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How to Paint Metal Lockers

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Lockers are necessary components to a school. As a facility manager, it’s your responsibility to maintain them properly throughout the years. They require a certain amount of upkeep, through fixing the dents, tightening the latches, and scrubbing away the rust. However, they also need to be painted every once in a while, so they can continue retaining the aesthetics of your school.

However, when it comes to painting metal lockers, there are a few important steps you’ll need to take. To successfully paint your school’s lockers, you’ll need to follow these crucial steps.

Picking the Right Time to Paint

When it’s a busy school day, finding the time or the space to paint any metal lockers can be tricky. That’s why it’s always good to embark on a locker painting project during a holiday break or during the summer, when there’s only a few faculty and staff in the school. That way, you won’t have a lot of interference with rows of students heading to class. It’s also beneficial during a low occupancy day because of the VOC emissions that will be put off from the painting.

Choosing the Right Place

Now that you’ve got your time to paint, you need your place. Find an open area in the school that you can paint. It will allow you to have the room to paint multiple lockers, so you can start getting the job done. That way, you can reinstall the lockers quickly. You can paint the lockers where they stand, but you’ll need plenty of tarp or drop cloth coverage to prevent any paint from getting on the floor or the wall.

Painting Your Lockers

Before you start painting the metal lockers, you’ll want to use a paint primer that’s designed for metal. It will help the paint stick while providing some much-needed protection to the paint once it dries. Before beginning to apply the primer or the paint, you’ll need to make sure that the lockers are cleaned thoroughly, so there aren’t any imperfections once you’re completed. When you paint the lockers, you’ll need to apply multiple coats to make sure that the color matches on each locker.

How to Avoid the Task of Painting Metal Lockers

Metal lockers are very durable and reliable storage compartments for the students. Sometimes, though, their maintenance, care, and upkeep outweigh their usefulness. The constant maintenance and repainting certainly adds to the locker’s costs. What you need is a reliable locker that doesn’t require the constant upkeep while retaining its appearance and durability.

HDPE plastic school lockers are a great place to start because they don’t require a paint job. They’re available in a variety of homogenous colors that will stand up to the elements. HDPE lockers don’t require as much up keep as metal lockers, and can actually outlast metal lockers because they don’t rust. If there’s graffiti present, too, it can simply be wiped away.

Do you want to learn more about HDPE plastic lockers and how they can save you time and money with your school and maintenance? Check out this free eBook, The Ultimate Guide to HDPE Plastic Lockers, from your friends at Scranton Products.

5 Tasks School Facility Managers Hate: So Why Not Get Rid of Them?

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As a facility manager in charge of an entire school, there are probably a bunch of tasks that you’re not a fan of. In fact, you may even loathe them, so why not find a way to get rid of them? One of the most common tasks that has caused considerable dislike is routine locker maintenance. Given the number of lockers in your school, and the variety of issues that can occur with them, facility managers simply hate the meticulous nature of maintaining them. However, because it’s a school, you can’t simply get rid of the lockers and have barren hallways. Students need storage compartments for their books and supplies, but there has to be a better alternative that can reduce your workload.

The 5 Tasks of Locker Maintenance That Facility Managers Despise

  • Painting. Giving all of your lockers a fresh coat of paint is never fun. Sometimes, though, there are no other options. Whether the exterior is chipping, or there’s considerable wear and tear, you can’t get away with painting just one locker. Still, while you’re carefully brushing the paint on, you may also dislike the fact that it’s filling your school with harmful VOC emissions.
  • Graffiti Removal. It’s hard not to take graffiti personally since it’s you that has to clean it off the locker. This requires more repainting, which simply adds to the frustration because you know it can, and probably will, happen again.
  • Removing Rust. Facility managers hate rust removal because it’s so tedious. Whether you’re using vinegar or baking soda, endlessly scrubbing one specific spot on a locker is an easy way to wear your wrist out, let alone drive you crazy.
  • Meticulous Cleaning. In order to prevent signs of rust, unsightly stains, or dust, the lockers require significant cleaning. Power washing makes the process a lot easier, but even that results in considerable cleanup, and you have to wait until students are out of the building.
  • Replacing Lockers. When they can’t take any more, lockers need to be replaced. They get slammed shut every day and they’re exposed to the elements. However, replacing them can result in high costs and painstaking installation.

