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Student accommodation refurbishment and repair

Unite Facilities Management is a customer of Plastic Surgeon and has made use of its multi-faceted repair service in a variety of locations, mainly to carry out snagging and refurbishment work during holiday periods in the academic year. In Scotland, the company’s operations have been focused on student accommodation buildings in two universities with their own mix of property, but suffering very similar problems due to the students’ behaviour in occupation.

Plastic Surgeon’s Operations Manager for Scotland reports: “Unite has dedicated Facilities Management teams based at both university campuses, and the way the contract has developed is that they book packages of work that will require one of our Finishers for perhaps two or three days. They do this through our headquarters’ call centre and we then receive electronic work requests detailing all the repairs that are required.

“One of the most common repairs we are asked to do relates to where the students have put very hot saucepans or frying pans directly onto the kitchen worksurfaces and it has melted the laminate.

“It will take one of our Finishers up to a couple of hours to dig out the depth of the burn and then rebuild the surface using our Premium fillers. Then once it has been smoothed back so that the repair is totally level with the surrounding area, they will repaint it to match. This might mean applying a solid colour or using fine brushes to put in all the detail of a granite or marble effect surface.”

Alcohol and testosterone are, of course, responsible for their own brands of damage to the interiors of the flats, with Plastic Surgeon having been required to repair a number of wood or laminate doors that a student has either kicked or punched a hole through.

In this situation the Finisher involved will try to piece together the shattered remains of the panel and then employ our special Cold Weld Gel and activator, in order to stabilize the repair. The two pack Premium fillers are then used again to complete the rebuilding before the surface is sanded and colour matched.

The Operations Manager continues: “The other place that suffers a lot of damage is the shower pods where the basins and the interior to the showers themselves get chipped or cracked; seemingly by having heavy objects dropped on them. In the case of the ceramic basins we tend to have to use our small multi-tools fitted with a cutting disk to open up the network of ‘spider cracks’: to make them big enough to give the Cold Weld Gel a key.  Then it is a matter of filling and shaping to replicate the original contours of the basin, using small sanding pads. Then after the repair is repainted the Finisher will apply several coats of lacquer to ensure it is waterproof and endures.

As with all its contracts, the Finishers photograph and report all of the repairs carried out using their “Mobile Finishers,” which not only provide billing information, but also feed data to Plastic Surgeon’s unique repair reporting and tracking system.  This then enables student accommodation management companies like Unite to view details of the weight and value of all items that have been saved from being replaced and sent to landfill. It is a service which enables facilities managers or site agents to accurately value the tasks which they are allocating budget to.

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Our services are used by a diverse range of organisations throughout the UK, who all recognise the cost and time saving benefits of repairing over replacing.

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We repair everything from scratched shower trays and chipped worktops to damaged sinks and baths. Read FAQs and use our ‘Interactive Repair Map’.

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