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What Are the 4 Phases of Planned Maintenance for Healthy Buildings

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Jason Pohl

Maintaining healthy indoor environments requires intelligent building maintenance strategies. This means looking beyond a single building system or method and understanding the four phases of planned maintenance. So, what are the four phases of planned maintenance? By exploring the answer, you can develop better, more efficient building maintenance practices.

What Are the 4 Phases of Planned Maintenance? 

Planned maintenance can be categorized in many ways but most commonly falls into four categories: 

  • Corrective maintenance
  • Preventive maintenance
  • Risk-based maintenance
  • Predictive maintenance

When used together, these offer a comprehensive and efficient approach to building maintenance. Savvy maintenance teams use the most advantageous elements of each, and understanding what these four phases of maintenance are will help stakeholders develop the best plan for each building.   

Corrective Maintenance

Planned corrective maintenance happens in one of two ways. The first involves conducting maintenance on equipment and systems once they break down, also referred to as run-to-failure maintenance. The second occurs when scheduled maintenance or inspections identify specific issues that require correction. 

Benefits of corrective maintenance include:

  • Allows maintenance personnel to concentrate on other tasks until breakdowns occur
  • Costs are only incurred when equipment breakdown or failure occurs 
  • Minimal planning is needed

As part of a broader maintenance plan, corrective maintenance makes the most sense for non-critical building assets that can be inexpensively and easily fixed or replaced, or when systems have redundancies that minimize the risk of complete system failure. However, a corrective approach should never be the sole or even primary component of a maintenance plan.

Preventive Maintenance

Preventive maintenance can use three approaches:

  • Time-based strategies use inspections at regular intervals to identify maintenance needs
  • Usage-based maintenance is performed according to equipment-use benchmarks, such as hours of operation or number of production cycles
  • Condition-based approaches require stakeholders to monitor an asset to determine maintenance needs 

Planned preventive maintenance also has numerous benefits. 

These include: 

  • Decreases downtime and equipment failures 
  • Diminishes the need to replace or repair equipment or systems 
  • Extends the useful life of equipment and systems. 
  • Makes better use of maintenance staff, reducing overtime and other costs associated with repairing major breakdowns 
  • Results in fewer major repairs 

However, preventive maintenance strategies have disadvantages. Often, stakeholders disagree on whether preventive maintenance is worth the cost and labor. It’s critical to weigh the potential costs of emergency repairs against the cost of preventive maintenance to ensure you are using resources effectively.

Risk-based Maintenance

This phase involves identifying and analyzing the risk of an event occurring, whether for a minor repair or catastrophic failure, to determine maintenance priorities.   

Risk-based maintenance entails: 

  • Collecting and analyzing data to determine the likelihood of breakdowns
  • Ranking risks according to probability and consequences 
  • Creating strategies to mitigate unacceptable risks (often using condition-based monitoring)

By assessing risks, plans and processes can be developed to deal with various scenarios.

Predictive Maintenance

The rise of Internet of Things (IoT) technology has added a new dimension to maintenance planning. The data gathered by IoT devices allow facilities managers and maintenance personnel to identify problems sooner and resolve them more efficiently. When combined with smart building platforms that provide insights into building performance and conditions, data can guide multiple phases of planned maintenance, but none more so than predictive maintenance.

A smart building platform continuously monitors equipment performance and building conditions. Using machine learning algorithms, it learns how each connected component functions and can identify anomalies as soon as they occur, long before they are noticed by building occupants or even maintenance staff. As it gathers more information, it can also reliably predict future maintenance needs to ensure indoor environments remain healthy.

The benefits of predictive maintenance include:

  • Lower risk of major malfunctions
  • Easier fixes, as problems are caught in the earliest stages
  • Minimal downtime
  • Reduced cost
  • Improved occupant safety
  • Better occupant experiences
  • Better allocation of maintenance resources
  • Easier budgeting

A predictive maintenance approach complements the other three phases of maintenance and allows stakeholders to develop a more efficient overall strategy for maintaining healthy buildings. 

Finding the Right Tools

While asking, “What are the 4 phases of planned maintenance?” is a good start, the most important question is “What are the best tools to create a robust maintenance strategy?” 

Smart maintenance relies on smart technology. That means selecting a smart building platform with the capabilities you need to implement predictive maintenance, accurately assess risk, and make data-driven decisions. With a cutting-edge platform, like onPoint, you can harness the power of data to transform your maintenance program and support the health of your building.

Buildings IOT’s innovative solutions allow you to create the best maintenance strategy for your building. Contact our expert team today to learn more.



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