14 Tips to Help You Maintain Your Industrial Equipment
Whether it’s transportation, oil and gas generation, food production, or some other type of industrial equipment, no business wants to experience downtime. Unplanned downtime can result in significant financial losses and even cause your business to lose its competitive edge.
For businesses in many industries, heavy machinery is the foundation of the operation. Without it, everything grinds to a halt. The proactive maintenance of your heavy equipment is one of the best ways to avoid unplanned downtime, prevent serious workplace accidents, and prolong the life of your machinery.
Here are some tips to help you maintain your business’s industrial equipment.
1. Read Your Equipment Manuals
If you haven’t read the equipment manuals for each of your industrial pumps, this should be one of your first steps. These manuals, which usually get shoved into a filing cabinet, will tell you how to keep the equipment in peak operating condition, including guidelines for regular maintenance.
2. Create a Maintenance Schedule
Regular equipment maintenance is one of the top things you can do to avoid the challenges associated with unplanned downtime. Instead of being reactive and performing maintenance when something breaks, you build maintenance into your schedule and get the best performance out of your machinery. Monitoring the Mean Time Between Failures (MTBF) is crucial in creating a maintenance schedule, as it provides valuable insights into the reliability and performance of your equipment.
3. Keep Accurate Records
It’s tough to perform regular maintenance if you don’t have accurate records. Seeing what maintenance tasks and repairs have been done on a piece of machinery can give you information about what parts may need replacement soon. These records can also tell you when a piece of equipment is costing too much in repairs and should simply be replaced.
4. Use Technology for Tracking
Paper checklists are useful for some tasks but may not be the best solution for your industrial equipment tracking program. Spreadsheets are another option, but they can get corrupted and confusing over time. Consider using some type of technology solution to track your maintenance program. In many cases, these modules are built into existing business management systems.
5. Keep Equipment Clean and Accessible
Cleaning your equipment routinely is an important maintenance task that is often overlooked. Make sure you use cleaning methods and products recommended by the manufacturer. Also, ensure that the machinery is easily accessible so it can be inspected, cleaned, and serviced regularly.
6. Regularly Check Lubrication Levels
Nearly all industrial pumps require lubrication to reduce friction within the machinery’s moving components. That lubrication doesn’t last forever. One of the most critical maintenance tasks is checking lubrication levels and examining the oil itself for any problems. For example, if there are particles in the oil, the next step is to determine why and fix the problem.
7. Perform Machine Calibration
If the pumps you use require precision operation, you should include machine calibration in your regular equipment maintenance schedule. This ensures that all parts are operating within the required parameters. The frequency of calibration will depend on the type and intended use of the machinery.
8. Inspect Machine Safety Features
Many industrial pumps have built-in safety features that you’ll want to inspect regularly. This includes warning lights and emergency shut-off buttons. When you do your maintenance, test these features. If they fail, it can lead to serious accidents and injuries.
9. Look for Signs of Wear and Tear
Daily inspection of the equipment before beginning work can prevent unplanned breakdowns. Otherwise, a detailed internal inspection of industrial pumps should be put on the schedule. This would include taking a close look at gears and belts to see if there are any worn-out parts or uneven friction that require addressing.
10. Keep Spare Parts on Hand
Consider having some basic spare parts on hand to keep you operating in a pinch. This might be as simple as filters and oil for your pumps or as complex as replacement motors, belts, and other essential parts.
11. Avoid Exceeding Machinery Specs
Every industrial pump has certain performance limitations, such as a predefined operating temperature and pressure. Make sure you know what these are for each piece of equipment you use, and don’t exceed them. If you do, it can be a safety issue and compromise the efficiency and integrity of your equipment.
12. Thoroughly Train Your Workers
When you train your workers on properly using your business’s industrial equipment, you reduce the chances they will do something to damage the machinery. In addition to training in safe and proper operation, workers should also know the things to look for as far as malfunctions so they can be addressed promptly.
13. Protect Equipment When Stored
Some industrial pumps are only used intermittently and stored between uses. How those pumps are stored can play a role in their longevity. Specifically, machinery should be kept undercover in a cool and dry area whenever possible. It should also be run periodically to keep internal parts lubricated.
14. Partner With an Experienced Servicer
As you work to take the best care of your equipment, one of the best industrial pump maintenance tips is to find a trustworthy partner for your repairs and service. Work with a provider with deep knowledge of this equipment and a track record of delivering high-quality service to their clients.
Maintaining your industrial pump can prolong its useful life and ensure you get maximum performance from the equipment. This requires regular check-ups to diagnose issues, perform preventative maintenance, and replace any deteriorating parts, all of which can save your business time and money.
It’s helpful to connect with a partner who can handle your industrial pump maintenance and repair tasks so you can focus on running your business. C&B Equipment has years of experience helping clients get the most performance and value out of their centrifugal pumps and positive displacement pumps.
Please contact us today to learn more about how our knowledgeable technicians can provide the pump maintenance and repair services you need.