Getting Rid of These Menial Tasks

If you’ve always fantasized about ways to rid yourself of these meticulous, dull, yet important tasks, there are actually ways to get around them while still having viable lockers and storage compartments for students. HDPE plastic has been introduced to schools across the country, and has met with positive results among students and facility managers. These lockers have successfully cut down on routine maintenance. HDPE is a solid plastic, so it has a durable structure that’s actually resistant to impacts, scratches, and rust. When there’s graffiti present, you don’t have to open a fresh can of paint. The graffiti can simply be wiped off the locker without affecting the locker’s homogenous color. You’ll save time and money on maintenance with HDPE lockers. They’ll provide the necessary storage for students while ridding your day of those pesky tasks. Finding ways to cut your maintenance costs is great, but finding a way to eliminate the task altogether is every facility manager’s dream. Implementing HDPE plastic into your school will reduce the time and money that goes into your school’s maintenance. That way you’ll have a long lasting material that doesn’t require any frustrating or meticulous maintenance, allowing you to use your time towards more important and pressing tasks in your school. Want to learn more about HDPE lockers and the benefits of choosing them for your school? Download this eBook, The Ultimate Guide to HDPE Plastic Lockers, from your friends at Scranton Products.

How to Start a Preventative Maintenance Plan for Your School

When you’re the building manager for a school, you know that there’s no escaping routine maintenance. It’s a necessary ingredient to running a functional building. However, as a facility manager, it’s imperative to stay ahead of any mechanical failures, repairs, and otherwise lengthy maintenance projects. What you need to do is come up with a preventative maintenance plan for your school to help you stay on top of everything.care and maintenace

Here’s a few helpful tips and tricks on getting the right preventative maintenance plan together.

Rally the Team

The first step towards executing the proper preventative maintenance plan is having a team of professionals to rely on to help you see your plans through. As the facility manager, you can’t be everywhere at once to spot any minor issues that could develop into a major problem. However, when you have members of your staff that are just as dedicated to staying on top of maintenance, your plan can proceed with great results. Through coordination and communication, tackling any major issues will be a lot easier.

Determine Your School’s Weaknesses

In order to stay on top of issues with preventative maintenance, you need to figure out the areas that are most likely to result in problems. This includes checking your HVAC system to ensure that it’s operating at capacity, your water system to find any impurities, and, of course, the bathrooms. Your school’s bathrooms and locker rooms are susceptible to mold growth, specifically with the partitions, which can reduce the air quality and result in an unpleasant odor.

Luckily, materials like HDPE plastic partitions are durable, solid, and impenetrable to mold and mildew, so you can passively keep your bathroom from sprouting mold by utilizing this solid plastic. This material can even be used for lockers to replace the metal ones that are in your school. Metal can dent, get rusty, chip its paint, and even get covered in graffiti. HDPE plastic lockers are impact-resistant, and when it comes to graffiti, all it takes is a simple wipe to remove it. You don’t have to add a fresh coat of paint to this material because it will keep its aesthetics intact while cutting down on your maintenance costs and time.

Plan the Schedule

It’s important that you coordinate your maintenance plan with the school schedule to determine the best time to complete certain projects. Throughout the school year, getting major projects completed can be difficult because the school is at its highest occupancy. Also, heavy-duty maintenance can be a major distraction during lessons.

Save any major maintenance projects for summer. Given that there are many fewer occupants in the building, getting the projected completed will be a lot easier during the summer. Winter break is another window for projects, but make sure you can determine what can be done given the amount of time you have to complete it.

By planning out your preventative maintenance, you’ll be able to keep your school in great condition with all of its systems functioning properly.

