Quality Of A Building Through Effective Maintenance Strategy Construction Essay

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Maintenance is working on a property to keep it in a functioning and safe state and preserving it from failure, decline or deterioration.

Maintaining a building is expensive yet brutal. The cost of maintenance to buildings is times greater than the cost to run it throughout its lifetime. Yet maintenance is often not given the priority or the attention as it should. Building with poor maintenance will waste resources and lead to failure to deliver the building function, services and purpose, while a building with well maintenance will function properly and bring benefits to its owner (T. Mneney and D. Yell, 2008).

Preventive or proactive maintenance is carried out to keep something functional. This type of activity is usually planned and scheduled. Preventive scheduling is carried out at a time interval, usually once per month to ensure the building is under an optimum condition (Prince Jude Cobbinah, 2010).

Corrective or reactive maintenance is to repair a certain component of a building to get it working again. This is an immediate action which requires urgent action to protect the building or parts of the building from further destruction which may affect the safety of the building, occupants and the entire activities inside the building. Corrective maintenance is carried out when there is a sudden failure or reported failure of part of the building. This is an unscheduled, unplanned task, usually associated with greater hazards and higher risk levels where failure of that component brings critical threat to the users (European Commission, 2011).

Suitable maintenance strategy is able to ensure the quality of building and increase the lifetime of a building.

1.2 Rationale

Maintenance is the work done to complete building to preserve the condition of the building. Maintenance works including repairs and replacements alternations, extensions, adaptations, refurbishment, rehabilitation, redecoration and cleaning. Components and parts with minor defects are then corrected. Finally, acceptable standard and cost indicate that maintenance work is tailored to suit individual need and conditions. A good maintenance strategy should allow building to operate at full potential and correctly functioning. At the same time, a good maintenance is able to ensure the optimum usage of building. Suitable appearance is created or maintained through maintenance work. Maintenance can give positive contribution the external environment and social condition, provide good services and increase the affection in the environment. Maintenance is carried out to maximize life of main materials and components. If a good maintenance strategy is applied, it can reduce the cost of maintenance and extend the periods between repairs and replacement.

There are usually a few different strategies to carry out maintenance in a building and various alternative decisions to maintain a building. This research identifies the strategies and the effective strategy to affect the quality and lifetime of a building.

1.3 Project Title

A Study of Lifetime Efficiency and Quality of a Building through Effective Maintenance Strategy

Research Goals

1.4.1 Aim

To investigate the effect of appropriate maintenance strategy in ensuring quality life of a building.


To investigate the methods of ensuring quality and durability with modern maintenance strategy. (Literature Review, Questionnaire)

To determine the effectiveness of maintenance strategy. (Literature Review, Interview)

To determine the successful maintenance strategy used in a building. (Literature Review)

1.5 Hypothesis

Building maintenance strategy has significant effect on building quality and lifetime efficiency.

1.6 Scope of Study

Building maintenance is a process which to keep a building in acceptable condition at a standard so that it is beneficial to the occupants and users. Different functional building might have different standards of maintenance. Building maintenance is a major part of the building industry and requires huge cost each year. Maintenance starts from the day the building is finished constructed. The design, materials, workmanship, function, usage and interrelationships will determine the level and rate of maintenance in the lifetime of a building. The purpose of the building maintenance is to preserve the building at its initial state and retaining the building investment values. Maintenance also makes the building presenting a good appearance, so it can effectively serves its purpose (Ghafar, 1994).

This research aims to study the suitable strategy to increase quality and lifetime of buildings through a proactive maintenance strategy. The traditional maintenance strategy is reviewed and studied with the type, design and function of building considered. Suitable maintenance strategy is determined with the methodologies in this research.

1.7 Problem Statement and Justification

Buildings tend to deteriorate as time lapses. Aging, physical damage and faulty design will cause the failure of building to serve its functionality, services and purpose. Maintenance is the integration of technical and administration activities, which includes supervisory to retain restore an item to a state that can perform its function properly.

In order to solve the problems caused by defect, building maintenance is required. Maintaining a building is expensive. The cost of building maintenance throughout the building lifetime is many times than to build it, however maintenance is usually neglected although it has an important role (Wood, 2009).

Lately in year 2007, many cases which involved component failures occurred in Malaysian school building. One of the cases is about the collapsed roof at Wakaf Tapai secondary school in Kuala Terengganu on 14 April 2008. In November 2008, similar case was reported in SRJK (C) Han Ming, Batu 14, Puchong, Selangor because the roof truss was attacked by termites (Akasah, 2010).

Building maintenance is usually neglected area of research and study. Few schools of architecture or building include it in the syllabus and work commenced on the research and development only recently in this subject.

A poorly maintained building will waste resources and impair building use, and a well maintained building will function properly and become an appreciating asset to its owners. Building maintenance strategy is ineffective when there is wrong selection of alternative material and equipment, poor workmanship, misunderstanding of the system and material, and lack of knowledge. By drawing suitable maintenance strategy, the lifetime and quality of a building can be significantly enhanced. The problem will be looked into and discussed throughout this paper.

1.8 Research Methodology

Method of data collection needed for this research study is primary sources and secondary sources. Primary data collection method is through questionnaire, interview, observation and case study. The selection of the research method is vital and depends on the nature and purpose of the researcher research study, since factor of the research capable to influence the data quality. The secondary sources included book, journals, magazines, record document and others.

