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Preventive vs Predictive Maintenance

Maintenance is central to any industrial operation. You want to know that your equipment is working properly. Regular maintenance ensures equipment and systems function efficiently, minimising downtime and maximising profitability.

The pipeline industry is no exception. Effective maintenance is crucial for ensuring safe and reliable transportation of the resources we use across long distances.

Two common maintenance strategies are preventive maintenance and predictive maintenance. On the surface, these sound very similar. Let’s explore the differences between the two approaches and see how we can apply them to the pipeline industry.  

Preventive vs predictive maintenance: what’s the difference?

Preventive maintenance involves performing regular inspections, cleaning and servicing equipment to prevent failures or breakdowns. Typically, operators follow a predetermined maintenance schedule, regardless of the actual condition of the equipment.

On the other hand, predictive maintenance uses data and analytics to predict when your equipment needs servicing based on the actual condition of the equipment. You continually monitor the equipment and systems using sensors, predictive maintenance software and other tools to detect early warning signs of potential failures. By analysing the data collected, you can schedule maintenance when it is actually needed, minimising downtime and reducing costs.

Preventive vs predictive maintenance: which is better?

Preventive maintenance is ideal for equipment that has predictable and frequent maintenance requirements. Having a regular maintenance schedule makes it easy to plan for equipment servicing. It does, however, have its drawbacks. Inspecting and servicing equipment that doesn’t necessarily need it is expensive, time-consuming and inefficient. Preventative maintenance can also lead to equipment wear and tear due to over-maintenance. 

Predictive maintenance is a more efficient way of reducing downtime and lowering maintenance costs. The approach allows operators to fix equipment issues before they become major problems and only when required, minimising repair costs and equipment downtime.

You can also integrate predictive maintenance with equipment automation to optimise maintenance schedules. Automation helps to reduce the time and labour required for maintenance checks and provides better insights into the health of the equipment. Predictive maintenance gives you a better idea of overall equipment health, helping you to make informed decisions about equipment replacements, repairs and upgrades.

Predictive maintenance solutions for the pipeline industry

In the pipeline industry – particularly for oil and gas, predictive maintenance has become increasingly sought after due to the high cost of downtime and equipment failures. With pipelines often spanning hundreds of kilometres across remote and challenging terrain, ensuring the reliability and safety of the system is critical.

Predictive maintenance solutions for the pipeline industry typically involve using sensors and data analytics software to monitor equipment and systems. Sensors can be placed at critical points along the pipeline to measure temperature, pressure, flow rate and other parameters. This data is then transmitted to a central monitoring system for analysis using advanced algorithms and machine learning techniques.

Digipipe: Klarian’s predictive maintenance solution

We know how important maintaining your equipment and systems is for your peace of mind, so we developed Digipipe to provide a condition monitoring and, ultimately, predictive maintenance solution.

By remotely monitoring pipeline equipment (such as pumps and compressors), Digipipe can provide early warning signs of pump inefficiencies or failures, allowing your maintenance teams to act before they lead to downtime or expensive repairs. Our approach helps to improve overall pump time and decrease maintenance costs.

We use our advanced analytics capabilities to build customised models that tackle your equipment monitoring needs, such as vibration and condition monitoring. Ultimately, Digipipe provides you with a predictive maintenance solution to help you optimise your operations and assets.