Once you've made the investment in a new canopy, you want to make sure it lasts.
When was the last time the debris was removed from the top of your fueling canopy or checked to ensure all the columns were draining properly?
When maintained properly, canopies can last 20+ years but the reality is very few owners think to maintain this valuable asset until there is a significant weather event or the need for repairs become obvious such as falling materials or large rusting/leak concerns. As the canopy product ages the need for proper maintenance & potentially costly repairs increases.
To ensure years of lasting service and proper operation from your canopy, follow these tips:
1. Assess your canopy from the ground
a. Inspect around the upright columns – are there any signs of cracking in the concrete? This could be a sign of deteriorating foundations/grout if there is any movement in your canopy above you may want to have an inspection performed.
b. Is there rust around the top or base of the columns- over time this can weaken your structure- Bottom of columns is a problem area especially in harsh weather areas that use salt. Wire brush, prep, and repaint as needed to minimize this deterioration.
c. Canopy Ceiling/Deck- appear in good condition? Are there any leaks present around the gutters or columns? Sheet metal components require re-caulking at times and when caught early, can prevent additional corrosion. Consider power washing the deck/fascia annually to remove salt/contaminants to aid in the components lasting longer.
2. Inspect the Top of your canopy – you would be surprised what is found on top of the decking and in the gutter systems from the wind.
a. Check the gutters which are typically around the perimeter but on older canopies can run down the center and then back to the columns. One of the worst culprits is plastic bags- with a bit of debris they can back up a column drain and stop the canopy from draining properly. Any debris found in the gutters should be removed and a simple water test can be performed to ensure water exiting all columns.
b. Check the level on the canopy - Does the canopy appear level or is there water pooling in one corner? Over time this can cause a build-up of ice and damage the canopy
c. Inspect the structural bolts – do they appear in good condition and still secure?
d. Vertical Fascia bracing/outriggers – ensure that fasteners are in place and fascia is secured properly
e. Caulk – if you are seeing leaks below typically the caulk needs to be replaced in areas on top of the canopy
Depending on your findings you may not have a punch list of items however typically, at least annually, there are some items that need to be maintained.
If you have any concerns other than cleaning or debris removal you likely will want to consider having an inspection completed to obtain a report of the canopy condition; this can also assess what your options are. Please contact your local 3rd party engineering/inspection firm or give us a call for assistance.
Your investment in maintenance is low compared to the costs of major repairs/replacements.