Looking to restore an elevator?

By Arturs Grablevskis

With Graffiti problems on the rise, all kinds of property managers from coast to coast are facing an unforeseen form of damage called Aggressive Graffiti. The practice includes the use of a sharp object like keys, carbide drill bit, knife, and even sand paper. Some vandals are even using a mixture of acid and white shoe polish to make their etching stand out once it dries. Elevators, for example, are enclosed spaces that allow a vandal do their damage with privacy and plenty of time. They vandalize the doors, side panels, and cab front directly by carving into the metal surface. Time is a key factor here and if you are not able to quickly react to the problem and repair the surface, you are risking further damage.

We are all familiar with the situation of a ‘postponed for a later’ action that never actually begins. A good example would be an oil change for your car. Feels important enough to do it right now, but you continue to use your car every day with less important tasks and defer the oil change for a later time. Or how many of us would associate an April 15th with the “OMG, I forgot to file my taxes” day? Usually, procrastination takes place until the ’last minute‘ before a deadline. How long would you tolerate graffiti in elevator before deciding to actually repair it? Waiting for too long may put you at risk of getting used to it and stop noticing how bad it became. But do your customers notice? Most likely, yes, since they do not see the damage each and every day.

“Research from the Pacific Partners Consulting Group found that every $1 in deferred maintenance costs $4 of capital renewal needs in the future.”

Risk of getting used to graffiti in an elevator is one cost. But the real cost could be way higher. Research from the Pacific Partners Consulting Group found that every $1 in deferred maintenance costs $4 of capital renewal needed in the future. Which is very logical since less preventative maintenance on your systems shortens their life cycle by as much as one-third. Emergency repairs are way costlier than the planned ones and are more of a nuisance.

All this vandalism can be fixed by spending many hours resurfacing the area by re graining the stainless steel and hoping to get the matching result. On average it takes about sixty minutes to resurface one square foot of damage. To perform the repair, you would need to close down each elevator for several hours depending on the amount of damage done due to metal and glass particles produced by resurfacing. But the worst thing that happens then is a new vandalism event on that newly repaired surface. While this is not something factored, it is a normal occurrence that starts the whole cycle over again. The best advice in any vandalism situation is to take care of it sooner than later. The Broken Window Theory is clearly the same in this situation. If one window is broken on a building, then it is considered OK to break more. The time is a key factor in protecting your property from being tagged over and over again. If you are not able to quickly react to the problem and repair the surface, you will get new tags.

On Picture 1 you see an elevator that takes you from the parking garage to the campus of a well-known university. Ironically is that this is the first impression parents will have when they take their kids to university for the first time. Imagine standing there and holding your daughters hand knowing that this will be her new home. I would feel at least worried, but also would question myself if this is a safe place for my kids or is it well maintained? These are not the questions parents should have to wonder about during their first visit.

Graffiti Shield has come up with a brilliant solution to prevent or cover up these permanent unsightly forms of defacement. We have created the technology to cover up the vandalism with a thick anti-graffiti film that matches the surface your covering. Here’s how it works. All panels are measured, CAD drawings designed with unique part numbers, and catalogued so that if any pieces were to get damaged after initial install, someone from maintenance can just order a particular part by number and then reinstallation could occur. The upfront investment of measuring and design is a one-time cost, but the reoccurring replacement panels will be simple and quick for your client and staff to replace and look new again.

There are many coatings available to resist traditional vandalism and make it easy to remove paint, markers, and the like. There are also spray on coatings that can be applied to a vandalized area, but most give you a repaired look, they are messy, and as a rule they are not removable in most cases. The newest solution is a removable surface protection film. These films can be clear for glass, in a stainless steel look, a mirror or custom color finish to match the surface they are covering. Metal Shield is a 6MIL Stainless Steel or Brushed Aluminum mimicking film; this film can be used as the pro-active solution to protect brand new surfaces or as the reactive solution to repair/mask any existing damage like graffiti, scratches, rust, corrosion, stains, and even previously repaired dents. The Metal Shield films have a special hard coat that is resistant to paint and acid and only need a replacement if it has been aggressively vandalized.

“Elevator panel replacement cost may reach up to $1500 or polishing that can cost over $225 per panel compared to a Metal Shield panel can cost under a $100.”

Agencies of today must start budgeting for dealing with aggressive vandalism before it grows out of hand and is too late. Most companies with whom we have been discussing this problem have some sort of budget for traditional vandalism, but not aggressive. However, it may be too costly to budget elevator panel replacement that could easily cost up to $1500 per panel or polishing with costs that start at $225 per panel compared to a Metal Shield panel that costs under $100. Metal Shield by far is the best cost and quickest way to surface repair. Normal panels take less than 5 minutes to replace.

We have a nationwide dealer network to support any size installation needed, or dedicated staff to help train your staff on all the installation needs they may have.

If these are products that you would like to learn more about, please contact us to get samples and more information.

www.Graffiti-Shield.com (714) 575-1100.

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