When you combine labour cost with lost revenue, the numbers can add up really quickly. Fortunately, we now offer asset reliability services that can help you maximize uptime and minimize losses associated with unplanned maintenance and repairs. There are many factors that can contribute to production shutdowns. Some of them are unavoidable, like natural disasters and extreme weather patterns that make it impossibly dangerous to run operations. No one would want to try to go to work during a hurricane, and there is nothing to be done in these situations but simply weather the storm. However, some causes of downtime are entirely avoidable, such as unplanned asset maintenance or repair.
Unfortunately, some asset reliability services rely almost exclusively on spreadsheets and big data to try to tell you when your assets need to be fixed. Big data can be informative, but when it comes to preventive maintenance and anticipatory repairs, it is most important to more closely inspect your specific assets. By employing Vortex to Dry Ice Blast your equipment and documenting the specific condition of each of its components, you can create a much more informed plan to repair and maintain each asset. Using that information, you can update or modify existing databases for maintenance, repairs, replacement and upgrades.
What the P-F (Potential to Failure) Interval Can Tell You
The smart money in machine reliability invests not only in frequent detection of faults and abnormal wear but also in frequent detection of root causes. Using the Pareto principle, you can concentrate efforts toward 20 percent of the root causes to gain 80 percent of the benefit. This is analogous to fixing the roof while the sun is shining. Correcting the cause of the leak is so much less expensive than correcting the damage caused by the leak (e.g., water damage to floors and furniture).
This concept is illustrated using the P-F interval in Figure 3. The proactive domain relates to vigilant monitoring and control of failure root causes (contamination, for instance). Corrections usually involve only minor adjustments (to remove the root cause) with no machine damage as shown in the root cause zone (A).
The onset of failure occurs at the beginning of the predictive domain. Ideally, it is detected early in the incipient failure zone (B). This requires high detection frequency and “pin-drop” detection technique (referring to condition monitoring techniques capable of detecting faint alarm signals). Once detected, the corrective action relates to root cause adjustments with only negligible machine damage.
The Dreaded Unscheduled Downtime Zone
Unscheduled downtime occurs in the precipitous failure zone (D). This is not early detection, and the damage is unforgiving. Certain types of failures produce runaway conditions. In such cases, the FDP is too short for detection (sudden death). For new machines, this is called infant mortality. The costs of these failures can be enormous due to business interruption, collateral damage (chain reaction failures), high repair bills and the potential for personal injury. Precipitous failure is the inverse of machine reliability.
Next is the post-mortem root cause analysis (RCA) zone (E). Use failure as a teacher to discover what went wrong and how to prevent its recurrence. Also, learn the incipient signs of failure so the condition monitoring program (frequency and technique) can be refined accordingly.