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Preventative Maintenance: Time, Talent, and Tools

Posted by Michelle Szemanski on Feb 10, 2016 1:36:22 PM

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Preventative Maintenance: Part 1 of 2

It doesn’t take much thought to imagine the benefits of a first class preventative maintenance system. Who doesn’t want minimal downtime, lower costs for repairs and spare parts, higher quality outputs, increased safety, and longer equipment lifespan? But in reality, maintenance falls into neglect with a “fix it when it breaks” mentality. That attitude seeps into any kind of application, from industrial control panels to OEM equipment, because it starts in the company’s culture.

While starting up a preventative maintenance program or whipping an existing routine into shape may feel like climbing a mountain, once pushed into motion, the program pays for itself. In Preventative Maintenance: Part 1, we'll cover some tips and common sense guidelines to get started on your preventative maintenance renaissance.

Time

Every other step of this process takes time: time to plan and scheduled downtime. Once you make it over this hurdle, the time investment goes a long way toward the best returns. Start with an evaluation of your equipment and weigh the need for monthly, quarterly, yearly, or twice yearly checks. This downtime can be short and sweet as machines are brought up to peak performance—and kept that way.

 

Talent

You can find the next best resource within the talents and experience of your team. Combined with training and ongoing education in standards and best practices, human beings are the best equipped to assess the machines they work with every day. Interdepartmental support takes preventative maintenance to the next level. Consider creating easy ways to produce feedback about machine performance on the spot, so that it feels natural for operators to contribute to the maintenance team’s evaluations. Better yet, you can equip your industrial control panels or other equipment with baked-in data collection or OEE capabilities.

 

Tools

Finally, equip your team with the resources they need to succeed: tools, training, documentation protocols, and the real time necessary to be thorough in their work. At least a fourth of good maintenance relies on choosing the right lubrication, and more on the best-suited and most accurate measurement tools. This research and the potential cost of tools are another reason why it’s tempting to be passive about maintenance, but the price of reacting with repairs and unplanned downtime quickly outweighs the investment.

 

Finding Professional Expertise

Truly valuable preventative maintenance isn’t just a checklist: it’s part of a company’s culture and profitability. Tune in next week for Preventative Maintenance: Part 2.

When it just isn’t possible to support a full-fledged in-house maintenance program, it’s time to call the experts. Professional field service and maintenance technicians can supplement an internal team or provide a complete service package. The advantage of partnering with preventative maintenance experts offers unrivaled attention to detail and dedication to regulations and best practices.

PanelShop.com prides itself on project and product support for industrial control panels, including field service and maintenance staff with experience across many industries, manufacturers, and systems. Whether you’re developing preventative maintenance goals or looking for assistance on a specific panel, we can help. PanelShop.com not only provides custom control panels, but also comprehensive support from shop-to-startup and beyond.

Contact us to find out how we can help you on your next project, or send us your specs for a free custom quote.

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This blog will bring you the latest industry news in Industrial Automation, helpful Engineering tips, and exciting company updates. Whether you're behind a desk or out in the field, the PanelShop.com Blog will keep you up-to-date and informed from  new product releases to determining factors in automation equipment upgrades.

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