The skies are turning grey, the temperature is dropping—for most of the country, fall is upon us.

And with the changing in seasons comes a change in how business has to be conducted at warehouses. Along with the inevitable upswing in products coming in due to the holiday sales rush, you have to deal with the changing conditions of the outside.

From weather conditions affecting deliveries to the comfort of your workers and safety of your products indoors, it can feel like you have to juggle a lot while making sure your warehouse is kept safe from the changing conditions of the outdoors.

It doesn’t have to be as big of a hassle as you’re expecting, though. If you want some fast weatherproofing tips for your warehouse to help see you through the colder months, here’s a few ideas we’ve gotten together:

 

Waterproof the outside

When we say “waterproof”, it can have a few different meanings. Most warehouses will already be waterproofed material wise, whether with steel construction, outdoor bricks, or similar materials, but there’s steps you can take to help further divert the inevitable rain and snow. Check your overhangs and awnings to make sure your products and workers have a safe, dry area near the doors and loading docks to get their work done, and clean out your gutters early and often to help them work their most effectively.

 

Check seals

Even if the outside of your warehouse is ready for the rain and snow, there’s always the chance that the bad weather can let itself in uninvited. While there’s still a few warm days left in the year, check the rubber seals around things like exterior doors and loading bay dock doors (whether mechanical or manual) to make sure there’s no signs of dry rot. This will help keep your building heated and dry, and can actually cut down on utility bills through the rest of the year.

 

Provide weatherproof equipment

“Weatherproofing” means more than just making sure the exterior of the building is ready when the rains come. The rain and snow will always find a way inside, and that means the equipment and storage you use inside needs to be able to withstand the changing seasons as well. Make sure your pallet racks are constructed from durable weatherproof material, try to use cold- and moisture-resistant options like rust proof wire shelving in areas that may be exposed to the elements more often (like shipping/receiving areas or areas with a lot of foot traffic from outdoors), and double-check the joints, sealants, and I-beams on all of your more easily-affected shelving options to ensure safety and reliability.

 

Clean and test vents

Eventually you’re going to come to the point in the year where the heat needs to be on all day, and when that comes you’ll want to make sure your heating and ventilation are up for the task. Do a test run of your heater at the earliest possible convenience and make sure there’s no easily-detectable leaks, gaps, or vents that aren’t producing hot air at all.

 

Provide an area for workers to warm up

Similar to the mudrooms and walkways you tend to see in grocery stores and other commercial buildings, you’ll want to provide an area to prevent mud and snow from getting tracked in and damaging your floor, your shelves, and your goods. In an area as close to the loading docks and doors as possible, lay down a heavy rug and provide rust proof lockers for workers to store their coats and boots when they come in from the outside. This will provide increased safety by reducing the amount of water on the floor and making sure moisture can’t be tracked in to damage your shelves and inventory.

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