What is Preventive Maintenance? A Complete Guide to Preventive Maintenance

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What is Preventive Maintenance A Complete Guide to Preventive Maintenance

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Preventive Maintenance is performed on physical assets on a regular and routine basis to reduce the possibility of equipment failure and unplanned machine downtime, which can be very costly for maintenance teams and Facility Managers.

What is Preventive Maintenance and why is it important? ​

Preventive Maintenance (PM) is used to strategically maintain, repair, or replace equipment before an uncertainty occurs, with the aim of improving the uptime of heavy equipment and machinery.

Effective Preventive Maintenance is planned and scheduled using real-time data insights. Since maintaining a Preventive Maintenance schedule for a large amount of equipment is challenging, many businesses often use software such as a CMMS. To avoid unexpected breakdowns, preventive maintenance is performed while the equipment is functioning.

“A successful maintenance strategy usually requires the planning and scheduling of equipment maintenance prior to the occurrence of an issue”.

A Preventive Maintenance plan also includes keeping records of past inspections and equipment servicing.

Time-based and interval-based maintenance techniques are used for simple Preventive Maintenance tasks. A combination of time-based, interval-based, and condition monitoring Preventive Maintenance activities is used for more complex tasks.

The Preventive Maintenance Workflow

Setting up a preventive maintenance schedule for your major equipment ensures that your facilities are functioning efficiently and productively.

A typical preventive maintenance workflow is depicted in the flowchart below. Your organization may choose to add, remove, or adjust steps as needed to fit your specific processes. A preventive maintenance workflow typically includes the following action items.

  1. Inspection
  2. Detection
  3. Correction
  4. Prevention

Types of Preventive Maintenance

Preventive maintenance is classified into three types: time, usage, and condition-based causes. To avoid unplanned failure, a variation of these types of preventive maintenance should ideally be scheduled and performed on all items of equipment. Manufacturers frequently provide recommendations on how to best maintain their equipment. 

Your maintenance team can schedule preventive maintenance using the appropriate type of preventive maintenance in addition to real-time data insights. Examples of each type of preventive maintenance are provided below.

#1. Time-Based Preventive Maintenance

A time-based approach schedules preventive maintenance tasks on a regular basis, such as every 10 days. Other examples include starting preventive maintenance (such as a regular inspection of critical systems) on the first of every month or once every three months.

#2. Usage-Based Preventive Maintenance

When asset usage reaches a certain benchmark, usage-based preventive maintenance initiates a maintenance action. This can be after set production cycles, the number of kilometers, or hours. A motor vehicle’s routine maintenance being scheduled every 10,000 kilometers is an example of this cause.

#3. Condition-Based Preventive Maintenance

It is a maintenance strategy that monitors an asset’s actual condition to determine what maintenance tasks need to be performed. According to condition-based maintenance, maintenance should only be performed when certain indicators indicate a decline in performance or an upcoming failure. For example, a malfunction in a smoke alarm will never be identified unless the alarm is triggered.

Benefits of Preventive Maintenance

For businesses that rely on their assets for revenue, the process of scheduling routinely planned maintenance is critical. As a result, most asset-reliant businesses prefer preventive maintenance over other strategies such as reactive maintenance.

Preventive Maintenance provides several advantages to businesses including;

#1. Prolonged Equipment Lifespan

By ensuring that equipment runs according to specifications, you can help to extend the asset’s life. Failing parts reduce the life of your equipment, resulting in costly repair or replacement.

#2. Reduced Risk of Injury and Improved Safety

Maintaining assets reduces the risk of potentially dangerous failure, reducing the risk of injury and any associated liability lawsuits.

Related Article: The Impact of PropTech and IoT on the Safety and Flexibility of Property Occupants.

#3. Cost Reduction

Running a piece of equipment to failure is estimated to cost ten times as much as performing routine maintenance. The cost is incurred as a result of unanticipated repairs and downtimes. Understanding the maintenance requirements allows you to schedule necessary repairs or part replacements at an appropriate time, whether they can be done internally or require the services of an outside professional.

#4. Increase in Productivity

According to statistics, poor maintenance can reduce a company’s production capacity by 20%. You can prevent this drop in productivity as well as reduce downtime to enable greater efficiency and productivity by meeting maintenance requirements.

Related Article: Increasing the Efficiency and ROI of the Field Service Workforce

#5. Reduction in Energy Consumption

“Preventive Maintenance can also be beneficial to the environment because poorly maintained electrical assets consume more energy than those that are properly maintained”.

Of course, there is also the financial benefit of reduced electricity bills.

Related Article: How does Green PropTech change Energy Operations & Property Management?

How Can Preventive Maintenance Software Help?

“Many businesses use preventive maintenance software to coordinate all of their preventive maintenance tasks because it simplifies what would otherwise be a complicated process”.

Preventive maintenance software saves a company’s maintenance data on a computer so that all inspections, repairs, and replacements can be easily tracked. 

Preventive maintenance software can be used to effectively manage work orders, purchase orders, inventory, and maintenance records because all data is conveniently stored in one location. Preventive maintenance software even prioritizes maintenance tasks and collects the information required for maintenance work.

