Preventive vs Predictive Maintenance: How to Up Your Facility Maintenance Program

Facilities maintenance falls into one of two approaches, proactive or reactive. While reactive maintenance may be unavoidable, a proactive maintenance strategy offers significant benefits and savings, not to mention less stress for Facility Managers. Proactive maintenance also includes different types of sub-strategies too, like when preventive vs predictive maintenance would be appropriate. Understanding the drawbacks of reactive maintenance, the value of advanced maintenance strategies, and how to apply them correctly will increase returns in your facilities maintenance program. 

Traditional Maintenance Approaches Increase Total Cost of Ownership

Depending on the industry, many facilities management departments, up to 66 percent, reports Maintenance, still rely on a reactive maintenance strategy. Describing reactive maintenance as a strategy is a misnomer; reactive maintenance increases costs and diminishes asset value.

Advanced Maintenance Strategies Follow a Proactive Approach

Improving the facility maintenance program lies in abandoning costly reactive maintenance strategies. Advanced maintenance strategies, such as preventive and predictive programs, focus on solving issues before they occur by planning for maintenance needs. This leads to savings and greater longevity of facility assets.

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When to Use Preventive Vs Predictive Maintenance

Preventive maintenance follows a series of planned maintenance tasks. Areas benefiting from preventive maintenance include all facility assets, but preventive maintenance does carry some limitations. For instance, consider these applications of preventive maintenance.

  • Completing manufacturer-recommended replacement of serviceable parts.
  • Cleaning assets regularly. Clean equipment is great, but things go wrong. A clogged filter from a dust storm could lead to inefficiencies and lost opportunities.
  • Testing asset function at recurring intervals. This application is reliant on a rigid schedule, not actual runtime and incapable of considering on-demand changes to runtime.
  • Refilling fluids or coolants in HVAC systems.
  • Inability to gain component-level insight into asset function in real-time and from remote areas.

Predictive maintenance is better-suited for technology-based maintenance strategies, such as:

  • Deploying the IoT to recognize when equipment is likely to fail.
  • Isolating potential causes of inefficiencies.
  • Using analytics to derive insights from data.
  • Creating an adaptable maintenance schedule to reflect the real-time needs of a facility.
  • Reviewing equipment functionality on-demand.

Additional steps to master preventive vs predictive maintenance include:

  1. Creating a “master list” to define repair versus replacement cost thresholds, rationale, warranty information and more.
  2. Making information accessible to all members of the facilities management department.
  3. Implement sensors and sensor-agnostic platforms to collect and manage data.
  4. Optimize operations to reflect insights from applied data analytics.
  5. Repeat the process to continuously improve all aspects of facilities management.

Unfortunately, predictive maintenance may require a higher, upfront investment to implement. However, the ability to use algorithms and advanced management tools, including business intelligence and real-time equipment monitoring, can have profound impacts on asset energy-efficiency and longevity.

Unlock Your Facility’s Potential With a Predictive Maintenance Program

The true potential of your facility rests within a predictive, preventive maintenance program, but hastily implementing such a program could lead to lost opportunities and greater cost of ownership. Avoid the pitfalls and challenges of implementing a predictive maintenance program by visiting QSI Facilities online and learning what you need to do to achieve success and positive ROI.

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