Your bottom line is suffering due to underestimating the importance of equipment maintenance. The adage “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” applies far too often to construction equipment maintenance. Why would you pay for equipment service if there isn’t anything wrong with it? There are various causes, believe it or not. Construction equipment is a long-term investment that requires both time and money to maintain.
HERE ARE THE IMPORTANCE OF EQUIPMENT MAINTENANCE
Preventative equipment maintenance is essential for extending the life of your equipment and, as a result, saving you time and money. While you may believe that paying for preventative maintenance is a waste of money, the reality is that if you don’t, you’ll wind up with more expensive problems. We believe in the necessity of preventative maintenance, and we believe you will as well after reading the following reasons.
KEY TO KEEPING EQUIPMENT RUNNING EFFECTIVELY
A brand-new piece of equipment is in perfect working order. It performs admirably. Although each piece of equipment has its definition of efficiency, new equipment runs like a well-oiled machine. That’s beneficial to the company.
When equipment performs well, projects are completed on time or ahead of schedule, and your financial line benefits. Maintaining that degree of equipment effectiveness requires keeping it in excellent, like-new condition. When maintenance degrades, efficiency falls as well. Your bottom line suffers when efficiency falls.
SMALL PROBLEMS EXPAND WITH TIME
We’ve all seen it. Something isn’t working quite right, but it’s not impeding our work too much, so we keep going, sometimes even adjusting how we utilize the piece of equipment to keep things moving. Unfortunately, while this may appear to be the most suitable way to do the task in the short term, it may give you considerable difficulties in the long run.
If something isn’t working as it should, what should you do? No matter how insignificant? If it isn’t addressed, it will very indeed become a more significant issue.
RESOLVING MAJOR PROBLEMS IS EXPENSIVE
While it may appear that spending the time and money to have it examined or fixed is unnecessary when you can work around it, the truth is that waiting will cost you far more. Repairs that are larger and more intricate are more expensive. Consider more than just parts. Yes, a more complicated problem will almost certainly necessitate the replacement of more and more significant, more expensive parts, but it doesn’t stop there.
Big problems frequently require more extended downtime, which means you’re behind schedule or unable to take on a new project. If you have personnel on the clock who were scheduled to work with that piece of equipment, you’re now paying them despite their inability to work due to equipment downtime.
If you’ve reached this stage, you’ll do whatever it takes to get the equipment back up and running as fast as possible, but it comes at a price. Expedited shipping for parts has a cost attached to it. Everything adds up. The escalation of more significant issues has a snowball effect. Invest in the tiny problem instead of waiting for the bigger one.
IMPROVE THE VALUE OF YOUR RESALE PROPERTY
In 2017, the construction equipment industry was expected to be worth $192 billion. You’ll likely need to sell a piece of equipment at some point to upgrade to a newer model. Whether you plan to trade it in for a newer model or sell it privately, you want to receive the most money possible for that piece of construction equipment.
Detailed maintenance records for heavy equipment will help you get the maximum money for your sales. This is why: Consider the last time you purchased a used piece of equipment. So many of the questions you have are the same whether it’s a piece of large construction equipment or the family car:
- Is it trustworthy?
- Was it appropriately cared for?
Has it ever sustained significant damage that could have a long-term impact on its performance?
Many of these questions are answered by service records and paperwork, putting many of the fears of the unknown to rest. However, you can’t value the peace of mind that having service records on a secondhand piece of equipment provides. Make an upfront investment in the upkeep of your construction equipment? It will pay off in the long run.
LOWER THE NUMBER OF INJURIES AND DEATHS
According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the construction business is first on the list of industries with the most workplace injuries. Contact with objects and equipment is responsible for 17% of fatal construction accidents in the construction sector. There’s a chance your equipment isn’t performing properly if it isn’t serviced regularly. If it’s not working correctly, you’re putting yourself at risk of workplace harm or death due to equipment failure.
Equipment failure is beyond your or your employees’ control, no matter how many safety trainings they have received. Of course, unforeseen breakdowns may occur, but you can reduce the number of them by being proactive with your construction equipment maintenance.
Workplace fatalities and injuries are unfortunate and costly. Your business line suffers as a result of low employee morale. One of the advantages of maintenance is that it acts as a preventative measure in lowering the number of injuries or fatalities on your property. You can’t put a premium on the safety of your squad on the field.
