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Are You Prepared for Flooding?

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No one wants to think about a flood, but they are a very real part of the phenomenon that is nature. According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency, flooding is the nation’s most common natural disaster. During the early weeks of spring, as the temperatures start to warm up and the snow starts to melt, the ground may still be frozen in spots, while other ground surfaces become saturated. Along with the snow melts, drenching rains and ground saturation, streams and rivers become swollen and spill over onto roadways, and into cities and towns. In other areas, burst dams, hurricanes and storm surges can cause catastrophic flooding.

Flooding can have serious consequences to buildings and what’s inside them, causing structural damage; affecting electrical wiring, as well as heating and cooling systems; saturating walls and floors, leading to mold growth and contamination; and damaging and contaminating furnishing and equipment.

No matter where your school is located, be prepared for flooding. This is particularly critical if your school is in a low-lying or coastal area, near water, or downstream from a dam – areas that can be in the pathway for raging floodwaters.

Mitigate Damages After A Flood

You may not be able to stay out of the path of those waters, but you can prepare your school facility for the aftermath and mitigate long-term cleanup

According to the National Clearinghouse for Educational Facilities, the following measures may help mitigate the impact of a flood on your school building:

  • Improve site drainage
  • Provide sump pump back-up power
  • Maintain or replace check valves in sewer lines
  • Provide off-site computer backup
  • Elevate or flood-proof mechanical and electrical equipment
  • Consider locating library facilities on a second story or higher level if possible

Select Furnishings Materials Carefully

In addition to these recommendations, to avoid damage to furnishings, consider selecting materials that are impervious to water and that can easily be cleaned and decontaminated.

School lockers, for example, can become a total loss to the school or require extensive repair and maintenance if they are not made of a strong, durable water resistant material. Currently, the only school hallway locker material that is not affected by water damage is Scranton Products high performance HDPE lockers.

Fully-fire rated for use in school hallways, Scranton Products Duralife Lockers® are manufactured from solid core high performance HDPE (high density polyethylene) and are impermeable to moisture. The solid core construction and non-porous surface means that no mold or mildew will grow inside or outside the lockers, and the lockers will never rust, corrode or delaminate. When cleanup is required, Duralife Lockers® are fully power-washable and steam-cleanable. In addition, Duralife Lockers® are GREENGUARD Gold Certified for use in school facilities, and are manufactured using recycled materials and are 100% recyclable, supporting a healthier environment both inside and outside of your school facility.

For more information on how Scranton Products Duralife Lockers® can help mitigate your school’s response to a serious flooding event, contact us today. To learn more about the sustainable and bacteria resistant properties of HDPE, click here to view our Continuing Education Center.

Give Your Janitor A Break This Summer – Install Duralife Lockers®

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Lets talk about janitors, you know, those guys and gals, who are always there, on the ready with a sponge, broom or mop, just when you need them. They are in our schools all year long, available for any size clean up, taking care of the spills our kids make in the lunchroom, classroom and hallways. They go about their business undetected, coming out when needed. But do you know one of the ways they spend their summer (that coveted time of the year when your kids are home with you)? We do – they clean what they couldn’t clean during the year, the student’s lockers!

Making The Move Away From Metal

While we are spending our 3 months of summer relaxing at the beach, and eating ice cream, the school janitorial staff is cleaning up from the previous 9 months while school was in session. Schools with metal lockers have a regularly scheduled task associated with those lockers during the summer months, debridement of rust, dent repairs, chemical cleaning of graffiti and surface repainting. Lockers take a beating during the school year, with books being banged around, food deposits and spills, and not to mention, the dreaded odors of smelly, sweaty gym clothes. The labor-intensive cleanup task is costly to the school district, in several areas including labor, materials, and air & surface quality. As you can see, traditional metal lockers require extensive care and maintenance, and still don’t meet the needs of the busy school environment. But, we have a solution, Duralife Lockers® made with HDPE (High Density Polyethylene).

Duralife Lockers® are specifically designed to meet the durability and environmental demands of today’s busy schools. Made with solid-core HDPE, these lockers are impact, scratch and dent resistant, and hold up to the toughest student use. Graffiti readily wipes off the non-porous surface, and because they are impervious to moisture, Duralife Lockers® will never rust, corrode or delaminate. In addition, the HDPE surface does not harbor mold, mildew or bacterial growth, and the lockers can be fully power-washed or steam-cleaned. In short, with Duralife Lockers® you can say goodbye to rust, mold, graffiti, scratches, dents, and worrisome bacteria, and say hello to years of worry-free, low maintenance.

 

Robert Gannon, High School Facilities Director, on the benefits of HDPE lockers.

*Testing conducted by SiTU Biosciences LLC by the ISO 22196 methods

 

Sleek Modern Design For The School Hallways Of Tomorrow

When it comes to design, the modern sleek, simple lines of the Duralife® Locker line, make them a polished and aesthetically pleasing addition to any school hallway. They can really kick it up with their color options that bring high style to any atmosphere. The sustainability and durability stand up over time, making them a smart investment for today and tomorrow.

So Show Your Janitors Some Love This Summer – Invest In The Smart Choice – Duralife Lockers®

Download our brochure and see for yourself how HDPE Duralife Lockers® compare to traditional metal lockers – and Show Your Janitor Some Love This Summer!

What Is a Sustainable School?

