Maintenance matters, even when it comes to your property’s parking lot. Curb appeal is part of it, of course, but that’s not all. Potholes, puddles, crumbling pavement and dark corners can raise a host of safety issues that leave your business open to liability.
Not sure where to begin? Here are a few cost-saving tips that’ll help you keep your parking lot in impeccable shape.
1. Sweep it Clean
From the customer’s view, the state of the lot speaks volumes about your overall management. A tidy lot with good maintenance and beautiful landscaping shows you aim to please from the moment they step onto your property.
Start with a clean sweep, clearing leaves, dirt and debris on a regular basis. Not only does this make the property look neat and tidy, but it also helps you spot problem areas like cracks and oil stains. Next, get rid of crumbling parking curbs and barriers before they become a safety hazard. Lawn care is just as important – the parking lot will only look as clean as the green space that surrounds it.
2. Care for the Tarmac
Asphalt takes a beating here in Southwestern Ontario. It bears the brunt of UV rays, heavy rain, and snow, not to mention our love of 2-ton pickup trucks.
Over time, the combined forces of water, oxidation and fluctuating temperatures cause parking lot surfaces to break down. What starts as a small crack in the pavement will gradually bloom into migrating cracks, degrade the asphalt sub-base and allow potholes to form.
It pays to have these cracks filled and sealed before they have a chance to expand. Patching up holes on an annual basis is far cheaper than having to replace major portions of the pavement down the line!
3. Upgrade to LEDs
How many people does it take to change a lightbulb? When you’re talking overhead lighting, you might need more than your usual parking lot maintenance crew. The cost of replacing a burnt-out parking lot light is often greater than you would expect, especially if you have to hire outside help.
That’s the beauty of LED lights. Along with providing better visibility and using less electricity than halogen bulbs, LED lights have a much longer lifespan. They’re also impressively durable and weather-resistant, performing just as well in the dead of winter as they do in warmer months.
Depending on your existing parking lot light fixtures, upgrading to LED parking lot lighting could involve a straightforward retrofit or a more extensive installation. In either case, the fact that LED lighting requires less ongoing maintenance and uses less energy means fast payback.
4. Keep Your Lights Clean
While you’re contemplating an LED parking lot lighting upgrade, ask yourself: when was the last time someone went up to clean those fixtures?
Outdoor lighting accumulates mountains of dirt, grime, and insects. The dirtier they are, the less light they provide. By some estimates, cleaning your lamps can make them 20-30% brighter! That’s up to 30% more light for the same energy cost.
5. Eliminate Graffiti Fast
When a property sits unoccupied, it becomes a magnet for graffiti. Why? Because vandals know no one’s watching. How? They see that the last person’s graffiti hasn’t been touched.
Vandalism is contagious, and that’s why it’s crucial to stay on top of it. When someone tags your property, have someone remove that graffiti as quickly as you can. If it reoccurs, take steps to make your parking lot less appealing to potential vandals.
Just about every parking lot maintenance issue has one thing in common: the sooner you notice it, the easier it is to fix.
Potholes don’t happen overnight – a crack in the asphalt is much easier to repair than a full-blown hole. Graffiti does happen overnight, but if you scrub it right away, you’re less likely to find more graffiti the next day.
Preventative maintenance is key. Ensure that someone on staff inspects the lot from end-to-end on a regular basis, looking for small cracks, oil stains, standing water, graffiti, and dead lights.
Contact Sign LITE to tackle any preventative maintenance needs and keep your parking lot well cared for.