How to Choose Your Type of Maintenance: Preventive - Corrective - Predictive

Regardless of the manufacturing sector, machine breakdowns are inevitable. When it happens, in addition to the cost of machine repair, it causes loss of production, delivery delays and adds stress to the whole team.
In order to manage normal wear and tear of machines precisely, there are several types of maintenance techniques that promise to minimize the inconvenience of breakdowns and breakage.

Maintenance prédictive, préventive ou corrective: comme s’y retrouver et surtout, comment choisir?

Preventive, Corrective, Predictive: What Are The Different Types of Maintenance?

Preventive maintenance
Preventive maintenance is certainly the most traditional method of those presented in this article. According to AFNOR1, it is a “maintenance carried out at predetermined intervals or according to prescribed criteria and it is intended to reduce the probability of failure or the degradation of the functioning of a good”.
In other words, it is a method where prevention is done through periodic inspections, just as it is recommended to have your car inspected every 5,000 km to 8,000 km.
Preventive maintenance is mainly found in two forms:

  1. Systematic: scheduled maintenance based on time or number of units produced. I.E.: Part A is replaced every 4 months or after production of 10,000 units.
  2. Conditional: monitoring the signs of wear or fatigue index. I.E. Tires are replaced when wear reduces the thickness of the tires to X mm.

Predictive maintenance
Predictive maintenance (also called condition-based) aims to anticipate the state of degradation before its complete deterioration. It is based on the principle that each part, system or element presents signs(visible or not) announcing a failure, a breakage or a breakdown. Using devices (most often smart sensors), the elements at risk are monitored by measuring temperature, vibrations, pressure, decibels, etc. in order to predict a problem before it even occurs. In other words, with an accumulation of data, predictive maintenance seeks to avoid the immobilization of production by favoring planned interventions.

Corrective or reactive maintenance
Corrective maintenance represents all the tasks performed to correct or repair faulty equipment. The goal is simple: Restore broken down or end-of-life systems back to working equipment.
This type of maintenance is, in most cases, unavoidable since it represents the logical continuation of the preventive and predictive maintenance. Indeed, corrective maintenance can be scheduled (an inspection determines that a part is too worn) or not (unforeseen breakage). It only becomes a problem when only this method leads to costly downtime, production losses and delays. Moreover, it is very common for industries to use a 80-20 hybrid maintenance method approach, where 80% of maintenance are preventive/predictive, combined with 20% of corrective maintenance.

How To Choose Your Type of Maintenance?

In this article, we will not discuss the combination of several types of maintenance method (since the possibilities are endless), but the comparison of the three methods mentioned above. 
Although each company and production is unique, the questions and considerations regarding maintenance choices are very similar.

#1 What are the "hidden" costs of your current maintenance?

The first step is to take a real and honest look at all the costs of your current situation. Certainly, you have to take the cost of labor for the maintenance team into consideration, but it is essential to highlight how much breakdowns and unplanned downtime are costing you as well:

  • Salaries paid while the production line is down
  • Material losses (Some material might have short expiration date)
  • Delayed delivery to customer
  • Loss of businesses

#2 What does your reality look like?

Does your manufacturing company operate outside the working hours of the maintenance team? Are replacement parts readily available? Is it possible to do a visual inspection of all your equipment at any time? What recurring problems are you looking to fix?

#3 How much does it cost?

Indeed, the total cost will vary depending on your specific needs, but Soralink has prepared a rough comparison with a realistic scenario from the same company using one the three maintenance methods. Note that in this case study, corrective maintenance is presented as a standalone maintenance method rather than a hybrid approach mentioned earlier.
In this simulation, there is an unplanned downtime at Time #1 and Time #6. We thought it is best to separate the costs of maintenance, repairs and losses of all kinds. Everything is illustrated in thousands of dollars.
*Warning: This is a simulation for Company X. Although the numbers are unique to this simulation, the overall results will be similar regardless of the manufacturing company.*

Corrective Maintenance

Preventive Maintenance

Predictive Maintenance (Soralink vs other providers)

It should be noted that this type of maintenance is often associated with a high initial cost. At Soralink, our goal is to make this maintenance accessible to everyone, thus we offer a monthly subscription, with no initial investment burden.

#4 Choose your maintenance

By gathering the information from #1, #2 and #3, it is now possible for you to choose your maintenance plan. The ultimate goal is to choose a method that suits your reality, your budget and above all, providing benefits against situation described in #1.

If you would like to know more about predictive maintenance, Soralink’s experts will be happy to discuss your issues, your reality and your needs with you. You can contact us at follow us on LinkedIn or subscribe to our newsletter to not miss any of the latest news in this field.

Extract from standard NF EN 13306 X 60-319 of June 2001