What is Tower Maintenance?

Tower maintenance is not a single event.  Inspections performed on a periodic and regularly scheduled basis is the most effective way to protect towers and the equipment collocated on those towers.  Ground level inspections can be quite effective especially when performed on a frequent basis or after significant weather storm.  On-tower inspections or drone inspections are also needed especially on tall towers to check wear, corrosion or slippage not viewable from ground level.  

Below is a list to help better understand the maintenance required and how maintenance differs based on the type of tower.

The video posted here is of a crew changing out a diagonal as part of a post-maintenance inspection finding 

 

Tower Diagonal Change Out

Play Video

Items to Inspect

Here is a shortlist of the possible items to include on your tower inspection list:

All Tower Types

  • Corrosion at guy pull-offs
  • Corrosion at bonding straps
  • Corrosion at anchor arms
  • Corrosion at leg flanges
  • Corrosion on any tower metal in contact with soil or water
  • Operation of the tower lighting systems
  • Foundation cracked or shifted concrete
  • Damage to grounding straps or the ground radial system

Guyed Towers

  • Slipped guy-grip dead ends
  • Unraveled guy-grip dead ends
  •  Damaged or missing cotter pins
  • Damaged, cocked or missing insulators
  • Missing safety wire on turnbuckles
  • Evidence of arcing on the guys
  • Evidence of arcing at the tower base
  • Position of lighting ball gaps
  • Damage or loss of oil from the base insulator
  • Failed fiberglass rod insulators
  • Crossed guys in a face-guyed tower

Energized Towers

  • Check for visible arcing on any antenna system components.
  • Check for any audible corona

Many teams of tower professionals are able to perform other services as well – such as guy wire tensioning, lighting system upgrades, grounding system improvements and resurfacing/painting.