Literature Review

Literature review is very essential collect relevant theory and literature in early stage. Therefore, literature review is used in order to get the information from past research as references to develop and elaborate the particular data needed for this research.

Sources of literature review can be from library, journals, articles, magazines and past research reports.


Interview is the primary source of information which information can be obtained from the respondent himself or herself. A group of respondent is chosen and the prepared questions are directed to them. Information collected is recorded and analyzed as supporting evidence in this paper.


The questionnaires are created and questionnaire forms are handed over to respondents either by hand or mail. A fixed period later, the questionnaire forms will be collected back through post or by hand. All the data collected will then be compiled, analyzed and discussed together with recommendations to improve the problem as supporting documents in this thesis.

1.9 Contribution

This research studies the strategies of building maintenance in detail. There are various alternatives to the decision of building maintenance to be chosen under different circumstances. The strategy chosen depends on the building environment, design, climate, terrain and other physical and geometrical factors that may affect the building. The study helps to identify the maintenance strategy suitable for buildings to improve the building lifetime efficiency and quality.

An incorrect maintenance strategy results in ineffective maintenance, higher maintenance cost and more maintenance work to achieve the same result. There are various factors affecting the selection of maintenance strategy. Through this research, the relationship between maintenance strategy and building performance can be identified.

Ultimately, the information gathered in this research can be a guidance to choose the correct maintenance strategy. This can contribute to more effective maintenance, better building quality and lifetime efficiency, lower maintenance cost and less maintenance work with application of the knowledge on building maintenance.

1.10 Limitation

A limitation faced in this research is that it is hard to observe the maintenance carried out in various buildings. Maintenance does not been carry out frequently, it may be once per month or even annually. It is impossible for me to keep track on all the maintenance carried out in the buildings.

The biggest challenge for this project is the case study on maintenance in buildings of big organization. It is hard in dealing with the management of the organizations to know the frequency of the maintenance work for the building. Occasionally, the management rejects or refuses to provide information regarding maintenance carried out in the building. This is because the details might affect the reputation of the organizations due to the ineffective maintenance and reported defects. Other than this, the term of "Private and Confidential" is usually emphasized when the management is requested to provide information related to the building maintenance, especially the report on maintenance works.

Due to the tight time schedule, the work must be speed up for good quality work in this research. This will affect the quality of this paper. The work has to be doubled as fast to ensure the research scope is covered.

1.11 Project Deliverables

With reviewing literature such as journals, books, articles, past researches and the internet, building maintenance strategies are studied and the effectiveness of each type of maintenance is identified. This research sought to find out the factors to the achievement of an improved building quality and lifetime efficiency through effective maintenance strategy.

The information regarding this research is collected and recorded with the methodologies chosen. A suitable maintenance strategy to bring comfort, satisfaction, safety and good appearance to the building users is identified. The recommendations for future reference and improvement are also made later.

1.12 Guide of Report

This research is done in 5 chapters. Chapter 1 introduces the background of the research. This chapter also included aims and objectives, research methodologies, justification and guide to the report.

Chapter 2 reviews definition and types, effects and standards of building maintenance. This chapter also discusses the quality, performance and factors affecting decision on maintenance. The literature review identified the scope and key issues of Building Maintenance.

Chapter 3 is the research methodology and the justification of rationale of the research methodology used. This chapter included all type of research methods which included literature review, questionnaire and interview.

Chapter 4 is to recording, discussing and analyzing of data collected. The research findings will be analyzed by using graphs, charts, diagrams and table.

Chapter 5 concludes the objectives achieved and recommendations on building maintenance.

Structure of Dissertation

1.13.1 Chapter 1: Introduction

In chapter 1, the introduction of the research is a description of the idea to this dissertation. The background of the research, the scope of studies, the aim that need to be accomplished, and problem statement are stated in this chapter. The introduction to the research title will give a better view to the reader to have a general idea on it. Apart from that, this chapter states the contribution, deliverables and the limitation during the progress of the research.

Chapter 2: Literature Review

Chapter 2 is about the literature review on the research. All the objectives that been listed earlier on will be achieved in this chapter. With the review of past researches, reference books, journals, articles, and internet access, information is gathered and recorded into this chapter. The knowledge gained from this chapter is vital for the research to be carried on to the next step.

Chapter 3: Research Methodology

Chapter 3 is where types of research methodology to collect data are studied, compared and analyzed. The best research methodology will chosen for data collection in chapter 4. This chapter is to identify the benefits of each methodology and the limitation of each method. A better idea on the methodologies is attained on paramount type of research methodology for this chapter. When the suitable methodologies are identified, the methods will be used to fabricate chapter 4.

Chapter 4: Data Analyses

Chapter 4 is the data collected with the methodologies in chapter 3. Information about building maintenance strategy is collected, recorded and analyzed. The most suitable maintenance strategy will be identified and an overview on the strategies will be formulated. This chapter will also discuss the impact on implementing the chosen maintenance strategy.

Chapter 5: Conclusion

Chapter 5 is the last chapter of this paper. It concludes everything in the research and summarizes the ideas and information in this dissertation. Recommendations will be made for future references and improvement.

1.14 Work Programme

The table below is the Work Programme of the research proposal project.

