Unfortunately, here in the UK, we have a very different type of weather system compared to other countries across Europe. With four different seasons, the damp, cold and even sunshine can have a real impact on your buildings cladding and façade. All of which will have a range of coatings, but are any of them there to protect your exterior building materials?
We are going to discuss the effects of bad weather on building panels, and how it can have a significant impact on the rest of your commercial property.
The different effects of bad weather on building panels
As you already know, the UK is prone to adverse weather, and we get it year on year without fail. However, it’s certainly a case of extremes most of the time, and the weather tends to swing one way or the other with very hot conditions or the complete opposite, with heavy rainfall or even snow.
The positioning of the UK
The position of the UK leaves it vulnerable to bad weather from polar and arctic regions and even tropical spells of weather from warmer locations.
With our current position, we find ourselves in the centre of six main air masses. These include:
- Tropical continental
- Tropical maritime
- Polar continental
- Polar maritime
- Arctic maritime
- Returning polar maritime
[Source] The Met Office
The effects on cladding coatings and spraying
Over time, the weather will impact the quality and life expectancy of buildings coatings, especially if there is no protective layer provided. The combinations of hot and cold temperatures make them vulnerable to change, so action must be taken if they are to remain protected throughout the year.
On site spraying is one of the many ways building managers maintain their warehouses and larger buildings. Coatings are provided on an annual or even bi-annual basis depending on the location of the building.
There are predominantly two main culprits that contribute to building damages as a result of bad weather. These include:
- Heat and UV
- Rain, sleet and snow
How heat and UV can affect building panels
Occasionally we’re blessed with a spell of warm weather in the UK, but after the two days have passed, it tends to go back to normal. However, these inconsistent hot spells can have a major impact on your buildings.
Warm conditions can cause the materials on large buildings to expand and contract, forcing it to return to its original shape when it cools back down; it’s this exact process that causes the layers of material to lose its chemical protection. Due to the expansion of material, coatings can often become stretched causing them to flake or pucker once resized.
When the materials do expand, it can also cause it to warp or change shape, which in turn can cause damage to the cladding panels. In some cases, cladding repair will be needed to improve the structure before applying a water-resistant protective coating.
The warmer temperatures in the atmosphere can also create vibrations within the materials. These vibrations then build up, causing the bonds within the coatings to break down. Once these bonds are broken, the cladding coatings start to lose their ability to protect themselves from harsher weather, which can have a detrimental effect on the way your cladding panels work, such as staying in place or structural reasons.
How heat can damage doors
In intense heat, doors can occasionally warp when subject to high temperatures, which can cause them to catch. This can then cause a number of other problems such as health and safety along with security concerns. In some cases doors can become so warped you may not be able to close them properly which may require replacement. We highly recommend taking a look around your building to ensure your property is secure at all times. If you are in need of any replacement why not take a look at Danetre Glass.
How the sun can cause fading
During the summer months, we do a considerable amount to ensure our skin is fully protected against the UV light. Much like your skin, cladding panels can experience a significant amount of deterioration if they do not have a protective layer.
The sun overtime causes bleaching of cladding panels, which will cause the colour to fade. Some colours are affected more than others for example, reds, blues and greens are all colours which when faded, will be more noticeable. You may also notice one side of your commercial property becomes prone to fading in comparison to the other. Therefore it is paramount you have a protective coating applied to ensure the colour is perfect all year round even if it is exposed to the sun more on one side.
How buildings exposed to rain and damp conditions are affected
We know that the UK gets a lot of wet weather as we see it most days! However, rain and additional wet conditions can significantly affect building’s panels and roof materials in the long term.
Unfortunately, even in warm conditions, water and moisture can be found in the air, in the form of humidity. As a result of this, any external cladding or façade coatings should be water-resistant and applied using a team of professional spray painters.
If water-resistant coatings don’t protect the buildings, any rainwater could collect on the surface of the coatings and start to pool. Even though the rainwater may appear to be present, it can still attack the coatings and get into the materials, which will inevitably cause it to blister and break down.
Excess rain can also have a great effect on your gutter systems. With large amounts of rainwater collecting in your gutter systems, it increases the risk of breakage and further damage. Make sure you either book your gutter systems in for regular cleaning or have them replaced before they become a health and safety issue. For gutter maintenance and other guttering services check out Seers.
As well as rainwater, constantly freezing temperatures can also cause buildings to lose their protection. Consistent cold weather below zero can cause the molecules in the paint to break down and flake when they start to dry.
While we have spoken about cladding panels, another part of your commercial property which can be affected greatly by the weather is your roofing system. If you have a flat roof on your commercial property, you may be slightly more prone to damage, as water can often pool in certain areas without clearing.
When it rains heavily here in the UK it can often be days before rain can clear, once a pool has created on the roofing system the weight can often cause it to buckle under pressure which can be extremely dangerous. A collapsed roof is not your only worry during the winter months as snow, sleet and ice can also all have an impact on your roofing system. From ice dams to leaks, it’s important you stay on top of maintenance when it comes to your roofing system. As a facilities manager, you should always know how to remove ice dams if they start to form, if you do not know how, then we highly recommend taking a read of Ice Dams: How to beat them.
To get the most out of your roofing system, we highly recommend looking at having a roof coating such as Giromax. Once it has been completely cured, you will notice it starts to work instantly, providing a tough, durable finish. It can handle a range of different weather conditions, from extreme heat to intense rain. The reason we recommend a Giromax coating to all of our clients is it is perfect against corrosion and further weather damages.
When do I need to consider Cut Edge Corrosion?
Cut edge corrosion is more commonly going to occur during the springtime as this is often when the weather is most unpredictable. We can be in for glorious sunshine one day to wake up to a significant amount of rain the next. The inconsistent weather means the edges of cladding panels becomes exposed to corrosion. It is also more likely for corrosion to happen at a quicker rate, which can have a detrimental effect on your cladding panels.
The longer it is left untreated, the more likely it is to spread, and if not treated in sufficient time it can cause cladding panels to become so damaged they need replacing. Replacement of cladding is extremely expensive and is not always the answer to cut edge corrosion.
There are a number of treatments out there which you can have applied to your commercial property to ensure your panels are protected all year round. We normally recommend to our clients to carry out a yearly survey of the building, taking into consideration all the edges of the cladding. Once you notice a small bit of corrosion, it is time to book in for a cut edge corrosion treatment. The wonderful aspect of these treatments are that many come with a long guarantee which means you can ensure your cladding panels will be in the best possible condition all year round.
Here’s how you can choose a coating for your building
As a facilities manager, it’s important to get the internal and external cladding coatings right. By not doing so you could experience a wide range of additional costs, from repairs and replacements. So it’s imperative you book in for onsite spraying and other cladding treatments.
One of the best ways to identify what coating or treatment you may need is to ask yourself a couple of questions. The best questions tend to include:
- What’s the building material made from?
- How old is the building?
- Is the current condition satisfactory?
- Where is the building located?
- Is the building exposed to sunlight regularly?
- Is the building heated?
A few key points worth remembering is that any building should be externally coated with a water resistant coating. It’s also worth noting that if it’s going to be exposed to a lot of sunlight, a UV protective spray coating could be more beneficial.
Here at CJ Coatings, we offer a wide range of coatings which can ensure your building is in tip-top condition all year round. We also offer a range of guarantees on these services, all of which is discussed with you during your consultation. For more information on a variety of our services feel free to get in touch with a dedicated member of the CJ Coatings team, or for your free, no obligation quote contact us on 0845 163 0005 or firstname.lastname@example.org.