There are several key advantages to using preventive maintenance software. It helps in managing all maintenance tasks (as well as the records of those tasks) to ensure that maintenance operations run smoothly. It can also save cost on maintenance because the system can plan and prioritize maintenance tasks based on operations, minimizing disruption to the work schedule when maintenance is performed. Finally, preventive maintenance software relieves technicians of administrative duties, allowing them to focus on their work.

Types of Preventive Maintenance Software

Preventive maintenance software comes in a variety of shapes and sizes, ranging from highly specialized systems to massive platforms that connect maintenance to other business units. The most common types of preventive maintenance software are listed below.

Computerised Maintenance Management Systems (CMMS)

Maintenance teams can use CMMS software and maintenance apps to keep detailed and centralized records of all assets, equipment, and completed work. A CMMS enables facilities to plan, track, and optimize work orders, inventory, and all other aspects of maintenance.

Related Article: A Comprehensive Guide to Choosing a CMMS Software

Entreprise Asset Management (EAM)

EAM software provides a comprehensive view of an organization’s physical assets and infrastructure over its entire lifecycle, from design and procurement to operation, maintenance, disposal, and replacement. EAM systems manage work orders, coordinate inventory purchasing and usage, organize labor, track contracts, measure costs, and spending, and calculate key performance indicators (KPIs).


Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP)

Accounting, human resources, and maintenance are just a few of the business units that keep a company running. ERP software connects everything these various departments do so that the entire organization has the same processes and information.

What to Consider When Using Preventive Maintenance Software?

An innovative PM Software will not only automate preventive maintenance tasks for you, but it will also replace bulky stacks of paper and cluttered spreadsheets. Your team is held accountable by software, which gives them instant access to asset information and preventive maintenance protocols in the field.

Creating recurring preventive maintenance tasks and procedures using a work order and the PM scheduling module.

Work order management and preventive maintenance scheduling are simplified by PM Software. It allows you to prioritize incoming service requests, assign work orders to specific team members, and get automatic reminders or notifications about upcoming preventive maintenance activities.

Utilizing location-based asset mapping to find and service equipment.

Users of location-based asset mapping software can filter through assets using an interactive floor plan map to see only the asset pins they need. This feature is especially useful if a team member is assigned to inspect or service all assets of a specific type as part of a preventive maintenance program (e.g., inspect all emergency exit signs for burnt-out bulbs).

Accessing PM Information for assets in the field using any electronic device.

Preventive Maintenance Software gets your team up and moving, allowing them to complete more work throughout the day. Because a PMS can function on any mobile device and eliminates the need to print work orders for preventive maintenance activities, you will no longer be tied to your desktop computer and printer.

Uploading asset documentation, receipts, and proper O&M manuals for future use.

Facility document management software protects your most critical building documentation and provides instant access to it on the field, where it matters the most. Any document, including O&M manuals, warranty information, receipts, and as-builts for commissioning reports, can be uploaded and stored.

Keeping updated with a data reporting dashboard.

Many facility managers are data-driven and seek quantitative evidence of success. A statistics dashboard, which serves as a one-stop-shop for departmental data, is available in some facility management software solutions. This information is useful when creating annual reports for your organisation’s administrators.

Choosing the Best Preventive Maintenance Software for your Organisation

i4T Maintenance is here to disrupt the Maintenance Management Software

i4T Maintenance Software enables you to effectively Handle Maintenance Requests, Source the Right Field Service Suppliers, Track the Quality of Work, Analyse Reports, and Manage Every Aspect of Their Business To Meet Service Requirements. 

You can generate reports that show exactly what is accomplished each day by using the i4T Maintenance Sofware as a central tool for daily workflows. You can use this data to identify the loopholes in the workflow and figure out how to increase productivity while minimizing your costs.

Other Types of Maintenance Strategies

Although preventive maintenance is preferred by 80% of maintenance personnel, there are other types of maintenance strategies that can suit various industries and operations. Other types of maintenance include;

Reactive Maintenance

A reactive maintenance strategy (also known as breakdown or corrective maintenance) is the practice of only repairing equipment after it has failed. Although this method can result in high breakdown repair costs and unplanned downtime, it is recommended for 10% of your asset inventory.

Predictive Maintenance (PdM)

The practice of gathering analytical data from sensors and IoT devices, storing it in a maintenance management system, and predicting when assets will fail is known as predictive maintenance. Predictions are based on asset condition monitoring, with the goal of identifying maintenance before failure.

PdM analyzes data gathered from experts, equipment readers, and previous experience to determine when specific conditions are met. Industry 4.0-based Internet of Things feedback is increasingly being used to inform PdM and help optimize PM requirements.

Related Article: Australia Setting the Tone for Digital Transformation & Embracing Fourth Industrial Revolution Opportunities

Bottom Line

Preventive Maintenance (PM) is the regular and routine maintenance of equipment and assets in order to keep them running while preventing costly unplanned downtime due to unexpected equipment failure.

“Preventive maintenance is planned based on usage or time-based triggers. The goal of PM is to reduce the likelihood of equipment failure”.

In many cases, preventive maintenance is the best maintenance strategy to use, and implementing a PM strategy is much easier with the help of maintenance software, such as CMMS software.

You might also be interested in;

How To Run Your Office’s Facilities Maintenance Efficiently? A Comprehensive Guide For Facility Managers

Why Are CMMS Metrics Important, and How Do They Affect Organizational Success?

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