Tasks to be completed

Semester 1 (week)

Semester Break

Semester 2 (week)














Chapter 1: Introduction

Preparation for exam

1.1 Research Background

1.2 Rational

1.3 Project Title

1.4 Research Goals

1.5 Hypothesis

1.6 Scope of Study

1.7 Problem Statement

1.8 Research Methodology

1.9 Contribution

1.10 Limitation

1.11 Project Deliverables

1.12 Guide of Report

1.13 Structure of Dissertation

1.14 Work Programme

1.15 Conclusion

Chapter 2: Literature Review

2.1 Background of Modern Maintenance Strategy

2.2 Definition of Building Maintenance

2.3 Types of Efficient Building Maintenance Strategy

2.4 Effect of Building Maintenance

2.5 Maintenance Standards for Building

2.6 Factors Affecting the Performance of Building Maintenance

2.7 Comfort Issue

Table 1: Work Programme.

1.15 Conclusion

This chapter is the introduction to the research. The chapter formulates the idea on how the research is going to progress. Details on the operational plans to find information and solutions to the problem statement are described.

In the next chapter, the outline of maintenance strategy will be defined. The following chapter is the literature review about maintenance and building maintenance strategy. All of the information is helpful to develop the research topic and the understanding on this topic.


2.1 Background of Modern Maintenance strategy

Literature review is a critical and in depth evaluation of the research proposal. Within this chapter, the literature search will help us to identify and analyze the strategies of building maintenance. The effectiveness of building maintenance will also be evaluated in this chapter.

Building maintenance is a major activity in the construction field in most countries. A rapid growth of housing construction appears as a part of the nation development few years ago. As the number of houses becomes more and more houses are being built, more maintenance work is required. To decrease the maintenance cost due to ageing of the buildings while retaining the same quality, a suitable maintenance strategy must be found. More maintenance, rehabilitation, and renovation work are needed to ensure the safety and serviceability of the constructed houses. Therefore, the existing houses can be sustained and the lifetime can be prolonged (Jalal Khatam, 2003).

Much progress has been made in maintaining buildings to an effective manner, maintenance of building is still a great challenge because of the size, cost, complexity and efficiency. Modern maintenance works are viewed as those actions and tasks attendant on the equipment maintenance function for test, servicing, repair, calibration, overhaul, modification of building (B.S. Dhillon, 2002).

According to Khatam (2003), modern maintenance includes much work. This is supported by Dhillon (2002), where a complete maintenance should cover all the detailed work to bring optimum operating condition to a building. However, most building owners neglect planned maintenance is consideration of the tedious and costly process, yet cannot afford to allow buildings to decay as time passes by. It is obviously impractical to replace building, therefore all owners, designers, constructors or users should look into this vast problem seriously.

Building Performance

A good building maintenance strategy will significantly improve building performance. There are many ways to measure building performance, however a building with good performance can be determine with some aspects.

Buildings are the asset supporting the business, organization or family. Financial concerns cut across the lifecycle of a building plays an important role because the lifecycle cost is always a concern to all. The construction or acquisition cost of the building, the buildings operations costs and the asset value of the building can be lowered with good maintenance carried out in the building. Buildings must be able to provide the physical protection of its occupants and assets. This includes protection from crime, vandalism, terrorism, fire, accidents and environmental elements. A badly maintained building may have a low security level because of the defective gates and others and make it easy to breach according to Jim Sinopoli (2009). Additionally, building is a place where occupants work, play, meet, shop, sleep, eat, socialize, educate, learn and a host of other things. So one of the performance criteria of a building should be how well it succeeds in enabling its occupants. A building lack of maintenance will not have the capability to meet all these requirements and lead to discomfort of the occupants (Jim Sinopoli, 2009).

Energy consumption and sustainability are critical in determining a building's performance. A well maintained building should be energy efficient throughout its lifetime if all the components are working in best condition. An evaluation was done on the 5 storeys SAS Hall in N.C. State which was constructed in year 2009. The evaluation was done in year 2011, which means the building was only 2 year old during the evaluation. The building maintenance was not optimum, causing defects in the components of the buildings. An average of 30% of the light sensors in the building are malfunction, air filters were very dirty, the cooling tower and chillers having foul odour and a low humidity in the air. The energy consumption increased in 81.4% throughout the year. This shows that poor maintenance causes a loss in energy efficiency (NC Sustainable Energy Conference, 2011).

Poorly maintained buildings bring inconveniences to the occupants. It dramatically lowers the building performance and ultimately brings discomfort and dissatisfaction to the users.

2.2 Definition of Building Maintenance

The definition of maintenance according to the committee of building maintenance in British is that the building maintenance is the work carried out to keep, restore or improve every facility. For example, every component of a building, its services and surrounds to a currently acceptable standard, and to sustain the utility and value of the building (Mills, 1980 cited in Jalal Khatam, 2003).

In addition, the British Standards (BS 3811:1974) defines the maintenance as a combination of any action carried out to retain an item in, or restore it to an acceptable condition (Mills, 1980 cited in Pheh, 2008).

According to Shear (1983), maintenance is synonymous with controlling the condition of a building so that its pattern lies within specified regions (Shear, 1983 cited in Prince Jude Cobbinah, 2010).

In Addition, the definition by BS 3811 is that maintenance as combination of all technical and associated administrative actions intended to retain an item in, or restore it to, a state in which it can perform its required function (Chudley, 1987 cited in Jalal Khatam, 2003).

Seeley (1976) stated that building maintenance as work undertaken in order to keep, restore or improve every part of a building, its services and surrounds, to a currently accepted standard and to sustain the utility and value of the building (Horner, et al., 1997).

