Shopping Center Property Maintenance – DIY (Do It Yourself) or Find a Partner?

Shopping Center Property Maintenance – The Temptation to Do Things Yourself

property maintenance shopping center - sweeping.com
Are you ready to do this shopping center maintenance work?

You just bought your first shopping center. You are deciding whether or not to handle the property maintenance yourself.

You could do it yourself, but here’s some things to think about:

1) Shopping Center maintenance requires experience and knowledge to take care of ongoing maintenance and potential unexpected issues.  Do you have the knowledge, experience and time to effectively maintain your property?

2) Do you have the cash needed for ongoing maintenance, including materials and extra labor?.

3) Did we mention time? The time you spend on the maintenance of you shopping center might take you away from other important management issues.

Shopping Center Property Maintenance – Partnering with the Professionals

Hire a professional property maintenance company to take care of the work for you. Here are the benefits that come with this choice.

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Portering (trash pickup and removal) – time consuming, but necessary.

1) You save a lot of time, especially when it comes to ongoing maintenance. Portering (trash pickup, trash removal, sweeping, etc) is done on schedule and by employees who are trained for the job.  Small maintenance issues are reported and resolved before they become larger (and more costly) issues.

Hiring someone to focus on regular maintenance helps keep you focused on other important property management tasks. Operations, leasing, communication all go more smoothly with the maintenance process handled by a professional maintenance company. Your maintenance company can deal with the maintenance issues, you as a property owner work on the business of managing the property.

2) Everyone has that “one” person that complains all the time. Shopping complexes get it too. Your maintenance company can respond to those issues.

3) What do you know about environmental and property maintenance regulations?  Although acquiring and owning a shopping center does have educational aspects, keeping up with local, state and federal regulations relating to environment and maintenance is usually not on property owner’s rader. These types of regulations are regularly reviewed by property maintenance professionals.

Shopping Center Property Maintenance – The Path of Least Resistance

Hire a professional property maintenance company you trust to work with you. Hiring someone could save you time, money and stress.  Hiring someone who knows property maintenance, maintenance regulations and is committed to providing excellent work is an investment in your property.

Shopping Center Property Maintenance – Realistic Tips

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Shopping Center maintenance – Equipment and labor to do the job right.

1) There is a saying that cheap work is not good and good work is not cheap. Obtaining professional property maintenance does require a financial commitment, however it might be a small price to pay for peace of mind and tenant satisfaction.

2) Make sure you do a thorough background check on the company you hire. Some may not have all the resources you need to effectively manage your property.  Here’s a previous article we wrote to help you select the right company – Property Maintenance | This is the Checklist You Should Use

Shopping Center Property Maintenance – Do You Need a Partner?

C & L Services is a third generation family owned property maintenance company. We have been providing property maintenance services to shopping center owners, commercial property owners and communities in New Jersey for over forty years.

Our services include parking lot sweeping,  pavement maintenanceseal coating, and line striping.

We can give your property the attention needs and keep your residents happy.

If you’re in North Jersey, Contact us at 908-730-7884.  If you’re in Central New Jersey call us at 732-886-1940 to arrange for shopping center property maintenance.

 

Homeowner’s Association (HOA) Property Maintenance: Who Should You Trust?

Homeowner’s Association Property Maintenance – It’s Not Buy it and Forget it

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A storm inlet repair. A HOA has the resources to arrange for this complicated repair.

People work hard throughout their lives with a particular goal in mind. Some want their every desire fulfilled which they could not while they were young. Some want to travel the world and enjoy different cultures. Some want to fulfill their craze of cars that they have had since they were children. Some want to spend their lives peacefully with their loved ones in a house they always dreamt of buying.

The thing about buying a house, however, is that it’s not like once you buy a house, you are done with it. You have to keep it maintained, repaired and clean. This doesn’t just apply to single properties, but also other commercial properties as well.

This is not an easy task, as many people find out with their first experience of home ownership. If you are also one of those individuals who want their property properly managed and maintained but prefer NOT to the job yourself, then a community with a Homeowners Association (HOA) is a good fit for you.

There are many responsibilities that HOA’s do for you to maintain your property, including lawn maintenance, shrub trimming, power washing, concrete repair, street and parking lot cleaning, and possibly many other tasks.

