As a business owner or manager, it is imperative to your organization’s success to have an established maintenance strategy. The needs of every business are unique, so most maintenance schedules will vary by organization. However, what typically has less variance between organizations is the approach they take toward maintenance. Most commonly businesses employ a preventive maintenance approach, however, a more customized approach known as predictive maintenance has become increasingly popular.
Beginning with the former, preventive maintenance is a rather customary strategy compared to predictive maintenance. This strategy is predicated on a calendar-driven system. Meaning the maintenance organizations would conduct would be based on established time intervals throughout the year. This isn’t to say each piece of equipment would require significant maintenance within these intervals, nor that all of the pieces of equipment in a fleet would be worked on at the same time. Rather this strategy is mean to establish scheduled maintenance at different parts of the year for each piece of equipment based on factors such as age and run time, amongst others.
A newer, much more sophisticated strategy to maintenance is predictive maintenance. In contrast to preventive maintenance, rather than having set scheduled intervals, why not let the machines notify you when they require maintenance? This is the approach of predictive maintenance. Through highly integrated systems, organizations are able to monitor important precursor data from their equipment that would then indicate when that piece of equipment would require maintenance. Seems perfect, right? Except for the fact that these systems aren’t cheap. More often than not, they’d cost the same as if organizations just deferred to preventive maintenance for each piece of their equipment.
While the cost of these systems remains high, the implementation of these systems has never been easier. As more and more technologies find their way into the Internet of Things ecosystem, the possibilities continue to expand. The moment these predictive maintenance systems are installed, they’re able to capture and record performance and external data of an organization’s fleet. This data can then be analyzed to provide insight into when a particular machine may require maintenance in addition to revealing the problem area that requires maintenance. Which in turn leads to greater efficiency as a result of less downtime required for critical machines.
Much like any other alternative, predictive maintenance is not always the solution to your organization’s woes. A majority of organizations won’t ever be able to afford such sophisticated systems. Those that can will be faced with the challenge of integrating these systems into their operations. As this will require some rigid training for existing (and new) employees, this could lead to some unexpected trouble. However, this sort of innovation requires a great deal of patience. So, if your organization is flush with the capital to make this change, it will likely contribute to an increase in efficiency.
For more information on which of these strategies is right for your business, be sure to review the resource below. Courtesy of Industrial Service Solutions.