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Maintenance and repair: expense or added value?

"Maintenance and repair covers a broad spectrum of operations. The classic approach using products from the field of chemical engineering now includes a multitude of modern, specialised, high-performance lubricants, which have not only made the oil can redundant, but also have increased the operating life of the machinery." (Translation of an excerpt from the "VTH Expert Discussions" on the topic of professional maintenance, repair & operations).

The chemo-technical maintenance products from OKS have been specially developed for the complex requirements of maintenance, repair and operations.

The demands of global competition mean that continual increases in productivity are essential. Streamlining of process chains and maximisation of plant availability are an unavoidable part of this. And this is exactly where maintenance and repair has a key role to play, since productivity depends on the smooth functioning of the production plant with as few interruptions as possible

Maintenance and repair: expense or added value?

Clearly, maintenance and repair operations represent an overhead for the company. After all, the bill for maintenance and repair operations across Germany as whole runs to an estimated 250 billion euros. However, since maintenance and repair represents an integral component of the value-added chain, it cannot simply be ignored. The lubricant that keeps a production machine running is just as important to producing the finished product as are the raw materials.

It makes sense, therefore, to optimise expenses on maintenance and repair - not to minimise it. The illlustration below shows how the optimum outlay, CIH on maintenance and repair can be assessed:

This shows that a company can achieve the optimal maintenance overhead by minimising the sum of maintenance costs and downtime costs.

Maintenance is an important value (added) factor and as such should be treaated with generosity, rather than minimalism.

If a company operates its machinery with the minimum possible amount of maintenance and repair - in other words, it continously reduces the number of maintenance cycles - then it runs risk that the downtime costs and cosequential total costs will become disproportionately high. A slightly "over zealous" maintenance and repair effort will have a significantly less drastic effect on the total costs, since the maintenance and repair costs increase linearly with the number of maintenance cycles.


Dipl.-Ing. Bernhard Finke

Sales Manager Germany

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