When you put HOA in charge of maintaining your properties, there are some established rules that resident need to follow. Not respecting these rules could lead to fines which the violator will have to pay.

Property Maintenance – Who is Responsible for What?

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Parking lot paving. Another project that is better managed by a HOA.

The scope and extent of responsibility for property maintenance adopted by a HOA can be influenced by the type of real estate ownership established in the community.  There are three basic types of ownership for communities who establish a HOA:

Fee Simple 

In this type of ownership, the homeowners own the structure and property. Some communities establish a HOA to maintain any common elements such as playgrounds, storm drain basins or landscaped entries, however in the majority of fee simple communities, the homeowner is generally responsible for doing the property maintenance work on his or her own home.

Condominium 

In this type of ownership, the land is owned in partnership with others who live in the homes on the property. The owner of the structure is the homeowner. When it comes to property maintenance responsibilities, they are distributed between the HOA and the individual property owners.  The HOA is usually responsible for exterior property maintenance, and the homeowners are generally responsible for the structure.  The property maintenance responsibilities do vary significantly in these communities.

Co-Op 

The property in this type of ownership is owned by a corporation. If you buy such a property, you are actually buying shares of the corporation. The residents are generally free of maintenance responsibilities in this type of ownership.

Property Maintenance – Making the Right Decision

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Community street sweeping. Definitely a HOA responsibility.

The aim of mentioning the types of ownership is to help you understand the responsibilities of maintaining a property, whether it is your personal, or a business property.  If maintaining a property is not something you want to do, you can partner with an experienced property maintenance company who will:

  • Save time – Finding someone who could care for all the needs of your property can be a tiring task. You will either find someone who can repair concrete and not trim bushes, or someone who can trim bushes and not repair concrete. Instead of wasting time searching for people who perform different tasks, the Home Owners Association (HOA) will contract and manage all of these responsibilities.
  • Reduce Stress – Maintaining a property can be stressful. Some people can hardly maintain one house, maintaining several is way over their heads. So instead of stressing about how you will handle the maintenance of several properties, let a HOA do its job.
  • Save Money – One of the top reasons for living in a community with a HOA is that you will be able to save money. Think about it yourself. If you hire different people for each property maintenance task, you end up spending more money. Instead, hire one company that does all the tasks, in a much lesser amount.

Property Maintenance – Finding a Trusted Partner?

Are you involved with a Homeowners Association Board? Do you need a trusted partner to help with property management responsibilities?

C & L Services is a third generation family owned property maintenance company. We have been providing property maintenance services to real estate developers, commercial property owners and communities in New Jersey for over forty years.

Our services include community sweepingpavement maintenanceseal coating, and line striping.

We can give your property the attention needs and keep your residents happy.

If you’re in North Jersey, Contact us at 908-730-7884.  If you’re in Central New Jersey call us at 732-886-1940 to arrange for HOA property maintenance.

HOA Parking Lot Sweeping – How to Get Your HOA On a Schedule

HOA Parking Lot Sweeping – Some Kids Never Learn

HOA parking lot sweeping - sweeping.comIf you’ve ever had kids, you’ll know that it’s hard to get them to stick to a schedule.  Most kids learn, some never do.

Getting people to cooperate is a lot like getting kids to cooperate,  you’ve got to employ the right consequences.

HOA Parking Lot Sweeping – The Right Consequences

There is a powerful consequence you need to use when you start an HOA parking lot sweeping program.

It’s called negative reinforcement.   This is the most common consequence that most people are familiar with.   You can sum it up in this simple sentence,  “do this or else”.

It sound somewhat heavy handed, but it doesn’t have to be.  However, it’s the primary consequence you need to employ when setting up a HOA Parking Lot Sweeping program.

HOA Parking Lot Sweeping – Examples of negative reinforcement

There are many examples of negative reinforcement.    

Most people don’t want to get a speeding ticket, so they drive under the speed limit.   Most people don’t want to get fired from their job, so they show up for work on time and do their work effectively.

Negative reinforcement does not have to be heavy-handed,  it just has to be communicated properly.

