Condition based maintenance (CBM) is a maintenance strategy that, simply put, monitors the condition of machinery. In order to keep machines operating at their most efficient capacity, CBM is usually performed after one or more indicators show signs of decreasing performance or imminent failure.
Similar to an overall health check at the doctors to detect any underlying issues that might arise with age, or regularly maintaining your car to keep it running, condition based maintenance uses various process parameters (e.g. pressure, temperature, vibration, flow) and material samples (e.g. oil and air) to monitor conditions in machines.
Engineers can then measure equipment health, performance, reliability and integrity to understand how machines perform as well as predicting and preventing failures before they happen.
How does CBM work?
The techniques used to monitor the performance of machinery or a component whilst in operation is known as condition monitoring.
Condition monitoring techniques – such as vibration analysis, ultrasonics, thermography and oil analysis – can be used solely or in combination and are vital in making sure maintenance is only performed when absolutely necessary.
Generally, condition monitoring techniques are used in rotating equipment, pumps, electric motors, internal combustion engines and presses.
What are the benefits of CBM to my organisation?
The main benefits of applying an effective condition based maintenance programme are that repairs can be scheduled during non-peak times, machine productivity and service life are enhanced, and repair costs due to a loss of production time are eliminated.
How do I identify my most critical assets?
The key to having a cost-effective and balanced condition based maintenance programme is to assess which machines are most valuable by performing an asset criticality audit. This addresses the impact of temporary or permanent loss that a key asset would have on your business. The characteristics that make an asset valuable aren’t always obvious. It’s important to rank assets based on the significance a failed asset has on your business.
For example, a small motor gearbox with a replacements cost of a few hundred pounds, which can be sourced quickly, is not critical equipment that needs constant monitoring.
In contrast, a motor gearbox that powers a major conveyor belt with a replacements cost of thousands of pounds, which could take weeks to source and halts your production line until it’s repaired or replaced, is a critical piece of equipment that needs to be monitored around the clock.
How do I implement a CBM programme?
The first phase to implement a condition based maintenance programme is to identify your critical assets by conducting a CBM survey. Our reliability experts will discuss your maintenance requirements, identify critical assets and pinpoint maintenance resources to where they are needed most.
If you are looking to increase productivity, lowers costs and improve the bottom line throughout your entire organisation, then contact us to discuss how we can implement an efficient and effective condition based monitoring strategy.
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