Proactive maintenance is an important part of maintaining an efficient business. Contact us to learn more!
Proactive maintenance is the regular and routine maintenance of equipment and facilities to keep them running and avoid any costly unplanned downtime from unexpected equipment and infrastructure failure.
Some may refer to this process as “preventative maintenance.” While it is “preventative,” our program is designed to be more data driven by evaluating the parts of equipment independently based on actual damage, functionality, and/or wear and tear, not necessarily recommending the replacing of parts simply because a time frame has expired. The goal is to get the most out of the equipment and reduce the total cost of ownership.
Although your loading dock infrastructure and equipment are designed to take a beating, it doesn’t mean that it’s indestructible. Sooner or later, dock levelers, Edge-of-Docks (EODs), vehicle restraints, overhead doors, and other parts of your loading dock facility that you rely on to work all the time will need to be maintained. Proactive maintenance ensures that you can keep your business humming along without significant downtime.
Read on to learn what proactive maintenance is and how National Equipment & Service can help create a plan to keep you on schedule and away from ultra expensive repairs.
Looking at 2017 through 2019 data, 80% of companies experienced unplanned downtime. This unplanned downtime costs companies a great deal of money, as you can imagine. According to a study by Aberdeen, the average cost of unplanned equipment downtime is $260,000 per hour. Even a few hours of unplanned downtime can cost your business significantly. Proactive maintenance has a price, but you’ll find that the cost is a small fraction of what unplanned downtime can cost you and your company from a safety and operational standpoint.
There are several types of proactive maintenance measures your company can take to decrease the likelihood of unplanned downtime. Below are the most common types:
Your warehouse facility uses machinery and equipment every day, and each piece has a lifecycle when wear and tear start becoming an issue. To help keep your equipment in good working condition, it’s a good idea to track usage through equipment monitors, operating hours, production cycles, etc. This is especially true if the equipment doesn’t automatically notify when specific hours of operations have been reached. This is referred to as usage-based maintenance.
Whether it’s a vehicle oil change or an essential piece of machinery that has reached a set number of hours, staying on top of your equipment’s use will help ensure that it’s functioning correctly and reduce unplanned downtime.
Like usage-based proactive maintenance, time-based maintenance is a monthly or annual maintenance schedule based on manufacturer recommendations for inspecting and cleaning equipment to keep it running as efficiently and safely as possible. However, its time-based proactive maintenance is a guideline, and your most essential pieces of equipment should be checked regularly to ensure they are operating as they should.
Examples of time-based maintenance might include servicing your exhaust fans a month or two out before peak summer months, lubing overhead doors, and cleaning vents to comply with health standards at least twice per year.
When creating a time-based proactive maintenance plan, determine the most vital pieces of your warehouse equipment and facilities to keep your business operating. You’ll want to try to schedule your time-based maintenance, so not all of them are being worked on simultaneously. This will help decrease your downtime so that your warehouse doesn’t go a day or several days without being able to operate. The last thing you’ll want to do is close for several days due to a problem that could’ve been prevented with a bit of planning.
Thankfully, technology has come a long way in helping commercial facilities maintain high safety standards and optimal functioning equipment. However, technology cannot do it all on its own.
Predictive maintenance uses sensors to capture warehouse equipment and facilities information like temperature, weight, and vibration sensors. If the sensor reads anything out of the ordinary or notes a piece of equipment operating in less-than-ideal conditions, they can trigger work orders for an inspection or upgrade. Predictive maintenance entails monitoring the state of your essential machinery and facilities to track performance and detect possible issues that could damage your equipment.
Newer equipment will most likely have OEM sensors, but older equipment can typically be outfitted with sensors to help detect any issues. If your equipment doesn’t have predictive maintenance sensors, it is well worth your time and expense to have them installed to help save you time, money, and the safety of your staff.
Proactive maintenance may cost you some upfront cost, but it’s a fraction of the cost compared to unplanned downtime or a workplace accident. In short, if you’re a business owner, you’ll face a certain amount of risk when it comes to employee safety, equipment operations, and facility upkeep. Regular proactive maintenance measures will ensure that you and your business are protected from substantial risks and accidents while keeping your business profitable.
At National Service & Equipment, your employees’ safety is our top priority as well as keeping your business up and running. We’d be happy to design a proactive maintenance schedule that works within your budget and calendar. Contact us today to learn more.