One of the highest costs every entrepreneur faces is the purchase of new equipment, especially when it comes to heavy machinery. Numerous startups and small businesses have no other option but to take out a large bank loan to be able to afford the necessary equipment. Otherwise, those businesses wouldn’t exist. However, with equipment having such a profound impact on performance, people have no other option than to buy the best pieces they can afford. To make them last as long as possible, we need to use and maintain such equipment properly. This prevents many problems from occurring, which is why we’ve prepared the following list of things that are absolutely necessary when it comes to equipment maintenance.
Always refer to the manual
It makes no sense to purchase an expensive piece of machinery and disregard the manual that comes with it. It is of utmost importance that you carefully read the manual and consult it before using the machine in question for the first time. Next, the manual should be the first thing you refer to in case something goes wrong with your equipment. Don’t be too self-confident, regardless of how much experience you have with similar kinds of equipment. Read the manual for the new machine, nevertheless.
While it’s true that there are certain warranties that simply don’t make much sense, the same cannot be said about equipment warranties. Namely, you could face a potential loss of time and money needed to replace parts or conduct minor repairs and without a warranty, you might jeopardize the future of your company because of these unforeseen costs. A warranty is actually your investment and a shrewd business decision, which allows you to minimize the risk of wasting significant human and financial resources.
Consider the environment
Every industry relies on equipment working properly 24/7. However, for that to happen, the conditions in which your equipment operates need to be optimal. No matter how well you look after your equipment in terms of inspection and maintenance, if the conditions, such as temperature, air quality and others are not suitable, your equipment won’t be able to perform well. In oil and gas applications, for example, if products containing hydrogen sulfide (H2S) get in contact with air and moisture, sulfuric acid is formed, which leads to corrosion of metal parts. This leads to reduced durability, weakened strength and premature failure. That’s why prompt and efficient hydrogen sulfide removal is a must.
Buy the best you can afford
It’s never a good idea to use price as the only criterion when buying business equipment, though it surely plays an important role. Instead, you should always consider how much money will be spent in the long run and invest in legitimately good quality equipment, especially if you’re working in heavy industry. Again, let’s use mining and oil drilling as an example. Poor quality machinery is more expensive to maintain and repair and it can also cause a real catastrophe, endangering workers and the environment. So, investing more money, in the beginning, pays off in the long run, because there will be less maintenance and less downtime in production. Finally, we all know that low-cost materials can be damaged easily during the production process, which means you might end up with a lot of waste. This, naturally, means more costs to your business.
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Never miss routine maintenance
It’s vital that you don’t skip scheduled maintenance of important equipment. Most machines should be examined at least once a year by an expert to make sure they are running smoothly. This reduces the chances of injuring a worker or things breaking down in the middle of work. Having an employee injured would also make you liable for a lawsuit, though nothing can be compared to harming a human being under your supervision.
All the tools and equipment used by your employees need to be cleaned regularly, using the right methods. Again, you should turn to the manual for specific instructions. The reason is very simple: clean tools and equipment perform better and are less likely to experience failure. Also, you mustn’t forget that you need much less time to clean something than to repair the damage that might occur as a result of failing to clean tools and machines regularly.
Even the latest, most expensive, and best equipment in the world won’t last long or perform well unless those dealing with it know how to handle it properly. This is one of the biggest challenges for every entrepreneur or a business owner. To prevent such problems, you need to train your employees and appoint a supervisor to keep everything in check and help workers maintain equipment properly. Machines often malfunction due to human error, and you should minimize that risk by training and supervising your employees.
There is no denying that you need to invest significant effort and resources into keeping your business equipment in top shape. However, even that is much better, easier, and cheaper than dealing with the potential consequences of not maintaining your equipment properly. If you’re careful and responsible, you’ll be able to enjoy a stable production process, which is necessary for any thriving company.