British Standards BS 4778-3.1 (1991) defined that maintenance as the process of maintaining an item in an operational state by either preventing a transition to a failed state or by restoring it to an operational state following failure (Chung, 2008).

Seeley (1992, p.11) posited that the purposes of building maintenance are to protect the health and safety of occupants and the public at large, retain value of investment, maintaining the building at its initial condition so that it can fulfill its functions and present a good appearance (Chung, 2008).

In short, building maintenance is the preventive and remedial upkeep of building components. As Chudley (1987) said, maintenance is to restore the condition of the building so that it can perform its function, which is agreed by Seeley (1992). The British Standards also defines maintenance as making sure the components to be restored to operational state. Maintenance is to restore the parts of the building to a standard, to satisfy the occupants and fulfill its functions.

Objective of Building Maintenance

Maintenance plays an irreplaceable role throughout the building lifetime. Good maintenance strategy has a vast effect on the building performance, lifetime and efficiency. Alner and Fellows (1990) define the objective of maintenance as: "… to ensure that the buildings in a safe condition to ensure the building is in condition to meet all statutory requirements, to do maintenance work to maintain the value of the building and to carry out the work to maintain the quality of the building" (Alner and Fellows, 1990).

Building maintenance's concern is not only on the building itself, but other factors are also reasons why building maintenance is practiced. Building maintenance aims to maintain the value of an asset and maintain the value of building. Normally, better maintained building has a greater value and to maintain the quality of the building. Additionally, the reason to building maintenance is to ensure optimum usage of building. The good maintenance should allow building to be used to full potential and correct or can make positive organization of work should minimize interference with process accommodated. Creating or maintaining suitable appearance for a building is also important because it can make a positive contribution to external environment and social condition. The dilapidated buildings can contribute to social deprivation and badly maintained services waste energy and can affect environment. Building maintenance also serves to maximize life of main material and components. Thus, the materials and components allow functioning more effectively. For instant, light are more effective if tenants are keeping clean. To ensure the suitable standard of safety, maintenance too has an irreplaceable role. The maintenance activities to keep the building in line with statutory requirement. Besides that, it must to ensure every tenant in live the safety areas. This is to ensure that the buildings and services are in a safe and good condition too. Last but not the least, building maintenance has the purpose to ensure the building does not detract from surroundings. It able to allows provision of facilities in line with needs of community.

Types of Maintenance Strategies

There are four vastly used maintenance strategies which are Preventive maintenance, Routine maintenance, Corrective maintenance and Deferred maintenance.

Preventive maintenance focuses on preserving the integrity in physical and value of the building. This can lead to reduction of corrective maintenance cost. It consists of regular maintenance activities and inspects the condition of the building in a fixed routine. This is to prevent problems and defect of the building and helps to prevent costly repair in the future. It is always better to fix problems when it is still small and evitable. Routine maintenance is the most frequently done maintenance type. It is a process of performing routine and scheduled maintenance on the building. Routine maintenance might involve activities such as changing equipment filters, removing debris, office cleaning, caulking, window cleaning and repairs, and parking lot care are examples that need scheduled maintenance. Corrective maintenance is the activities to carry out actual repair that keeps the property to function normally and usually need to be done as soon as possible. The targeted components are usually parts breaking or not working properly anymore. This includes replacing broken air conditioning unit, unclogging drains, fixing faucet, replacing light bulbs or repairing toilet. In simpler words, corrective maintenance is the maintenance process when something has gone wrong. Deferred maintenance is the maintenance process chosen when other maintenances do not work. It is the repairs, replacements and improvements that should have been done, yet not. Eventually, the process costs more. The items are often expensive, therefore the maintenance team will delay the maintenance until it has gone serious (Stonegate Property Inspections, 2011).

In modern building maintenance strategy, most maintenance management will choose preventive maintenance as it is the most cost effective. This is because preventive maintenance is a proactive maintenance to prevent component from failing. However, most organizations with sufficient human resource prefer Routine maintenance. Although not very cost efficient, the maintenance team can periodically identify the conditions of the building. Deferred maintenance is the maintenance every management tend to avoid. Whenever deferred maintenance is carried out, it will most likely involve a huge cost. The defect is usually serious and affect a lot of parties.

The Important of Building Maintenance

The important of building maintenance cannot be underestimated. There are many reasons to properly maintain buildings.

Retaining Value of Investment

A building without maintenance will have its value decreased because the physical look and functionality prove that it does not worth much. An unmaintained building also reflects its former occupants' character.

As Teh (2008) notes in his articles, "When investing in a stratified property as well as in gated and guarded communities, always consider what the quality of its maintenance will be like" (Teh, 2008).

Maintenance has the role on retaining economic life of buildings. It is a productive activity at both private and the national levels. Proper maintenance leads to lower depreciation on properties and consequently leads to higher profitability. Proper maintenance leads to lower costs on replacement. This allows more expenditure on investments and expansions into new productive fields (Ikhwan, 1996).

Similar to automobile, a property with proper management will not depreciate drastically. The building under proper maintenance will retain a good condition for a long time and its value will not drop. According to Teh (2008), people will consider the condition and quality of the building before investing on it. A lack of maintenance building will not make people interested in investing much on it.

Maintain Building Condition

Services provided in the building must be kept in good condition for the convenient of the occupants. Safety of the components and proper functioning is vital for the users to use the facilities.