HOA Parking Lot Sweeping – It starts with communication

When it comes to an HOA parking lot sweeping program communication is key.

Ensuring that the residents know well in advance about a regular parking lot sweeping program goes a long way towards minimizing conflicts.

Approximately two months before the start of the program a  separate letter should be sent to each homeowner informing them that an HOA parking lot sweeping program is going to be scheduled.  Include the specifics regarding the dates, the times, the requirements, and most importantly, the consequences if requirements are not met.

The key to communication is both repetition and variety.  Communicate consistently and in a variety of ways.  And document these communications for the resident who will claim that nobody told them.

HOA Parking Lot Sweeping – Continuous Followup

The letter should be followed up a week later with a printed flyer that is hand delivered to each residence because not every residence receives notices from the management company.   Some residences are rented so they may not get notified by their Landlord.

Several weeks before the parking lot sweeping program begins, small signs (about 11 x 17  tablet size) should be staked around the community where every resident can visibly see them.

A few days before the program begins, conduct a mass phone notification campaign (these phone services are now readily available to all homeowners associations).

HOA Parking Lot Sweeping – Resident Requirements

Generally, the main requirement is to ask the resident to move their car out of the parking lot that’s being swept on the sweeping date.

Invariably there will be residents who will forget, or ignore the requirements.   If the sweeper has to sweep around a particular vehicle, the sweeper should take that picture of the  license plate and send the picture to the HOA.

If the HOA can identify the car as owned by resident, they can send a letter asking the resident to adhere to the requirements and move their car on the next sweeping date. They can also respectfully remind them of consequences for future non-compliance.

Moving forward, consequences must be initiated on non-compliant residents.   No exceptions.

HOA Parking Lot Sweeping – The Consequence of No Consequences

Although it’s  tempting to let one or two violations slide, it’s important to remember that without consequences people will not change their behavior. 

Also, if you are going to apply consequences to one person, it’s only fair (and legal) to apply the same consequences to all.

Although it does seem like a lot of work to communicate, followup, and enforce requirements, the outcome will be that most people will cooperate. Those that don’t won’t have a leg to stand on when they suffer the consequences.

Need Help with your HOA parking lot sweeping project?

Are you involved with a Homeowners Association Board? Would you like to discuss ways to improve your community’s overall appearance?

C & L Services is a third generation family owned property maintenance company. We have been providing property maintenance services to real estate developers, commercial property owners and communities in New Jersey for over forty years.

Our services include community sweepingpavement maintenanceseal coating, and line striping.

We can give your property the attention needs and keep your residents happy.

If you’re in North Jersey, Contact us at 908-730-7884.  If you’re in Central New Jersey call us at 732-886-1940 to arrange for HOA parking lot sweeping.

Shopping Center Sweeping – Should You Sweep The Parking Lot Before or After the Winter?

Shopping Center Sweeping – The Big Question

shopping center sweepingPerhaps the question I get asked the most about shopping center sweeping is, “when is the best time to do a thorough parking lot sweep and clean? 

Should I do it before the winter so there is not much to do when the winter is over?

Or should I wait until winter is over and then do a thorough cleanup in the spring?”

My answer is, “it depends…”

Now I know that’s not a definitive answer, which is frustrating but there are several questions that need to be answered in order to give a definitive answer.

Shopping Center Sweeping – First question is how big is your parking lot?

The size of your parking lot really determines whether you should have parking lot sweeping at all.

Small shopping center parking lot – If your parking lot holds between 20 and 50 cars this is a rather small parking lot. You should rely mainly on manual portering you keep your parking lot clean. The shopping center sweeping is usually done with a simple broom and hopper pan.

Medium shopping center parking lot – If your parking lot holds between 50 and 500 cars then a good sweeping can spruce up the parking lot.  Not only will the appearance improve, But you can prepare the parking lot for other types of improvement projects such as asphalt repair, pothole patching, seal coating or lien striping.

Large shopping center parking lot – If your parking lot holds more than 500 cars then you probably have a substantial piece of real estate that needs maintenance. This is a parking lot that should have regular sweeping and maintenance.

Shopping Center Sweeping – It depends

So going back to the question should you sweep the parking lot before or after the winter you see now it depends.

