There is a lot of information to review before you can make sound and effective asset life expectancy planning and replacement decisions for the equipment in an operation
All equipment has a life expectancy and you need to plan for its replacement, and for major overhauls and rebuilds during its service lifetime. There are big, bad, future operating cost implications if you make the wrong choice between replacement of an asset verses renewing its components in a planned maintenance overhaul.
To compile an asset life expectancy plan, including asset replacement or refurbishment, you need to identify the range of service duties and the difficulty of the operating life for each asset. You may have the same asset type used in a number of places, but if there is wide variation between the use of the assets, it will change the outcome of the life cycle replacement or refurbishment analysis for an asset.
For example, if you have two lifts in a building and one does three times the amount of movements as another lift, then the harder working lift will have a shorter service life and need different service life requirements. The people doing the review and analysis would need to provide you with separate lifetime assessments of replacement and refurbishment for each asset.
To assess the likely working lifetime of equipment and its components you need to know how well an asset was first constructed, how hard an asset is working when it is in use, how many hours it will operate per year, and how well it will be maintained during its service life.
You need to provide all the following prerequisite information in order to ensure you get a comprehensive and accurate asset life expectancy planning schedule.
- A complete asset register listing all the equipment in the operation to which the asset replacement and refurbishment planning project applies. (Are you looking at 1,000 equipment items, or 10,000 items?)
- The equipment criticality analysis for the assets that identifies the risks they cause the operation, and their level of each risk, should they fail.
- A complete list of all statutory assets used in the operation, i.e. pressure equipment, lifts and cranes, dangerous goods containments, electrical equipment, etc. You are legally obligated to keep such equipment always safe to use and there may be no choice as to when you overhaul the asset.
- Layout drawings of the location of the assets that the project applies to.
- Process and Instumentation Drawings explaining the engineering logic of how the equipment in the operation is designed to run and interact, including the design duties each asset is required to deliver during its service life.
- Drawings of the electrical and process control systems.
- Each asset’s manufacturers operating and maintenance manuals.
- The list of all your maintenance service providers for each asset. (There maybe questions to ask them about the maintenance work that they do, and the problems they have seen with the asset.)
- The list of the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) for each asset. (There maybe questions to ask them about their engineering design, and the problems they foresee with the asset.)
- A description of each asset’s normal method of use, the way the staff on site operate it, and its required performance. (How is each asset used by your people, and what is the regime for running each asset, i.e. is it running continuously, started/stopped many times a day, or used only a few times a month, etc.?)
- The prospective hours of operation required from each asset per year.
- The maintenance strategy for each asset, and the associated maintenance activities to be performed to deliver the strategy.
- Commissioning problems encountered at start-up.
- Operating history for each asset to understand how hard it has been run during its life.
- Maintenance history collected for each asset to see what problems it has had while in service.
If the above requirements are not already available, then your first job is to get them. After which you can do the asset life expectancy planning analysis and make sound and sensible replacement and refurbishment recommendations.
Typically, this type of project requires two professional engineering disciplines, being a senior mechanical and a senior electrical engineer, to cover the full range of asset types used at an operating site. If a lot of automation and process control equipment are used, then a professional Systems Control Engineer will also be needed to assess those asset types.
All the best to you,
Lifetime Reliability Solutions HQ