The Importance of Preventive Maintenance

opinion Essay
1948 words
1948 words

Preventive maintenance can be defined as an activity performed on a certain schedule which is intended to prevent breakdowns or deterioration. These activities can include regular inspection along with solving any discovered problems or situations and regularly scheduled parts changes. Preventive maintenance involves the scheduled adjustment, inspection, replacement of wearable parts, calibrations, basic cleaning and lubrication of equipment or other recommendation made by the equipment manufacturer. These activities can help increase the equipment functional life and help decrease facilities deterioration. No equipment should, No equipment should reach the breaking point [1].
Preventive maintenance is the base of the entire maintenance strategy for every pharmaceutical industry. One of the frequent problems that PM programs may confront is to maintain equally every equipment or parts involved in the pharmaceutical manufacturing. A safer path is to apply a risk-based approach that separates each equipment or parts of equipment in terms of their direct contact with product and possible defects on possibly affecting product quality [2]. It is useful to apply a risk-based approach to prioritize and organize the documentation needed. PM activities are more vulnerable to risks in the period of time of parts changes, including scheduled shutdowns or special projects. Complete process documentation and operating procedures, including organizational policies should exist for all maintenance activities [2].
As part of the process of developing an effective preventive maintenance program, it is also needed to change the whole organization mind-set, about maintenance. There are several steps involved in the implementation of preventive main...

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...hing versus very expensive unscheduled repairs that may be required under troublesome conditions causing production to stop and loss of revenue. Good PM saves money over a product’s life cycle.
[1] Worsham W. C. (2005). Is preventive maintenance necessary? Reliability Center, Inc. Retrieved from
[2] White paper 10 common GMP challenges facing maintenance departments in pharmaceutical plants, (2013). Retrieved from
[3] Clarke, G., Mulryan, G., & Liggan, P. (2010).Lean maintenance- a risk based approach. Pharmaceutical Engineering, the official magazine of ISPE,30(5),1-5 Retrieved April1, 2014, from
[4] Gross, J.M. (2002) Fundamentals of preventive maintenance. Amacon: New York
[5] Maintenance, 21 C.F.R. 211.58 (2013).
[6] Equipment cleaning and maintenance, 21 C.F.R. 211.67 (2013).

In this essay, the author

  • Describes the advantages and disadvantages of preventive maintenance for pharmaceutical manufacturing industries.
  • Explains that pm increases the margin of safety by keeping equipment in top running condition.
  • Analyzes how mcneil healthcare collected data to determine the frequency of preventive maintenance activities at packaging lines.
  • Explains that mcneil healthcare must overcome a series of challenges to effectively implement and improve preventive maintenance systems.
  • Opines that a risk-based approach to maintenance is not applied. it can help determine which equipments are crucial to assure product quality and integrity.
  • Opines that all documentation related to equipment should be accessible to the maintenance team, before any pm work starts.
  • Opines that computerized maintenance management systems are not properly used, or employees aren't qualified to execute it. employees must be properly trained.
  • Explains that maintenance plans are not updated as part of new equipment introduction and production plans. new equipment must include the corresponding procedure and specifications required for the proper functioning of the equipment.
  • Summarizes the implementations made to pm activities and procedures at mcneil healthcare and estimates a 10% reduction in overall packaging equipment failure.
  • Cites the white paper 10 common gmp challenges facing maintenance departments in pharmaceutical plants.
  • Cites clarke, mulryan, & liggan as the editors of pharmaceutical engineering. lean maintenance- a risk based approach.
  • Explains that preventive maintenance is the basis of the entire maintenance strategy for every pharmaceutical industry.
  • Explains that pharmaceutical companies recognize the need for change because of growing regulatory requirements and competition in the marketplace.
  • Explains that unscheduled repairs are higher than pm downtime hours, which indicates that pm activities aren't performed on time or not performed at all.
  • Explains the current capability of preventive maintenance in packaging equipments depends on different factors, such as a lack of maintenance management process knowledge or training in the company's computerized maintenance system.
  • Recommends assigning preventive tasks to lines operators, such as cleaning, lubricating, and visual inspections before and after using the equipment, so that mechanics and technicians can work on scheduled pm activities.
  • Explains that the objective of this project was met; the overall rate of packaging equipment failure was reduced. good pm saves money over a product’s life cycle.

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