Want to learn more about preventative facility maintenance? Download this free eBook, The Ultimate Guide or Facility Maintenance & Property Solutions, from your friends at Scranton Products.

 

 

Your Back-to-School Cleaning Plan & Checklist

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To a school facility manager, the end of summer is an exciting and busy time. While you may have kept up with some routine maintenance and cleaning throughout the off-season, now it’s time to really get started on preparing the building for the upcoming school year. This means getting a back-to-school cleaning plan and checklist together to make sure that you cover all your bases so your school building can be ready to start the school year off on the right foot.

Clean Those Hallways.

It’s important to give your hallways a thorough cleaning before the school year begins. Most germs and bacteria are picked up through foot traffic, and more often than not, those germs end up in the hallways. Utilizing a strong disinfectant cleaner can help combat the spread of germs. However, there are green cleaning products on the market that can help you achieve germ removal and still keep harmful chemicals from contaminating the air.

Focus Your Efforts in the Restroom/Locker Rooms.

School restrooms and locker rooms are a breeding ground for bacteria, germs, and, of course, mold. While a thorough cleaning can help reduce the growth and spread of mold, it may already be too late. The constant presence of moisture can actually cause mold to sprout inside your partitions. If this is the case, you’ll need to replace them. But why not replace them with a material that can resist mold growth, such as HDPE (high-density polyethylene)?

Test Your Water & Air Quality.

Be sure to check your air and water quality to see if it’s up to code. Find a water tester in the area to help you conduct these routine tests so you can see where the quality lies. If the result isn’t as high as you’d hoped, consider replacing the filtration system. When it comes to air, there are several ways that you can do your part increase the quality. Consider getting indoor plants, utilize HDPE building materials, and have your HVAC system checked for any issues.

Clean/Replace Lockers.

You may not realize this, but lockers are a hotbed for germs. When the light catches them just right, you can see the assortment of finger prints, grease, and smudges that have built up over time. You can utilize cleaning products, but if there’s any rust or exterior damage, you may want to consider replacing them. Luckily, HDPE plastic lockers don’t rust, they don’t easily damage, and they’re resistant to graffiti, helping you maintain your facility without having to paint over them. HDPE lockers can also help improve the school’s air quality. This material is also low maintenance, which helps you save time and money on your school cleaning checklist!

Was this back-to-school cleaning plan and checklist helpful in showing you the many ways that you can help get your school ready for the sudden influx of students? Do you want to find ways to make your school a safer and more sustainable environment for the students? Check out this eBook, Safe School Design: How Architecture Plays a Role in Creating Safe & Secure Educational Spaces, from your friends at Scranton Products.

 

10 Ways to Make Your Existing School a Greener Facility

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Do you ever try to come up with new ways to improve your school’s efficiency? Making a pre-existing school facility greener can be a frustrating concept; but, actually, it’s not that hard to take the building in a greener direction with a few implementations and additions. Here are 10 ways that you can make your existing school a greener facility.

 1. Use Green Cleaning Products.

One of the best ways you can take a step toward making your school greener is by using green cleaning products. These products are free of harmful chemicals and leave very little effect on the environment.

 2. Improve Recycling Programs.

Getting behind a more thorough recycling program is essential. Make sure that your facility is executing these practices. You can also use it to educate students about the importance of reusing, reducing, and recycling.

 3. Use Green Building Materials.

If you’re considering any remodels or renovations in the coming year, you may want to utilize green building materials that’ll not only last, but will make your facility more efficient. Materials like HDPE (high-density polyethylene) not only provide high durability, but they’re also recycled and sustainable—requiring very little maintenance.

 4. Open the Windows.

If the weather’s right, you may want to consider opening the windows, rather than relying on the HVAC system. It helps by providing fresh air to students and faculty, and it helps you save energy costs.

 5. Get Plants for the Classroom.

Placing a plant in each classroom has numerous benefits. A plant can help reduce dust and carbon dioxide levels while preventing the growth of pollutants. It can also help improve humidity.