A major defect was reported in year 2008, faulty lift causes inconveniences to the residents of Vista Angkasa apartment. The breakdown caused a big problem for the elderly or disabled people who are not compatible to use the staircase. Moreover, if there is an emergency during the breakdown period, evacuation is very hard to achieve. Therefore, maintenance works need to be carried out effectively and efficiency so that good and safe facilities can be ensured (Fazleena, 2008).

To maintain best and optimum building performance, the building structural system and envelope such as doors, exterior wall covering, windows and roof covering, cannot be allow to deteriorate. If the building is significantly defective by corrosion, termite attack, wood decay, or weathering, it is prone to damage from natural hazards (Federal Emergency Management Agency, 1981, p. 14-1).

So, building performance is a major purpose to carry out building maintenance. If the maintenance is not effective and efficient, the components and parts of building will not have good quality and short lifetime. This brings a lot of inconveniences, which Fazleena (2008) said that to cause problem to people especially elders. If the building is not maintained well, it is prone to natural hazards and cause problem to the occupants.

Good Appearance

The first glance on a building burns the impression to people's mind. A building with good appearance gives an implication that it can provide a good security system to the occupants.

According to Derek and Paul (1987), "the first impressions of the appearance of the property are very important and exact reputation of the owner or occupants may be judged by appearance of external surfaces". People feel safer and more comfortable and would definitely prefer good looking building of the poor appearance building (Derek and Paul, 1987 cited in Lim, 2008).

By repainting the building envelops or to maintain the services such as lighting, escalators and fire alarm system not only can provide a good building condition that safe for using and functioning well but also can maintain the good appearance of the building (Ghafar Ahmad, 1994).

A building with good maintenance will give a good impression to people including the occupants and potential buyers. Derek and Paul (1987) said that people tend to judge a building from the first impression they have on it. This is supported by Ghafar Ahmad (1994), because components with good appearance usually are working in good condition which is safe and well functioning.

Building Quality and Lifetime

Building maintenance will preserve a building's appearance and prolong its life. Also, it prevents loss of original fabric because less material is used and wasted in regular, minimal and small-scale work than in big restoration projects. A nicely planned maintenance reduces or potentially eliminates the need of major repair projects. Since repairs can be very costly and disruptive in terms of fabric and finances with good maintenance strategy, the period between two scheduled maintenance can be longer (William Morris, 2007).

For instance, preventive maintenance is also a sustainable activity. With maintenance, the amount of resources to extract the materials and reconstruct the building can be reduced. It is therefore better to maintain existing buildings in good state. This will reduce the demand for materials, waste and energy. Historic buildings enrich our quality of life. Preventative maintenance ensures that buildings will be in an optimum state to be handed over to next generations (Sustainable Design for Building, 2010).

William Morris (1877) stated that it is for all these buildings, therefore, of all period and styles, that we plead, and call ahead those who have relation with them, to put protection in the place of Restoration, to stave off decay by daily care, to prop a perilous wall or mend a leaky roof. Thus, and thus only can we protect our ancient buildings, and hand them down instructive and venerable to those that come after us. (William Morris, 1877).

Building maintenance provides opportunity for employment since the tasks require specially trained personnel and specialist equipment. Since maintenance is a cyclical process, it is a steady source of continuous job opportunity.

2.3 Types of Efficient Building Maintenances Strategy

The type of building maintenance practiced is the core reason for a building maintenance to be efficient.

Planned Maintenance

Planned maintenance is a proactive strategic maintenance designed to maximize component performance over its entire life cycle.

According to Seeley (1987), planned maintenance is the maintenance planned and carried out with control, forethought and the use of records to a predetermined plan (Seeley, 1987).

Hall (1984) defined forethought as the provision of a plan indicating when work is to be carried out, possibly in the forms of programming and other forms of programming can be adopted to show organization of work on specific tasks (Hall, 1984 cited in Pheh, 2009).

Planned maintenance usually means the organized maintenance which was under the consideration of time, cost and quality.

Preventive Maintenance

Preventive maintenance is maintenance carried out in a routine which is designed to prevent the necessity of more costly repairs. By frequently carrying out activities which contribute to the upkeep of a building, it is able to sidestep serious problems which arise as a result of neglect, and more expensive maintenance can be postponed.

Maintenance can be planned ahead and carried out whenever it is convenient. Through preventive maintenance, cost can be reduced to avoid the cost of consequential damage. The time for a component of the building is out of service, means down time, can be minimized so the building can increase in habitability (Matulionis and Freitag, 1991 cited in Horner, 1995).

Figure 2 Preventive Maintenance Program elements (Raymond and Joan, 1991 cited in Pheh, 2008)Work orders generated through inspections

Preventive Maintenance Procedures


Information System

However, preventive maintenance is performed regardless of the condition of the building elements. Sometimes, unnecessary works might be done on components that could have remained safe and acceptable operating condition for a longer time. The condition of an element may be worse than it was. This redundancy might cause a lot of inefficient expenditures (El-Haram, 1995).

An example of preventive maintenance is purchasing a light bulb.

The manufacturing company provides that the life span of the bulb is 3 years. So just before expiring 3 years the bulb is replaced with a new one and scheduled for a maintenance. In building maintenance, preventive maintenance can ensure the quality of a building. However, it does not prolong the lifetime of the components.

