Maintaining your silo for years to come starts with just that - maintenance. While you might not be able to control every factor that can impact your production schedule, you do control your silo maintenance. Proactive maintenance is the most effective method to ensure the integrity of concrete and steel silos.
If a silo falls and no one is around to get hurt, does it still cost you big time? Keeping up with preventive maintenance is crucial to increasing the life of your silo, as silo failures are often easily prevented. Many structural silo issues can be easily and economically addressed if caught and addressed early.
Prevent the Problem with Regular Silo Maintenance
A silo maintenance program should be comprehensive and include routine silo cleaning as well as inspection. Bundling these services allows a professional silo inspector to view all areas of the silo interior and catch any causes for concern before they become major and expensive problems. Regular silo inspections should happen either annually or at two to five-year intervals, depending on several key factors that influence how often you need a silo inspection. Sticking to a schedule recommended for your specific industry and practices ensures the early identification of problems that increase the risk of silo collapse or structural failure.
So how do you know what silo maintenance is needed to prolong its useful life? Following a thorough, professional silo inspection, you receive a detailed list of recommended maintenance. Implementing the recommended repairs and preventive maintenance sooner rather than later helps keep your silo healthy and can prevent larger, more expensive repairs later.
Just as routine silo inspections are an essential component of your maintenance program, so are regular cleanings. Regularly cleaning your silo can help keep it operating efficiently and limit potential liabilities. With rising temperatures comes rising humidity - a natural enemy of many stored materials that hydrate and cause blockages as well as lost product. Regular cleanings also increase your silo's usable lifespan, minimize big-ticket repairs, and avoid more costly cleaning expenses. Silos that are emptied regularly and refilled will not have the same buildup issues as silos that are kept topped off, but every silo can benefit from a regular cleaning schedule.
When to schedule silo restoration depends on more than the condition of your silo. While it is never advisable to postpone necessary silo repairs, the time of year you schedule your silo repair or restoration can impact your bottom line.
4 Weather Conditions That Can Impact Silo Restoration
The same weather conditions that can impact the performance and lifespan of your silo, extreme heat or cold, heavy rain, and severe wind, can also affect silo restoration. Work undertaken during extreme temperature conditions can be slower, while heavy rain can make it difficult or impossible to repair concrete or apply waterproof coatings. When the silo roof or other high areas of the silo need to be repaired, high winds can pose safety risks during the restoration process.
Spring into Silo Restoration
Scheduling routine maintenance during temperate times of the year can help you reduce expenses by catching and addressing problems early and reducing downtime. Temperate times of the year, like the spring and fall, tend to provide better working conditions for a variety of silo repairs. These ideal weather conditions can make a repair or restoration go more quickly – reducing the cost of labor and your downtime.
Types of Silo Repairs
Emergent silo issues or a silo that shows signs of new or worsening damage should be inspected as soon as possible. Regularly viewing the silo exterior can help facilities find new or worsening issues that might necessitate earlier or more frequent inspections. For silos that were properly designed and constructed, much of this damage is preventable or can be minimized by regular inspections, silo maintenance and a full understanding of proper procedures.
Routine inspections identify minor issues as well as more serious problems that can lead to preventable structural failures like silo collapse. Common problems that cause concrete structure and concrete silo failure include foundation deterioration, roof collapse, unsuitable material filling and unloading procedures, silo wall delamination or deterioration, and silo discharge cone or bin floor issues. Additional important silo maintenance includes airflow unit inspection and regular, professional silo cleaning to avoid material buildup issues. When it comes to steel silos, they often suffer from corrosion and buckling, which can be inspected using wear-measure thickness ultrasonic gauges. Marietta Silos can address these concrete silo issues and any other necessary silo restoration types, regardless of stored material.
Repairing silo problems quickly, before they become an emergency, helps save money and can reduce or eliminate safety issues. The long-term savings, reduced liability, and reduction of unplanned downtime that results from professional silo inspections and silo restoration should be seen as an investment as it is far cheaper to address issues early before they lead to silo failure.
USA Silo Service can clean, inspect, and maintain your concrete storage dome. Most domes are situated at a 35-degree angle and can range from 150 to 250 feet in diameter. The unique shape of the storage dome creates a non-standard flow pattern that makes material build up much more likely and much more difficult to remove from dome walls and fluidizing equipment.
Concrete storage domes suffering from restricted airflow need comprehensive cleaning and maintenance. Hardened stored material that is caked on dome walls needs to be removed through professional cleaning to return the dome to its original efficiency. Air pads and other fluidizing equipment may also need to be restored or replaced if there are signs of corrosion or defects affecting its usability.
Bulk storage is the term for buildings that store bulk commodities such as cement, sand, frac sand, salt, fertilizer, feed, grains, aggregates, carbon, chips, seeds, peanuts, coke, blasting powder – and the list goes on.
Regular professional silo cleaning is a necessary tool that ensures maximization of production while protecting employee safety. All too often, however, we postpone silo cleaning to delay the economic effects that downtime and lost production may bring.
When regularly cleaned by a professional silo cleaning company, a silo yields maximum production while providing a safe working environment. So how do you have your silo regularly cleaned, minimize downtime and save money in the process?
The USA Silo Service solution is employing The Boss proprietary silo cleaning method, which is 2/3 more powerful than conventional cleaning methods. Since The Boss moves more material per hour, our system delivers optimal cleaning quickly and correctly, resulting in less downtime and production loss, ultimately saving you money.
So don't put off that silo cleaning any longer. Let The Boss silo cleaning machine and USA Silo Service help you get back on a regular silo cleaning schedule to maximize your efficiency, production and safety.