Preventive maintenance is essential to the productivity and lifespan of your automation equipment. From inspecting and cleaning components to replacing, tightening, or lubricating parts, preventive maintenance helps you correct small issues before they lead to costly equipment failures.
To properly set up the best preventive maintenance plan for your equipment, follow the steps below.
Determine Who Will Be Involved
It is important to determine who will be involved in the preventive maintenance procedures before organizing your maintenance plan. Including top management, maintenance managers, and other experienced equipment operators will ensure that everything runs smoothly and that you receive proper feedback.
Set Goals for the Preventive Maintenance Plan
With input from your preventive maintenance task force, it is important to set measurable goals that can be tracked, improved, and achieved. By looking at your system metrics, you can determine areas for improvement and track your progress towards your desired goals.
Inventory the Facility Equipment and Assets
Create a master list of all the equipment you intend to include in your maintenance plan with specific details about that equipment. This will help you design your maintenance schedule, determine where your challenges may lie, identify the most costly equipment, and make it easy to order replacement parts quickly.
Include the following information:
- Make, model, and category of the equipment
- Serial numbers and other identification numbers
- The location of the equipment in your facility
- What the equipment does
- The department and team leaders who are responsible for the item
- Any specific costs associated with that piece of equipment
- The age of the equipment, its current condition, and its priority level within your facility
Create Preventive Maintenance Procedures
Determine what kind of maintenance is required for each piece of equipment based on the operator’s manual, the manufacturer’s recommendations, and any past corrective actions you’ve taken. You should also determine how often these tasks should be performed and how long it will take to perform them. Depending on the machine, different factors determine when preventive maintenance needs to be performed, including the number of operating hours, the number of items produced, or other meter-based triggers.
Develop Preventive Maintenance Schedules
It’s important to streamline your preventive maintenance processes to make the best use of your time, money, energy, and resources. It is best to schedule high-priority preventative maintenance first, which can be determined by evaluating the goals you listed before. It is also important to leave space for unexpected situations such as emergency repairs.
Train Your Team
Your maintenance technicians should be thoroughly trained in proper inspection and care of each machine. They should also understand the benefits of performing ongoing preventive maintenance, so they don’t become complacent with their preventive actions. Anyone who operates the machines should be instructed in the daily maintenance procedures and inspections that help ensure operator safety as well as prolonged equipment life.
Analyze, Correct, Improve
It is important to revisit your preventive maintenance plan every couple of years and make adjustments to ensure that it’s the most effective plan for your equipment. Continued attention and detailed records of your maintenance plan will make it easier to implement new maintenance plans in the future.
Preventive Maintenance from Tec-Option
At Tec-Option, we have experience working on the most challenging automation systems. Contact us today for help optimizing cycle times, boosting productivity, and increasing reliability with our proper system maintenance, calibration and retooling services.