EAM asset management applications compile the maintenance history of assets that can be analysed for historical trends. These trends can be used to predict when failure is likely to occur in the future. As a result, preventive inspections or proactive replacements can be scheduled to prevent anticipated failures.

Predictive maintenance is a maintenance strategy that provides early detection of asset defects and conditions that lead to defects.

The role of EAM in the predictive maintenance process

EAM systems play a role in the progress of the maintenance process. In order to have efficient operations, we must collect data and analyse it. Monitoring trends in costs, purchases, records and evaluation of the effectiveness of preventive and predictive maintenance and related trends allows us to identify areas for improvement.

With real-time data and the right analytical skills, companies can reduce maintenance planning time, increase equipment uptime and reduce maintenance costs.

Predictive maintenance is a proactive approach that helps companies to prevent failures and improve the reliability of equipment, minimizing productivity losses and costs resulting from unnecessary and unplanned maintenance.

The successful implementation of a predictive maintenance programme requires balancing budgets, goals and available resources with business priorities and technical requirements.

Ensuring the continued operation of the business and maximising equipment uptime are critical factors in the overall success of an organisation. As a result, in recent years there has been a growing trend in planning and implementing predictive maintenance strategies in organisations that have an extensive network of assets.

Steps for the implementation of a predictive maintenance plan

In order to try to optimise maintenance, it is necessary to design a predictive maintenance plan that is appropriate to the company’s needs. In order to achieve an optimal process, it is advisable to follow some steps in the process detailed below.

1. Analysis of the current system and selection of equipment

An analysis of the current system will allow us to know if there are recurrent breakdowns that represent excessive economic losses for the company.

Example: a predictive maintenance plan based on the vibration analysis technique that seeks to reduce the economic losses produced by problems in the bearings of a generator.

2. Definition of the methodology

A good predictive maintenance plan has various tools that allow us to know if a machine can suffer excesses that degrade it or if it is already partially degraded.

Example: two methods that will make it possible to know which machines may need to be intervened; the first is remote monitoring, while the second will be on-site inspections.

3. Time planning

Optimal maintenance planning will ensure that assets are properly maintained but without investing excessive financial resources that would result in losses for the company.

Example: Knowing that during the last years the average annual number of short circuits in generators in the parks is 10, it is considered appropriate to carry out an annual inspection.

4. Feasibility study

The economic feasibility study will allow the direct effects of predictive maintenance to be evaluated and may promote the implementation of the maintenance plan. This study will break down the costs into direct costs, which will be based mainly on repair and human resource costs.

Some of the most common predictive maintenance techniques

Predictive maintenance is a type of maintenance that relates the wear or condition of a machine to a physical variable. Some common techniques are used to detect possible failures, such as:

  • Vibration analysis: This is the main technique for implementing a predictive maintenance plan, used to diagnose and monitor machinery.
  • Thermography: Infrared thermography is a fundamental technique in electrical maintenance, characterised by its capacity to detect hot spots. Thermographic cameras are tools that allow problems to be visualised and analysed like no other technology, as well as inspecting equipment in a hurry and taking precise temperature measurements at a safe distance.
  • Oil analysis: This type of predictive maintenance solution is used to check the wear and tear of machines and their components, as it allows us to maximise the life cycle of such machinery, saving costs by changing lubricants at the exact moment of their degradation.
  • Ultrasound analysis: Ultrasound capture is a predictive maintenance technique aimed at preventing the detection of faults through a thermal camera in the evacuation of heat from equipment, humidity detection, environmental insulation, etc.
  • Pressure measurement: Through this predictive technique, pressures are checked to detect possible failures in hydraulics due to leaks, filter obstruction, etc.
  • Visual inspections: It is based on the observation of the equipment to detect faults such as checking for wear and tear, cracks or fissures, noise, etc.
  • Magnetic particles: This predictive technique allows to detect fissures. It is carried out by magnetising the material to be analysed through a magnetic field.

Advantages of predictive maintenance

The optimized management of maintenance programming brings, among others, the following advantages to the organization

  • Using the monitoring data to establish a root cause analysis (RCA) programme will reduce failures in general and catastrophic failures in particular.
  • Increased machine availability.
  • Anticipation of failures.
  • Saving of spare parts.
  • Improved machine knowledge.
  • Improved reliability.
  • Reduction of downtime and the rate of interventions/year of the equipment.
  • Reduction in spare parts expenditure.
  • Monitoring results in reduced accidents and increased safety.

Predictive maintenance at Retain

Retain’s EAM software has an asset maintenance module that includes tools to implement preventive and predictive asset maintenance plans in the organisation. We also offer outsourcing and technical office services that allow companies to have a specialized support minimizing the use of internal resources.

If you would like more information, contact us and an expert will evaluate your case without obligation.