One of the most important processes in a plant is preventative maintenance. Yet it's also a process that is most often taken for granted. The result can be indifference to the process, leading to breakdowns and early equipment replacement. Fortunately, an understanding of preventative maintenance is all that your operators need in order to appreciate the process.
3 Things to Know About Preventive Maintenance
1. It is not a waste.
It is a common misconception that preventative maintenance is a lot of time and money spent on conquering "just in case" problems. These issues do not occur if the maintenance is done as scheduled, though. This situation is similar to that of a patient who decides to stop taking his medication because he feels fine. The continuous and consistent medication dosage, like the scheduled maintenance, is what keeps the body and machinery operating as it should.
2. Preventive replacement is necessary.
Preventive maintenance is often viewed as the premature retirement of equipment, but the opposite is true. It is a way to replace the equipment just before it becomes a liability on the budget. Preventive replacement requires a bit of math and intimate knowledge of your equipment, operations, and operators. This knowledge allows you to take the machine out of service just before it fails but not too soon, or when it still has plenty of life left.
3. No inspections necessary.
Preventive maintenance is not a substitute for regular and mandatory inspections. Many plant managers make the inspections a part of the maintenance schedule to streamline the process. In short, although the preventive maintenance keeps the machine from breaking down prematurely, it does not guard against defects and breakdowns due to non-operational sources.
Eagle Technologies encourages and even assists its customers in preventive maintenance. We and other equipment manufacturers also maintain programs and customer care departments that plant managers and owners can utilize when creating a program for their new machinery. No matter how you approach it, do not neglect the preventive maintenance on your machines.