Preventive maintenance is all about planning and scheduling, taking a proactive approach rather than a reactive approach to maintenance. Every piece of machinery and equipment under your care should have a schedule that outlines its required inspections and maintenance. Setting a preventive maintenance schedule with your CMMS software will ensure that your equipment stays in tip-top shape and help you keep costs down by preventing equipment failure.
Regular maintenance is essential to keeping your machinery safe, reliable, and in working order. Inadequate maintenance can cause accidents, health issues, and other dangerous problems. Maintenance is crucial for creating products of high quality and ensuring continuous productivity.
Maintenance tasks may include the following:
Not only can accidents hurt your company’s bottom line, they can also take an enormous toll on the motivation and morale of your employees. If you’re in charge of machinery, it’s important to attend to it and maintain it with the help of EAM/CMMS software. EAM/CMMS software can help you keep track of day-to-day asset maintenance and prevent equipment failure.
Creating a Preventive Maintenance Calendar
Create a preventive maintenance calendar and schedule basic maintenance tasks, such as checking belts, checking and changing fluids, and oiling bearings. You can determine what preventive maintenance tasks need to be added to your calendar based on trial and error. For example, if a piece of machinery fails, the diagnosis may show that a simple preventive maintenance task performed at regular intervals is required to prevent the failure from occurring again.
Routine maintenance extends the life of machinery. You can distill preventive maintenance tasks into a set of best practices in your EAM/CMMS software. By developing a detailed list of preventive maintenance procedures, you can standardize the operation and maintenance of machinery across your organization and cut costs. Standardizing the processes you use to inspect, repair, and maintain equipment is crucial to ensuring a low risk of injury and uniform maintenance work, regardless of who completes the task.
As you consider your preventive maintenance, begin with a plan that includes:
1. Setting standard intervals for component maintenance
Not setting standard intervals for component maintenance is a problem because going too long in between PM tasks can lead to equipment damage. The repairs may end up costing you more than ongoing maintenance would have. Proper scheduling is essential for optimizing PM advantages.
Regular PM inspections and maintenance can provide you with insight into problems that are occurring. You can mine the data to determine what you need to do in your PM program. You can also identify systems or sub-systems that are experiencing failure and then come up with a game plan to address those issues in your PM program. Maintenance software enables you to measure performance by helping you keep track of data, such as the percentage of completed PM tasks, the number of breakdowns occurring, or the number of times you’ve had to repair a specific component.
2. Clear PMs for appropriate equipment
Preventive maintenance only applies to wear-based failure modes. Regular preventive maintenance will reduce many – but not all – failures. Emergency maintenance may be needed to handle random failures, and this data needs to be captured for future PMs.
PM tasks should clearly explain what the maintenance technician has to measure, what condition they have to look for, and what they should do if they find an unsatisfactory condition while performing a PM task. If you want the job to be done right, you need to be as specific as possible, including attaching needed drawings, MSDS sheets, etc.
When a PM task is completed, allow the technician the opportunity to provide comments about what was found when performing the inspection. It’s important to collect feedback from maintenance technicians if you want to optimize your PM program. This data can be used to correct instructions and refine scheduling.
3. Knowing the difference between failure finding tasks and PM tasks
Many organizations lump failure finding tasks with PM tasks as if they were one in the same but they are not. Failure finding tasks are time-based inspections of components that are performed to determine whether a failure has already occurred, while PM tasks are intended to determine whether an item is about to fail. Failure finding tasks deserve to be in a category of their own.
4. Prioritizing Maintenance Work
Use priority codes in your CMMS to prioritize work and alert maintenance technicians about health and safety concerns in regards to machinery. Maintenance software allows you to flag assets based on their criticality from a safety perspective. You can also use your CMMS to identify maintenance jobs that are risky. Safety priority codes give maintenance technicians full knowledge of the safety risks associated with various maintenance tasks.
Making safety a priority in your maintenance department can go a long way toward promoting productivity and mitigating the risk of injury. Empower your workforce with the tools they need to efficiently maintain machinery in the field with EAM/CMMS software.
Save Money with Scheduled Maintenance
Appropriate preventive maintenance scheduling can reduce equipment downtime and increase reliability. On the other hand, if you allow a piece of equipment to run until it breaks down, emergency maintenance will have to be performed. This means that the equipment will be unable to perform its function until it is restored to working condition. Effective machinery maintenance with the help of maintenance software will extend equipment life, reduce equipment breakdown/downtime, and increase labor productivity.
Extend Equipment Life while eliminating the premature replacement of parts and equipment. While maintenance software isn’t capable of fully automating purchasing decisions, it does allow you to keep track of KPIs and develop a robust view of equipment costs. Typically, maintenance managers decide whether or not to replace an asset based on its age. However, this isn’t always the best or most cost-effective measure for deciding when to replace an asset.
Preventive maintenance software analyzes equipment based on operational information captured through PMs and work orders. With some analysis, a maintenance manager may determine that an older piece of equipment has more uptime and requires fewer repairs than a newer model. As a result, the maintenance manager may conclude that equipment replacement could be postponed until a later date. This would enable the organization to shift asset capital spending to where it’s needed most, further contributing to the ROI of the maintenance software.
Reduce Equipment Breakdown and Downtime with scheduled maintenance. If your equipment isn’t maintained properly, it will break down more often and experience more downtime. This leads to lost dollars. If you use preventive maintenance software to schedule and track preventive maintenance tasks, you can reduce unexpected breakdowns and emergency maintenance issues. Properly maintained assets perform more efficiently and fail less often. Having equipment up and running efficiently has a huge impact on your organization’s overall productivity and effectiveness.
A well-executed preventive maintenance program leads to a decrease in unplanned repairs, which lowers costs. And if equipment breaks down, CMMS software gives you quick and easy access to equipment history, manufacturer information, specs, and warranty information, so maintenance technicians can handle the repair quickly. Furthermore, routine repairs eliminate the need for expensive, large-scale repairs.
Increase Labor Productivity with a fully-implemented maintenance program. When you schedule maintenance activities, you are able to make better use of your maintenance workers’ time and reduce overtime costs. This is because all workers can be made aware of maintenance work and their time can be planned efficiently, maintaining productivity levels, rather than unexpectedly ceasing work in multiple areas at any time.
If you use CMMS software, you can look at the cost of repairs across the life of a piece of equipment to determine whether it should be replaced. By performing routine preventive maintenance, you may also discover that a piece of equipment is operating perfectly, even when it is past its prime. This enables you to postpone or avoid equipment replacement, which can lead to a reduction in expenses. You can also analyze the data that preventive maintenance software generates to identify equipment that has excessive maintenance costs, which could indicate the need for corrective maintenance or equipment replacement.
A CMMS system can contribute to your organization’s bottom line and ensure that your maintenance operation is a profit center rather than a cost center. Investing in a maintenance management solution is a must for companies that want to protect their assets and maximize their budgets.
Define maintenance jobs including detailed tasks to be performed, crafts needed with estimated time to complete, parts, tools and miscellaneous items needed
Define the schedule frequency for each asset and maintenance job
Automatically create and print work orders that are due or that fall within a certain date range or meter reading
Specify days of the year when your company is shut down, or you’ve scheduled downtime, so that work orders aren’t scheduled for those days
Specify date ranges when in-season work should not be done or off-season work must be done
Create part exception notes when a schedule requires a part that is currently unavailable
Take note of assets that are covered under warranty
Read a few of our blog posts geared toward the importance of maintenance planning and scheduling, as well as overall maintenance strategy.