Condition monitoring is a crucial process in ensuring that all systems in a building run perfectly. It can ensure massive cost savings for the owner. Additionally, it is a necessary process in preventing potentially catastrophic events. Through careful analysis of historical events, it has been demonstrated numerous times that condition monitoring could have prevented major accidents.
It is a field that is still developing. However, the techniques and technology used in condition monitoring are quite advanced. Any business or building that has a genuine concern for its occupants or employees should have a condition monitoring system in place. In this article, we are going to discuss the reasons why.
What is Condition Monitoring?
Condition based monitoring is a proactive strategy of ensuring that all operations within a building run efficiently. It monitors what problems a machine has, and therefore allows a solution to be found. It relies on the use of sophisticated equipment to monitor various aspects of a machine.
For instance, it relies on vibrational analysis to establish if a machine’s performance has deteriorated. The technique also measures other parameters such as the temperature of a machine. If any of these conditions deviate too much, a technician is alerted, and he or she looks for a solution.
Most businesses apply condition monitoring to its mission critical assets. However, the sensors used can be applied to non-mission critical aspects of the operation. The conditioning monitoring process entails gathering huge amounts of data. As a result, an analysis is only possible using complex software and computers with powerful processors.
It ensures a degree of accuracy, which a human operator would never achieve. It differs from scheduled maintenance in that maintenance is performed as needed. Consequently, it normally leads to fewer maintenance repairs, which leads to less stoppage of operations. The aim of machine condition monitoring is to prevent failures, which can be quite expensive to remedy. Thus, it leads to a better bottom-line for the organization.
The Advantages of Condition Monitoring
SKF Condition Monitoring is an essential process for any organization, whether large or small. One of the benefits that a company can hope to gain from utilizing it is reduced replacement costs. Using vibrational monitoring on a turning part, a technician can establish the moment at which the bearings become worn out. Consequently, a replacement can be conducted, instead of replacing the entire part due to delayed detection.
Better Machine Productivity
Condition monitoring also leads to better machine productivity. The reason is that the machine will have more uptime due to fewer maintenance schedules. The result is that the company can get more productivity from its machines. It is done through a combination of less unplanned downtime and the fewer maintenance schedules. Another benefit is that it leads to better product quality. The reason is that all parts of the system operate at their optimal levels most of the time. As a result, uniformity and quality of the product are guaranteed most of the time.
Reduced Costs of the Products
Another benefit worth noting is that it leads to reduced costs of the products. Scheduled maintenance and repairs usually result in extra costs for the business. Additionally, failing to recognize a problem in time also leads to added expenses. All of these costs will usually be passed down to the final consumer.
The result is that a company’s products become less competitive in the marketplace. However, condition monitoring services ensure that all these costs can be cut down significantly. The result is that a firm’s products will become more competitive in the marketplace. Additionally, it ensures that a company can grow its capacity due to the improved sales.
Enhanced Product Safety
There is also the benefit of enhanced product safety. Each time a machine is not running perfectly, there is the risk that one of the safety requirements is not being fully met. Thus, consumers could be exposed to health hazards, which could lead to expensive lawsuits for the firm.
Additionally, it could also compromise the safety of a building. The result could be that the safety of the employees is put at risk. In general, all conditioning monitoring solutions lead to improved safety and reduced costs for a company. The initial cost associated with it eventually pays off.
Guidelines of Condition Monitoring
Condition monitoring is an effective way of ensuring that a building or a firm runs efficiently. However, some guidelines need to be understood for it to be effective. Firstly, it should never be implemented on its own. It needs to be implemented to supplement a solid maintenance program. Although it can reduce the number of maintenance schedules needed, it should never totally replace them.
2. Focus on the most critical processes
Another goldmine to keep in mind is that it should be targeted at only the most critical processes. For one, condition monitoring is quite costly. Some systems are too cheap to justify the cost of implementing such a system. Only implement it in areas where the cost savings of such a system offset the initial cost.
4. Seek feedback
You should also seek as much feedback as possible from the machine operators. These people work with the equipment each day. Even though they are not trained to detect faults, they can tell when the machine changes its normal vibration. Value the feedback that they give and send a qualified technician to conduct a visual inspection each time.
5. Use reputed companies
Always remember only to use a qualified company. Most people these days outsource their condition monitoring. However, it is important to request for referrals and conduct background checks. Ensure that the company you hire has demonstrated its ability to conduct its duties. Additionally, insist that all the technicians they send to your building bring along their qualifications.
6. Keep up with the “trend”
Condition monitoring is a fast evolving discipline. What might have worked five years ago could be considered ineffective today. As a building manager or a plan manager, it is important to stay informed. Continually research the new trends that are taking place. Another point to keep in mind is that not all strategies will work. Trying different ones on a trial basis is important before settling on one.
In conclusion, consult widely with as many people as you can find. Additionally, it is important to take time and conduct a visual inspection of the plant. Ensure that you understand the purpose of each system implemented in the firm. You should also have a robust data processing system in place to work with the monitoring system. Good luck!