What Is Preventive Maintenance?

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Continuing our recent string of articles on maintenance (see previous articles on electrical maintenance, mechanical maintenance, and facilities maintenance), and timed to coincide with the addition of many new courses in our industrial maintenance and facilities maintenance online training libraries, this article will introduce you to some basic concepts of preventive maintenance.

In addition to this introduction to preventive maintenance, you might also find interesting our Benefits of Preventive Maintenance article.

For now, read and enjoy the article, and let us know if you have any questions about your own maintenance training program at work. Plus, check out our recorded webinar on maintenance, maintainability, organizational learning, and continuous improvement and consider catching out our upcoming case-study webinar on creating training  paths for maintenance-tech career development programs.

A Definition of Preventive Maintenance

A simple definition of preventive maintenance is a maintenance program and/or maintenance activities intended to eliminate or reduce the use of corrective maintenance or breakdowns.

What Preventive Maintenance Includes

Preventive maintenance programs include the following aspects:

  • Operator care, including cleaning, inspections, and adjustments to keep equipment operating at full potential
  • Lubrication programs
  • Leveling and alignment of machines and assets
  • Calibration and adjustments
  • Inspections intended to become aware of conditions before they become a serious problem

One key element to preventive maintenance is scheduled, fixed maintenance conducted at intervals, with preventive tasks performed at different intervals–daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, etc. Intervals may also not be time-based but instead based on things like hours of use, miles, etc.

Some Benefits of Preventive Maintenance

Preventive maintenance programs, probably somewhat obviously, will lead to a reduction of machine breakdowns, unplanned corrective maintenance, and downtime. All of which increases productivity and decreases costs.

Additionally, improved maintenance through the use of preventive maintenance leads to better quality and safety.

For an even deeper-dive consideration, check out our Benefits of Preventive Maintenance article.

And don’t forget to download our free Guide to Online Maintenance Training, below, before you go!

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Free Guide to Selecting Online Maintenance Training

Download this free guide to discover everything you need to know to select and use online maintenance training, including courses, learning management systems, and providers.

Download Free Guide

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Jeffrey Dalto

Jeffrey Dalto

Jeffrey Dalto is an Instructional Designer and the Senior Learning & Development Specialist at Convergence Training. He's worked in training/learning & development for 25 years, in safety and safety training for more than 10, is an OSHA Authorized Outreach Trainer for General Industry OSHA 10 and 30, has completed a General Industry Safety and Health Specialist Certificate from the University of Washington/Pacific Northwest OSHA Education Center and an Instructional Design certification from the Association of Talent Development (ATD), and is a member of the committee creating the upcoming ANSI/ASSP Z490.2 national standard on online environmental, health, and safety training. Jeff frequently writes for magazines related to safety, safety training, and training and frequently speaks at conferences on the same issues, including the Washington Governor's Safety and Health Conference, the Oregon Governor's Occupational Safety and Health Conference, the Wisconsin Safety Conference, the MSHA Training Resources Applied to Mining (TRAM) Conference, and others.

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