Scheduled Maintenance

Schedule maintenance is the preventive maintenance carried out at a predetermined period and interval, number of operation, mileage (Seeley, 1987).

Scheduled maintenance is the maintenance done to buildings that requires planning, allocation of significant amount of time, and high degree of coordination between different departments and is typically initiated through a work order (Telang, 2010).

Maintenance has same characteristic with condition-based maintenance. However, this maintenance tends to run with the schedule which is not including the inspection work, for example cleaning and repainting works which has a fixed timetable.

Predictive Maintenance

Kevin Hawkes (2001) defines predictive maintenance as a type of condition based maintenance where a maintenance plan is based on the ability to detect a potential or chances of failure and the maintenance are required carried out before failure actually occurs. Predictive maintenance provides early warning of failure before it occur so that measuring performance can be carried out to know the building condition. In this maintenance, equipments are monitored continuously or at regular intervals and do not need to be shut down to determine condition (Kevin Hawkes, 2001).

Predictive maintenance is carried out only when it is confirmed necessary through the use of non-destructive tests to detect unacceptable conditions before the components fail. Predictive maintenance requires conducting inspections on the components to determine the time whether work is required (Joel Levitt, 2003).

Predictive maintenance can be seen, for example buying a bulb which is used and can be observed every day. After two years, the bulb starts to flicker and it is predicted that it will fail very soon. A new bulb is changed to a new bulb and scheduled for maintenance.

Cyclical or Time-Based Maintenance

Kevin Hawkes (2001) defines this maintenance as a system based on a rigid pattern. The maintenance schedules are pre-set earlier. The aim of a time-based maintenance plan is to avoid unexpected breakdown or failure, especially to components or elements critical to the functioning of the building.

Time-based maintenance, fixed-time of scheduled maintenance is carried out at predetermined intervals or according to fixed criteria and to reduce the chances of failure or the degradation of the functioning of an item or element. This process is suitable for mechanical services inspections such as air conditioning and other services (Kevin Hawkes, 2001).

Cyclical maintenance is the maintenance of planned programme which deals with those gradual and predictable deterioration of building parts or building components, and done periodically. For examples, painting window frames regularly to avoid the windows from decaying and keep a good appearance (Hawkes, 2001).

Therefore, Cyclical maintenance has the same objective as preventive maintenance. It is the work that can be predicted and carried out in a cycle, supported by Kevin Hawkes (2001), are the works we carry out regularly, normally as a part of a planned programme. The components are avoided from failure.


Types of Maintenance


Planned Maintenance

Planned maintenance is a type of unavoidable maintenance. The maintenance works to be carried out to the building is planned so that the maintenance process can be controlled to meet the purpose of maintenance.

Preventive Maintenance

Preventive maintenance is carried out to prevent or reduce the likeliness of failure of components and parts of building. This process requires frequent inspections on the components and parts of building.

Scheduled Maintenance

Scheduled maintenance is an extension of planned maintenance. This process is carried out in a fixed interval of time planned earlier on early stage of a building lifetime.

Predictive Maintenance

Predictive maintenance is condition-based. The condition of the components and parts of the building are observed in the daily operation. The prediction of next breakdown of components and parts of building is done and maintenance is carried out to prevent the breakdown.

Cyclical or Time-Based Maintenance

Cyclical maintenance is almost the integration of scheduled maintenance and predictive maintenance. Maintenance works are carried out at predetermined intervals to predict the next breakdown and prevent it from happening.

Table 2 A Summary on Types of Maintenance Strategy.

2.4 Effect of Building Maintenance

There is no fixed standard measuring ruler to determine how good a maintenance work is. Therefore the skill in measuring how good or badly a maintenance does is still under dispute. However, the effect of building maintenance can be roughly divided into two most patency effects, which are good and poor building maintenance. Basically, good building maintenance fulfills the objectives of building maintenance while on the other hand, poor maintenance does the opposite (Laura N. Gitlin, 2003).

The effect of maintenance and repair on a building's materials is on the material usage, which is usually measured in quantity of take-offs on a square meter basis on the repair products and components. Maintenance on a building will affect the energy used for future maintenance and operation of the building. Furthermore, it also influence the on-site waste generated by maintenance and operation of the building. A significant effect can be seen from the mass of waste products throughout the lifetime of the building and the typical life expectancy of components and parts (Morrison Hershfield, 2002).

It is hard to say that whether a building is under good building maintenance or not, Laura N Gitlin (2003) said that the extent of wellness that a building maintenance is usually seen in two patency effects, which good maintenance will result in good building performance, enabling the building to serve its purpose and objective well, satisfy the occupants and perform its function correctly; while an ineffective building maintenance does the opposite. According to Hershfield (2002), good maintenance will prolong the lifetime of building components and parts, reduce wastes generated during building operation and reduce energy used during building operation. This is because if building maintenance is not carried out properly, components tend to damage. A lot of energy is needed to replace the defects and result in wastes.

Good Building Performance and Poor Building Performance

Good maintenance has a significant positive effect on a building. From the outer and physical view, a good maintenance is able to render a good appearance on the maintained building. The building and the environment must be clean and painted with a tidy surrounding landscaping, so that it is able to provide a habitable, healthy and comfortable place to the occupants.

From a technical side of view, a good maintenance can ensure that the entire buildings with all its components are functioning properly and durable. The building must also be safe to serve is purposes. Vital elements in the building are staircase, lighting, staircase, windows and doors. To prevent undesired accident from happening, good maintenance is a salient point, not only to prevent the building decay but also retaining its value of investment (Laura N. Gitlin, 2003).