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You may have heard the word “sustainability” a lot recently, and as a facility manager of a school, you may be wondering how you can make your school more sustainable. Many educational facilities across the country have been implementing sustainability and green plans to make their schools more eco-friendly and energy efficient. But what makes a school sustainable?

What Makes a School Sustainable?

In recent years, many organizations and schools have begun taking the necessary steps to reduce their carbon footprint though various means. The most popular route that schools have taken is with recycling. Ramping up their recycling process, and even hosting recycling-oriented events have proven successful in not only reducing waste, but also educating students on the environmental benefits of properly recycling their trash.

While recycling is effective at reducing waste and taking the necessary step toward eco-conscious practices, there are other ways that schools have made their facilities more sustainable. Cutting down on unnecessary energy by opening the windows during particularly nice days and utilizing non-toxic cleaning materials and school supplies have become popular practices. Even implementing green materials during renovations have proven to be highly effective. 

Making Your School Sustainable

Taking the necessary steps toward making your school sustainable has numerous benefits, including student health, reducing waste, conserving energy, and helping the environment. There are many different ways that you, the facility manager, can help make your school more sustainable and eco-friendly.

 

Using Green Materials

Whenever you need to renovate or remodel a portion of your school, you should implement green building materials wherever you can. Green building materials can help you use your resources and energy more efficiently. Materials like cork flooring, solar hot water heaters, and even recycled carpeting go a long way in increasing your school’s sustainability. Updating your school’s corridors with HDPE (high-density polyethylene) lockers has numerous sustainability benefits, and they even last longer than traditional lockers due to their durability and rust/mildew resistance, resulting in effective lockers that require very little maintenance.

 

Cleaning Your Air

One of the scourges of the environment is poor air quality. Unless you’re regularly testing your air, you may be dealing with poor air in your school. Touching up or completely repainting sections of your school can release VOC (volatile organic compounds) emissions in your air, which over time can result in poor air quality and health complications.

 

Focusing on the Bathroom

One of the best ways that you can move your school into a greener direction is by updating your restrooms. Whenever there’s a drop in your school’s air quality, the restrooms tend to be ground zero. Due to the constant barrage of moisture and humidity, mold will sprout. If it’s on the walls and on the floor, it can be easily removed. However, mold could be inside the stalls and partitions, so you’ll need a more durable and eco-friendly replacement. Utilizing HDPE materials for your stalls will not only reduce the mold growth, but it’ll also increase the air quality of your restrooms for a long time.

Taking the necessary steps toward sustainability will not only reduce waste, but it’ll be more cost-effective and eco-friendly.

 

Want to learn more about how to make your school more sustainable? Read Sustainable Building Products: How to Make Your Facility Eco-Friendly from Top to Bottom, courtesy of Scranton Products.

Determining the Lifecycle Cost of Lockers: Metal vs HDPE

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When you’re choosing the lockers for your school or facility, there are a variety of factors at play that you need to consider, not just for the immediate future, but for the long term. Choosing the right material for your lockers is crucial if you want to have functional storage compartments, but you’ll also want durable lockers that’ll last the years so you can get the most out of them without having to ensure a costly replacement years down the line. Making the right decision can end up saving you the costs for replacements and even maintenance. Learn more about the lifecycle cost of your lockers and the difference in cost between metal and HDPE lockers over time.

Choosing the Right Materials

Metal lockers have been the standard for a long time due to their durability, but they’ve received some criticism over the years because of the constant upkeep and maintenance that they require. Lately, some facility managers have been gravitating toward HDPE (high-density polyethylene) lockers because of the low-cost maintenance, durability, and their longevity. But in order to make the decision, you need to learn the benefits of both materials.

Metal Lockers vs HDPE Lockers

Both metal and HDPE lockers provide a strong construct that can last a long time and perform effectively for years. However, as most facility managers have learned, metal lockers are actually susceptible to a variety of factors and issues that can result in costly and recurring maintenance. HDPE requires very little maintenance over the years, resulting in less costs and a longer lasting material.

Metal lockers are susceptible to mold growth. Whether it’s in the locker room, or a lengthy corridor, moisture and humidity will cling to the metal. Over time, unsightly mildew will begin to sprout, resulting in a foul smell and a drop in air quality. Ridding the lockers of mold and mildew can be a costly and repetitive endeavor.

HDPE materials, on the other hand, are made of solid plastic. Mold can’t penetrate its thick construction, and its exterior is impervious to humidity and moisture. HDPE lockers are also resistant to impacts, scratches, and dents, and even graffiti can be eradicated with a simple wipe.

Benefits of HDPE Lockers

There are numerous benefits to choosing HDPE lockers over metal ones. The most obvious is cost. Metal lockers require a lot of maintenance and upkeep over the years, whereas HDPE lockers don’t require extensive repairs of cleaning. In a study conducted over 20 years, HDPE has been proven to not only last longer, but require less maintenance. Within two years, HDPE lockers are less expensive than metal lockers.

Because of the low cost of maintenance with HDPE lockers, you don’t have to repaint them. This has the added benefit of keeping VOCs (volatile organic compounds) emissions out of your facility’s air. HDPE lockers are also less noisy than metal lockers, without the loud clanging whenever the lockers are shut. If you’re looking for low-maintenance, cost-effective, and long-lasting lockers, then HDPE is one of your best options.

 

Want to learn more about the benefits of HDPE lockers? Read The Ultimate Guide to HDPE Plastic Lockers, courtesy of Scranton Products.