What is a Preventative Maintenance Schedule?

A preventative maintenance schedule refers to a set of planned maintenance tasks that take place regularly on critical components in order to avoid critical equipment failure. To define preventive maintenance, it refers to the process of caring for and servicing organizational assets to keep them in good working order through systematic inspections and observations in order to find and rectify flaws before they become a total failure. Preventative maintenance necessitates careful planning and scheduling of equipment inspection and maintenance before a problem arises. It also requires preserving correct records of previous inspections and servicing reports.

What are the Elements of Preventative Maintenance?

Preventative Maintenance comes with key elements. It is necessary to follow these elements if you want to have a successful preventative maintenance program. Here are these elements:

Inspection. As a maintenance worker, it is critical to check the overall condition of assets on a regular basis in order to assess their availability. This consists of the physical, mechanical, electrical, and other aspects, as well as ensuring that it meets the expected standards. This element of preventative maintenance should be planned, but it does not necessarily need to be scheduled.Servicing. Asset/equipment servicing, which includes cleaning, lubricating, and charging should be done on a periodic basis to avoid premature wear and failure. It is critical for an organization to preserve records of the previous maintenance that was performed; this practice allows the maintenance staff to know exactly what type of servicing is required and when it is required.Calibration. Preventative maintenance determines the worth of an asset’s characteristics by comparing it to the expected standard that is provided by the manufacturer or the experts on a periodic basis. It involves comparing two assets, one of which is a certified standard with an established accuracy, for the purpose of detecting and repairing any kind of discrepancies between the precision of the asset that is being compared and the established certified standards.Testing. The purpose of this element of preventative maintenance is to continuously check and test assets to ascertain serviceability, and also to detect and check for degradation of any characteristics of single or multiple components.Alignment and Adjustment. These elements comprise of making some changes or a periodic tweaking of specified variable elements of a particular asset to ensure that its optimum performance levels are reached or exceeded.Installation. In order to avoid breakdown and to preserve the desired system performance or tolerance, components that have a limited lifespan or those that undergo a time cycle or wear degradation should be replaced immediately during the maintenance process before a failure occurs.

Primary Types of Preventative Maintenance

The tasks in a preventative maintenance are primarily completed for the purpose of preventing an equipment or a vehicle breakdown. The types of preventative maintenance can be divided into categories. Here are those:

Periodic Maintenance. Often known as time-based maintenance, this type of preventative maintenance is carried out on assets at predetermined times throughout the year. It could be performed once a year, twice per quarter, once a month, or once a week. Checking the manufacturer’s guidelines is the simplest way to figure out how often assets parts need to be updated. Each piece of equipment will also come with particular maintenance instructions to help it last longer. Examples of periodic maintenance include checking of bearing grease, changing oils, and checking for corrosion.Meter-based maintenance. This is sometimes referred to as performance-based maintenance. This type of preventative maintenance is more difficult to carry out compared to periodic maintenance. When a meter reading shows that an asset already needs to be serviced, this method is then used. Examples of common measurement variables in meter-based maintenance are hours used, kilometers driven, and parts manufactured. Meters must also be regularly monitored in order to ensure that the equipment is maintained. Examples of meter-based maintenance are changing motor oil every 15000 kilometers, inspecting an aircraft component every 150 flight hours, etc.Predictive Maintenance. This advanced maintenance method makes use of sensor devices in monitoring the condition of assets. Once an abnormality is detected by the sensor, a work order is immediately assigned to a corresponding technician. This type of preventative maintenance is usually known as the “just right” method because this is the go-to solution for not overdoing or underdoing a maintenance task. Predictive maintenance is beneficial to organizations since it saves them lots of time, money, and manpower in the long term. An example of predictive maintenance is installing a thermal sensor in server facilities to provide alerts when a piece of equipment is in danger of overheating.Prescriptive Maintenance. This type of preventative maintenance is similar to predictive maintenance in that it makes its observations and decisions based on the available data. However, through the use of machine learning software, this cutting-edge way of equipment monitoring improves efficiency even further. Prescriptive maintenance allows maintenance teams to track variable operating conditions up until the time of failure. The technology behind this type of preventative maintenance is developed to predict any kind of events that can lead to equipment shutdowns. This type of preventative maintenance also has the highest possible degree of accuracy.