Poor maintenance does not completely harms the building, but might bring negative effect to the building. Poorly maintained components might speed up building deterioration. If buildings are maintained poorly, or do not undergo maintenance work at all, there will be an obvious decrease in performance and service. For instance, the building might be unsafe for accommodation. A malfunctioning corridor lighting system will make it very dangerous to go out at night. A lack security building will definitely bring inconveniences to the occupants especially females. Worn out and ugly appearance will also destroy the image of the building, and this will have a direct effect on the building's value. In buildings where maintenance has become scarce, the environment will become unhealthy, unpleasant and uncomfortable, rendering it inhabitable (Sally Deneed, 2011).

In summary, a good maintenance enhances the building's performance, lifetime and efficiency. But, a building will show "Sick Building Syndrome" if poor maintenance is practiced. As Gitlin (2003) stated, a well maintenance building brings safety, comfort and satisfaction to the occupants, prevent the deterioration and retaining the value of the building. If the building is left without maintenance or maintained poorly, the performance and service will degrade. This is supported by Deneed (2011), which the appearance of building will be worn out, brings a lot of inconveniences to the users and will directly affect the occupants.

Maintenance Standards for Building

2.5.1 Determinants of Maintenance Standards

The factors which affect the decisions to carry out maintenance are complex and in some cases conflicting. However, the factors should be made explicit in a planned maintenance policy spanning a number of years. The factors include the satisfaction of user requirements, value considerations and statutory constraints (Reginald Lee, 1976, p.53).

The determinants of maintenance standards can be measured in different levels. There are level A, level B, level C, level D and level E.

Level A: Superior

The best level maintenance indicates that equipment is maintained to the acceptable condition at all times. Each major system, component and part of the building is inspected on a daily basis. Also, preventive maintenance should be done on time and consists more than

90% of all maintenance activities for a Level A standard. Non-emergency breakdowns are solved within 24 hours and the most important is the high satisfaction of building users (Brian Woods, 2009).

Level B: Standard

Building maintenance is considered to have level 2 maintenance standards if the minimum life-cycle cost of building must result in maximum return on the investment of maintenance costs. The maintenance process must ensure all major systems are inspected week. If there are comfort control breakdowns in the building, it must be responded in one working day. This level of maintenance can satisfy all regulatory requirements. The customer satisfaction level is satisfied and usually complimentary (Brian Woods, 2009).

Level C: Sub-Standard

The sub-standard of maintenance is a reduced level of maintenance. The systems are serviced less frequently than level B, resulting in a higher risk of breakdowns. The premature failure of some systems caused increases in deferred maintenance budget. The maintenance can ensure only the minimum life-cycle expenditures on major climate control systems. In level C maintenance, major climate control systems are serviced on a regular basis. Individual room equipment and components are only serviced when there is a breakdown. The respond time to comfort control breakdowns is 3 working days. The occupant's satisfaction is intermediate because of the basic level of maintenance with lack of inspection in surroundings (Brian Woods, 2009).

Level D: Compliance only

In Level D maintenance, only the regulatory requirements are serviced. The premature failure of most systems increases the deferred maintenance costs. All systems are inspected minimum once per year. Client comfort systems are serviced seasonally. For significant portions of buildings without building systems, the service will be carried out in four to five work days because of failure of primary equipment. Satisfaction level of this maintenance level is low because it is generally critical of cost, responsiveness, and quality (Brian Woods, 2009).

Level E: Life Safety only

The fifth level maintenance concerns only on the users' life safety. If there is a breakdown, this will result in maximum life-cycle cost because with the lack of maintenance, there is usually unpredictable, premature failure of most systems. The deferred maintenance funding required is maximum to restore buildings that have been maintained at this level, because once found, the defect is usually severe. This maintenance usually involves no inspection to most systems. Maintenance will only be carried out when there is a major failure such as large sections of entire building with no ventilation. A lot of burnt out lights and certain parts collapsing. The prolonged periods of primary equipment outages will cause poor comfort control, HVAC system failure. This maintenance is used on buildings which do not worth preserving, or buildings scheduled for demolition, or their systems are simple that lack of maintenance does not affect the health and safety requirements. This maintenance will make the maintenance team to have good emergency response from the system failure skills gained. Satisfaction of user is low, which the building usually show sick building syndrome, they will distrust the building and show signs of discomfort (Brian Woods, 2009).

As Reginald Lee (1976) indicated, there is still no defined standard to measure how well a maintenance work is. If the maintenance makes improvement to the building condition, brings comfort and satisfaction to the users and ensures the building functions properly, the maintenance work is considered a good one in evaluation.

A Stable Shelter from the Weather

In the early stages, buildings were designed to do more than protecting the occupants from climate. When the complexity of building increases, the walls and roof have assumed a variety of other interdependent functions. However, not to collapse is an absolute requirement for all buildings. Certain movement in the building is inevitable and it is needed to determine whether the amount of movement and the rate of it happening will not cause failure of a structural member of the building. Damp penetration may be tolerated in certain situations when the damage it causes is negligible (Reginald Lee, 1976, p.53).

In such cases, there are standard would be determined partly by visual acceptance and partly by assessing the effect of dampness on the functional efficiency of the building envelope (Frics, 1981).

