As a business manager, you know the importance of a good maintenance program.
It’s what keeps your place of business looking its best while creating a safe and comfortable environment for employees and customers.
You may already invest plenty of time, money and attention maintaining everything from your IT equipment, to your heating and cooling, to your floors.
But have you thought about your electrical system?
Today we’ll take a look at the benefits of regular electrical maintenance and some helpful hints for implementing preventive maintenance for your own electrical equipment.
What Are the Benefits of Electrical Maintenance?
Electricity is one of those things that’s often ignored except when something goes wrong. We don’t think about the lights until we need to change a bulb, for example.
But many electrical problems accumulate slowly over time. The longer you ignore them, the bigger the consequences:
- Reduced energy efficiency
- Higher utility bills
- Increased risk of injury from electrical hazards
- More expensive repairs
- Lost productivity from unplanned outages
By investing in a routine electrical maintenance program, you can catch electrical problems early and fix them before they become a more dangerous — and expensive — headache.
Here are a few of the key benefits of regular electrical maintenance:
- Lower costs. U.S. businesses lose an estimated $4 billion each year to inefficient electrical systems. Routine electrical maintenance can help you improve efficiency and lower energy costs by up to 30%. That frees up extra dollars to invest in more profitable activities.
- Improve safety. Electrical hazards from faulty wiring or equipment increase the risk of fire and electrical shock, which can lead to expensive injuries and repairs. Preventive electrical maintenance can help you stay compliant with electrical safety standards established by OSHA and the National Fire Protection Association.
- Prevent damage before it occurs. Large electrical failures can result in significant damage to wiring, equipment, and major components. This leads to expensive and inconvenient repairs. Routine maintenance helps you catch problems early, when they are simpler and cheaper to fix.
- Better equipment performance. The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) says that the failure rate of electrical components is 3 times higher when there is no preventive maintenance program. Electrical equipment can accumulate dust and dirt, and parts can become worn out. By resolving these problems early, you get longer life out of your equipment and lower replacement costs.
- Fewer unplanned outages. Electrical maintenance often requires a temporary power outage to protect the safety of electrical workers. With planned maintenance, you can schedule outages ahead of time, when it is most convenient for your employees and customers. If you neglect electrical maintenance, you stand a greater risk of losing power at the wrong time, which can hurt customer satisfaction, degrade employee performance, and cost you money.
Tips for Your Electrical Maintenance Plan
When implementing routine electrical maintenance, here are a few important tips to keep in mind:
- Hire the right person. Preventive electrical maintenance is not a do-it-yourself job. Just like you want a trained IT specialist to service your computers, you want a certified electrician with the proper credentials to work on your electrical system. A trained, licensed electrician will have a thorough knowledge of electrical codes and safety practices to do the job right.
- Schedule planned outages. It will be necessary to temporarily cut electricity to your business to perform maintenance. Talk to your electrician about the best time to schedule a planned outage in order to minimize the impact on customers and employees.
- Inspect with infrared technology. Thermal cameras can be used to pinpoint hidden electrical problems. This can help to find leaky windows and doors, check the integrity of your insulation, detect moisture problems and detect early warning signs of electrical failure. Catching these problems early can prevent more significant damage to equipment and wiring down the road.
- Inspect your generator(s). When bad weather hits, the last thing you need is a generator that won’t do its job. Have your electrician inspect your emergency generator on a regular basis. Get rid of old or contaminated fuel, which can clog a fuel filter. Make sure batteries are fully charged and properly installed, and set the start switch to the correct mode.
- Fix or replace faulty equipment. Electrical repairs can be as simple as keeping equipment and wiring clean and dry. Remove dust, dirt and moisture, and tighten up or replace loose or damaged components. These simple steps will keep your system working properly and avoid more expensive repairs later on.
- Look at the lights. Have your electrician check all lighting fixtures and switches. Make sure sensors and switches work and that timers are set to the correct on and off times. Pay special attention to entry and exit lights, and lights on or near stairwells.
- Keep records. Have your electrician provide written verification of the work performed and repairs made. Track inspection results over time.
Do you need help with electrical maintenance for your business?
Contact us at Complete Electrical Solutions. We’ll provide the information you need to get started and to keep your electrical system in good condition for years to come.