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PROMOTING EXCELLENCE IN NYC MULTI-FAMILY BUILDING OPERATION AND MAINTENANCE

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Porters, Handymen, and Doorman, or PHD's Blog
 
  IMPROVED MAINTENANCE - Five Steps  
  by Peter Grech, president of the Superintendents Technical Association 2003-2004  
 
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Good maintenance is good management, pure and simple, but, an aggressive, realistic preventive maintenance plan and a motivated staff are essential.

Step 1: Aggressive Approach. The superintendent must be aggressive and vigilant in keeping to a carefully established schedule.

Step 2: Knowledge. A proper understanding of how the systems and equipment in our building work is vital to a successful maintenance program.

A good way to learn about building systems is to ask questions of the persons who perform repairs; by learning more about the system, the super can learn to prevent breakdowns.

Another way to learn is to go to school. The Thomas Shortman school at the Union provides free classes in may aspects of building management for members of Local 32B-32J. To learn about classes available in September, contact the Union at (212) 388-3800 or visit their website at http://www.seiu32bj.org. New York City Technical College also teaches many classes in building maintenance and superintendency skills. Contact CUNY Tech at (718) 260-5500 or visit their website at http://www.citytech.cuny.edu.

A third path to knowledge is to teach those who perform maintenance what to do. For instance, just how much grease should a pump get? Too much will overheat the pump; not enough will wear out the bearings. And, just what kind of grease should one use? Its not so simple if one does not understand the machine. But the pump should have come with an owner’s manual. The answer is most probably there. When new equipment is installed, make sure to get the manual and to keep it in a safe place. If the manual has been lost, contact the manufacturer, either to get a new manual or the information you need.

Step 3: Scheduling. When one understands how a system or piece of equipment works, one has a good idea of what needs to be done to maintain it. A schedule of maintenance should be created. Again, an owner’s manual is the preferred reference, because it spells out the where’s, when’s and how’s.

Step 4: Record Keeping. Keeping records of individual pieces of equipment and of systems, including when they were serviced, whether routine maintenance or repair, what was done and by whom, is a must.

Step 5: Money and Time. Without having budgeted for a maintenance program, one cannot expect to carry it out. Money is needed for tools and materials necessary to a maintenance program. It’s much cheaper to budget for maintenance than to have to spend money on repairs or replacement.
Finally, we need to schedule staff time to perform the maintenance tasks adequately and completely in accordance with the schedule established for each building system.

 

 

 

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