Highlighter Summer 2015

10 | Pond & Company T he word reliability has not been around for all that long. It was first applied to scientific experiments in the 1800’s. An experiment was considered reliable if it produced consistent results, and was focused more on repeatability. It was not until World War II that modern use of the term was developed. It initially meant that a product would operate when expected. With advancements in technology most everything in our lives, both personal and professional has become more reliable. It is not unheard of for a car to go 200,000 miles with no major mechanical failures with only regularly scheduled oil changes. We expect the air conditioning to be running when we get to our office or home. More often than not, it is. Preventative Maintenance The increase in reliability saves us money and time but also requires us to more closely adhere to the regularly scheduled maintenance required by equipment manufacturers. This is often referred to preventative maintenance or PM. With limited construction and maintenance funds, would increase amount of PM or inspections enable the same equipment to last longer than expected. In all but a few cases we would agree, but how much longer would it increase the service life. With the limited new construction funds and the ever tightening of maintenance budgets, facility managers are forced to do more with less. In the past a reactionary approach has been adequate to facility management. With the given resources, expectations for mission readiness, and budgetary climate this is no longer sustainable. Adopting existing tools and strategies from other industries has become necessary. More empirical and statistical data will need to be used to determine where budgets should be spent. When the total building square footage is in the 10’s of millions of square feet, algorithms will need to be employed to organize and rank restoration and maintenance work. Using Corps of Engineers Research Laboratory’s (CERL) Builder Software Existing tools like Builder can help facility manager and base civil engineers maintain a high level of reliability and mission readiness in their facilities. Employing better reliability policies allows you to plan and predict equipment replacements before major failures become mission stopping. These practices and principles have been put into practice at the Hartsfield Jackson Atlanta International Airport (HJAIA). With a regularly scheduled assessment cycle and a robust preventative maintenance policies, the airport has been able to maintain a high level of reliability while utilizing a majority of the same equipment that was installed originally at the airport. The high level of reliability is maintained through the following: 1. Established preventative maintenance schedule specific to each equipment type. 2. Established inspection/assessment schedule. 3. Adherence to work plans developed by assessments. 4. Data collection to find root causes of failures. Using an air handling unit as an example, the airport has rigorous maintenance and inspection policies to ensure the preventative maintenance is being completed. Work orders are automatically submitted to the maintenance staff using an enterprise management system and the air handling unit is fully assessed every three years. Adherence to this maintenance philosophy allows the airport to do more with less. Over the years repair and maintenance budgets have been reduced while the expected reliability has increased. This required the airport to rethink their operating strategies. The key to their success is a thorough recurring facility assessment. The results of this assessment is used to create a work plan that will focus the resources and efforts of the maintenance staff. The CERL Builder software utilizes empirical and statistical data gathered from government building systems to analyze and predict service life of in service equipment. Through the use of an objective assessment approach, the software gives an accurate determination of the existing service life of the equipment being appraised. When the air handling unit is assessed, it is done so through an objective process that looks at all the parts of the air handling unit. The motor, coil, valves, insulation, control devices, bearings, etc, are surveyed individually. The condition of the parts will give an accurate condition of the whole. Breaking the equipment down into the separate parts also allows the assessment to be more objective without taking more time. Prioritization Strategies & Work Plan Once the condition of all the building systems is known, the assessor and Strategies for the Facility Manager Leadership Reliability Commitment