Many facilities choose to operate under an “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” management style, but relying solely on deferred maintenance leaves your facility vulnerable to added costs and lost productivity. Performing routine preventive maintenance ensures your facility runs efficiently and offers you peace of mind. Listed here are 7 benefits of preventive maintenance.

1. Lengthen the life of assets

Arguably, the most important benefit of preventive maintenance is lengthened lifespan of assets. Keeping your equipment in good condition allows it to run longer, lowering costs. MTBF—mean time between failures—is a common KPI used by facilities leaders to make informed maintenance decisions. Tracking information like MTBF allows you to plan preventive maintenance at just the right moment, catching the equipment before a breakdown.

The power of a good tracking system is so impactful that 78% of companies that track and implement preventive maintenance report seeing an increase in their equipment’s lifespan.

2. Lower risk of breakdowns

Decreased risk of breakdowns is another key benefit of preventive maintenance. In fact, most of the benefits listed here occur primarily as a result of lowered risk of breakdown. Waiting to perform maintenance until failure puts your facility at risk for lost productivity and a damaged reputation.

Only about 10% or less of industrial equipment ever truly wears out from proper use– this means that 90% of mechanical failures are due to preventable problems, avoidable with a good preventative maintenance plan in place. By proactively scheduling maintenance you can significantly lower the risk of your equipment failing, giving you peace of mind as a facilities leader.

3. Increase efficiency

Along with lasting longer, equipment that sees routine preventive maintenance also runs more efficiently. OEE, Overall Equipment Effectiveness, is a commonly used maintenance management KPI that measures efficiency. OEE rates equipment in three categories: availability, performance, and quality. 

A piece of equipment like an HVAC unit sees improvement across the board as a result of preventive maintenance. 

  • Availability: Downtime for reactive maintenance is typically longer than downtime for scheduled preventive maintenance, choosing preventive maintenance means more uptime and availability of equipment. 
  • Performance: Properly maintained HVAC units can better maintain air at a set temperature and disperse it evenly throughout the space. 
  • Quality: An HVAC unit that regularly has the air filter and coils cleaned will heat and cool more effectively and produce cleaner, higher quality air. 

4. Decrease unplanned downtime

Whether you decide to rely on reactive or preventive maintenance, machine downtime is inevitable when maintenance is being performed. However, downtime can be significantly reduced by scheduling maintenance in advance with a preventive maintenance plan. In the case of a reactive maintenance repair, the machine’s downtime might be extended by wait times to see specialized mechanics or shipment time of necessary parts.

When preventive maintenance is performed you have the opportunity to schedule the procedure at a convenient time for you and your facility (i.e. when occupants are out of the building or operations have concluded for the day), minimizing disruptions in production and efficiency.

5. Promote health and safety

Accurately tracking and performing preventive maintenance can also improve the health and safety of your facility.  In the context of preventive maintenance, health and safety are often thought of as primarily a concern in facilities with dangerous equipment, but health and safety are important in every facility– even office buildings and schools.

Tracking preventive maintenance with a computerized maintenance management system (CMMS software) will allow you to oversee all equipment in your facility and store important safety information in one digital hub. Using CMMS software also simplifies safety audits – with a few clicks on a smartphone the complete maintenance history and safety protocols for all equipment items will become  available.  This article highlights how preventive maintenance and CMMS software can assist your facility with fire safety readiness

6. Boost customer satisfaction

Ensuring equipment is always running as efficiently as possible directly translates to cost savings and increased revenue, but it also helps to create a strong brand image and boost customer satisfaction. In facilities manufacturing goods for sale, practicing preventive maintenance to avoid breakdowns and maintain the quality of the goods produced guarantees customer satisfaction with the product, which in turn strengthens brand image. 

Even in facilities that don’t produce goods for sale, “customers” can be the staff or students working on site. In office spaces and schools a comfortable environment is proven to increase productivity– preventive maintenance can ensure productivity is never lost to a broken-down HVAC unit.

7. Save money

All of the reasons listed above lead back to one ultimate benefit of preventive maintenance– it saves money. Unplanned maintenance typically costs 3 to 9 times more than planned maintenance. Emergency reactive maintenance has to accommodate the cost of rushed shipping on necessary machinery parts, compensation for specialized technicians, and lost sales revenue or productivity while the equipment isn’t in use. Even worse, failing to properly implement preventive maintenance could result in the need for a full equipment replacement, causing costs to soar.

The upfront costs of performing preventive maintenance may seem intimidating at first, especially if your facility is operating under a tight budget. However, investing in your equipment is an investment in your company’s future.

Performing preventive maintenance prolongs the life of your equipment, reduces downtime, decreases reactive maintenance requests, helps you manage compliance and inspection needs, and prevents costly emergency repairs from occurring. Learn more about the benefits of preventive maintenance software and how it can improve your facility!