Scheduled Maintenance Shutdown Tips

Your scheduled maintenance day only comes around every so often, so it’s important that you approach it strategically.

Order tube bundles, gaskets and O-rings early for your scheduled maintenance day.
Order tube bundles, gaskets and O-rings early for your scheduled maintenance day.

Are you getting ready for your scheduled maintenance shutdown? The approach of the year’s end is typically a cue for business leaders to assess their companies and make plans to improve in the year ahead. Often, this includes a scheduled maintenance shutdown that coincides with the slower period of business around the holidays. Your scheduled maintenance day only comes around every so often, so it’s important that you approach it strategically.

Here are a few tips to keep in mind as you plan your holiday maintenance day:

Review equipment documents

To best ensure your scheduled maintenance shutdown is as productive as possible, you’ll need a few pieces of key information. First, you may want to check the maintenance history of your equipment – when was the last time it was serviced? How old is it? When was the last time it was repaired? How has it been performing in recent months?

If your equipment is starting to age or slow down, it may be time to begin planning its replacement. On the other hand, if it’s still relatively young but not performing as efficiently, it may be a sign that it’s in need of a deep cleaning or a part replacement.

When preparing for an equipment inspection, it’s a good idea to have information like the serial number or model information on hand so you can be precise when ordering parts or requesting specific services.

Order spare parts early

If you think the replacement of certain parts is needed for your maintenance day, be sure to come prepared. You’re not the only one scheduling planned maintenance at the end of the year, so it’s important to beat the rush and order parts as soon as you’ve identified which ones you need. Order tube bundles, gaskets and O-rings early for your scheduled maintenance day.

To order parts for your shell and tube heat exchanger soon, reach out to Enerquip. Our lead time is faster than the industry average, which means you should have your necessary components in hand within a few weeks. Consider all aspects of your shell and tube heat exchanger before placing an order: O-rings, gaskets and tube bundles are all popular items to order this time of year.

Consider your heating system

With winter comes cold weather, but that doesn’t mean your facility needs to be chilly (unless refrigeration is necessary). To make sure you’re not overspending on energy costs this year, review your heating system and identify areas where you can improve. Knipp Services pointed out that this may mean you’ll need to clean some burners, remove carbon buildup from flues, calibrate pressure gauges and make sure that flames can burn cleanly without any obstructions that can create a fire hazard.

One heating system aspect that’s easy to overlook is wasted heat. Many systems that require hot water or steam produce heat that can be captured and used elsewhere in your facility. A shell and tube heat exchanger is ideal for waste heat recovery, an effort that can simultaneously make your operation more sustainable and cut energy costs. Perhaps a heating system overhaul isn’t practical during your planned maintenance day, but it’s worth checking out to see if it’d be a feasible investment further down the line.

On the other end of the scale, your cooling system deserves some attention, too. While you may not be turning it back on until June, assessing the condition of your cooling system is better done sooner than later. Check condensate drain taps, cooling towers and chillers for signs of aging or damage sustained during the summer and fall.

Prevent slip and fall incidents

The ice and snow of wintertime can make for a risky work environment if precautions aren’t taken. Outdoors, you may put down salt or sand to create a safer walkway, but don’t neglect your buildings’ interiors, Cleaning & Maintenance Management Magazine noted. Use a combination of scraper mats and absorbent mats at your entrances to remove snow, ice and water from shoes and boots to mitigate moisture and puddles forming on your floors.

Anticipate power losses

When a winter storm hits, there’s always a chance that a power outage can occur. While you can’t predict when these events will take place, you can prepare for them. If you already have a backup generator, be sure to inspect it to make sure it’ll perform when it’s needed, Facility Executive suggested. If you don’t, or you need to replace an aging one, do this sooner than later.

If you’re planning your scheduled maintenance shutdown day, be sure to consider all tasks you want to accomplish. Remember to have spare parts on hand before you open up equipment to prevent unexpected downtime. To order spare parts early for your shell and tube heat exchanger, reach out to the helpful heat exchanger experts at Enerquip.