What is Preventative Maintenance?
Preventative maintenance is strategy for maintaining equipment that is regularly performed before failures occur. Generally, preventative maintenance is on a calendar-based scheduled. An example is an HVAC unit which is serviced every year, before summer.
Why it Matters
When operating a building, the strategy that is implemented to maintain normal operations has profound effects on energy consumption, equipment repair costs, and the health and comfort of tenants. Some companies implement preventative maintenance strategies such as automatic ticketing to engage tenants and build a data set for developing preventative maintenance schedules in the future. Other companies use a building monitoring system to build that data set with data from equipment systems themselves.
Advantages of Preventative Maintenance
Better planning, which leads to benefits in cost control, prioritization, and benchmarking
Equipment can be shut down to coincide with occupancy downtime
Prior to the shutdown, any required parts, supplies and personnel can be gathered to minimize the time taken for a repair
Disadvantages of Preventative Maintenance
Preventative maintenance is more complex to coordinate than reactive maintenance because the maintenance schedule must be planned
The frequency of preventative maintenance is most likely too high. This frequency can be lowered, without sacrificing reliability when condition monitoring and analysis is used
Below is an graphical representation of preventative maintenance being performed on a fan coil unit. As maintenance is performed, the unit increases demand, indicating full capacity. As the unit runs, it gradually decreases it's demand and increases the likelihood of failure.