Negosentro | Education Is the Key to Proper Maintenance: 5 Tips for Extending the Life of Industrial Machinery | All types of industrial machinery require some level of servicing, with operating conditions generally defining the amount of ongoing maintenance needed. Since machinery represents a significant investment, it always pays to take whatever steps are necessary to educate machine users and maintenance personnel in strategies designed to extend the life of a machine. There are five steps any organization can take immediately to improve their ROI on machinery.
1.) Boost the Level and Quality of Training
Many organizations operate multiple shifts or assign more than one person to operate machinery. All machine users must be fully briefed on operating techniques and basic maintenance requirements. That means understanding and following the equipment manufacturer’s recommendations, adhering to company safety rules, and protecting the equipment from unnecessary exposure to threats. For example, employees should understand the importance of using way covers and other protection options.
2.) Lubricate the Machines as Needed
Equipment manufacturers routinely include maintenance schedules developed to minimize the potential for excess wear. Properly lubricating a machine is vitally important, and users should always track when and how that lubrication is provided. Even the best hydraulic press needs proper lubrication, what more for bigger manufacturing machineries?
If a leak develops, employees should be instructed to report the issue immediately and stop using the equipment until they receive instructions from a supervisor. In some cases, it may be appropriate to add lubricants until an issue can be repaired. However, there are times when the equipment should be sidelined until repairs are made.
3.) Keep All Machinery Clean
Yes, there are some situations where it’s virtually impossible to keep a machine clean, but that doesn’t mean a regular schedule of cleaning should be ignored. During the cleaning process, equipment users will be able to spot many of the issues that could threaten the equipment and take steps to deal with those problems.
4.) Schedule Maintenance
Virtually every type of machine requires maintenance typical users are not qualified to provide. That generally means working with a specialist to schedule the maintenance. Most companies will try to schedule maintenance at times when a specific machine would not be in use.
These types of maintenance for industrial machinery include vibration monitoring, fluid analysis, resistance testing, and other machine-specific services. Taking advantage of these types of services extends the life of equipment, reduces the likelihood of unscheduled downtime, and minimize the potential for rejected components.
5.) Maintain Records
The last issue is keeping records. It’s always important to track the performance and maintenance of all industrial machinery. Proper record keeping makes it possible to spot potential issues, assess repair costs to appropriate equipment, and make plans to replace equipment in the future.
Return on investment is always important and tracking a machine’s performance over time allows the company to determine where issues are developing. That, in turn, makes it easier to plan systemic changes to reduce costs and improve bottom-line revenues.
If you haven’t already taken steps to educate personnel on ways to extend the life of machinery, now is the time to start. Most training costs little, and the benefits far outweigh any investment required.
In addition, education also serves to reduce the number of injuries a company’s employees experiences. Yes, education about machinery and safety are closely linked, so take the time now to develop an educational program for your organization.