They say you only truly appreciate something after you lose it. Electricity is one of the most under-appreciated utilities yet is most crucial to the running of our daily lives. It is not something you want to be without, especially in our competitive business market.
Electrical maintenance is often overlooked or listed lower down in business priorities and this can have serious overall consequences. Failure to properly maintain appliances and machines leads to lower efficiency and could generate unpredicted costs and thus should be an important part of a maintenance programme.
Improper electrical fault management can lead to injury and deaths. According to the Electrical Regulatory Authorities Council 28 deaths occurred due to electricity in Australia and New Zealand between 2009 and 2010.
Approximately 20 per cent of fires in Australia are caused by electrical faults and between 2002 and 2007 11 260 fires caused by faults of electrical equipment occurred in Australia and New Zealand. Consequently, the cost of the fires and deaths is estimated at $489 million per year.
Electrical maintenance is a major component that can prevent the loss in production and efficiency, unpredicted costs, injuries and damage to buildings.
Equipment such as switchboards and motor control centers that are continuously on require more attention, and regular electrical maintenance will identify ageing or defective products so you can repair them before they breakdown.
If equipment is left unattended it may take a lot more work to return the equipment back to a satisfactory operational standard instead of conducting a simple maintenance exercise.
Electrical maintenance resolves potential problems which, when left unchecked, could leave equipment unrepairable. Moreover, fixing electrical problems could lead to closure of business which generates costly interruptions of normal business operations.
Ways to conduct electrical maintenance
It is important to find early warning signs of pending electrical failures, such as regularly checking operation of equipment and identifying faulty electrical connection points.
Locate faulty electrical installations such as wiring, cables, plugs and equipment. These are one of the main causes of hazards in the workplace and can lead to dangers such as fire and electrocution if left unchecked.
Regular maintenance helps to prevent damage to key equipment and reduce unplanned outages. Moreover, the rates for electrical equipment failures are three times higher when not part of a scheduled maintenance system.
For electrical maintenance programs, strict guidelines need to be adhered to. Maintenance engineers must be specialized in both testing technology and safety protocols as the slightest carelessness could lead to a major electrical hazard. It is better to have maintenance conducted by licensed professionals who can handle testing and equipment safely, rather than trying to perform in-house maintenance.
Proper maintenance builds efficiency, protects your building assets, ensures safety of your staff and ultimately saves money in the long run. Research conducted by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) states that the risk of an unscheduled outage is reduced by 66 per cent when you implement an electronic maintenance program.
Electrical maintenance programs are important in ensuring efficiency and preventing injury and death. Contact us if you would like information on establishing an electrical maintenance regime at your organisation.