10 Tips for Cold Weather Projects

Carrying out a construction project in cold weather can become an immensely challenging task. Low temperatures can cause issues for workers themselves, but the largest issues lie elsewhere. Cold weather can throw the construction schedule off track, damage stored materials, impair the strength of the completed structures and much more. This can lead to a significant increases in the cost of a project overall. The good news is that there are a number of ways you can ensure that your cold weather project progresses on schedule and on budget. Here are ten tips to help you get through the cold:

1. Protect Materials from the Cold

One of the most important things to do with cold weather projects is to keep your raw materials safe from the low or below freezing temperature. Chemicals or other similar industrial material that you need during the project may need to be kept at specific temperatures. Unless this happens, the material either cannot be used at all or is less effective when used. Keep these materials protected using a thermal blanket or heated bulk materials box. 

2. Ensure Temperature Control to Keep Materials Usable

Merely insulating materials from the cold is not enough to keep them usable for constructions projects. What is critical is that these materials are maintained at the right temperature where they retain their basic characteristics, for example viscosity and malleability. It is a best practice to opt for heating solutions that allow you to change and control the temperature settings so that you can use them in different weather conditions as needed.

3. Certified Heating Solutions for Reliable Temperature Control

You want a reliable heating solution to keep your construction materials in usable form. A defective heating blanket, one that does not keep the temperature from fluctuating, or one that is simply not safe to use is clearly not a viable solution. Look for certification when you pick heating solutions and find out if the manufacturer has a stringent quality control procedure to ensure that the product conforms to known standards.

4. Weather Resistant Solutions

It is not enough for you to opt for heating solutions that work well in warding off the cold but fail when it rains or there is increased humidity in the atmosphere. You cannot control the weather conditions during outdoor projects and neither can you predict the climatic conditions in advance. Your heating solution needs to handle severe weather conditions so that you can stop worrying about how the weather will impact your job.

5. Ensure Uniform Heating

Often, materials used in construction projects need to be maintained within specific temperatures. A sudden loss of heating can be as damaging to these materials as a spike in the temperature. It is critical that an even temperature is maintained throughout the material with no hot and cold areas.

6. Avoiding Construction Delays due to Cold Weather

Cold weather can result in significant delays and underutilized man-hours. With concrete structures, unless the structure cures correctly, further work cannot be carried out. Instead of losing precious time, money and resources, simply ensure that you cover newly laid brick or cement with electric thermal blankets so that the concrete is cured before work continues.

7. Easy to Install Heating Solutions

If you need to hire people to set up, use and take down your heating equipment, you lose all the savings you achieve by keeping your materials viable for use through cold weather. Choose an easy to install, easy to use heating solution so that you can quickly insulate your critical materials without external help. You should also be able to take it all down and resume work quickly. This keeps you from investing too much of your project time to managing the heating solution.

8. Avoid Spending on Heated Enclosures

Building heated enclosures is a common practice at construction sites where the half finished building, the materials, piping etc need to be thoroughly insulated from the low temperatures. This not only involves extra expenditure but also takes up a good portion of the workmen's time that would otherwise be spent on the project. If the cold weather is creating significant problems, your projects may be delayed beyond scheduled deadlines simply because your work force is being diverted to maintenance rather than building. Avoid investing money, labor or time in building enclosures and opt for adaptable heating solutions instead to insulate pipes, walls or materials.

9. Addressing Condensation Issues

Often, we pay special attention to maintaining ambient temperature with construction material and partially completed structures but fail to make arrangement to deal with condensation. When the temperature increases after a sharp dip, there is high risk of water accumulation due to condensation. There are a good number of materials that may be significantly damaged when they are in constant contact with moisture. You can keep cold temperatures away and also avoid the dampness that arises due to condensation with various heating solutions.

10. Keeping Costs Low with Re-Usable Heating Solutions

Choosing and adaptable heating solution that can be used on various projects will save money and decrease the amount of time spent finding other heating solutions.

About the author:

Powerblanket® was established in 2005, and currently resides in Salt Lake City, Utah. Featuring patented GreenHeat™ technology, Powerblanket® manufactures industrial heating blankets to cover where it's needed most - preventing fluids from freezing while ensuring optimal viscosity.