Building serves as a shelter to its occupants. If a building is not maintained, it cannot protect the users. Reginald Lee (1976) states that every part if the building has a specific function to act as shelter and protection. If the building is left without maintenance and deteriorate, not only the outside of the building but the interior of the building will also be a threat to the users. Soon, the building will be abandoned. Frics (1981) indicated that there are some standards to check whether the efficiency of the building is damping and appropriate actions can be carried out if the efficiency damps to an unacceptable extent.

Suitable Internal Environment Conditions

These are usually provided partly by natural means and partly by artificial means. The external envelope may be regarded as a filter which is adjusted to allow varying amounts of light and air into the building while excluding undesirable features, such as noise and excessive heat. Where the input from natural sources is inadequate, the balance must be supplied artificially. There is thus a continuous interplay between the fabric of the building and the services in regulating the internal environment (M.Phil, 1981, p.53).

Apart from that, a good internal arrangement of rooms and spaces inside a building can improve the ability of people so that they can work independently and know the location of particular areas without reliance on signage. Other factors of internal building environment, such as the sound and voices, the presence of lighting, or the fragrance from plants and perfumes, should be considered beneficial features and can help to inspire people (Dan Lockton, 2005).

So, internal environment is important for the users to have comfort and satisfaction. Phil (1981) said that a good environment will have good airflow and lightning. Lockton (2005) also stated that the environment with adequate sound, lighting and aroma will inspire the occupants to do better. With good building maintenance strategy, the internal environment of the building can be enhanced and improved.

2.6 Factors influencing Decisions to carry out Maintenance

The decision to carry out maintenance is usually made with various considerations, as it involves a lot of resources, power and cost.

Cost Issues

Cost always is the first issue to affect the decision on maintenance, considering money may affect many things, and the budget limitation.

Chudley (1981) defined that "… the cost of maintenance may at first sight seem to be a simple matter of how much be expected on the materials and labour contents to carry out a particular maintenance task but before coming to a decision to implement a particular item of maintenance other cost factors must be considered." (Chudley, 1981).

Cost of maintenance may include the materials and labour wages required in the maintenance. Wu, et al. (2004) said that "… unscheduled maintenance tends to be most expensive in terms of maintenance costs because it is unplanned" It is important to understand the condition of the building and own financial status before we make decision for building maintenance. Most of the major failure of a building happens in a sudden and often implies high cost to repair. If a good maintenance strategy is practiced, spontaneous failure can be avoided (Wu, et al., 2004).

Hall (1984) implies that a best method for maintenance should be chosen with consideration of the cost involved. The factors needed to be considered in making decision for selecting building maintenance in terms of cost are actual cost of maintenance compared with cost of maintaining similar buildings. If the money spent is worth of the maintenance provided and the cost of maintaining same standard in future and economies of replacing facility. The factor also includes types of use of building, high costs possibly legitimate for historical building but not industrial property (Hall, 1984 cited in Pheh, 2008).

Before any maintenance decision can be carried out, the cost should be taken into consideration. Chudley (1981) implies that all the costs involved such as material cost, labour cost and additional costs must be considered. Moreover, the maintenance must be planned especially regarding the costs. Wu (2004) indicated that unplanned maintenance will incur a lot of unexpected cost. This will result in inefficient maintenance. Hall (1984) supported with the consideration of that to maintain the building's condition to the acceptable condition, there are many alternatives and the most cost effective way should be considered.

The chart below shows that cost plays a vital role in good maintenance strategy.

Chart 2: Insufficient funding is the one of the major causes bad maintenance in a building

Comfort Issue

2.7.1 Sick Building Syndrome

Sick building syndrome is a combination syndromes caused by place of work or residence. A report by Work Health Organization in 1984 stated that 30% of new and remodeled buildings were showing sick building syndrome. Sick building syndrome is related to poor indoor air quality (Work Health Organization, 1984).

Syndromes related to Sick Building Syndrome are that eyes getting watery, nose or throat get irritated then human skin becomes dry or itchy. Some individuals might get a headache and fatigue sets in. People will find it hard to concentrate and other occupants in the same place will complain of similar symptoms. Some occupants might meet symptoms which do not appear to be connected. Yet soon after leave the building they feel relief (Occupational and Environmental Medicine, 2004).

Sick Building Syndrome can be caused by inadequate ventilation, chemical contaminants from indoor or outdoor sources and biological contaminants. Volatile organic compounds in air, which are considered chemical contaminants, can affect on the occupants of a building. Bacteria, molds, pollen, and viruses are types of biological contaminants which can all cause Sick Building Syndrome. For buildings which lack of maintenance, the air flow and ventilation will get worse due to the defect in the ventilation system. Old components such as the ceilings and woody materials might be moldy. If the decayed components are not replaced, the air will get contaminated and contribute to Sick Building Syndrome Occupational medicine (Philadelphia, 2000).

To figure out the cause and solutions, building managers can conduct a walk-through survey on obvious issues in the building condition. Usually, poor cleaning, water damage or overcrowding is the causes to Sick Building Syndrome. Sick Building Syndrome emphasizes that building maintenance is important so that the occupants will have a comfortable place to work or stay.

The photo below shows that a building with Sick Building Syndrome because of the moldy ceiling. With proper maintenance strategy, this can be prevented.


Figure 2: Sick Building Syndrome with Moldy Ceiling (Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory Environmental Energy Technologies Division).

2.8 Summary