When is your next maintenance due?

Sep 30, 2020
3d Signals

The history of maintenance in a nutshell

In the last century, the way maintenance is scheduled and conducted has changed significantly several times. The traditional approach was that of “fix things as they break”. This approach dominated for many years since the industry was not very complex or highly mechanized. After World War 2, the industry started to rely more and more on machines, which raised the importance of reducing equipment downtime. A new approach – “time based overhauling” – developed based on the assumption that components have a specific life time and would fail after reaching a certain age. Therefore, conducting maintenance on a planned schedule and replacing components before they reach their end of life, would prevent failures and downtimes.

The industry adopted this approach.
However, contrary to expectations, increasing the amount of preventive maintenance didn’t reduce the amount of failures or machine downtime for several reasons:

  • A large portion of failures occurs randomly rather than based on component age
  • Maintenance has its own cost in money, machine downtime, equipment replacement, and labor cost
  • Ineffective and invasive maintenance can actually lead to more breakdowns and downtime

Reliability Centered Maintenance

After analyzing 12 years of data, it was concluded that overhauls had little or no effect on overall reliability or safety. A new and modern approach has become dominant: “Reliability Centered Maintenance”. This approach balances between the two old approaches and combines 9 innovative principles:

  1. Accept Failures. Not all failures can be prevented by maintenance
  2. Most Failures Are Not Age-Related
  3. Some Failures Matter More Than Others
  4. Parts Might Wear Out, But Your Equipment Breaks Down. Only where we can prove that an item has wear outage does performing time-based overhaul or component replacement make sense
  5. Hidden Failures Must Be Found
  6. Identical Equipment Does Not Mean Identical Maintenance
  7. “You Can’t Maintain Your Way To Reliability” or in other words – No amount of maintenance can raise the inherent reliability of a design
  8. Good Maintenance Programs Don’t Waste Your Resources
  9. Good Maintenance Programs Become Better Maintenance Programs. The most effective maintenance programs are dynamic. They are changing and improving continuously

Perform maintenance only when it’s really needed

Many industries adopted the modern Reliability Centered Maintenance approach and were now able to reduce the amount of maintenance conducted on each machine to the necessary minimum, and perform it only when it’s really required, based on equipment age and condition.

But how can one tell when is the right time to perform machine maintenance?

3d Signals has a solution for that.  Beyond the live updates and business insights, the 3d Signals Asset Performance Monitoring solution enables to monitor and manage the next planned maintenance based on the actual working hours of the machine, and free the maintenance personnel from manual or paper tracking.

The maintenance tool provides full flexibility to meet a variety of needs:

  • Define the time frame for planned maintenance for each machine/machine type (operation time + non productive run)
  • Choose the starting point of the countdown: now or at a specific past/future date
  • Set preferred time ahead of alert notification
  • Add countdown for the next maintenance

The result:

  • Less frequent maintenance 
  • Lower maintenance cost
  • Lower machine downtime