The importance of a robust preventive maintenance program

Preventive maintenance: Myth vs. Fact

Among the myths surrounding preventive maintenance (PM), these two surface frequently:

Myth:

Preventive maintenance is costly and time consuming.

Fact:

By adhering to a predetermined upkeep schedule, a preventive maintenance program keeps costs predictable and under control. An approach that emphasizes failure avoidance is a more focused and productive use of time.

Myth:

Preventive maintenance is just about the equipment.

Fact:

Inadequate equipment maintenance can impact your entire business. Equipment that is not in prime condition presents a major obstacle to continuous process improvement. Even more serious, it creates the risk of failing to meet customer expectations, which can have long-term repercussions for any business.

By adhering to a predetermined upkeep schedule, a preventive maintenance program keeps costs predictable and under control.

Why preventive maintenance?

Why invest in preventive maintenance? The answer is simple. Impaired equipment causes downtime, and downtime is very expensive.

Statistics on the cost of downtime vary from site to site, but one thing is clear: Repair costs are only the proverbial tip of the iceberg. Any calculation of the true cost of downtime has to take a number of factors into account.

Consider the spiral of negative consequences when your equipment is unable to perform its primary function. Product quality can suffer in the lead-up to failure. Unanticipated production stops mean immediate loss of output – and subsequent loss of revenue. Idled employees are inefficient. Malfunctions can shorten the equipment lifetime. Customer expectations are not met when delivery schedules are missed.

Bottom line, hidden costs swell when preventive maintenance is de-prioritized in favor of short-term savings.

Why invest in preventive maintenance? The answer is simple. Impaired equipment causes downtime, and downtime is very expensive.

The technical rationale behind preventive maintenance

Maximize uptime

Without sufficient Preventive Maintenance, the failure rate of electrical, hydraulic, and mechanical systems increases substantially with each year of production. A good PM program checks and replaces components to maximize uptime.

Increase operator and machine safety

PM includes safety-related measurements and non-destructive tests to safeguard equipment from fatigue issues and ensure the highest level of operator safety.

Extend product life

Mitigate potential risks (i.e., mechanical wear, ageing components, corrosion, the accumulation of dust and dirt) before they cause serious equipment damage. For instance, in high pressure and high temperature operations, the use of the latest environmentally friendly, friction-reducing lubricants decreases wear on all moving parts. Retrofits, upgrades, and rebuilds protect equipment and extend asset life.

Reduce energy consumption

The adjustment and realignment of moving parts are essential not only to avoid unnecessary wear but to operate efficiently. In a high pressure press, improper adjustment causes temperature build-up in components during pressurization and decompression, causing strain, accelerating wear, and consuming excess energy—raising production costs. A correctly adjusted machine ensures energy efficiency.

Features of a robust preventive maintenance program

Site survey and site audit

A comprehensive PM program will have many elements. Where does it start? The site survey and site audit are the first steps. In this fact-finding phase a specialist inspects and evaluates the press, on-site spares, and the operating environment, according to a maintenance assessment template based on standards developed by the equipment manufacturer. The assessment generates customized recommendations so end users know exactly how to maintain their press for optimum performance.

A vital part of this phase is to pinpoint the source of nonconformance – information that is essential to ensure continuous performance improvement while protecting press integrity.

The maintenance schedule

The maintenance schedule provides a systematic and functional means of maintaining the machine. When offered by the equipment manufacturer, it is the result of in-depth technological knowledge combined with a vast database of end-user operational experiences.

Material replacement processes

Material replacement processes provide guidance on how to plan and perform replacement and repair procedures in an optimized way.

Preventive maintenance kits

Preventive maintenance kits bundle the assortment of genuine service parts required for a specified scheduled-maintenance procedure into a single, convenient package. Bundling is more cost-effective than individual parts purchases and assures all necessary parts will be on hand.

The site survey and site audit are the first steps of a maintenance program. In this fact-finding phase a specialist inspects and evaluates the press, on-site spares, and the operating environment.

Documentation and training

Documentation and training are critical pieces of a robust PM program, spanning a wide range of materials and activities. User-friendly documentation and process updates make the right information easily accessible and ensure efficient use of everyone’s time.

Product descriptions

Product descriptions define the nature and extent of the service. Service instructions provide step-by-step guidance to service personnel on how to perform the maintenance work.

Operator guidance

Operator guidance keeps your staff up to date to effectively operate and achieve full control over your press.

PM training packages

PM training packages refresh and deepen long-term maintenance know-how, and instruct in corrective maintenance practices to decrease the likelihood of press downtime and unscheduled stops.

Maintenance notes

Maintenance notes describe part functionality and explain why each maintenance action is necessary. They also detail the consequences of neglected maintenance actions. This information is a strong source of continuing education and helps in the orientation of new personnel.

Service reports

Service reports follow a standard template to provide service details in a consistent, customer-friendly format.

Training is a critical piece of a robust PM program, by refreshing and deepening long-term maintenance know-how for example.

Support around the clock

Americas

Service & Support

Europe/Asia

Service & Support