 It appears that the weather really shouldn’t be part of the decision making process, it’s really the size of the parking lot that dictates the need for shopping center sweeping.

What  should I do Before the winter  to prepare my parking lot?

Inspect the Parking lot – Grab a pad and a pen, then go out and walk the parking lot.  Walk in a back and forth pattern to inspect the condition of the asphalt, concrete and cleanliness of the lot.   

Do you see any areas that need repair, replacement, painting, or cleaning?   Note these on your pad.

When you get back to the office rate these on a scale of 1 to 3.

1 is a critical must do,

2 is a should do,

3 is a nice to do.

Consider the items you rated as a one to be the most critical that need to be completed prior to the winter.

Shopping Center Sweeping – More than just sweeping

Some of the pre-winter tasks to consider are:

Concrete repairs, curbs,  sidewalks, parking stops, ballard bases, decorative concrete.   Rate anything that could cause a trip or fall hazard as a particularly critical item.

Asphalt repairs, potholes, large cracks

Inlet repairs –  any Inlet that is showing cracking or sinking ( it’s not going to get better over the winter)

Crack filling, sealcoating, and striping or not quite as critical,  however if the striping for handicap parking for traffic flow has started to fade,  it’s best to touch it up before bad weather arrives.

Shopping Center Sweeping – Winter Prep

A few other things that really don’t have anything to do with parking lot sweeping,  what are work thinking about are:

Emergency contractors such a snow removal or  roofers (looks like hurricanes are only going to get worse with continuing global warming)

Do you have your snow removal and ice melt supplies in good condition and ready for the first snow emergency?

although items  listed above appear to be  a lot of additional work, these tasks can be completed in a few hours.

So getting back to our original question about Shopping Center sweeping, we’ve given you a lot to think about and perhaps have answered the question for you.

Shopping Center Sweeping – Need Help with Your Shopping Center Parking Lot?

C & L Services is a third generation family owned property maintenance company. We have been providing property maintenance services to Homeowners Associations, commercial property owners and communities in New Jersey for over forty years.

Our services include community sweepingpavement maintenanceseal coating, and line striping.

We can give your property the attention needs and keep your residents happy.

If you’re in North Jersey, Contact us at 908-730-7884.  If you’re in Central New Jersey call us at 732-886-1940 to arrange for shopping center sweeping..

Property Maintenance for HOAs – How Homeowner’s Associations Can Get Control of Property Management and Maintenance Fees

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Property Maintenance for HOAs – A Consistent Management Challenge

hoa property maintenance-sweeping.comHomeowners associations are between a rock and a hard place. The rock is the required maintenance and management fees.

The hard place is trying to meet  the high expectations the community residence hold.

The balancing act of providing good property maintenance and effective property management, while holding down costs, requires skill, experience and a bit of ingenuity.

Property Maintenance for HOAs – The Costliest Line Items

For most Homeowners Associations and professional management companies, property maintenance represents the bulk of the maintenance fees…and these fees increase at the community ages.

There are two issues that are challenges for most homeowners associations, management costs and maintenance costs.

PPROPERTY MANAGEMENT COSTS

Many homeowners associations consistently focus on how to lower management costs. This usually leads to one of two things, either less effective service providers or reduced services.   

Ultimately the result is unhappy residents who are dissatisfied with the level of property maintenance…and complain about it.

Rather than spending time and energy on squeezing blood from a stone (cost cutting can only go so far until it begins to affect the value of the homes in the community), we recommend that Homeowners Associations encourage management professionals to look for ways to generate revenue rather than reduce cost.

Here are some revenue generation examples:

Sell ads in the community newspaper – reach out to specific service providers who can benefit from a relationship with community and invite them to purchase low-cost ads. You would be surprised to discover how many residents actually have home based businesses could benefit from community based advertising.

Sell banner ads in the website – Similar to the above suggestion and more consistent since billing can be automated.

Reduce paper by using electronic channels – this is cost-cutting, however it’s a sensible one since electronic media is readily available and electronic payment systems are very reliable.

Use property amenities for rentals – if the community has Clubhouse then providing the clubhouse for low maintenance groups such as corporate meetings or trainings can actually be very lucrative.   Avoid party rentals because these types of events generate more “wear and tear” on the propeerty and require additional property maintenance.

