One often overlooked preventive maintenance task is re-coating guiderail / handrail posts. While the rail itself may be visually inspected, few look at the base.
Typically set into concrete, the bases of the posts are often heavily rusted. In cold winter regions harsh salts used for de-icing exacerbate this problem. Likewise, coastal areas can be impacted by salt spray, fine mists of which can be carried quite far from the coast.
It is recommended that guiderail / handrail posts be inspected at least annually. Signs of rust should be addressed with a good stiff wire brush, a quality metal primer, and a quality exterior paint designed for metal.
The consequences could be posts snapping off at the concrete / post joint which will then necessitate a much, much more expensive replacement of the rail system. You can’t just lower the rails as they will no longer meet code – replacement is the proper course.
Even worse, someone could be seriously injured if the rail system gives way when pressure is applied causing not only injury but also a potential lawsuit or claim for injury.
It is an easy inspection and an easy preventive measure to undertake.
Maintenance Minute is a weekly quick tip on improving facilities,
produced by Dowler Construction Services.
For more information contact us at Dowler@DowlerConstruction.com.