Parking Deck Repair and Maintenance
Anyone who has ever been in a multi-tier parking deck understands that by their very nature, they withstand a lot of stress due to harsh weather conditions and constant wear and tear caused by daily in and out traffic. It is critical that parking deck owners and operators, along with a qualified engineer who is experienced in parking deck design and maintenance, devise a comprehensive program that allows pedestrians and parkers unobstructed accessibility and that promotes safety and longevity of the structure. Being proactive now and communicating any issues with a qualified contractor can save considerable resources in the long run. Let’s dig a bit deeper into some of the materials used in parking decks and tips on their maintenance.
Concrete is the most popular construction material for parking structures because of its strength and durability. However, over time, concrete, as well as supporting steel structural beams, can show signs of distress if they are not frequently monitored and maintained. Assuming the parking deck was properly waterproofed during the initial construction phase with the appropriate coating, it is best practices to do an annual inspection with a qualified and manufacturer certified installer. This inspection is to locate inferior or failing locations on the deck and to determine a plan of correction. Taking measures to prevent leaks and/or structural damage during frequent inspections, or as soon as they are discovered, will thwart any additional future damage and keep the structure safe for frequent use.
Balconies and terraces are unique structures in that they append to individual houses above the ground in a systematic fashion. These structures tend to withstand significant damage over time caused by extreme weather conditions as well as over usage from people and items such as furniture, large planters and grills – assuming these are permitted. Cracks in the concrete balcony foundations can cause water damage to not only the owner’s balcony, but to others around it. It is imperative to create a preventative maintenance plan to lengthen the life of your balcony, avoid liability from falling or broken debris, and keep them looking nice for passersby and the community overall.
Depending on the association’s budget, we recommend conducting annual inspections of each balcony or terrace, with an engineer, as well as a qualified contractor, such as Regal Restoration USA. While we understand this can be a costly endeavor, it may save the association money in the long run if there is a failure in a structure and significant repairs are warranted, or worse, an accident occurs. While your hired professionals can be your guide on what items to look for when conducting your own inspections, we recommend looking for failing areas on the deck surface, cracks, sagging or soft spots when walked on, standing water and flashing that is peeling away from the housing structure. When holding meetings with homeowners, instruct them to evaluate their own structures and report any findings to management so that they can be well documented and communicated to an engineer, insurance company or contractor professional immediately. If owners are required to maintain their own balconies, be sure that the detailed guidelines are properly defined in the association’s rules and regulations.