Blog Post

How to Create an Effective Preventive Maintenance Schedule

Posted by Miranda Cheatham

man in hard hat doing scheduled preventive maintenance work on machinery

Companies that wait for something to go wrong before addressing safety issues in the workplace are just waiting for trouble. They are also spending thousands of dollars each year reacting to crises instead of preventing them from happening in the first place. If you don’t currently have an active preventive maintenance schedule in place, it’s time to create one. In this post, we’ll help you understand why you need a preventive maintenance schedule, what is should include, and how to implement it in your organization.

What is a Preventive Maintenance Plan?

A preventive maintenance plan is a series of steps outlining regularly scheduled maintenance. It is designed to minimize workplace hazards, machinery malfunction, and other unexpected delays that could impact how a business is run or the safety of employees.

What are the Benefits of Preventive Maintenance?

Preventive maintenance schedules help employers stay up to date on the status of their workplace environment, their machinery, commercial vehicles, and equipment. While keeping tabs on company systems and equipment can reduce workplace accidents, it is also an effective way to manage costs. Putting a preventive maintenance plan in places saves your company money by:

  • Reducing downtime for commonly used machinery
  • Helping equipment run more efficiently
  • Catching small problems before they become big, more expensive problems
  • Extending the lifespan of the equipment, vehicles, or machinery

Device Magic mobile forms software makes it easy to create custom preventive maintenance checklists that can be completed from anywhere, even without internet access. Learn More.

What to Include in Your Preventive Maintenance Schedule

An effective preventive maintenance schedule requires taking inventory, careful planning, research, and establishing a maintenance routine that is easy to understand and facilitate. Here are some key tips to keep in mind when creating your plan:

Take Inventory

The first step is to take careful inventory of your machinery, equipment, resources, and vehicles that need regular attention. Walk through your workspaces, construction sites, stores, call centers, and other work areas and make a list of all the equipment that is required for your business to run effectively. An effective preventive maintenance plan starts with a clear understanding of what needs to be maintained.

Prioritize Maintenance

When you have a list of all of the equipment that requires regular maintenance, the next step is deciding exactly when each will be serviced. Take into consideration the equipment that has the highest return on investment and which equipment you use most often. A construction team, for instance, uses hundreds of different machines for any given project, but the ones they use the most, like bulldozers, excavators, and loaders, may take precedence when it comes to preventive maintenance since they are such a commonly used and essential part of a construction project. Once you know what machines need to be serviced and have prioritized them by ROI and frequency of use, you can begin to put your plan together.

This is an important step because it allows you to focus on your business’s most critical assets. It can prevent scheduling too much time assessing equipment that doesn’t play a vital role in the productivity and profitability of your business.

List Specific Maintenance Tasks Create a Schedule

Start at the top of your list and create detailed processes and procedures for regular preventive maintenance on each piece of equipment. Make it clear as to how often this routine maintenance needs to be done and create a space where questions, observations, and feedback can be noted and saved for future reference. This is a good time to speak with the people who use the equipment regularly. Elicit feedback from workers about how the machinery or equipment runs and specific work conditions, and gather information regarding the frequency of breakdowns and malfunctions for a specific piece of equipment.

Once you have this information, consider creating a comprehensive maintenance checklist for your entire facility and for each piece of equipment. Digitizing this checklist can make it easy for your employees in the field to complete while allowing you to keep detailed records of maintenance.

For a more detailed guide on what to include in your checklist, read our blog on How to Create a Facilities Preventive Maintenance Checklist.

Tracking & Modifying

Creating and implementing a preventive maintenance schedule is a smart business move for your company. But if you aren’t monitoring and modifying the schedule, you could be missing something. If you notice a machine doesn’t experience a single breakdown in a specific timeframe, you could modify your schedule so you’re not spending time maintaining a piece of equipment that seems to be running fine on its own. If you notice that another machine is experiencing regular failures despite regular maintenance, you can investigate further and see why it is consistently having issues—then update your plan accordingly.

Preventive Maintenance: How to Get Started

Effective preventive maintenance starts with proper documentation. Device Magic makes it easy to create custom preventive maintenance checklists for all of your equipment, machinery, and vehicles.

Our easy-to-use Form Builder allows you to drag and drop elements like free-text boxes, question-and-answer sections, and even photos to make the maintenance procedure seamless, cost-effective, and organized.

One malfunction or breakdown in a commercial vehicle or piece of equipment can result in serious delays, missed deadlines, and unsafe working conditions. Instead of scrambling to fix an equipment malfunction when it happens, be proactive and schedule regular preventive maintenance to avoid unexpected (and expensive) repairs.

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