Share amenities with other communities – if the community has a pool or Clubhouse that’s underutilized, invite other nearby communities without these amenities to share them for a fee.   Also charge additional fees to residents who over-utilized the amenities (additional guests, multiple grandchildren, etc.).

PROPERTY MAINTENANCE COSTS

Most HOA’s and Management companies still want to keep property maintenance costs in check.  Here are some ideas that don’t impact services:

Consolidate vendors –  contract with vendors who can supply multiple services. For example a lawn service that also provides tree maintenance.

A street sweeping company can also provide pavement, concrete and other property management services. Having separate contractors for each different type of property management also creates additional administrative burden.

Review The Reserve Fund – and verify that the funds collected are neither too high nor too low for effective community property maintenance.

Please note that we do not recommend reducing or eliminating Property Maintenance services as a way to manage costs.   

Certainly we think this is a bad idea because of the nature of our company, however we have found in our experience that deferred maintenance can result and very expensive special assessments.   

Very few things make Community residence more upset than the special assessment for emergency property maintenance services.

Property Maintenance for HOAs – Tapping Into Experience

Are you involved with a Homeowners Association Board? Would you like to discuss ways to improve your community’s property maintenance?

C & L Services is a third generation family owned property maintenance company. We have been providing property maintenance services to real estate developers, commercial property owners and communities in New Jersey for over forty years.

Our services include community sweepingpavement maintenanceseal coating, and line striping.

We can give your property the attention needs and keep your residents happy.

If you’re in North Jersey, Contact us at 908-730-7884.  If you’re in Central New Jersey call us at 732-886-1940 to arrange for HOA property maintenance.

Property Maintenance for Shopping Centers –  Are Bigger Shopping Centers Easier to Maintain?

Shopping Center Property Maintenance – The Focus On ROI

shopping center property maintenance-sweeping.comGetting a good ROI (return on investment) is usually a critical element when deciding whether to invest in a large or a small commercial property.

Property maintenance is one of the key factors impacting Roi so many investors assume that larger properties actually result in lower maintenance costs.

However larger properties also come with larger risks since they require larger tenants who need more space. Lose one of these larger tenants and ROI is negatively impacted.

Investing and the Property Maintenance Calculation

Smaller commercial properties and shopping centers usually have smaller maintenance budgets but on a percentage basis the cost of property maintenance is higher.

Smaller commercial properties and shopping centers still need portering, sweeping, painting, regular maintenance and repair, as well as the occasional emergency (just like the larger properties).   

The frequency of maintenance and the need for experts is the same whether the property is big or small. The cost for property maintenance must be built into the operating income for the property.

There are certain investor’s  who will pass investing in a small property because of maintenance costs, but they may be missing out on an opportunity because they’re placing too much attention on only one aspect of the investment.

Shopping Center Property Maintenance – Most Companies Don’t Need Large Spaces

90% of most businesses in the United States have less than 20 employees. So the  vast majority of the potential tenant market is looking for smaller space to operate..

Larger commercial properties look good in the spreadsheet’s bottom line, but smaller actually provides better opportunities and less risk.

Because there is a much larger pool of tennents, smaller stores and office spaces are easier to rent.  Small companies are also generally easier to communicate with since the business owners are more accessable.

Larger tenants have larger corporate entities to deal with. Also, if the larger organization decides to close a branch or division then this can leave a costly vacancy in your property. 

This vacancy can put a hole in the bottom line through a lengthy vacancy.  Finding a larger tenant for larger space is also a challenge because the tenant pool is smaller.

The property still needs to be maintained even if a store or office is vacant.   Revenue stops but the property maintenance costs continue.

Shopping Center Property Maintenance – Large or Small?

This is why in our opinion when it comes to shopping centers or office space, smaller is better.

Do you have a shopping center, office space or commercial property that needs expert property maintenance?

C & L Services is a third generation family owned property maintenance company. We have been providing pavement maintenance services to real estate developers, commercial property owners and communities in New Jersey for over forty years.

Our services include parking lot sweeping, porteringpavement maintenanceseal coating, and line striping.

We can give your property the attention needs and keep your ROI stable.

