Research from the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) shows that an effective electrical maintenance program can reduce electrical outages by as much as 66%!
Using predictive or condition-based maintenance provides the most effective AND least expensive method of reducing the downtime f your equipment. Predictive maintenance would involve scheduling maintenance work around diagnostic evaluations to determine when to perform services. Condition-based maintenance involves collecting trending data to anticipate future maintenance needs.
Overall, there are three main reasons why electric equipment can break down.
1. Mechanical Failure – overtime, connections can become loose, the equipment can overheat, or changes and additions to load can cause problems.
2. Environmental Conditions – Frequent downtime can be caused by high humidity, corrosive environments, and high levels of dust or dirt.
3. Human Error – This can often become a factor when hands-on maintenance is performed.
To avoid costly downtime, many companies have begun to use the predictive maintenance approach. Schneider Electric has helped in this shift with new software and technology to help make effective monitoring both affordable and precise.
Schneider Electric recommends these 7 predictive maintenance approaches to inspect, monitor, assess, and analyze equipment to avoid disruptions:
1. Power System Assessments
Power system assessments provide you with visual inspections of your existing power distribution system to help identify any defects, deficiencies, deteriorations, hazards, or weaknesses. These should always be conducted by professional electrical engineers that have been trained in power system analyses.
2. Infrared (Thermographic) Inspections
Using specialised cameras you can detect anomalies that aren’t noticeable to the naked eye with infrared inspections. This is particularly useful in electrical settings as it can identify hotspots that are often a precursor to equipment malfunctions.
3. Online Temperature Monitoring
When traditional thermography cannot be used, online temperature monitoring can provide 24/7 access to critical connection points. This continuous monitoring can help detect abnormalities at very early stages to allow you to quickly correct things before they become problems.
4. Insulating Fluid Analysis
Oil analysis can detect the breakdown of the oil paper within your system. Often the tests performed within this approach include reading moisture content, acid levels, dielectric strength, power factor, and dissolved gas analysis.
5. Partial Discharge Monitoring
Partial discharges are localised electrical discharges in insulation systems that don’t completely bridge the electrodes. When insulation systems age, they become more susceptible to these breakdowns.
6. Circuit Monitor Analysis
Record voltage, current, and power data using circuit monitors. This will help you to understand when and where dangerous and destructive transients, sags, and swells occur to allow quick action to be taken.
7. Intelligent Protective Devices
Intelligent protective devices include circuit breakers and motor control centers. Circuit breakers provide you with advanced information on identifying and positioning, the number of operations, cumulative interrupted currents, operating times, charging time, travel-time curve, excess closing energy, and wear of contacts. Monitor control centers will help you read the current and power of the motor, thermal capacity, line currents, average current, ground current, motor temperature, current phase imbalance, voltage frequency, line-to-line voltage, and line voltage imbalance.
For additional help or support with anything mentioned in this blog, or any other products that we stock, don’t hesitate to contact our team! Use our contact form to get in touch and our team will get back to you quickly with our expert knowledge!
This is just a brief look at the APC Range, if you require more Schneider Electric equipment for your business, you can check our Schneider Electric microsite for a wide range of APC products to suit your needs.
Other Schneider Electric products Available from Comms Express:
Server Racks & Accessories | NetBotz Security and Environmental Monitoring | Extended Warranty | Accessory Extended Warranty | Power Distribution Units | Uniterruptible Power Supply
If you require any further information on these or any other products that we stock here at Comms Express, please do not hesitate to contact our team who will be only too happy to help.
Until next time…