Preventive Maintenance Plan Basics

A preventive maintenance plan, when developed and executed correctly, should deliver greater productivity and lower overhead.

A preventive maintenance plan, when developed and executed correctly, should deliver greater productivity and lower overhead. Preventive maintenance is any maintenance we do to prevent further, more consequential maintenance. Efficient and effective preventive maintenance keeps production moving and minimizes downtime.

When components don’t last until their next scheduled maintenance, it is all too common for facility managers to blame breakdowns on the person who last performed PM on the equipment. The real problem isn’t the crew, however, it’s the inefficient and ineffective preventive maintenance strategies and programs.

An effective preventive maintenance program should assure production that a technician’s signature on a PM work order guarantees that the component they just performed maintenance on will last through the next PM, excluding any catastrophic incident.

Preventive Maintenance Plan Elements

An effective planned maintenance program has four categories:

  • Planned periodic inspection.

Inspections by qualified and trained personnel are designed to detect trouble before it happens and to schedule required repairs quickly, without unnecessary disruption of production.

  • Adequate and correct lubrication programs.

The correct lubrication of every relevant piece of machinery or system component is the most important work that maintenance does in terms of preventive efforts.

  • Corrective adjustments and repairs.

Inspectors should work from a planned checklist that covers all points of wear on the components, and have a column indicating each task is ‘OK’ or that the component required additional maintenance, like a repair or adjustment.

  • Complete and accurate records for historical and trending purposes. 

Good record keeping allows us to determine when repairs and replacements should be scheduled to prevent problems from developing, the type and quantity of spare parts that should be kept on hand, and to avoid overstocking parts that are not needed.

A preventive maintenance program tailored to the needs of your specific plant and following these guidelines will keep your plant running more cost-effectively in the long run.

Are OEM Recommendations Adequate?

Common sources for preventive and predictive maintenance tasks and requirements include:

  •  Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) recommendations
  •  Corporate or company policy
  •  Regulatory (Federal, State, or Municipality)
  •  Engineering directive
  •  Tasks applicable to similar equipment or components
  •  Tribal knowledge
  •  Good Maintenance Practices (e.g. ASME, NFPA, etc.)

It would be wonderful if a preventive maintenance program following guidelines set down by manufacturers’ standards ensured that maintenance is primarily predictive rather than reactive after a component has already begun to fail. It is becoming less and less likely that the OEM can serve as a reasonable source for PM mandates, however. All too often their suggested protocols are woefully inadequate. PM protocols advised by the OEM should be considered a starting point, not a plan, because the OEM of the component doesn’t know your context of operation.

Preventive Maintenance Plans From Maintenance Innovators

Maintenance Innovators, Inc. has over thirty-seven years of experience building and executing highly effective and efficient preventive maintenance programs. We will work with you as a valued partner to build a Preventive Maintenance Plan and practice that successfully guards your asset’s inherent reliability. The results of your preventive maintenance should be the number one driver of your planning and scheduling. Call (913) 633-4009 or click here to get started today!

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