If you’re in North Jersey, Contact us at 908-730-7884.  If you’re in Central New Jersey call us at 732-886-1940 to arrange for commercial property maintenance.

Line Striping – The Finishing Touch To Your Shopping Center

Line Striping – Not Top of Mind

line striping attention - sweeping.commHow much attention do people pay to line striping?

Not much, however if there are no lines in the parking lot then people park wherever they want and that gets a lot of attention.

So people don’t think about line striping unless the lines are not there.

And when striping is done properly not only does it restore order to parking (in most cases)  it actually makes the property look attractive and appealing.

Line striping –  Before Your Project...Read This

Do you need parking lines for a new parking lot or do you need to upgrade the lines in an existing parking lot?

If it’s a new parking lot, you’re probably working with new pavement and adding properly laid out lines its just the necessary next step.

However, if you’re upgrading the lines in an existing parking lot, you may want to consider these steps to prepare the surface.

First determine if the pavement needs any repair such as crack filling, pothole repair, curb replacement, bollard and/or curb stop replacement.

Preparing the Parking Lot for Striping

If repairs or maintenance needs to be done to any of these parking lot elements, please get these repairs done first.  

Performing maintenance or repairs on the parking lot after new lines have been painted could result in either rework or damage to the new lines.   Either way, it’s something that can be easily avoided by a quick inspection of the parking lot prior to initiating the line striping project.

If you determine that you need pavement repair,  cracked filling or pothole repair then here are some articles we’ve written that can help you with these areas.

Asphalt Repairs – A Checklist

Crack Filling – What Works and What Doesn’t

Sealcoating – Questions to Ask

Once you have taken care of the maintenance and repair of your parking lot elements, you can now initiate your striping project.

Line striping – The “new lines’ process

As mentioned above if you have a new parking lot then it’s best to go ahead and stripe the lot as soon as possible after pavement has been installed.   

If there’s  a lengthy amount of time (more than a month) between the pavement install and the project, consider having a parking lot sweeper come in to clean the lot before the line striping project.   

With an older parking lot, a sweeping is a standard part of the process to prepare the surface for line striping.

Whether you have an older or newer parking lot, it’s always ideal to have a clean pavement surface for line striping so the stripes adhere fully to the pavement.

Line striping –  The right equipment

There are a wide range of striping machines to paint lines on parking lots.  

From manual machines that are operated by hand to large “ride on” stripers, choose the equipment that will provide the best stripe in for your needs.

The parking lot with 20 stalls  will have much different equipment requirements than the parking lot with 1,200 parking spaces.   This is where your striping contractor can be an excellent resource. 

Verify that your contractor has the equipment needed for the striping project.

Line striping paint

There are generally two types of paint used for striping:

  1. Oil-based Alkyd paint which is used for re-stripes and for new layouts.
  2. Latex paint that is commonly used for resurfaced lots although it serves just fine when used for new layouts and re-striping.

Read more in our article here – line striping fundamentals

Line Striping – The Right Contractor for the Job

C & L Services is a third generation family owned property maintenance company. We have been providing pavement maintenance services to real estate developers, commercial property owners and communities in New Jersey for over forty years.

Our services include pavement maintenance, seal coating, and line striping.

We can give your property the facelift it needs and eliminate potential liability with C&L’s striping and marking services.

If you’re in North Jersey, Contact us at 908-730-7884.  If you’re in Central New Jersey call us at 732-886-1940 to arrange for parking lot line striping.

Power Washing – Tackle the Commercial Power Washing Projects

Power Washing – Is It Time to Clean Your Building?

When is it time to power wash your building? Here are some questions that will prompt you…”

Is your building looking fresh clean and attractive?

Over time, a building’s exterior develops a coating of dirt, dust and pollutants. If this builds up over a long period, the building can begin to look quite dingy.

Unfortunately, tenants and customers tend to judge (and quite harshly).  So dim grungy buildings create a negative impression.

Is the nice white marble Starting to turn grey?  Is that crisp, red Brick now a dull maroon? These Are indicators that it’s Time for Power washing.

Are there areas where dirt, dust, or pollutants have built up?

