Maintenance and repair costs are often one of the highest line items in a facility’s operating budget. Equipment breakdowns can reduce production capacity, increase expenses, and cause delays. And while maintenance is vital to any business to remain operational and extend equipment lifespans, there are different priorities when it comes to maintenance strategies that have different costs and objectives.
For example, there is a balance between taking equipment offline to be serviced vs. risking a potential breakdown. Maintenance strategies generally fall into three different categories: reactive, preventative, and predictive.
Reactive maintenance is maintenance that is performed once equipment has already broken down, to restore that equipment to working order. This type of maintenance allows equipment to run to failure and is sometimes preferred by companies because it requires less personnel time and money to perform equipment upkeep. Reactive maintenance can also be used to maximize asset output by using assets to their limits. But this strategy is only a good one until system equipment fails.
Once equipment has failed, truck rolls can become extremely costly and put the comfort of both employees and customers at risk with prolonged outages, or worse, a loss in revenue due to operations stopping.
Reactive maintenance can also lead to harmful band-aid fixes. Each time a piece of equipment goes down and a technician is called for repair the technician may only be solving a piece of the problem rather than finding the root cause of the issue. Band-aid fixes lead to recurring asset problems, wasted budget over time, and can even lead to permanent system failure if serious root problems are not addressed.
The next step up from reactive maintenance is preventative maintenance. Also called planned maintenance, preventative maintenance is performed while equipment is in good working order in hopes of avoiding expected asset downtime.
Preventative maintenance includes cleaning filters regularly, checking pressures on refrigerant circuits periodically, replacing worn belts on fans or blowers every five years (or sooner if they become frayed), inspecting condensers for leaks every two years, testing heat exchangers annually (or sooner if they begin leaking oil), inspecting air flow rate sensors annually (or sooner if they begin registering inaccurately), etcetera.
The key to preventative maintenance is that checks are done before there’s any warning sign of trouble so you’re able to prevent many potential issues from occurring at all.
While preventative maintenance is cost-effective in the long run and keeps equipment healthy, it can sometimes be hard for companies to justify because it requires personnel time and asset downtime. However, preventive maintenance pays off in the long run by keeping assets in good working order and preventing unscheduled downtime.
Predictive maintenance is a technique that uses condition-monitoring tools and techniques to monitor the performance of a structure or a piece of equipment during operation.
Predictive maintenance connects your equipment to a software program using sensor data. This connection allows for direct monitoring of the performance of the asset. As it monitors, the smart technology collects enough data to predict when a failure might occur, allowing you to find the least costly and disruptive time to take a part offline for repair. Performed in real-time, predictive maintenance allows facility managers to have instant insight into the status of their operations.
Because predictive maintenance addresses problems before appliances stop working, it is highly cost-effective, saving roughly 8%-12% over preventive maintenance, and up to 40% over reactive maintenance. Predictive maintenance gives you the time to order parts, address maintenance needs, and, ultimately, extend the life of existing appliances, eliminating the need to purchase new machines.
Predictive maintenance can have a timely set-up and new training for employees, working with a company like GridPoint, we make the set-up as seamless as possible and avoid disruptions to your business.
While predictive maintenance can have some higher upfront costs, in the long run, assets will be managed with a transparent and holistic approach across systems and equipment. Cost-benefit analysis of predictive maintenance usually shows a quick ROI.
Start Implementing Predictive Maintenance Today
Energy and asset monitoring systems can prevent truck rolls and costly repairs, as they identify HVAC issues before they become a major problem allowing you to easily perform predictive maintenance.
An energy and asset monitoring system is your first line of defense against costly asset outages. Monitoring systems use AI to collect data about your facility’s HVAC system, understand long-term, trending HVAC system issues, and help prioritize maintenance. This allows you to extend the life of existing equipment and reduce the need for new equipment.
In the last 12 months alone, GridPoint’s HVAC Health tool was able to identify 32,354 malfunctioning units (12,310 Sev 1 and 20,044 Sev 2) and alerted facility managers, before it became a critical issue.
To learn more about GridPoint’s Energy management system and how to execute a predictive maintenance plan of action, Request a Demo today.