Common Mistakes in Preventative Maintenance

Here are some of the mistakes that can be found whenever maintenance team conducts any type of preventative maintenance:

Step by Step Process in Creating an Effective Preventative Maintenance Schedule

Setting up an effective preventative maintenance schedule will prove to be a great long-term investment you can make in the company. The maintenance team will save a great amount of money and will also have to deal with fewer maintenance-related crises in the future. With that being said, here are some steps to follow to create an effective schedule:

1. Prioritize assets in order of maintenance needs.

It is recommended in this step that you make a list of your company’s most critical equipment and start the Preventative Maintenance Schedule with them. This enables you and your team to start slowly as you begin your transition to a proactive workflow and mindset. You will give your company the biggest long-term profits by selecting equipment that will require a lot of resources (time and money) should they unexpectedly fail. By investing in preventative maintenance, the expenses of reactive maintenance can be avoided, which tend to be much higher. Your return will also be higher if you choose equipment that is newer first.

2. Collect data about the asset.

After you’ve decided which equipment to include in your preventative maintenance plan, it is now time to gather information on any service orders and unplanned downtime that each asset has had over the last several years. Afterwards, start verifying what types of problems each asset has presented and how often they occurred. It gives you perspective on how much you should be spending on preventative maintenance work.

3. Make projections about maintenance needs.

Every asset is unique in terms of its operational lifetime and maintenance requirements; as a result, you should gather information about each piece of equipment prior to creating their respective maintenance checklist. The asset’s Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) recommendations are generally the main source of information. This is a manufacturer-supplied manual that typically includes the maintenance schedules, crucial spare part usage instructions, and basic maintenance work instructions. Another great source of information would be your maintenance team. By talking to them, you might find out that you have to schedule regular maintenance to one of your assets because no spare parts were available prior to that asset’s breakdown.

4. Put together the initial preventative maintenance plan.

In this step, you should start to write down all the necessary preventative maintenance tasks for every asset. Also, include how often you should need to perform these tasks. It is also usually not a bad idea to include more additional notes for certain tasks to be completed so that the technician who will perform the maintenance will know exactly what to do. Once the initial preventative maintenance plan is ready, you can start putting it into practice.

5. Verify the progress and adjust.

As the maintenance team gets acclimatized with the workflow that is created, you should also be monitoring the progress and making the necessary adjustments. You can expect to perform any regular adjustments as the results start to materialize. By doing this, it ensures that you get an optimum return on the investment that you are making. It is also important to keep in mind that the initial preventative maintenance schedule will never be perfect. Just make sure that you are always prepared to make the necessary adjustments to your maintenance plan based on the insights and feedback that you get from your maintenance technicians.


What assets are suitable for preventative maintenance?

The assets that are suitable for preventative maintenance include those that have failure modes that can be prevented with regular maintenance, assets that have a likelihood of failure that increases with time or use, and those assets that are critical to production, business operations, health, or safety.

How does a preventative maintenance schedule lessen downtime?

With an effective preventative maintenance schedule in place, maintenance managers are presented with an opportunity to decrease operation interruptions and increase productivity. The schedule is usually contained in and automated with a CMMS that comes with preventative maintenance software. However, as stated earlier in the article, the maintenance managers should also be aware of over-maintaining their assets as this can lead to a waste of precious resources.

What is a preventative maintenance software?

A preventative maintenance software allows you to schedule maintenance, send warnings to appropriate individuals when a maintenance task is due and boost resource availability and allocation, all of which helps you complete planned activities much faster and more effectively. As a result, you’ll be able to streamline operations that will greatly aid you in the success of performing preventative maintenance. Preventative maintenance software can range from extremely specialized maintenance systems to giant platforms that connect maintenance tasks to other types of business units.

An example of such software is the Computerized Maintenance Management System (CMMS), which allows facilities to plan, track, and optimize work orders, inventory, and everything else associated with maintenance. This software also helps maintenance teams keep detailed and centralized records of all types of assets, equipment, and completed work.

Preventative maintenance is scheduled according to time or usage-based triggers. Its main purpose is to lessen the likelihood of equipment or vehicle breakdowns. When it is implemented properly, it can result in huge savings over time because the assets can last longer, can use less energy than what is required, and can result in fewer interruptions to the production processes. It can also help promote safety within the workplace. Also, having an effective preventative maintenance schedule in place can be a huge step in the right direction of preventative maintenance planning. In this article, examples of an effective preventative maintenance schedule are posted so that you can have something to look at as a reference should you need to make one for the place you work at.