- Test & Inspect your Fire Alarm and Fire Sprinkler Systems
Ensuring your fire/ life safety systems operate the way they were designed should be your number one focus. Statistics show building fires increase in the winter months and if your fire sprinkler pipes are frozen, they’re not going save lives or your property. The same holds true with your fire alarm system if it’s not functioning the way it was designed, by the time your occupants notice a fire it may be too late. Testing and inspection every 12-months is also required by law.
- Inspect Heating Systems
Maintaining heating systems should be another top priority in cold weather. Make sure you are having your heating system inspected regularly and staying up to date on the maintenance tasks like examining flues for carbon buildup and removing and cleaning burners. Help keep your customers and employees warm in your building and safe from dangerous carbon monoxide leaks. In addition, if you have furnaces that are older than 10 years, consider replacing them for efficiency and safety.
- Calibrate Thermostats/Reduce Set Points
As a business owner/building manager, we know that you need to save money where you can to spend where it really matters! By calibrating your building’s thermostats, you’ll make sure your heating systems are operating efficiently, which saves you money on your heating bill. In addition, keep an eye on your thermostat to keep the temperature down, but still comfortable. Experts suggest a lowering of one percent per degree drop in thermostat temperature. The savings will add up!
- Inspect Doors and Windows
Doors and windows are prime entranceways for cold, water and pests to enter your building, and exit ways for warm indoor air to escape. The former can cause damage to your merchandise or interior infrastructure, while the latter causes upticks in your heating bill. It’s a good idea to use weather stripping to seal gaps you may discover between windows, doors, and exterior walls.
- Select Good Entrance Mats
Did you know 80 percent of the dirt found in buildings such as offices and shopping spaces was tracked in on people’s shoes? The cost to remove dirt from floors can reach up to $500 and $700 a pound – even more if it is ground into carpeting. A simple fix is to invest in mats to place both outside and inside entrances and exits. A good guide is that people entering should have three steps on a mat with each foot. The mats should give a little traction and should be rubber underneath to alleviate potential slip hazards.
- De-ice your sidewalks
It’s no secret that one of the biggest winter hazards is an icy, slippery sidewalk, which poses a slip risk for employees and customers alike who are walking outside of your building. You would be wise to consider de-icing options, such as rock salt or other alternatives, such as deicing liquid. Be sure to use whatever you choose correctly, otherwise, you might end up damaging areas around your building.
Following these safety tips will help keep your building, employees,
and customers safe from tragedy this winter season.