Streamlining maintenance to be faster, safer, and more economically efficient is no easy feat. This holds true whether it’s a smaller-scale operation or an enterprise-level facility. Bringing automation into the equation is a clear necessity to remain competitive. But extending this type of automation to maintenance services poses a significant challenge, especially in the spring and summer seasons.
Computerized maintenance management systems (CMMS) utilize an expansive range of technology to detect and communicate issues to staff. Additionally, integrating these tools with smart technology and sensors on equipment using the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) connects automation and machine-based sensors to people in an intuitive way.
Move from reactive to predictive maintenance and service
Reactive maintenance refers to operating until something breaks down. This creates high stress for technicians and managers as operations are usually halted until a repair can be made.
Traditional Preventive Maintenance addresses potential equipment failure by conducting preventative maintenance at regularly scheduled times. These schedules tend to be very conservative, and are usually based on operator judgement or experience. The result is a system that practically guarantees high maintenance costs, and is difficult to adapt to complex and changing environments.
Proactive maintenance, on the other hand, creates ongoing maintenance schedules to keep everything moving smoothly. Instead of only servicing the equipment at a regular frequency (i.e., preventive maintenance), you monitor the equipment continuously to detect any signs of possible failure. This strategy gives you much more control over the operations of your equipment. You can continue to schedule regular maintenance, since preventive maintenance is essentially a good practice that helps you to take care of your equipment, but at the same time you have the ability to check the health your equipment at any given time, predict when a part is going to fail, and avoid unplanned downtime.
If we can predict a part failure well in advance, we can schedule maintenance/repair work for the part when it is convenient, while continuing to operate the equipment to avoid unexpected downtime.
Predictive maintenance: A step forward from preventive maintenance
Predictive maintenance solutions help manufacturers reduce downtime, improve equipment effectiveness, lower maintenance costs, and increase return on assets. When a balanced proactive maintenance approach is used, a company can save time, money, and lots of stress for technicians.
This will help reduce large repair expenses, as the part will be repaired or replaced well before it fails, stopping it from causing further damage to the equipment. Also, the productivity loss from sudden and unexpected downtime will be minimal. The repairs can be done at an optimal time to ensure minimum impact on productivity. Reduction in both maintenance cost and loss of productivity can have a significant impact on the bottom line of a business. Also, you would not need to schedule downtime just for the sake of inspection anymore, which results in productivity gains.
Unlock the benefits of Predictive Maintenance with IIoT
Adapting a Predictive Maintenance approach requires an understanding of how and why asset failure can occur, and identifying the warning signs that indicate potential problems or failure. By knowing what failure is likely to occur and when, maintenance schedule adjustments and repairs can be performed before the asset breaks down.
The IoT is a network of intelligent computers, devices, and objects that collect and share huge amounts of data. The application of the IoT to the manufacturing industry is called the IIoT (or Industrial Internet). The IIoT will revolutionize manufacturing by enabling the acquisition and accessibility of far greater amounts of data, at far greater speeds, and far more efficiently than before. This means that manufacturing equipment can connect and communicate its status back to software platforms.
Predictive Maintenance is based on the collection, management, and intelligent use of historical and current asset data from these connected devices. Data is collected from the equipment sensors on a frequent basis, normal behavior patterns are established, then finally, the data is analyzed for possible patterns of failure.
Connected machines can tell you they’re going to fail, before they fail. Organizations can transform real-time machine data into actionable metrics to boost productivity by preventing or minimizing unscheduled downtime. Routine time-based preventive maintenance can become a thing of the past because the assets are idled only when necessary. This method focuses on “asset health,” performing services and repairs based on the asset’s failure to meet prescribed performance objectives.
Connecting the Dots to a CMMS
Adopting various technological solutions through the IIoT is only one component to a larger objective. That objective is better overall company operation that reduces downtime and maximizes efficiency.
Here’s how this connection can work within an operation:
- IIoT machinery senses specific parameters which are transmitted and collected as data.
- Various machine controls, including programmable logic controls (PLC) and OPC technology, can send their data over to a CMMS.
- Based on that data, automated responses such as maintenance work orders, mobile alerts, and other notifications can be configured.
- These systems can be further refined to incorporate proactive maintenance – preventing downtime and improving efficiency.
Automated maintenance operations can certainly help speed up downtime or prevent catastrophic failures. Beyond this benefit, however, there’s even more that a well-integrated CMMS/IIoT solution can offer.
Data received from IIoT hardware can be compiled and analyzed to identify key trends, pain points, or problem areas. Better understanding this data can lead to significant improvements in how a company works.
Data trends can help determine maintenance schedules, operations, and efficiency. Over time, it can even show a company the next logical point of expansion to accommodate growth.
How can you get started?
Is it time to take the plunge with a new or upgraded CMMS? Like most technologies, CMMS software has evolved significantly over the past 30 years. At Eagle Technology, we aim to provide our customers with the most current features and capabilities that a CMMS solution has to offer.
Still not certain?
Try our Free CMMS Software ROI Calculator to calculate your Return On Investment.
To learn more about how Eagle Technology can change the way you do business, please contact us today at +1 (262) 241-3845 or 1-800-388-3268 (Toll Free US and Canada), email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or sign-up for a Free Live Demo.