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Preventive Maintenance & Monsoon Management

by Admin
0 comment

The rains’ impact on housekeeping

a.    Lack of Total Quality in work levels all round.
b.    Pronounced absentee(ism) amongst workers at all levels.
c.    Increased consumption of sanitizing agents.
d.    Equipment / vehicular damage owing to accident/rusting.
e.    Default at key housekeeping functions:
i.    Maintenance of uniforms becomes a difficult proposition for the housekeeping personnel
ii.    Sewer, drainage, AC plants, fountains, outer areas, hoods, water tanks/dispenser, door/foot mats cleaning and maintenance becomes problematic.
iii.    Dumping and disposal of waste (dry & wet) is a key issue in monsoons.
iv.    Machine/equipment lubrication/cleansing, carpet deep cleaning/debugging and upholstery maintenance adds on to housekeeping cost.

G4S Facility Services Pvt. Ltd

Keep your property moisture free

Housekeeping is not only a cleaning process for removal of dust, dirt, foreign matter, tarnishes and stains from various surfaces but it is much more than that. Similarly during monsoon, housekeepers have to face real touch task to handle different issues from dampness to increase in problem of pests and insecticides. Therefore, a housekeeper must follow some practical processes and tips to keep the property fresh, the moisture away and sometimes to quick fix the problems that monsoon, could cause.

Renovation and repair of damp walls

As a practice, major renovation works should be done before or after the monsoon. Similarly, the areas where one has faced the problem of dampness in the walls the previous season need to be repaired by waterproofing. A leak test should be conducted to find the reasons for the leaks like broken pipes, weak wall plaster, a worn terrace floor etc. Also moss and other natural debris like leaves that get collected at the mouths of drain pipes and block the rain water from draining off, should be periodically removed.

For Furniture

Wrought iron furniture requires a thick coat of anti-rust application followed by fresh painting. Also, hair oil (non-scented) could be used to prevent rust on the furniture especially during the monsoon.

Moisture should be prevented from getting into mattresses of beds and sofa sets to control Silverfish. Plastic sheets should be places over the mattress before you put the mattress protector or sofa covers.

For closets and drawers

Camphor or silica gel should be kept in cupboards/ closets to keep the clothes fresh and keep away the moisture and fungus from the clothes. Neem leaves or cloves are also very effective against Silverfish, therefore could be used in the closets.

Window coverings

Instead of drapes or curtains, blinds should be preferred as the curtains or drapes tend to absorb moisture and the problem of mildew is always there. Or, to protect the fabrics, a little baking soda could be sprinkled, as they absorb moisture and unpleasant smells also.

For floors

Wooden flooring should be properly waxed (polished) and inspected for any moisture presence, as the moisture warps the hardwood floorings. Carpets need to be vacuumed at frequent intervals with cleaners to take away not only dirt but also the moisture that seeps into fibre and causes musty smell. Rugs should be rolled up and wrapped properly in polyethylene sheets during the monsoon.

Ventilation of rooms

Windows should be opened up for enough cross ventilation & fresh air and to let sunlight enter the rooms. This will help get rid of humidity as well as take away the musty smell. Room fresheners can be used during cleaning processes to freshen up the rooms. Automatic airfreshner dispenser in the bathroom or bedroom is effective during rains. You can preset it to spray every 5-20 minutes.

 

Bhupesh Kumar, BCIHMCT, New Delhi

General tips

Pre-planning will enable the facility manager to ensure that the impact of rains on day-to-day operations is minimal. The floods in Mumbai in 2005 highlighted the unpredictability of the severity of the monsoon and thus, adequate preparation will go a long way in enabling business to function without interruptions.

The preparations can be divided into pre-monsoon activities and activities during the monsoon period. The preparations should ideally be started two months before the commencement of rains. The key focus areas that should be covered in the monsoon management plan are:

  • Review of defects/leakages of previous monsoon period
  • Building fabricA thorough check of the intactness of the sealing is essential.
  • Rooftops/Terrace inspectionsLeakage through seepage from locations on the roof where water stagnates. The stagnation could be because of blocked drains or storage of unwanted materials on the terrace.
  • Basements: Adequate means to pump out water from basements are essential. Pre-monsoon activities would include testing of the sump pumps, clearing of the sumps and drains and testing of sump flooding sensors.
  • Storm water drains
  • Inside office preparationsLeakages in the electrical shafts are common and thus a check on the sealing of the distribution boards and electrical panels is necessary.

During rains monitoring of the situation on a day-to-day basis is equally important. An area often neglected is the increase in housekeeping effort on account of employees dirtying the facility. Adequate arrangements for stowage of rain gear help in minimizing the amount of water that enters the office premise. The moisture content in the air increases, the facility manager should identify areas that require humidity control and monitor these areas closely during this period.

Aneesh Kadyan, Associate Director (North),
Asset Services, CB Richard Ellis

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