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May 28, 2008 -
✉ Email The Editor
I’m Dan Hounsell, editor of Maintenance Solutions magazine. Today’s topic is, plumbing system repairs.
The efficient operation and effective maintenance of plumbing systems go beyond providing a reliable water supply for facility operations. They also are essential for conserving water and minimizing costs tied to repair time and spare parts.
But maintenance only goes so far. At some point, components and entire systems reach the end of their service lives. How can managers determine the best time to stop devoting resources to maintaining existing fixtures and components and upgrade to new fixtures?
The answer lies in a manager’s ability to compile and analyze data on maintenance activity. Once that step is complete, the challenge becomes a matter of dollars and sense.
Developing an effective replacement plan has to rely on credible historical data. This is not to suggest managers track issues with individual toilets or minor arteries supporting those fixtures. It makes more sense to divide a building into logical sectors, whether based on floors, wings or utility corridors.
Managers also can divide exterior lines into sections that make more sense for tracking purposes. They need to track labor hours, labor costs, and non-labor and contractor costs for all related activities occurring in those logical sectors. Managers also need to track individual incidences, where some kind of response was required, to be able to track their frequencies and recurrences.
Finally, when replacing systems and components sector by sector, managers must be sure they select a design and set of specifications they can apply easily and continually to other sectors in the same building or to the same system when programming additional replacements. The goal here is to minimize the number of different components in one facility or organization.
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