Get Work Order Management Software to Optimize Condition-Based Maintenance

Condition-based maintenance (CBM) is a maintenance strategy that involves monitoring asset performance to determine the best time to perform maintenance.

Preventive maintenance (PM) aims to protect equipment condition and performance through regular proactive maintenance work. PM work identifies and fixes simple problems before they develop into major ones. This approach is best because it helps to prevent breakdowns and reduce maintenance costs and unplanned downtime. All of this will save maintenance costs on expensive fixes.

However, it can sometimes be more cost-effective for teams to take a more targeted approach to asset management. This is where predictive maintenance becomes useful.

“Some organizations operate with high levels of planned and unplanned downtime. These companies would benefit from a rigorous screening of their maintenance programs, using analytics to weigh the frequency and criticality of failures, and then refining their intervention plans accordingly.”

Predictive Maintenance and Condition-Based Maintenance

Predictive maintenance (PDM) seeks to predict when breakdowns and malfunctions will likely occur. And, as a result, enables maintenance teams to schedule maintenance work around those periods. Of course, this approach doesn’t work for all assets or facilities.

Some routine maintenance tasks need to be carried out regularly, no matter what. However, some maintenance activities can be redundant. PDM aims to isolate those activities only to the most necessary instances, thus saving money and optimizing efforts.

Condition-based maintenance (CBM) goes hand in hand with predictive maintenance. Both base maintenance work on current or predicted asset conditions. They aren’t the same, however. Predictive maintenance uses sensor data and algorithmic technology to predict exactly when breakdowns will occur.

Condition-based monitoring focuses more on asset conditions, identifying when set parameters reach or cross unacceptable thresholds. In both cases, robust work order management is critical to a successful maintenance strategy.

Teams looking to implement condition-based maintenance should pay attention to maintenance software with functionality for storing historical asset data. The asset data will form the basis for any condition-based approach.

Historical data analysis helps understand asset failure modes that have occurred previously. These could be due to part misalignments, faulty oil analysis, lubricant issues, or bearing failures. More on this shortly.

CBM also helps managers do a better job with spare parts inventory management. Consider connecting parts to assets in work orders. This way, when maintenance staff is on a CBM work task, they will know if the parts necessary are in stock or if they need to order them.

Condition-based maintenance reduces downtime, prevents breakdowns, and decreases unnecessary maintenance and costs. Teams will avoid overspending on reactive equipment maintenance. They will also ensure their spending on preventive maintenance is optimal.

MaintainX Meter-Based Predictive Maintenance

How Does Condition-Based Maintenance Work?

Condition-based maintenance uses scheduled tests, sensor data, and visual inspections in maintenance planning to create maintenance schedules. A standard condition-based maintenance workflow involves the following steps:

1. Determine Baseline Standards

This step involves teams determining the optimal parameters within which their critical assets work. These parameters depend on the assets in question and manufacturer requirements, the volume of production, regulatory conditions, and other factors that individual facilities consider.

Such a standard could mean knowing that a machine works best between a 25 to 30-degree Celsius range. With that established, the team knows temperatures above that would suggest overheating for that specific piece of equipment.

2. Install Sensors to Monitor Conditions

Monitoring asset conditions requires sensors that pay close attention to properties like temperature, pressure, etc. The sensors could include pressure monitors, thermometers, thermal imagers, ultrasonic sensors, etc.

3. Collect and Monitor Data

This step involves analyzing the data collected by the already installed sensors. Monitoring techniques here include:

  • Vibration analysis: This measures the vibration levels of machinery and can point to malfunctioning parts. For example, a malfunctioning fan will vibrate more or less intensely than an optimally performing one.
  • Infrared thermography: This analysis uses thermal imaging to detect radiation from an asset and can help identify when assets are overheating.
  • Pressure analysis: Sudden drops or spikes in pressure for equipment carrying air, gas, or fluids can point to malfunctions needing attention.

4. Identify Conditional Data Anomalies

This step involves identifying any deviations from the optimal standards established in step one. Teams can achieve this via regular conditional testing or by using Internet of Things (IoT) devices to automate the process. Any deviations can then trigger the required maintenance work.

MaintainX Work Order Templates

5. Create Work Orders

While many teams still prefer spreadsheets and pen-and-paper work orders, work order software really does make a difference. A computerized maintenance management system (CMMS) allows facility managers to track multiple work orders simultaneously.

Users can assign priorities, add work instructions, comment directly in work orders, and communicate via instant chat. In addition, teams can monitor work orders from start to finish, sharing and receiving real-time information on their mobile devices from the shop floor.

6. Perform Corrective Maintenance

Work order management systems allow managers to create digital work instructions, checklists, and templates to guide the maintenance process. This system helps ensure maintenance technicians know precisely how to approach corrective maintenance.

Chat features allow technicians to reach out to other team members for any support they might need. Also, as in the case of MaintainX, the global procedures library contains standard operating procedures from various industries that users can access at any time.

Mobile-First MaintainX

Why Is Work Order Management Crucial for CBM?

Historical Asset Data to Predict Conditions

Maintaining robust historical asset data is crucial for a successful CBM program. This collected data forms the foundation of equipment monitoring, as teams can only act on deviations when they know their established asset performance baselines.

A CMMS can help teams maintain detailed records of asset performance against which maintenance departments can benchmark present performance. With the right CMMS, this data is easily accessible via tools like barcodes and QR codes.

Users can create codes and pair them with assets. Scanning these codes then offers access to detailed information about the piece of equipment, from historical performance to maintenance histories and much more. This historical data can also form part of useful digital audit trails.

MaintainX Reporting Dashboard

Reporting and Analysis

A condition-based maintenance program requires constant monitoring and reiterating. When looking for a CMMS solution to optimize your condition-based maintenance work, focus on options providing robust reporting tools that help you audit and improve your processes.

The last thing you want is to spend months applying a particular strategy only to realize that you’re not getting the results you want. MaintainX CMMS, for example, contains reporting modules that generate data-driven, actionable insights, which enable trustworthy decision-making.

Optimize Condition-Based Maintenance with MaintainX

MaintainX is a CMMS system that helps streamline processes and centralize real-time data. Our work order management system can help you optimize your CBM protocols by facilitating asset performance monitoring, establishing standard operating procedures for maintenance work, and managing important data.

Using MaintainX to manage your maintenance work order process also ensures you create a digital audit trail right as you work. This means you can evaluate your condition-based maintenance strategy as you proceed. Try MaintainX today!


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Lekan Olanrewaju

Lekan Olanrewaju is a content writer at MaintainX with years of experience in media and content creation. He has held positions at various media organizations, working with and leading teams at print magazines, digital publications, and television productions.

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