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Audit implications of changing the frequency of preventive maintenance


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#1 danh@nutmegspice

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Posted 29 October 2019 - 04:00 PM

Hi,

 

Currently trying to improve/update our PM schedule. I pulled the suggested PM schedule out of every manual for all equipment in the building, and after going over it with our maintenance guy i had a little pushback as he feels some of the listed PM requirements are overkill and not needed to be done as often as listed in the manual.

 

Basically what i am asking is if we change the frequency of something (IE manual suggests something to be checked every week and we change it to say bi-monthly), will an auditor question us on this? will they actually take one of our manuals and look at what the company recommends?

 

This is going to be our first audit and am finding myself confused on a lot of these little issues.

 

Thanks



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#2 BostonCream

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Posted 29 October 2019 - 04:52 PM

I would think of 2 things needed to be done: risk assessment (before change) & trend analysis (after change).

 

If risk assessment shows satisfactory, and u decided to change from weekly to monthly, try it for 3-6 month and record any deviations. Do a trend analysis. If more internal deviations/customer complaints were found, and product safety/quality was affected, go back to the original schedule. If not, the current schedule is probably safe.

 

If u change from weekly to semi annual, I'm not sure... Maybe do the same: weekly - monthly (3-6 months satisfied) - semiannual? Personal opinion.. Looking for more thoughts on this forum!



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#3 SQFconsultant

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Posted 29 October 2019 - 05:09 PM

You can spend a lot of time doing risk analysis, trending, etc to determine if you should or should not follow the manufacturers suggestions.

 

I have seen an Auditor review a PM schedule, then review if the PM schedule was actually carried out as stated, and then ask for the manual for a couple of different pieces of equipment.  

 

It is really not a standard thing for an Auditor to ask for the manuals -- UNLESS, they see something on the PM program and have internval knowledge of machines.

 

When I was an SQF Auditor, I also followed the rabbit hole on several PM programs because the intervals of checks seemed off and facility did not have any validation/verification available to backup why they did PM a lot less frequency than required.

 

Yes, that would be a concern.


Kind regards,
Glenn Oster
 
GOC BUSINESS GROUP | SQF System Development, Implementation & Certification Consultants
 
 

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#4 Hoosiersmoker

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Posted 06 November 2019 - 07:13 PM

PMs need to be adequate for your purposes to prevent unnecessary hazards to your products but you need to have some basis. Having been a maintenance Supervisor for over 20 years and developed a couple of PM programs, I have done the same thing using the manufacturers recommendations. Hours run is primarily how they divide things up so if you run 3 shifts you'll do PMs three times more frequently (calendar-wise) than if you only ran only one shift, so that has to be taken into account. Two facilities that run the same equipment could have two totally different frequencies. A monthly PM at one place running three shifts a day would be a quarterly at another place only running 1 shift a day. Both are accurate to manufacturer recommendations but they're considerably farther apart time-wise. Make sure you can answer all of those questions and give proper justification and there should be no reason for the auditor to start digging. Also, extrapolating those frequencies should fall on the side of more frequent than less. Sometimes "every 2000 hours" isn't going to work out at exactly quarterly it might be a little more than quarterly but I would move it back rather that forward. Also, tell your maintenance guy you'll determine the frequency and let him know when he needs to do it. :lol:



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#5 mgourley

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Posted 06 November 2019 - 08:51 PM

While not completely analogous, I have done the same thing with Master Cleaning Schedules when taking over a Sanitation department.

I look at the current periodicity and question items that I think (through previous experience) are either done too often or not often enough.

 

I let the scheduled cleaning take place and then when the next scheduled cleaning comes due, I go out and do a detailed inspection of the equipment/area prior to the cleaning activity.

I then make a determination whether the SSOP frequency needs to be adjusted. I train my sanitation supervisors/leads to always inspect an area before having someone clean it. If it does not need to be cleaned, don't spend the time cleaning it and document that the area was inspected and did not need to be cleaned.

 

Obviously, this only works for some items that have a fairly decent interval between cleaning. For example, when I started my current position, the CCTV cameras were scheduled to be cleaned every two weeks. I inspected a representative sample of cameras throughout the facility at the two week mark. Did not need to be cleaned. I looked two weeks later. Did not need to be cleaned. I looked two weeks later. Some of the cameras in the mixing areas had a light buildup of flour dust.

 

So, I broke those particular cameras out into a new line item and changed the cleaning frequency to every 45 days. The rest of the cameras I changed to 45 days and changed the description of the SSOP to "Inspect and clean if necessary". 

 

I've never had an auditor ask to see an equipment manual to determine cleaning (or PM) frequencies.

To echo Glenn though, If I were an auditor and observed a piece of equipment that obviously had not been PM'd, I would certainly ask to see your PM schedule for that equipment and determine when the last time it was "supposedly" PM'd. If your records say it was done last week, I'd probably question you on the validity of your PM records and I "might" ask to see what the manufacturers recommendation for PM is.

 

Marshall



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#6 Charles.C

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Posted 07 November 2019 - 09:46 AM

Hi danh,

 

It might have helped to give some specific examples.

 

A table is not quite the same as a compressor piston. :smile:


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


#7 JohannesTrithemius

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Posted 12 November 2019 - 12:50 PM

Your maintenance tech is correct, you do not have to follow the manufacturer's recommendations exactly. Most manufacturers will want you to over service their machines for insurance and warranty purposes, in case they sold you a machine with a defective part, over servicing ensures your machine runs continuously without break downs.



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#8 Timwoodbag

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Posted 12 November 2019 - 03:23 PM

Yea Manufacturer recommendations for some of our biggest machines are 8 hours of run time equals 4 hours of Preventative Maintenance and cleaning.  That's not possible, and very much not necessary.  All our PM is based on internal discussions with operators and mechanics.



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#9 JohannesTrithemius

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Posted 12 November 2019 - 03:38 PM

Some parts are very cheap and very durable, especially bearings which don't take on loads such as conveyor bearings. The manufacturer will say once a week, but this one you could leave until failure. We have conveyor bearings that are still good after 6 years without any servicing. I'm not saying we are leaving those alone on purpose, they're just not that important/critical, can be changed within 10-20 minutes, and wont shut down production if they fail.



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