Mold and mildew can collect on buildings and damage or discolor the exterior.

power washing mold damage - sweeping.com
Mold damage on the exterior of the Library of Congress Madison Building

Power washing is both the remedy and a good preventative measure for potential repairs or discoloration.

In addition, mold and mildew may present health problems for building tenants and their customers.

Power washing strips away these potential irritants and improve the health and safety aspects of your property.

Power washing checklist

If you decided to tackle your power washing project here are some suggested steps for taking the project off:

First do a thorough inspection of the property and determine which areas need the most attention in which areas are more sensitive to power washing

We recommend the top to bottom  inspection that covers these areas:

  • Roof
  • Soffit
  • Eaves
  • Gutter
  • Exterior walls
  • Windows
  • Gables and overhangs
  • Decorative sheathing
  • Foundation
  • Rails
  • Decks
  • Sidewalks
  • Decorative concrete

Power Washing – The Areas Than Can Tolerate the Stream

Determine if there are some sensitive areas that could be damaged from the high speed stream of water, such as generated by the power washing, cover them with plastic.

These areas include decorative Roofing, decorative Fypon or sunburst, or smaller decorative items on the exterior.

Although these exterior areas are already subject to exterior weather, power washing creates a very powerful stream of water that these elements are not designed for.

Also contact a professional maintenance company who has the experience and equipment to do the job safely, effectively, and thoroughly.

A top-notch service will save you time by conducting the inspection and making recommendations about what needs attention and what needs protection.

Power Washing for Commercial Buildings – Call in the Experts

C & L Services is a third generation family owned property maintenance company. We have been providing pavement maintenance services to real estate developers, commercial property owners and communities in New Jersey for over forty years.

Our services include power washing, fencing repair and garage scrubbing

We can give your buildings, sidewalks, walkways, parking lots, parking garages, warehouse and dumpster areas a fresh look with hot water or steam pressure cleanings.

If you’re in North Jersey, Contact us at 908-730-7884.  If you’re in Central New Jersey call us at 732-886-1940 to arrange for commercial power washing.

Street Sweeper – The Science Behind The Technology

Street Sweeper – A Part of History

street sweeper 1926
Street Flusher Circa 1926

I’m sure by now you are aware that the common street sweeper has been around for a long time and they are everywhere.

What you may not be aware of is that there is more technology to these rather noisy machines the most people think.

The science behind the water, the brush, and the technology may surprise you.

All of these elements combined in the modern street sweeper help keep neighborhoods clean, improve the environment, and keep people healthy.

Here’s a few surprises that many people do not know about today’s modern street sweeping.

Street Sweeper – One of the First Vehicles on the Road

Sweepers were one of the first mechanical vehicles to appear in cities and residential neighborhoods.  

The very first street sweeping machine was patented in 1849 by its inventor C. S. Bishop. Motor-driven street sweepers actually started appearing in the streets of Boise Idaho in 1914.

This was the Elgin motorized street sweeper built by the Elgin Sweeper Company headed up by Mr. D. M. Todd.

Sweeping Science Fact 1

Many people think that the water sprayed by a street sweeper is for cleaning…It’s not.

The water sprayed by a street sweeper is actually a technique to keep dust on the road while the cleaning bristles sweep debris into the hopper.

Spraying water on the street is required by environmental laws to keep dust from fouling the air and contaminating the environment.

If you see a street sweeper kicking up a lot of dust, then the water jets are either clogged or the water tank on the sweeper is depleted.

Sweeping Science Fact 2

There are several types of brushes on a street sweeper and they act as a mechanical brooms. These brushes are:

Tube brushes – that have bristles attached throughout the tubes or strips of bristles attached in rows. The bristles are made of either steel, polycarbonate or a combination of both.

Gutter brushes – are shaped like a flat disk and rotate to push curb debris to the tube brushes. The tube brushes then “sweep” the debris onto a conveyor belt which drops it into a collection hopper.

Sweeping Science Fact 3

Debris (trash, leaves, branches, etc) from the sweeping is collected in a storage bin called the hopper.

Storage hopper’s come in all different sizes and need to be emptied regularly to avoid jamming the conveyor belt and damaging the mechanical components of the sweeper.

