Maintenance Technology October 2016 - 48


FINAL THOUGHT

PdM: The Good, Bad, and Ugly

I

mplementing predictive maintenance (PdM)
technologies is a fundamental requirement
for improving your operations. Yet, too many
companies still struggle to establish and
sustain a fundamental PdM process.
Dr. Klaus M. Blache
Univ. of Tennessee
Reliability &
Maintainability
Center

All predictive
technologies can
help improve asset
availability. The
key is to use them.
Photo courtesy
of Fluke Corp.

The good
At least 25% of your resources should be focused
on using predictive technologies (finding issues).
Another 30% should be devoted to correcting
the issues found. That means more than half of
your resources should be PdM-related. Doing
more predictive maintenance (and less reactive)
results in better safety, throughput, and cost. A
2015 study by the Univ. of Tennessee Reliability
& Maintainability Center (UT-RMC, Knoxville),
which involved 120+ companies representing
about 3,000 facilities, revealed that top quartile
companies in reactive maintenance:
■ averaged 23% resources allocated toward
finding issues with PdM
■ were 27% better in OSHA recordable-incident
rates than the average of the remaining facilities
■ averaged 7% higher OEE (overall equipment
effectiveness) than middle (2nd and
3rd quartiles) and 11% higher
OEE than the bottom
quartile.

The bad
Too many companies
merely have the
appearance of
leveraging predictive
technologies. Take,
for example, organizations that are reporting
more than 90% preventive maintenance (PM)
compliance, while their PdM
compliance is less than 50%.
Companies that report a high PdM
compliance should be asked if they have developed an Asset List versus an Applicable Predictive
Technology matrix. Are they doing PDM on all of
the identified assets?
I've found companies reporting 100% PdM
compliance, despite having identified less than
5% of the total predictive maintenance needed.

48 |

MAINTENANCE TECHNOLOGY

(Make sure your metrics tell the entire story.)
I've also visited several operations that were not
only planning a renewed PdM focus, but ready to
purchase predictive technologies. Upon further
investigation, though, we discovered unused
PdM tools-still in their boxes-at these sites.
Meanwhile, management doesn't understand why
things aren't getting better.

The ugly
When sorting companies in our 2015 study by
predictive maintenance, it was found that the top
quartile averaged 30% PdM versus 8% for the
lower 75% of organizations. This means that 75%
are falling extremely short on the amount of PdM
needed to improve operations. Keep in mind that
you can't fix if you don't find. Many organizations,
however, still have their maintenance employees
fighting fires, yet report that they are resource
constrained.
Some readers may be fans of (or remember) the
"The Good, The Bad and The Ugly." In this great
1966 movie starring Clint Eastwood and Lee Van
Cleef, the Italian director Sergio Leone wanted
to depict the real (not so nice) Wild West and
provide a critical outlook of "what was." Giving
credit where credit is due, I've paraphrased the
movie's title for this month's column to make a
similar comparison of "what is" relative to the use
of predictive technologies. To that end, the first
step in getting better is to "grasp the situation"
(which may be ugly). PM optimization is always
a good place to start freeing up resources that can
be realigned to carry out effective PdM.
Fortunately, all predictive technologies, such
as thermography, ultrasound, vibration analysis,
motor-circuit analysis, and oil sampling/analysis,
can help improve asset availability. This translates
as opportunity to gain competitive advantage
given that 75% of North American facilities are
not implementing sufficient PdM,
Don't wait. Decide what technologies are best
for you and use them. MT

Based in Knoxville, Klaus M. Blache is director of
the Reliability & Maintainability Center at the
Univ. of Tennessee, and a research professor in the
College of Engineering. Contact him at kblache@
utk.edu.
OCTOBER 2016



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Maintenance Technology October 2016

Maintenance Technology October 2016 - 1
Maintenance Technology October 2016 - Cover1
Maintenance Technology October 2016 - Cover2
Maintenance Technology October 2016 - 1
Maintenance Technology October 2016 - 2
Maintenance Technology October 2016 - 3
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