What does a Building Maintenance Worker do?

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  • Written By: Patrick Roland
  • Edited By: R. Halprin
  • Last Modified Date: 16 November 2019
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A building maintenance worker is in charge of the repair, installation, and maintenance of a structure. This job requires the repair person to watch for potential problems within the structure and mechanical elements of a building. A repair person must also have a wide knowledge of all operations to properly fix items. Building maintenance workers must also perform preventative maintenance to avoid costly repairs. Maintenance workers also stay on the cutting edge of industry developments to install new materials.

Observation is one of the fundamental duties of a building maintenance worker. The worker must be aware of how structural and mechanical elements in a building look, sound, and perform when running properly and must also be able to identify issues when things are broken. Many times problems are invisible to the naked eye; building maintenance workers must run tests on building items on a regular basis.

If problems are detected by the building maintenance worker, repair work is a crucial part of the job. A worker must understand basic repair principles for structural elements such as walls and ceilings, electrical work, and also how to perform general woodworking. Anything that is essential to a building operating properly must be efficiently and quickly fixed by the maintenance worker. If problems cannot be solved by maintenance staff, the worker must call outside experts for the repair.


Preventative maintenance is an important job that helps a building maintenance worker avoid costly and time-consuming repairs. Jobs as small as routine painting and as large as cleaning a pool filter system all fall under this category and each helps keep a building running smoothly. Maintenance workers must understand how frequently these duties must be carried out and then schedule them to be performed by entering the jobs into a physical calendar or a digital reminder system.

Installation is another crucial element of the building maintenance worker job because some building elements either cannot be repaired or must be replaced due to obsolescence. A worker needs to know how to remove old hardware and successfully replace it with new materials; a solid understanding of electrical and mechanical science is therefore important. A firm grasp of reading blueprints and following instructions are also important for installing anything the worker is not an expert in. Research is also important because a maintenance worker must stay informed about the latest industrial trends and offerings in building materials to install the appropriate items.


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Post 4

@sinbad - From some of the job ads I have seen for a building maintenance worker you do not have to have an advanced degree. However, experience is required.

Also what I can tell and the great experiences I have had with very handy maintenance workers - it is an appreciated line of employment!

Post 3

I always thought maintenance had more to do with cleaning types of maintenance but now I realize it is quite a detailed and important job!

Do you have to go to school to become a building maintenance worker?

Post 2

@starrynight - Building maintenance workers are essential to any building running smoothly! One of my great uncles was a maintenance worker and I think he would be happy to hear that they are appreciated.

I feel like too many people look down on laborers and service workers. However, if it wasn't for them all of our modern conveniences would not work!

Post 1

One of my previous apartments was high rise and I was always really grateful to our building maintenance workers. I would always see them doing stuff to the outside of the building and it really paid off. The building looked great!

I know there are a lot of regulations regarding building maintenance, and I feel certain my old building was always up to code!

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