GET THE MOST OUT OF YOUR WARRANTY COVERAGE
If you’ve purchased a new or barely used piece of equipment with a guarantee, you’ll be even more motivated to keep up with routine equipment maintenance. To be protected by equipment warranties, extensive service records are frequently required.
If you’ve spent the money on a newer piece of covered equipment, it makes sense to put in the effort to maintain its routine maintenance up to date. It does not, however, stop with the completion of the service? You should also keep complete records and receipts of the service history if a repair is required. Then, you have the evidence to indicate that the repairs are required even if the piece of equipment has been adequately maintained.
As an aside, the fact that equipment makers want confirmation of routine maintenance is noteworthy in and of itself. These are the folks who make the equipment. And if they’re willing to pay for repairs for a more extended period as long as routine maintenance is performed, it demonstrates how much they value maintenance. You could even say that they are willing to insure equipment under this condition since they are confident that frequent maintenance will prevent costly repairs.
HOW TO EXTEND THE LIFE OF EQUIPMENT?
The first step is to recognize the need for equipment upkeep. The second step is knowing what to do to guarantee that your equipment lasts as long as possible. There are many different types of construction equipment, each with its design and parts. However, regardless of what piece of equipment you have, whether one or a fleet, there are various strategies you can apply to extend the life of your equipment.
EQUIPMENT TECHNOLOGY FOR MONITORING
This may appear to be a no-brainer, but have you considered how far equipment technology has progressed? Many versions include a variety of sensors. It will alert you if anything isn’t operating correctly, even if it’s only a minor issue. Ascertain that technology is being monitored and data on equipment and performance is being collected. When a sensor discovers something isn’t operating correctly, this technology is only helpful if someone alerts you.
You can also employ tools to augment a specific piece of equipment’s technology. Some technologies can help you collect more information on your construction equipment. For example, vibration monitoring, thermal imaging, audio gauges, and other technologies and tests.
OPERATORS AND TECHNICIANS IN TRAINING
There is no substitute for the human touch, no matter how many various techniques are offered. After all, what good is technology if no one regularly monitors and evaluates it? It takes a qualified operator to diagnose the issue and a trained technician to repair it or notify someone that it needs to be repaired. Educating your equipment operators and any on-staff technicians is critical to extending the life of your equipment since they will ensure that minor issues do not become major ones.
Staff training can also assist in preventing equipment damage caused by abuse or overuse. Operators must be taught the particular model of equipment they will be operating. If in-person training isn’t possible, a summary of best practices and an operation manual must be in place so that operators can use the equipment as intended. For example, they are observing all weight restrictions and so forth. Untrained equipment operators may cause costly repairs unintentionally, so ensure sure recommended practices and standards are communicated, not only on training day but regularly as a reminder.
MAKE SOMEONE RESPONSIBLE
Your personnel organization should include someone responsible for equipment maintenance, in addition to training operators and technicians. Construction firms exist in numerous shapes and sizes, so this will appear different for each individual. When someone is assigned the task of monitoring the status of construction equipment, they will learn through time how much of an influence proactive maintenance can have and how much of a mess reactionary repairs may cause. The success of preventative maintenance depends on empowering and educating someone to take on this duty. Otherwise, it will be pushed to the side.
The bottom line is that if someone must ensure that a piece of equipment or a fleet is in proper functioning order, they will do so as if their job depends on it.
ESTABLISH AND OBSERVE A MAINTENANCE SCHEDULE
Each piece of equipment is unique. They all have their quirks and require their maintenance and repair schedules. Some seals, belts, fasteners, and other components will need to be replaced over time. Replace these parts when they are due to be replaced, rather than waiting for them to break down.
How can you know when that is going to happen? Most companies include pieces of maintenance advice from the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) with the piece of equipment. Could you commit to it? It may appear like being proactive involves attempting to fix something that isn’t broken but trusts us when we say that failing to do so will result in costly repairs.
Those seals, belts, and fasteners are all part of a more extensive system, and you don’t want to replace them all at once. Not only does this mean more excellent parts costs, but it also means more extended downtime when the equipment requires more significant repairs.
