Salt spray can cause great harm to the exterior of a commercial building. Problems are especially likely to occur if the structure is located on the coast itself. But some degree of damage is possible even if the building is several miles inland.
To gauge your degree of risk, take a deep breath one day while you’re outside. If you detect even the faintest whiff of salt in the air, then you have cause for concern.
The good news is that salt spray damage is manageable. Here’s a simple four-step process to deal with the problem:
- Give the building a thorough inspection to see if harm has already occurred – – be sure to check the interior as well as the exterior, as ocean water can sometimes penetrate into the structure of the building itself.
- Repair any damage that is found.
- Protect the building with a commercial-grade coating designed specifically to repel salt spray.
- Keep an eye on the structure going forward to make sure that the damage doesn’t recur.
Let’s take a closer look at these four steps.
Step One: Check For Existing Damage
Here are some things to look for when inspecting the building’s exterior for damage:
- Discoloration – such as a dark gray patina over painted surfaces.
- Damage to building materials such as bricks or concrete blocks. They may appear pitted, gouged, or crumbling.
- Mold or mildew stains – created by the moisture-rich environment on or near a seacoast. This problem is often accompanied by unpleasant odors.
Make notes of any problems you see and refer them to the building supervisor or an exterior building restoration contractor.
Step Two: Perform Necessary Repairs
You should repair any existing damage to the building such as gaps, holes, or structural weakness. Sometimes this may require the replacement of interior walls, wires, or pipes. That’s because salt water can sometimes eat through the outside of a building and find its way into the inside.
Make sure this step is complete before proceeding to step three. Trying to cover up these problems with paint or other cosmetic touches will only lead to bigger repair bills down the road. It may even put you at risk of code violations, or lawsuits.
Step Three: Protecting The building With Salt-Repellent Paint Or Other Exterior Coating
Once any necessary repairs are done, the next phase is to coat the exterior with salt-repellent paint or a similar material. Liquefied cork is often used for this purpose. Your contractor can suggest the best product for your situation.
Make sure the building receives a thorough, continuous coating. Gaps in the material can serve as an open invitation for salt spray to return.
While the coating is being applied, this is a good time to clean the exterior windows, siding, and walkways, as well as replace any unsightly hardware, and give the structure a general facelift. Contact the professionals at Squeegee Squad to assist with window cleaning and power washing services. Once the work is complete, your building will look as good as new!
Step Four: Keep An Eye On The Building’s Condition
Salt spray is one of the most corrosive materials on earth. Every year it causes billions of dollars in damage to commercial buildings, homes, highways, and other man-made structures. So remember to perform routine inspections on your commercial building and/or home once the protective coating is in place.
Wrapping it all up
Living or working near the ocean offers plenty of benefits, including natural beauty and the chance to enjoy a refreshing breeze. But remember that salt spray can inflict serious damage on both commercial and residential structures unless you take the proper precautions. Let the information in this post be your guide as you seek harmony with the sea.