What are ways to improve my equipment uptime?

There are numerous ways to improve your equipment uptime, each of which has to do with streamlining your maintenance processes.

Improve Preventive Maintenance

First off, if you’re not doing any preventive maintenance, I strongly recommend starting. Pick an asset, figure out what’s likely to fail, and start scheduling tasks designed to keep it running.

If you’ve already got a PM program going, make it better. On average, about 30% of all PM tasks don’t really accomplish much, so there will almost certainly be room for improvement.

One way to cut out unnecessary PMs is to track asset failures, particularly ones that would have a high impact on your processes. If you’re performing tasks that don’t prevent failures, those tasks aren’t necessary. On the other hand, if you’re not performing tasks that would head off asset failure, start working those into your schedule.

Implement Predictive Maintenance

Of course, a lot of PM is a bit speculative, particularly with respect to recurring schedules. Most assets don’t fail based on a schedule, so the ideal situation is to zero in on the actual conditions surrounding your equipment failures.

This is where predictive maintenance comes in. PdM uses sensors to monitor equipment and determine when maintenance is needed based on its condition. This way, you only perform preventive tasks based on need rather than a rote schedule.

Given how it limits maintenance to an as-needed basis, PdM is one major step facilities can take toward achieving optimum equipment uptime.

Streamline Workflow

One more way to improve your equipment uptime goes beyond maintenance planning and monitoring. Often, inefficiencies in your workflow may limit the number of preventive tasks your team can perform in the course of a workday, and it can prolong unplanned downtime whenever it occurs.

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A great way to remedy these inefficiencies is to use a CMMS, particularly one with mobile capabilities. A CMMS allows you to:

  • Track data and plan PM work orders
  • Assign work orders to technicians without unnecessary delays
  • Give remote access to equipment schematics and instructions
  • Streamline parts requisitions and inventory management
  • Improve adherence to LOTO procedures

The end result of each of these features is to streamline your maintenance processes and improve time utilization. Your team will stay more on top of scheduled tasks, you’ll do more tasks that truly work, and you’ll resolve unplanned downtimes more quickly.