Signs Your Building Needs Architectural Metal Restoration

Dec 28, 2019

Does your building need architectural metal restoration? New York is a place for sleek efficiency and incredible embellishment. The architectural metal fixtures here are truly a sight to see. From the modern art pieces to the ancient ironwork, from the doors and beams to the grand built-in sculpture, architectural metal is as much a part of NYC as the skyline itself. It’s what you see on the ground, at a distance, and up-close & personal with the buildings. Architectural metal can be structural, decorative, or both.

Architectural Metal Restoration Staircase

It can also wear down. Architectural metal is meant to last forever, but the surface may leave something to be desired. Especially in older buildings, the architectural metal pieces may have seen better years. But that doesn’t mean they can’t be beautiful or awe-inspiring once more. Believe it or not, with professional metal restoration services, everything from your largest metal structure to your smallest sculpture or fixture can be brought back to new life. All you need is a team that knows how to restore and refinish.

Is your building one of the many in our great city that could use a little architectural metal restoration? Or a lot of restoration? Let’s take a look at the signs that can clearly tell you whether metal restoration could bring new life to your building through the beauty of its metal decor.

1. Your Building Has Exposed Metal Architecture or Sculpture

Exposed metal is an essential part of buildings in New York. From great steel struts and brushed aluminum window frames to sweeping architectural artwork. If your building has any type of architectural metal that is exposed to the elements or to daily wear-and-tear, there’s a good chance that you could benefit from metal restoration. The longer your metal is exposed, the more likely that improvements can be made simply by cleaning, polishing, and refinishing your metal in the right ways.

If you’re not sure because you are so used to your building that you don’t see the architectural details anymore, take a walk around the building. Check out the front and sides and judge whether the exposed segments are metal that could be gleaming or stone and brick that might benefit from a power-wash. Then take a walk through the building. Every doorframe, every metal-accented elevator, and every handrail or metal line in the walls is architectural metal. All could be refinished to improve the look, feel, and durability of your entire building.

Sculpture is another major part of metalworks in building design. There is sculpture that may be built into your building like an overhead lattice or individual sculptures. You may not realize just how much more impressive this metal artwork could be if refinished with professional metal restoration.

2. Your Architectural Metal is Rust-Red or Copper-Green

Next, consider the color of your architectural metal, especially the metal you find outdoors. There are two colors that always mean metal restoration is your best choice for both integrity and aesthetics: Red and Green. No, it’s not Christmas. It’s oxidation.

When iron and steel oxidize with exposure to air and water over time, they turn red with rust. This is particularly likely after the original finish, if any, has worn away to expose the raw metal. When copper metal fixtures are exposed to air and moisture, they turn pale green with oxidation instead. Both are bad news for your metal and your building in the long-term.

Oxidation isn’t like dirt. It’s actually turning the top layer of metal into that fluffy-flaky stuff in red or green. This means that your fixtures are slowly wearing away. Metal restoration will not only blast away the oxidation until your architectural metal shines like new, but you can also have your metal refinished to resist oxidation more effectively in the future.

3. Dirt You Can’t Polish Away on Ornamental Metal

Another sign that your building could benefit from metal restoration is if you have metal artwork that won’t come clean. Whether you’re polishing ornamental metal detail in your elevators and walls or you have a sculpture that just won’t polish to perfection, this could be a problem with the metal rather than your polishing technique. You may have noticed little dark or rough spots in the metal that never look quite perfect. These are signs of minor damage, but only on the surface layer. Metal restoration will remove that flawed top layer and add a protective finish in any texture you desire to make your decorative metal perfect again.

Once restored, your ornamental metal details or metal artwork will gleam with a reflective or brushed finish that will make your entire building look subtly more refined and polished as a result.

4. Architectural Metal Looks Dull and Won’t Gleam

Many building owners or managers don’t even realize that their architectural metal could look better than it currently does. The building’s metal architecture may have been aging for so long that no one knows how good it can look once refinished. In some buildings, the entire location could look like a whole new structure simply by refinishing the architectural metal and metal artwork built into the building.

You may be able to tell if the metal of your building looks dull but doesn’t appear to have an intentionally brushed or matte texture. If you clean and polish, but the metal won’t gleam, or the metal on the outside of your building seems particularly dull compared to other buildings nearby, metal restoration may completely transform the appearance of your building.

5. Metal Fixtures and Panels are Badly Scratched and Scuffed

Of course, often, you know what the issue is. Your metal is scuffed. This is most often an issue with architectural metal down at a human level in the form of accents and artwork. From the metal lining your elevators to the metal countertops and sculptures in the lobby, scratches can lower the appearance of any architectural metal. And there’s not a lot you can do with a polishing rag.

But metal restoration, on the other hand, can get those metal accents and pieces of artwork back to shining perfection. Whether you want mirror-reflective shine or a soft brushed metal look, metal restoration and refinishing can remove those scuffs and scratches to make sure your architectural metal looks even better than when it was first installed.

6. Exterior Metal Artwork is Showing Wear-and-Tear

You may also have metal artwork outdoors that needs a little attention. Decorative fencing, sculptures, and even functional fixtures like fountains and playground items can be refinished. In New York, worn-looking exterior metal is a fact of life. But it doesn’t have to be an issue with your building. If you can see visible signs of wear-and-tear on your exterior metal artwork or fixtures, it may be time for a little metal restoration magic.

Look for those tell-tale signs of rust in the concave corners of a sculpture or scratches and scuffs around the base. Look for chipping paint or clearcoat, if there was an original finish, or for scratches that visibly start to oxidize. Metal restoration can fix it all. Have the best-looking architectural metal on your block simply by taking the time for restoration when you start to see signs of aging.

Architectural Metal Restoration for Your New York Architecture and Artwork

What can metal restoration do for your New York Building? When you decide that your architectural metal and metal artwork need to be refinished, our team will come to your building and restore the metal on-site. After all, it’s built into your building. The first step to architectural metal refinishing is usually sandblasting or precision laser stripping. This strips away the top layer of everything. It smooths scratches and removes oxidation, dirt, and old finish in a flash. The metal is treated and refinished to achieve the perfect look, feel, and durability for your New York building.

Metal restoration can bring the shine back to polished metal and that rich gleam back to brushed and burnished metal. If you have exterior decorative or structural metal (or both) as so many New York buildings do, we can make it shine like new. If you have interior metal accents that make your building look sleek and modern, we will remove every scuff and scratch. And if you have beautiful historical metal artwork, we will treat it with the care of art-lovers and the expertise of a professional metal restoration team.

TLC Architectural Metal Restoration in Long Island

TLC Metal Restoration is located in Long Island and serves the greater NYC area. Whether your building is in Manhattan, Brooklyn Queens, Staten Island, or of course, Long Island, our skilled team of metal restoration experts are ready to bring your building back to life. You might just be amazed at the transformation a little bit of metal refinishing can do. For more information about NYC architectural metal restoration or to begin a consultation on your project, please contact TLC Metal today!