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  • Green Earth, Inc.

Commercial Parking Lot Maintenance: The Real Costs of Snow and Ice Removal

Tractor loader machine uploading dirty snow into dump truck. Cleaning city street, removing snow and ice after heavy snowfalls and blizzard. Snowplow outdoors clean pavement sidewalk road driveway

Winter weather can be challenging for business owners, and so can commercial parking lot maintenance. After the frantic pace of the holiday season, winter continues, and so does the snow and ice of the season.

Sometimes for months and months to come. More than an inconvenience, winter weather conditions play a big part in breaking down one of your biggest pieces of infrastructure: your parking lot.

Water is one of the most destructive elements on the planet. Harsh winters can severely impact the inflow of customers to your business and their safety and convenience. This is why you need a professional snow removal team that works for you to keep your parking areas clear.

The Science of Water Damage

The unique properties of how the atoms that form water allow water to expand when heated and when frozen to create crystalline structures that also expand. The hydraulic force of pressure within a contained area means that the same force is exerted throughout the closed system.

This is an actual law of physics explained in Pascal's Law. Water that gets into cracks in asphalt and pavement freezes and expands, forcing the cracks even further apart. The same phenomenon that has carved mountains into valleys since the beginning of time is also ruining your parking lot.

Commercial Parking Lot Maintenance

empty parking lot with snow removed

Commercial parking lot maintenance is crucial to maintaining your business. Not only does it serve as a place for your employees to park, but your commercial parking lot is the first point of contact you will have with your customers.

Snow, rain, and ice are constantly working to damage your parking lot. Over time, this process, known as "frost action," will turn your newly poured (and expensive) parking lot into a gravel pit.

Not only does a wrecked parking lot look terrible, but it also poses a wide range of safety issues. Snow and ice removal prevents ice buildup, which can be hazardous to people attempting to walk on the slick surface of your parking lot.

Slip and fall injuries are one of the most common forms of personal injury lawsuits out there today. Property owners should remove snow and ice due to liability laws and maybe be responsible for a significant chunk of a person's hospital bills, rehabilitation, and even legal expenses if injured.

This can easily range into the mid-six figures and even into the millions of dollars for the amount your insurance will have to pay for damages.

Safety is Good for Business

A slick or snowy parking lot presents dangers to drivers as well. Cars sliding on icy parking lot surfaces can lead to collisions with drivers and pedestrians and parts of your property, such as light poles, outbuildings, and other infrastructure. Snow and ice make parking lines difficult to see, and make for inefficient parking, resulting in door dings, double and triple-parked cars, and limited access to your business.

Customers won't go to a dangerous business, or at the very least, a difficult parking lot they must navigate. They will take their business someplace else. Parking areas are the first thing your customers will know about the kind of service they can expect.

Snow plowing gives your business access, safety, and convenience. The costs of the customers lost are immeasurable, yet an important consideration.

Reason For Maintenance and Repairs

Not only do parking lot maintenance services drastically reduce injury and damages to your commercial parking lot, but snow and ice removal go a long way to saving money with preventative repairs.

Parking owners should know that much engineering goes into an effective parking lot. Not only are concrete and asphalt slabs built to give cars and their drivers ease and convenience, but also it relies on drainage systems.

Complex Systems of Engineering

water grate in the parking lot.

Like any important part of the infrastructure, parking lots require preventative maintenance. Not only are parking areas built to provide places to park vehicles, but parking lots also do the following:

  • Inclined to facilitate drainage

  • System of gutters,

  • Curbs to reduce backflow into buildings and sidewalks

  • Drainage pipes to remove water to sewer/storm systems

Water Removal is Crucial

Ice and snow block these systems, and the excess water buildup can lead to ice dams, which cause frost weathering. The longer water in solid or liquid form stays on your parking lot, the more extensive the damage will become.

  • Spalling

  • Cracks

  • Sub-surface soil erosion

  • Buckling

  • Sinkholes

Reducing Replacement Expenses

Basic commercial parking lot maintenance can greatly reduce extensive damage and the likelihood of expensive repairs and full replacements. Preventive maintenance allows you to sustain your parking area with lower costs and labor, with plowing, salting, and snow removal. In contrast, areas that are not properly maintained break down much more quickly.

Resurfacing a parking lot also means when your customers cannot access your business. As you wait for the pavement to be laid and lines to be repainted, you are facing the expense of a major construction project and looking at the time lost when your business should be open to the public.

The time it takes to plow and remove snow from your parking lot is negligible compared to the days (or even weeks!) of rebuilding your parking lot. Depending on the size, paving used, and subsurface draining and construction, you could look anywhere between tens to hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Better For The Environment

Since parking lots are made of asphalt and concrete, many petroleum-based products are used to make the building materials. Replacing a parking lot takes its toll on the environment with raw materials that are often quarried, transported, and fired using petroleum products.

With concerns about fuel and oil and their environmental impact, customers are becoming pickier regarding the companies they work with and their views toward environmental impact.

Contact Us For Snow Removal

Green Earth has you covered with a wide range of snow removal tools, methods, and professional courtesy. Contact us if you would like to learn more about the services we offer our clients.

From sidewalk utility plows to backhoe loaders and skid steers for bigger jobs, salt spreaders, and containment plows, Green Earth has the right tools and know-how to do the job. Save money and keep your business safe and running during winter weather with Green Earth!


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