The Hanover Insurance Group

Water damage prevention checklist for commercial building HVAC systems

Proper operation and maintenance of heating, ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC) systems is essential to reducing the risk of water damage to a commercial building. Use this checklist to help identify potential water damage hazards before they cause damage to your facility.

Operations and maintenance manual

Yes No
Is there a checklist with suggested timing of monthly, seasonal, or annual events and do they include:
A written preventive maintenance program, with operating manuals and specifications for all equipment, including model and serial numbers
Required spare parts, equipment specifications and a parts suppliers list
An equipment history record file, noting dates of installation and repair
Air balancing reports and airflow specifications
"As-built" blueprints and system operation plans for mechanical, electrical, and plumbing systems
Is there a rapid response to water damage events? If so:
Are staff trained how to shut down water supply lines and make sure the controls work?
Are staff trained how to safely shut down electric and gas supply lines?
Does staff have access to appropriate tools?
Does staff have telephone numbers for fire, police and emergency personnel?

Systems and components

Yes No
Is an equipment inspection schedule in place? If so, does it include replacement/repair/cleaning/testing of:
Furnace burners
Heat exchangers
Chimneys, vents and connective pipes
Water/circulating pumps
Water main supply lines and drains (bathrooms/kitchens)
Rooftop water elements
Janitors’ closets
Sprinkler systems
Drains (drainage travels away from the structure, does not drain directly onto the roof or over the side of the building)
Air filters (no dust or debris found)
Air coils (no dust or debris found, level condenser units)
Fresh air supply ducts (no debris, rust, condensation or other signs of moisture found)
Condensate drains/lines/pans (no dirt, algae, contaminants or rust found)
Basement flood control and sump systems
Have there been any changes to windows, space use, office equipment or other modifications? If so:
Has the HVAC been reviewed to ensure it continues to meet demands?

Heating systems and burners

Yes No
Is the flame blue with a light yellow tip?
Does the heating unit ignite promptly?
Heat exchangers — no cracks found?
Proper venting of combustion byproducts (chimneys, vents and connective pipes)?
Appropriate carbon monoxide levels?
Emergency shutdown procedure?
Sufficient return air supply?
Proper balance of ventilation and exhaust systems?
Supply ducts tight, appropriate pressures and airflow?
Is HVAC response to thermostats, humidistats and other control systems adequate?

Large building systems

Yes No
Do cooling towers have appropriate drainage?
Are fan belts, motors, and other basic system components inspected, lubricated and maintained?
If hiring outside contractors to perform maintenance, are they licensed, insured and have a clean reputation with the Better Business Bureau?
If a temperature element is damaged, is it replaced?
Other recommendations:
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The recommendation(s), advice and contents of this material are provided for informational purposes only and do not purport to address every possible legal obligation, hazard, code violation, loss potential or exception to good practice. The Hanover Insurance Company and its affiliates and subsidiaries ("The Hanover") specifically disclaim any warranty or representation that acceptance of any recommendations or advice contained herein will make any premises, property or operation safe or in compliance with any law or regulation. Under no circumstances should this material or your acceptance of any recommendations or advice contained herein be construed as establishing the existence or availability of any insurance coverage with The Hanover. By providing this information to you, The Hanover does not assume (and specifically disclaims) any duty, undertaking or responsibility to you. The decision to accept or implement any recommendation(s) or advice contained in this material must be made by you.

LC FEB 2019 10-128H
171-0886 (11/13)