As a construction company, you only make money when you are on the job site. So, if your gear is getting repaired, you are losing money. However, when the days on the job site are long, it can be difficult to make time for preventative maintenance. After all, adopting the ‘if it’s not broken, don’t worry about it’ attitude is easy. But this approach can find you not having the machinery ready to go when needed.
There’s nothing like preventative maintenance to help give you an edge over your competition. This is especially true when it comes to having a successful construction company. Other benefits of preventive maintenance include:
- Minimal risk of unexpected component failure
- Less downtime; better reliability
- Better resale value, should you wish to sell some equipment
- Lower operating costs
- Safer equipment, so less chance of personal injury
The Must-Have Preventative Maintenance List
Annual vehicle inspections
If your company has dozers, backhoes, spreaders, dump trucks, and work trucks, they must be ready to go. Plan time at least once a year to inspect them. During these inspections, note the status of the seats, windows, battery, engine, spark plugs, etc. Ensure they are all in working order. If it hasn’t been done in a while, this is an excellent time to replace the battery, clean the posts and terminals, and inspect for any cracked, lose, or damaged hoses, lines, or wires.
Change the oil and top off fluids
How often this is done will depend on the piece of machinery and the manufacturer’s recommendation. The oil is an essential part of any piece of machinery because it not only keeps the engine running smoothly but keeps the gears and other areas of the machinery from grinding against each other. To make the most of an oil change, use synthetic oil. LifeTime Oil carries a full line of AMSOIL products, so you can find all the oil, lubricants, fuel boosters, brake fluid, and transmission fluid you need to keep your construction equipment running at its peak.
On machinery used daily/weekly, it is vital to check the various moving parts-blades, wheels, axles, brakes/brake pads, gears, etc. and see that there are no nicks, loose bolts or cables, worn-out pieces, or other aspects that are key to the equipment functioning correctly. Ideally, this should be done weekly, but if necessary, once a month will be okay.
Inspect from the Ground Up
At least once a week, take a few minutes to inspect all the machinery from top to bottom. A simple visual inspection of the equipment’s body, attachments, brakes, lines, cables, handrails, steps, grab bars, lights, windshield, safety devices, and the amount of fuel will help you stay ahead of the small concerns before they become serious problems. This weekly inspection is also a great time to do any cleaning tasks or spray down the outside of the machinery.
Preventative maintenance and construction companies go hand in hand. As a construction company, you wouldn’t tell a client to ignore that small hole in the foundation until it becomes more significant. You would encourage them to get it repaired sooner, not later. Your construction equipment is no different. Taking care of the small jobs can minimize the need for the big ones later. Make a maintenance list and stick to it- your company’s bottom line will be thankful.