How to Adopt Better Maintenance and Troubleshooting Strategies

If you want your business to be successful, you need better maintenance and troubleshooting strategies in place. Ideally, your maintenance standards will be so effective and consistent that troubleshooting is rarely necessary.

But when it does come time to troubleshoot a piece of equipment, like a centrifugal pump, it’s important to be ready.

So how do you adopt better maintenance and troubleshooting strategies in your business?

Pump system maintenance

Why Are Maintenance and Troubleshooting So Important?

Maintenance and troubleshooting may not seem like they should be top priorities in your business, but they’re very important for several reasons:

Saving time

Better maintenance and troubleshooting practices can help you save time. When something goes wrong, instead of running around frantically with no idea what to do, standard procedures can help you diagnose and fix issues much more quickly. That means your business can get back up and running much more reliably and in a shorter timeframe.

Saving money

These strategies can also save you a lot of money. Instead of hiring new technicians or dealing with more complicated problems, you can minimize the issues that appear and handle them completely in-house.

Improving safety

You should also know that improved maintenance standards can also carry safety benefits. When your biggest, heaviest, most complicated machinery operates more reliably, your people will be shielded from the most catastrophic events.

Improving overall profitability

As a result of all of these, improved maintenance and troubleshooting strategies can improve your overall profitability as a business. You’ll save time, you’ll save money, and you’ll even suffer fewer damages as a result of safety issues.

Server maintenance specialist

Strategies for Better Maintenance and Troubleshooting

Now for the central question. What strategies can you adopt for better maintenance and troubleshooting?

Adopt a proactive mindset

First, and perhaps most importantly, you need to adopt a proactive mindset. That means trying to predict what’s going to happen next and working to prevent issues instead of merely reacting to them. Proactive maintenance is important in vehicles because they’re complicated machines with lots of interrelated parts; if you catch an issue early enough, you can prevent it from spiraling out of control, ultimately making your vehicle safer and reducing the total costs of necessary repairs.

In all aspects of your business, you need to be thinking proactively. Instead of responding to incidents, you need to be predicting and preventing them.

Create a single source of truth (SSOT)

A single source of truth (SSOT) is a centralized location where your employees can find all the information they need on a given topic. You need to have an SSOT for all your maintenance and troubleshooting needs. This should be a consolidation of all information pertaining to your specific equipment, as well as instructions for how to handle maintenance and troubleshooting for each of them.

Train and educate your employees well

Next, train and educate your employees as thoroughly as possible. When your employees have proactive mindsets and ample information to maintain and troubleshoot your equipment, things are going to flow much more smoothly.

Document everything

Everything related to maintenance and troubleshooting should be thoroughly documented. When examining asset history, there should be no confusion as to how this machine has operated, when it has been maintained, and when the last incident was. This is incredibly helpful for diagnosing issues as well as keeping a good maintenance schedule.

Employ checks and balances

No matter how well-trained or diligent your employees are, employees are capable of making mistakes. For this reason, it’s important to have some checks and balances in your system. If one of your employees misses something, can another employee compensate for it?

Monitor whatever you can in real time

As much as possible, you should be monitoring processes in real time. You should also get automatic alerts if anything on your production line is disrupted or behaving aberrantly.

Develop consistent checklists and workflows

Similarly, it’s important to develop consistent checklists and workflows. Even completely untrained employees should have sequences of basic steps they can follow to get to the bottom of an issue or conduct elementary maintenance.

Practice root cause analysis

Root cause analysis (RCA) is a set of techniques designed to help you identify and analyze the “root cause” of a given problem. The faster and more consistently you practice this, the better you can respond to an issue in progress. This can also help you from a high level by analyzing maintenance failures that led to disruptions in productivity.

Remain adaptable

There’s no such thing as a perfect approach to maintenance or troubleshooting, so remain adaptable as you build on your progress.

Steel machine maintenance
photo credit: Kateryna Babaieva / Pexels

Improved maintenance and troubleshooting strategies can save your business a lot of time and money, so they’re well worth investing in. With the strategies outlined in this guide, you should have no trouble seeing better bottom-line results.