Modular buildings have various benefits when compared to traditional construction. Offsite construction delivers fast and affordable modular building solutions, whether the requirement is for a permanent, temporary or relocatable building. Compared to conventional building methods, modular building solutions minimize time on the site, reduce the number of deliveries and are virtually unaffected by weather conditions. Importantly, for a site where disruptions must be kept to a minimum, the modular building process creates less noise and interference to the daily operation of the site and its occupants.
But modular buildings are still a structure and it’s imperative to keep your modular building in good working order by performing routine maintenance.
Below are VESTA’s top 5 tips to help maintain your modular building and keep it in good working order.
Number one maintenance recommendation for your modular building is to simply keep it clean. Dirt, mud and debris can be tracked in from outside. Keeping floors clean of mud and other debris can help eliminate slip and fall hazards as well as damage to floors such as scratching and dents.
Dust, pollen and other air-born allergens can accumulate on interior surfaces and mechanicals which will make your classrooms less healthy.
Set up a weekly cleaning schedule to include mopping, sweeping and dusting to keep your school building not only looking good but also keep the air circulating, clean and healthy.
Cleaning your building is only one way to ensure that your HVAC system continues to function properly. It’s vital that you replace HVAC air filters as recommended. VESTA recommends replacing the air filter every 30 days, though you might need to replace it more often if your school is in a particularly dusty or dirty environment. Not sure how to change your HVAC filters? Learn how!
Most modular classrooms come with an HVAC (heating and cooling) unit that will keep the interior of the building at an even and comfortable temperature. The thermostat helps regulate the HVAC unit throughout the building.
Turning the AC up or off entirely in your building subjects it to environmental factors. Most of the time, your building will heat up so much that cooling it down to a comfortable temperature when you return wastes more energy than letting it run. Instead, adjust your thermostat 7-10 degrees and close the blinds to keep the sun from heating the unit through the windows.
Although it seems like a small maintenance tip, setting your thermostat correctly will help prevent HVAC problems. If you must adjust it to a temperature to cool the building down after extreme heat, this will overwork your unit and cause bigger issues down the road. Keep your thermostat at a steady temperature even when the building is unoccupied. Keeping the HVAC running prevents it from having to work extra hard to either heat or cool the unit once it is occupied again.
Last, do not leave your thermostat set to “fan ON mode” but rather turn it to “auto-mode” which will reduce the amount of humidity that could be introduced into the building.
Many times, especially in classrooms, furniture and other objects such as dry erase boards or posters are placed in front of/over vents and/or air return grills. Doing this to air return vents will starve the unit for fresh air and could seize or put added strain on your HVAC unit. By blocking the vents, you are not allowing the temperature-controlled air to move about the classrooms and other parts of the building, thus the unit will work harder to regulate the temperature set.
There are many components of your modular building that need to be checked and maintained to avoid leaking.
Your roof is one component that need to be monitored for leaks. Modular buildings have different types of roofs, depending on their use. During climate changes such rainstorms, snow or high winds, check your roof to ensure there are no holes, tears, or shingles coming up. If you happen to find damage during one of these checks, determine how to fix your roof as soon as possible.
As part of the roofing system, gutters, roof drains and scuppers should be maintained and monitored for damage or a backup of debris. When gutters, drains and scuppers cannot drain properly, water has nowhere to go and builds up within the gutter or creates ponding on the roof. Debris will cause water to back up and can easily overflow or get under the roof’s membrane, causing damage to the edge of your roof’s surface and the underlying materials.
You will also want to check for leaks around windows, doors, and mate-line areas. These areas can become compromised due to severe climate change, lack of insulation or breakdown of taping or caulking around the areas. You will want to check these frequently to make sure they are not damaged and leaking.
Last, check for any appliance and plumbing leaks. Make sure faucets are properly turned off and toilets are not continually running. Make sure to check flappers on toilets/sinks shut off. You can waste 1,000s of gallons with a small leak.
VESTA Modular recommends a walk-through and thorough check of your building at least once a week during the summer months. Do you have questions about maintaining your modular building or are you interested in modular classroom space for your school? The team at VESTA Modular has pioneered countless solutions for schools across the country. To learn more, give us a call at 817-663-8527 or contact us online today.