Since the pandemic forced us to stay at home all year, we learned maintenance hacks and DIY repairs. Learning them has been surprisingly fun; maintenance and repairs were skills we didn’t know we needed. Sure, they’re already taught in some schools. But it’s only during the pandemic when most of us took them seriously.
Now that workplaces are starting to reopen, can we apply what we’ve learned from home maintenance to our offices? Will DIY repairs help our companies save money? It was a useful hack at home, so it must suit offices as well.
While an office is also a living space, there are key differences between home maintenance and office maintenance. For one thing, office spaces are typically leased. As such, it’s the landlord who pays for its repairs. You have no control over the repair methods and process of the office in that case. But for basic maintenance, which falls on your company’s responsibility, their differences from home maintenance are the following:
Home Maintenance: New Seasons Require a New Checklist
At home, we traditionally perform spring cleaning. Spring is the official season for major de-cluttering and reorganization. During that time, we inspect our abodes from the roof down to the basement. It’s also most likely the time we replace air filters, power wash our exteriors, repair the weather stripping, and even re-finish our deck.
Home maintenance doesn’t necessarily get easier during other seasons, though. In winter, for example, we have to constantly watch out for snowstorms that can damage our roofs, gutters, and downspouts. In summer, we should be mindful of our cooling costs. And in fall, we have to prepare for winter, so we focus on our heating systems, yards, and home appliances, among others.
Office Maintenance: The Same Throughout the Year
While offices can also perform spring cleaning, the overall maintenance checklist doesn’t change for the most part. We still run regular checks the same way, regardless of the weather. And the focus of the maintenance runs isn’t the roofs, yards, and appliances. Instead, it’s the plumbing system, lighting, HVAC system, and the space’s cleanliness.
If your workplace is a standalone brick-and-mortar, then a seasonal maintenance checklist will apply to it. Otherwise, if it’s situated in a commercial building, you don’t need such a checklist.
Home Maintenance: DIY Repairs Are Cost-efficient
You can DIY at least eight types of repairs in your home. Your faucet is leaking? Just grab your flashlight and toolbox. The slip-nut near the P-trap probably needs to be tightened. If the drainpipe has a hole, a hose clamp should fix it. The only time you’d need a plumber is when the leak’s source is inside the wall.
Repairing a running toilet is DIY- friendly, too. Just buy a toilet rebuild kit from a hardware store, and you’ll already have everything you need. However, one-piece or special toilets are a bit tricky to repair, so in that case, a plumber may be necessary.
Other common DIY repairs include gutter cleaning and patching a hole on the drywall. Watching a quick YouTube tutorial is all it takes to nail them.
Office Maintenance: DIY Repairs Are Unacceptable
Offices have policies, and one of those is to repair any damage immediately. As such, companies set aside a budget for those repairs. Even if the issue is just a minor leak that an employee can fix in a few minutes, the protocol states that a plumber must do the job.
DIY repairs are unacceptable in offices because it’s not part of the employees’ job description. In addition, repairing things take time, which employees could’ve used to boost their productivity. Plus, not every DIY repair results in a seamless finish. If the issue recurs, the company will end up spending more money to fix it.
Home Maintenance: Driveway Maintenance Is Focused on Foot Traffic
Despite the term “driveway,” residential driveways aren’t designed for heavy traffic and large vehicles. Only the homeowner’s vehicle can wear it down. As such, they typically use pavers instead of concrete. If they use concrete, they settle for inexpensive concrete slabs designed more for walking than for driving.
Office Maintenance: Driveway Maintenance Is Focused on Vehicle Traffic
Since offices have parking lots apart from a driveway, they can’t just use pavers or inexpensive concrete slabs. Instead, the surface should be protected by asphalt and a bituminous coating for waterproofing. It boosts the concrete’s durability and allows it to withstand heavy vehicle traffic.
These key differences are why you shouldn’t immediately apply home maintenance hacks to your workplace. They may be budget-friendly but not worth your time and lost productivity.