 6. Find Weaknesses in Your HVAC and Water Systems.

There’s nothing like a flaw in your energy systems to prevent your school from entering the green realm. Conduct an audit of your HVAC and water systems to find out if there are any repairs you should make in order to avoid wasting energy.

 7. Improve Your Air Quality.

Improving your air quality is one of the benchmarks for greening your facility. While air fresheners can be effective, seeking out the culprit that’s reducing the quality of your air is far more effective. Most often, the stalls and partitions in the restroom and locker rooms of your school are sprouting mold. Consider replacing them with the previously mentioned HDPE, which is resistant to moisture and humidity.

 8. Consider Going Solar.

A lot of schools and commercial buildings have made the jump to solar energy. With just a few panels, you can reduce your energy costs while having your facility run on clean solar power.

 9. Test Your Water.

It’s always smart to ensure that you’re supplying your students and faculty with the cleanest drinking water possible. Check the quality of your water supply to make sure it’s in good standing.

10. Reduce Your Energy Use.

While the classrooms and hallways should be well-lit, there are other ways that you can reduce your energy use. One of the best and easiest ways is by turning off all the computers before leaving for the day, rather than setting them to sleep mode.

 

By implementing a few of these practices, you’ll see a noticeable difference, and your school will become greener every day. Do you want to learn more about how to make your school greener? Download the Sustainable Building Products: How to Make Your Facility Eco-Friendly from Top to Bottom eBook, courtesy of Scranton Products.

Teaching Children About Sustainability in School: Practice What You Preach

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When you’re managing a sustainable educational facility, it’s important to impart your wisdom to the occupants and students that grace the halls and classrooms. Sustainability is one of the most important factors in today’s society, as it’s crucial to the overall well-being of our planet and its occupants. But in order to practice what you preach, sustainability education should be implemented early on so students can understand the best practices and benefits.

Learning How to Make Your Building More Sustainable

When you’re managing a facility or school, it’s always a good idea to move forward with steps toward making your facility more sustainable. While you may be thinking that the only way to do that is by taking your recycling program to the next level, you’ll be surprised to know that there are ways where you can make your actual building more sustainable and eco-friendly.

You can start off by switching to green cleaning products that’ll reduce harmful emissions in your air. Another way is by using green LEED building materials when it comes time for renovations and remodeling. There are different materials like eco-friendly windows, recycled flooring, and even solar panels to help reduce the carbon footprint.

You can even change the lockers and bathroom stalls by using the 100% recyclable HDPE (high-density polyethylene) plastic. This material doesn’t scratch, corrode, or fall victim to unhealthy mold growth. Another major benefit is that it doesn’t delaminate or require a fresh coat of paint. You’ll cut a lot of costs when it comes to maintenance, and you won’t have to repaint them and add unhealthy VOC (volatile organic compounds) emissions to your school’s air.

Educating Students About Sustainability

While we’re growing acclimated to a greener lifestyle, we need to educate younger students on the importance of environmentally conscious practices like sustainability. The best ways to approach sustainability education is through hands-on experience. Show your students how to effectively recycle their waste through separating the different materials and even composting the organic waste.

While on the topic of composting, you can work your way toward another sustainable aspect: gardening. Compost goes from our normal food and yard waste and becomes a fertile material that provides exceptional nutrients to growing plants and vegetables. Teach the students that gardening and other agricultural practices benefit the environment and its inhabitants.

Finally, one of the most important steps to teach children about is conservation. Educating them on the benefits of conserving energy and water can be useful. If you implement fun educational methods, students will take the knowledge to heart and apply it to their daily lives. By taking the necessary steps to educate today’s youth about sustainability, you’ll pave the way toward a brighter and greener future for generations.

 

Was this blog post helpful? Do you want to learn more about how to make your facility more sustainable? Download the eBook, Sustainable Building Products: How to Make Your Facility Eco-Friendly from Top to Bottom, courtesy of Scranton Products.