Winter Damage

Routine winter parking garage maintenance helps protect your patrons and your parking structure. And while plowing and de-icing are necessary in areas that see significant snowfall each year, they can accelerate deterioration if done incorrectly.

Snow piled in parking garage

How to avoid winter damage for your parking structure

The best way to prevent winter damage is through comprehensive training on proper parking garage snow removal. Our service clients receive annual winter maintenance training to help their staff manage snow and ice safely, including how to use snow melting materials and equipment, apply chemicals, plow and remove snow from a parking garage.


Experts in repairing winter damage

It’s our goal to provide you with long-term solutions that reduce the need for large-scale repairs. We’ve identified several common — but avoidable — types of winter damage. With help from a StructureCare expert, your team can better manage winter conditions to maximize the life of your garage.

Steel beam with active corrosion

Shortened waterproofing life

Waterproofing systems like sealants, traffic coatings and expansion joints have a service life that’s shorter than your parking garage structure’s. Wear and tear from plows can shorten it even more, especially on the roof where snow is piled to melt.

Parking structure snow overload

To keep your parking structure as clear as possible, it’s tempting to pile all the snow into one area. Snow is heavy, often weighing much more than the structural design load your parking garage can handle. This can lead to serious structural issues.

Snow piled in parking garage
Parking deck with scraped surface

Structural plow damage

Improper parking garage snow removal can lead to the need for structural repairs. For example, plow equipment might contact your concrete garage floor or might pile snow against a wall, pushing a load-bearing member away from the structure and dislodging the wall.

Chemical deterioration

When de-icing chemicals — particularly chlorides — penetrate concrete structures, they actually change the chemistry within the concrete. It’s important to apply these chemicals properly to minimize damage to your parking garage and avoid deterioration.

Chemical scaling and concrete deterioration
Drainage issue on parking structure deck

Parking structure drainage issues

There’s the potential for an ice dam to form when snow is piled over a drain. Snow melts during the day but refreezes at night, completely plugging the drain and no longer allowing any water to drain. Proper maintenance is essential for preventing drainage-related structural issues.

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Every environment. Every season. Every day. Your parking structure is constantly exposed to harsh conditions that impact its structural health. In this guide, we’ll walk you through how to protect your investment with a strategic maintenance approach.

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Infographic 06/09/2022

Parking Structure Deterioration Guide

A parking garage is subject to stress from the first day concrete is poured and the structure is erected. Without proper maintenance, deterioration can reduce the structure’s service life by up to one-third — and result in unplanned downtime, exposure to increased risk, unexpected maintenance and increased costs.

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