Here’s a video that shows a standard street sweeper emptying their hopper:

Evolving Technology for Sweepers

Sweeping technology keeps advancing.  Some recent innovations include:

Sound Dampening – Between the diesel engine, rotating brushes and spinning conveyor belt, a modern Street sweeper can be in noisy affair. Sound dampening technology is being built into modern street sweepers with quieter Motors and Better Sound insulation.

Vehicle power – with the focus on environmental impact, newer street sweepers are being powered either by electric battery or natural gas. natural gas has been in use in a number of cities for  the last decade.

Air sweepers – are also being equipped with vacuums and air scrubbers that eliminate the need for the water spray which is particularly useful in regions that are experiencing drought.

How Can C & L Services Help You?

C & L Services is a third generation family owned property maintenance company. We have been sweeping and servicing shopping centers, commercial properties and communities in New Jersey for over forty years.

Our services include parking lot sweeping, municipal sweeping, construction sweeping, and garage scrubbing.

We can help you keep your property in excellent condition with reliable, dependable, cost-effective services. If you’re in North Jersey, Contact us at 908-730-7884.  If you’re in Central New Jersey call us at 732-886-1940 to speak with a professional street sweeper.

Shopping Center Maintenance – Sweeping, Portering and Maintenance Done Right

shopping center property maintenance - sweeping.com

Shopping Center Maintenance – What Needs Attention?

Shopping Center Maintenance - sweeping.comMaintaining your Shopping Center is like maintaining your refrigerator – sometimes there are things in the refrigerator that smell bad because they should have been thrown away a long time ago. And sometimes there are things that should have been fixed or cleaned a long time ago in the Shopping Center that now need attention.

Of course, many people miss taking care of things when they first crop up. They think, “I’ll get to it when the weather gets better” or “I’ll get to it when I have some time”. And so as time goes on, the little things retreat from our attention, until they’re no longer little things.

You can avoid this. All you have to do is make the time for preventative maintenance (not find the time…you’ll never “find” any extra time) In other words, you need to make a plan for consistent, effective shopping center maintenance. Here’s how…

Shopping Center Maintenance – Sweeping

Regular Parking lot sweeping not only improves the overall “curb appeal” of the parking lot, it extends the life of the asphalt surfaces.

Regular parking lot sweeping removes grit, oils, and pollutants that reduce the life of an asphalt parking lot. The longer the life of the asphalt, the better the ROI (return on investment) for the cost of installing the parking lot.

Sweeping is also an environmentally friendly practice, a much-needed practice in an environmentally sensitive world.

Scheduling a regular sweeping keeps the parking lot looking tidy and removes the debris, trash and normal leaf and organic matter that collects in corners.

Shopping Center Maintenance – Portering

A porter is someone who conducts small maintenance duties to keep your shopping center clean.
These duties can include removing trash from trash bins, replacing trash bags, picking up larger pieces of trash and debris, and performing cleaning of any grease, oil or organic spills.

They are an extra set of eyes on anything that might need additional attention such as broken traffic stops, damaged curbs or sidewalks and other physical equipment that needs replacement such as lights, light fixtures, peeling paint, wall gouges, etc.

By using a porter, you can get up-to-date communication on the appearance and maintenance of your shopping center.

Shopping Center Maintainance Scheduling

There is a saying that whatever you place your attention on improves. This is particularly true with regular maintenance.

Updating (or creating) a regular maintenance schedule provides an effective baseline for monitoring and measuring ongoing tasks for shopping center maintenance.

A task management schedule should be based on client requirements that satisfy process tenant safety, task quality, and environmental requirement.

The more clearly you define your maintenance task schedule, the easier it will be to monitor and measure and manage the effective maintenance of your shopping center.

How Can C & L Services Help You?

C & L Services is a third generation family owned property maintenance company. We have been consulting and servicing shopping centers, commercial properties and communities in New Jersey for over forty years.

Our shopping center maintenance services include parking sweeping, portering, asphalt repair, line striping and seal coating.

We can help you keep your property in excellent condition with reliable, dependable, cost-effective services. If you’re in North Jersey, Contact us at 908-730-7884.  If you’re in Central New Jersey call us at 732-886-1940 to speak with a professional in shopping center maintenance.