan and a detailed and careful maintenance checklist, but let’s look at some of them together:
- helps to reduce fixes and the downtime of equipment;
- optimizes the work of management and maintenance personnel and makes them more organized and productive, thanks to less urgent interventions;
- keeps special maintenance expenses low;
- enhances security inside the building;
- extends the lifetime of installations and equipment.
At this point, I hope you will have no doubts about the many benefits that a building maintenance checklist brings to the maintenance activities to be carried out in a building. In order for a building to be always safe and perfectly functioning, it is necessary to use the right tools allowing to plan, track and monitor extraordinary and ordinary maintenance activities. For this reason, I recommend that you rely on a professional facility management software that can support you when managing any building maintenance process.