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What Is An Equipment Maintenance Log?

December 11, 2020

Equipment Maintenance Log Definition

An equipment maintenance log is a document that organizations use to record asset maintenance activities. It enables them to monitor their system checkup processes and track maintenance tasks performed by technicians, the exact time the tasks were performed, and each specific task’s purpose. 

Organizations rely on equipment maintenance logs to ensure that critical pieces of equipment are in good working order, and plant operations aren’t affected by unplanned downtimes. They usually put so much effort and resources into the maintenance of every asset. Without a proper maintenance tracking system, it’s easy for maintenance schedules to be missed, and maintenance needs to get out of hand.

Summary

Regardless of the industry, every organization relies on the health of its assets for productivity. Unplanned downtimes can be costly. However, it can be challenging to ensure all assets are inspected and maintained at regular intervals. Of course, skipping preventive maintenance (PM)  increases the risk of unexpected equipment breakdowns and unplanned downtimes. 

For this reason, organizations ideally develop an equipment maintenance log for each asset to track their maintenance. Logs ensure there are no unnecessary disruptions to production. Additionally tracking maintenance helps to improve safety. As reported by the International Journal of Occupational Safety and Ergonomics, equipment failure accounted for 272 out of 773 facility accidents in a pulp and paper company. 

What’s Inside a Maintenance Log

Maintenance logs contain records of historical actions performed on given pieces of equipment. Usually, they have two sections that contain different types of information, including: 

  • General Information: The first section contains general information used to identify the asset. It includes details such as the name of the equipment, manufacturer and model, its serial number, location, and the maintenance technician responsible for the equipment. Some facilities also include the asset’s date of purchase and price.
  • List of Maintenance Actions: This section includes all maintenance activities performed on the asset. Details in this section can consist of the date of performed maintenance, a description of the maintenance task, and the maintenance technician who performed the maintenance activities.

Some maintenance logs include a section for remarks to note any special observations useful for future maintenance activities or to be followed up.

Types of Maintenance Logs

Equipment maintenance logs help to keep organizational assets in good working condition. An organization can choose to use different types of maintenance logs an organization. They can be about on-going or completed projects, employees, and assets. Common types of equipment maintenance logs include:

  • Maintenance Schedule Logs: These document ongoing projects within the organization, including the expected time of completion. Maintenance schedule logs provide an organization with a holistic view of its projects at all times.
  • Project Logs: These keep track of current projects within an organization. They are similar to maintenance schedule logs but can also include projects from other departments and projects that have already been completed.
  • Machinery Maintenance Logs: Machinery maintenance logs are used to schedule machine maintenance. They contain information relating to scheduled maintenance activities. Organizations rely on these logs to ensure that machines are serviced at specified intervals to keep operating efficiently.

There are also company logs that detail information about an organization’s employees, including their positions, current job assignments, job performances, and accomplishments. They also detail scheduled assignments for the employees. 

Machine maintenance is the only way to optimize production and maximize the lifespan of an asset. Maintenance logs help to ensure that maintenance activities are performed. Maintenance logs should be updated every time a maintenance activity is performed. By having a well-documented and up-to-date maintenance log, an organization can stay up to speed on the status of its assets. This is important in improving asset performance and workplace safety.

Benefits of Equipment Maintenance Logs

Business productivity depends on how functional an organization’s assets are. Maintenance logs help monitor the condition of assets and ensure they’re in good working order. The organizational  benefits of keeping a maintenance log include:

  • Minimize Repair Costs: Poor equipment maintenance can be costly to an organization. By documenting maintenance activities, the organization can ensure that all maintenance tasks are performed as prescribed, and assets stay in good condition. Any equipment that needs special attention is noted in the Remarks section.
  • Develop Specialized Maintenance Programs: Each piece of equipment usually has its own maintenance log. This enables organizations to develop specialized maintenance programs for each asset. Maintenance logs are also a source of historical maintenance data that helps determine the type of maintenance needed for an asset.
  • Validate Warranty Claims: Documenting maintenance work can help an organization make its case for a warranty claim. The log can show that equipment failure wasn’t a result of negligence. 
  • Improve Workplace Safety: Keeping pieces of equipment well-maintained improves the safety of the machine and facility operators. Tracking an asset’s health helps determine when it needs maintenance before it becomes a safety hazard.
  • Enhance Accountability: Maintenance logs also indicate the technician responsible for given tasks. Operators can be held responsible for the condition of assets under their care. This enhances accountability among an organization’s employees. 
  • Improve the Resale Value: Maintenance logs can prove that a piece of equipment was well-maintained, and therefore can attract a higher resale price.

How to Create an Equipment Maintenance Log

Organizations can design their own equipment maintenance logs. The template should cover proper care and maintenance processes. Important details to include in the template are:

  • Name of the asset
  • Serial number
  • Equipment manufacturer and its contact details
  • Date of purchase
  • Date of first use
  • Operator responsible for the asset
  • Location of facility
  • Date of maintenance
  • Description of maintenance tasks performed
  • Maintenance technician responsible for the tasks
  • Date of next scheduled maintenance
  • Additional notes, remarks, or observations

The log should be simple so that technicians don’t have difficulties completing it. Descriptions should be short, accurate, and legible. Some factors worth keeping in mind when developing a maintenance log include:

  • Creating a standard template for all the assets. Templates should all have the same baseline to eliminate errors and make it easy to analyze the data.
  • Ensuring logs are readily available to the team. Maintenance software, such as computerized maintenance management systems (CMMS), allows organizations to create digital logs that are easily accessed.
  • Ensuring standard operating procedures for shift changes. Everyone should be aware of pending tasks, safety risks, and who is responsible for completing what task at the end of the day. 

Equipment Maintenance Log Templates

Here are a few samples of equipment maintenance log templates:

Equipment Maintenance Log
Equipment NameManufacturer
Serial NumberManufacturer P/N
Plant LocationManufacturer Contact Details
Date of ManufactureDate in Service
Maintenance Activity
DateDescription of Maintenance ActivityMaintenance Performed ByValidated ByDate of ValidationDate of Next MaintenanceRemarks
Maintenance Log
DateEquipment NameMaintenance Work DoneCommentsTechnicianNext Maintenance
Recommendations/ Report Details: 

Conclusion

Equipment maintenance logs can unlock key insights to help organizations optimize asset performance. But, completing logs can be boring, repetitive, and tedious. Tools such as CMMS can eliminate the boring paperwork and automatically update the logs as soon as a work order is closed. This not only helps to ensure accuracy but enables the maintenance team to focus on the actual work. 

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