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Wind Monitoring for Building Maintenance Units

Building maintenance units or BMUs are important in high-rise buildings, providing external access to the facade for cleaning and maintenance. BMUs are vulnerable to high winds and building managers must ensure safe working conditions for cleaning crews. Weather forecasts provide a general idea of what to expect but only a wind monitoring system can track outdoor conditions in real time.

  • Building facades must be cleaned at regular intervals, not only for aesthetic reasons, but also to protect building elements from damage.
  • A poorly-serviced facade becomes a constant hazard: materials can loosen over time, threatening visitors and pedestrians if they fall.
  • Clean facades also have a marketing benefit, since they provide the first impression for potential clients and business partners.

BMUs are normally configured as cradles hanging from cranes. Technical personnel can access the BMU from an upper level, and the cradle is lowered to the floor that needs attention. This would be impractical with a ground-mounted structure, since hanging cradles are more stable.

When a BMU is equipped with a wind monitoring system, it can detect the early warning signs of high wind and turbulence. This way, building managers can suspend any cleaning or maintenance activities before the wind threatens the crew. Consider that accidents can happen even if the BMU does not fall. Materials and heavy tools may be dropped several floors, and crew members may lose their footing if the cradle becomes unstable.


In buildings where a contractor is hired for facade cleaning and maintenance, wind measurements can also provide evidence for Extension of Time (EoT), justifying any downtime due to bad weather. Construction companies can also deploy BMUs with wind monitors for facade renovations, light repairs, and any tasks where the unit can handle the load.

  • A typical BMU will only move horizontally and vertically, but modern facades with unusual shapes require units with more degrees of freedom.
  • A BMU can be automated, remote-controlled or mechanical.
  • Some modern BMUs carry robots instead of personnel, but even a robotic unit needs protection. High winds can damage the unit, or they can cause a collision with the building facade. Also, the risk of falling materials and tools is still present.

Benefits of Wind Monitoring on a BMU

Building managers can schedule cleaning and maintenance more effectively when using a wind monitoring system. At the same time, they are protecting their staff from harsh wind conditions and can prevent the legal and financial consequences of accidents.

In addition to providing safety, wind monitoring makes facade cleaning and maintenance more efficient. WINDCRANE is designed for this purpose and measures wind data directly from your building maintenance unit or crane providing a wind safety solution for tall and complex structures.

The wind monitoring system can send automatic notifications with the first warning signs of strong wind or turbulence. The crew can be warned with audible and visual signals and everyone involved in the project can get automatic notifications in their mobile devices of high risk winds.

WINDCRANE wind speed monitoring is a cloud based system which provides accurate and reliable wind data to improve safety, planning and productivity for your building maintenance unit. Manage your fleet anytime and anywhere in the world via any internet connected device.

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