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Be Aware of Repairs Your Equipment Needs

Research shows that almost 90 percent of machine failures could be avoided.

How? By properly maintaining the equipment.

Contractors who address the maintenance needs of a piece of machinery at the first signs of trouble can minimize repair costs while extending the life of supporting components. Waiting until absolute machine failure increases costs significantly.

Plan For Indicator Servicing

Planned indicators are scheduled maintenance services that a company can plan and budget for, such as following equipment’s service guidelines based on its hours of use, as recommended by the manufacturer.

Programs such as the Cat®SOS Services perform oil and coolant system fluid sampling, offering a look at the machinery’s wear of components and failure potential. This data gives owners a “blood test” to make informed and proactive decisions on upcoming services.

Don’t Wait For Failure

There are a number of reasons contractors should not wait until a machine fails to get it repaired.

Limited repair options and a higher risk of damage to other parts can only increase the financial costs associated with this practice. While contractors obviously don’t want to halt or slow production to allow for a repair, the downtime associated with a repair after an equipment failure is often much longer than a preventive maintenance job.

Manufacturers typically label parts in three tiers, with the higher tiers costing more to repair. Level 1 parts are non-reusable parts designed to last the shortest time such as exhaust valve, gaskets, piston rings, and seals. Level 2 parts wear more slowly and include pistons, intake valves, and fuel injectors, while Level 3 parts – designed to last the duration of the machine’s lifetime – include engine block castings and crankshafts as well as the drivetrain’s transmission cases.

When you wait for a machine failure to occur, they could be adding tens of thousands of dollars to the repair bill – largely due to level 2 and 3 parts needing to be replaced. That could have been avoided if the repair was made when the problem was first apparent.

Consider the Alternatives

Equipment owners can choose whether to select original equipment manufacturer (OEM) parts like those offered in Cat Genuine, or try to save money by looking for an aftermarket solution. Cat also offers YellowMark, a more budget-conscious line of parts that falls between OEM and aftermarket parts. These parts are designed for contractors who don’t necessarily need a genuine OEM part for their equipment but need a quality part they can rely upon.

Rebuilding and Remanufacturing

When contractors keep up with preventive maintenance schedules and maximize the life of their machines, level 2 parts will inevitably show signs of wear and need to be either rebuilt or remanufactured. The process involves the component being disassembled, cleaned, and inspected – bringing it back to its original state.

Rebuilding involves pairing original parts with new ones to replace components that are too worn, while remanufacturing takes the cleaned and reusable parts and rebuilds them on the manufacturer’s assembly line. Despite the differences, both processes give contractors another life for their equipment and come with the same warranty you’d get with a new component.