Demolition is more than it sounds. It’s a complex job that is carefully planned out from beginning to end. Demolition companies plan every single phase of a demolition job when they’re taking on a project, to make sure that their employees are safe, the environment is safe, and any surrounding public is safe. They follow all the regulations and laws set down to keep to this, as breaking them could risk a revoke of their business licenses.
Knowing that there are regulations and laws to follow, many demolition companies have started going above and beyond to follow these regulations in ways that benefit the environment and their business. Reusing materials, and recycling materials to be remade to conserve natural resources are just some of the ways they do this.
Seeing how commercial demolition companies are working with the laws and regulations to benefit everyone, there’s a few things that residential demolition companies, and everyone looking to hire a demolition company can take note of. Here are a couple of demolition tips from a commercial demolition company.
Limit Exposure to Dangers During Demolition Work
Residential demolition companies all know about the dangerous and possibly hazardous materials that can be found inside buildings, and a commercial demolition company is no different. Demolition services are offered because of this, to limit the exposure of hazardous materials to the public. Contractors know how to work within an environment with these hazards and how to safely maneuver. Where residential and commercial demolition differs is the larger number of hazards that can be found inside of a commercial building. Commercial demolition is normally on a larger scale since the structures are much larger, which leaves more room for errors and hazards to be on the worksite. As people start to rebuild new homes on their property where an older structure stood, residential demolition companies are going to start seeing these hazards more often due to the age of the structures. Often, these hazards are easily worked around/against and don’t need a specialist for removal. Here are a few of these hazardous materials that can be found within an older residential demolition job.
Synthetic Mineral Fibers
Synthetic Mineral Fibers or SMF are fibrous products found within older structures due to the materials used to build at the time. These products are made from ceramic, fiberglass, and rock wool. It’s not a hazardous material where immediate exposure can cause extreme health risks, yet it’s still a hazardous material that if not dealt with properly, can result in health problems. Symptoms from exposure to SMF are eyes, nose, and throat irritation. An annoyance that will pass, but it’s best to keep safe during a job in an environment containing SMF. Commercial demolition experts recommend that the workers in this environment are to wear respirations and protective clothing to directly avoid body exposure to SMF. Limiting the exposure to the minimal possible is important to keep workers safe and avoid compromising their health.
Wood dust is often found within construction sites, just as it is found in demolition jobs. It’s an annoyance again, but one that can cause easily avoidable health risks. Wood dust can contain formaldehyde, and this is when it becomes the biggest risk to workers’ health. Inhaling wood dust that contains formaldehyde can get stuck in the nasal passages when inhaled, and this toxic substance poses a health risk. A commercial demolition company immediately would recommend wearing the proper PPE such as a respirator to avoid this. Workers are the biggest asset for any demolition company, and their health and safety are the number one priority.
A hazard that is often overlooked is the dangers that become increasingly present when torching steel beams that have been painted with lead paint. A simple cut on these beams can expose the air to lead levels and the worker who is in the area to extreme levels of airborne lead. Wearing PPE such as a respirator, protective clothing, and having hand & eye washing stations at the ready are necessary. Residential demolition companies are sure to have experienced coming across lead paint but keeping the risks of exposure fresh in memory is what keeps health and safety from being compromised.
Being in the business of tearing down structures means that there are going to be holes within the structure. Within a commercial demolition job, this is a well-known hazard as buildings can vary in size. Having any type of hole in the building that could result in a fall great than 6 feet means wearing a full-body restraint is necessary. Although demolition companies hire trained and experienced workers, accidents happen. Wearing these restraints to catch workers in the event of an accidental fall is crucial to keeping workers safe.
Recycling Demolition Waste
Demolition Services offered now all stay to being green during the project’s lifespan. The demolition industry is an environmentally conscious one, so the services offered should stay true to this. The recycling demolition waste can be expensive but separating the waste to be recycled as opposed to dumping it all in a landfill can offer benefits.
Demolition jobs on commercial buildings often bring tons of concrete. Although residential demolition jobs have less concrete waste to deal with, it’s still worthwhile to properly dispose of it. Concrete can be crushed into gravel which is always in high demand for new building projects. This brings the ability to save money on future projects as now the “waste” can be repurposed into a material that is needed. Some commercial demolition companies go even further and have mobile concrete crushers that can crush the concrete on-site.
When employing demolition services on a structure, whether it’s a commercial building or a residential building, steel is going to be found throughout the project. It’s a give that this material will be on-site, and being able to re-purpose, re-use, or recycle steel is an asset that should always be taken advantage of. With the right equipment on hand, steel and scrap metal can be processed for recycling into new products.
Interior Building Materials
When taking on a commercial demolition job, it’s often on older structures where wooden beams will be found throughout. This is the same for residential structures and is still used to this day. Wood doors, posts, and beams that are in good condition still can be recycled, reused, or sold. The interior of a building often has many different materials that can be salvaged and it’s always worthwhile to go through the entire structure with a method such as selective demolition, to find these materials for future use or recycling.
The same process as used with wood, porcelain materials such as sinks, and toilets can be reused for future projects. If they’re in good condition, reusing them can save money on future building costs, and recycling them can add additional funds for the future building. Salvage companies are always looking to purchase porcelain and wooden materials so taking advantage of this is key. If they’re in poor condition and cannot be re-used, then recycling should be done. Porcelain can be recycled with concrete, so it makes for a quick and easy recycling process.
Commercial demolition varies from residential demolition heavily since commercial buildings are often larger and can take longer periods to complete a job on. Yet demolition companies never try to treat a job any different from another. Whether a job is a large one that can take up to a full week to complete or a small one that only takes 2 days total of planning the demolition, the demolition, and the clean-up, every demolition job should have the same amount of care, and planning put into them.
Residential demolition jobs can take up to a week, while normally being 4-5 days on average to complete. This means factoring in all the planning that goes into a demolition job, the demolition of the structure, and the cleaning up afterward. All that work put into the job should be the same for every job. Keeping a reputation as a professional demolition company is important and showing it through thorough work is the number one way to keep that reputation.
Equipment is Key To Demolitions
Commercial demolition being on a larger scale means that larger equipment is often used in the demolition process. Investing in the larger, more expensive equipment is done to provide the clients with the demolition services they were promised. The same should go for a residential demolition company. Residential structures can vary in size and having the right equipment on hand is key to providing the best services possible. This goes into every single part of the demolition services process as well. Investing in the right machinery to do the demolition. Investing in all the proper PPE for workers to keep their health and safety. Investing in the proper clean-up materials to effectively clean up the site after. Investing with the right recycling company to have a source to unload the waste materials. All of this is important and should never be skipped out on. Even skipping one step in this process can lead to safety risks. As said before, this is the same as putting the same amount of care into every project and client. Investing in your equipment to properly provide the demolition services builds you up.
Residential demolition and commercial demolition are two subfields within an industry which means they share many similarities. Although they differ in major ways depending on the project, taking these tips from a commercial demolition company can lead to success for any type of demolition company. If you’re looking for a residential or commercial demolition company, contact your local demolition contractors for information on what demolition services they provide.