INSPECT ON A REGULAR BASIS
Inspections and maintenance schedules are not the same things. The operators should inspect every time they use their heavy equipment. Training operators should know what to look for and listen for to ensure that equipment is working correctly. Simple things like evidence of wear on equipment, for example, can go a long way. Heavy machinery is frequently subjected to vibration, high temperatures, and friction, all of which contribute to moving part wear and tear. You’ve got a prescription for deterioration when you add aging to the equation.
This is true of all equipment, and the secret to extending its life is to do something as simple as adding an operator visual inspection to your equipment’s use criteria. For example, warped belts, dry or broken seals, and loose fasteners may appear minor. Still, a visual inspection can recognize and fix it before they become a bigger problem. We also recommend that you keep up with any more in-depth checks that come with your OEM maintenance plan.
LUBRICANTS SHOULD BE ADDED
In any piece of machinery, lubrication is crucial. For example, it can extend the life of heavy construction equipment by reducing friction between moving elements. Learn about each piece of equipment you have and the lubrication requirements for each.
Because lubrication isn’t a one-size-fits-all chemical, talk to a qualified dealer to determine what the manufacturer recommends. Know when and where you can use a lubricant. There are some sections that you may be able to check and supplement on your in-between scheduled maintenance, but others may require the assistance of a qualified specialist. Learn about your equipment and how to grease it properly. Friction caused by a lack of lubrication can cause severe wear and tear over time, limiting the equipment’s lifespan.
More than just decreasing friction and wear & tear, lubrication is essential. It can also help identify trouble areas. For example, knowing which sections of your equipment require lubrication and are accessible can aid in the detection of problems.
Check for a buildup of oil or grease on the pistons, as well as leaking oil seals. You can also check lubricants to see if any parts of your heavy machinery are worn down. For example, examining particles in used oil can reveal pollutants that indicate a breakdown in a specific location. Are you not an oil expert? Is that not an issue? A knowledgeable Warren CAT technician can perform an oil test. This is usually a part of routine maintenance, but you can also do it if you believe something is amiss.
OPERATORS SHOULD CLEAN EQUIPMENT REGULARLY
Even the most significant and heaviest construction equipment is prone to dirt and pollutants. Keep in mind that this enormous piece of machinery comprises multiple moving parts, each with its complicated system. Filters that aren’t replaced regularly and breathers and electronics that aren’t maintained clean affect how the equipment operates and can lead to a costly repair. In addition, when things become unclean, they tend to break down.
To extend the life of equipment, owners should keep it indoors and away from the weather. Wind and rain can cause rust and replacing it can be costly.
USE ORIGINAL ORIGINAL ORIGINAL ORIGINAL ORIGINAL ORIGINAL
Why utilize genuine OEM Cat parts when you can purchase the same part from another firm for less money? This is an excellent question and one that we frequently ask. It’s no secret that the same part may cost less money.
Take, for example, something tiny and straightforward. a bolt of lightning. Is it essential to have the OEM bolt replacement if you’re looking for something simple like a bolt? Instead, assume you’ve discovered a less expensive choice. Consider the following questions:
- Do you realize it’s manufactured from the same exact materials as the original?
- Do you know if the thread pitch is the same?
- Is it a requirement of your warranty that you use OEM parts?
- Is that bolt compatible with the sensors that are currently in place to ensure that a piece of equipment is operational?
- Are you positive you’ll receive the bolt in a specific amount of time?
- Do you have faith in the chemical composition of the bolt? that it, for example, will withstand corrosion in the same way as the original?
A bolt is a simple example but is it worth the risk, especially for a more sophisticated item?
If we have this many questions about a bolt? You don’t want to void your warranty to save money on a part, do you? Or be stuck with additional downtime if it isn’t delivered on schedule.
Choose genuine OEM components to enhance the life of your equipment because your equipment manufacturer spent a lot of effort creating that particular part for your piece of equipment.
Interstate Heavy Equipment specializes in purchasing and selling used construction and aerial equipment from commercial lawn forestry and agricultural equipment of all brands. We sell all major brands sold in the United States and Canada. We specialize in both large and small equipment. Daily, we add to our inventory. As a result, we have the most extensive inventory of both construction and aerial equipment in the industry. Call us today at 469-370-7501 or visit interstateheavyequipment.com.