Facility & Maintenance Management

How to Create a Preventive Maintenance Checklist (PPM Checklist)

June 23, 2022

Creating a preventive maintenance (PM) checklist is one of the core tasks of a facility or maintenance manager. Building maintenance checklist checks ensure that your building’s systems, such as HVAC, plumbing, or electrical are in working order. Our short guide explains what preventive maintenance checklists are, why they are important, and what are the benefits you can get by using them.

What is a Preventive Maintenance Checklist?

A preventive maintenance checklist is a set of tasks for regular inspections on physical assets. It helps ensure that equipment will work properly and serve its purpose when needed.

Preventive maintenance is the process of proactively checking and inspecting equipment to prevent costly emergency repairs. By conducting regular inspections, you can find and fix small problems before they lead to bigger ones.

It's important to note that there are two types of maintenance: preventive (or planned) maintenance and predictive maintenance. While both are designed to keep your machine working longer, they go about it in different ways. Preventive maintenance is proactive—it focuses on keeping your machine running smoothly by performing routine checks and tasks. On the other hand, predictive maintenance focuses on spotting potential issues before they actually happen by using sensors and gathering data about your machine's performance over time.

Why You Should Create a PPM Maintenance Checklist

Preventive maintenance, when applied properly, involves a series of procedures that help to ensure the long-term health of your equipment. When executed correctly, this sort of practice can have a substantial impact on the longevity and efficiency of your equipment. More importantly, PPM maintenance checklist can reduce operating costs by extending the time between overhauls (when the most expensive parts are replaced).

How Can PPM Maintenance Checklists Improve the Efficiency of Maintenance Operations?

PPM (Preventive Maintenance) checklists help to improve maintenance efficiency by providing a systematic approach for completing tasks. They help to ensure that all necessary steps are taken and that nothing is overlooked, reducing the likelihood of costly mistakes or equipment failures. PPM checklists also allow for the tracking and documenting of maintenance activities, which can provide valuable data for future planning and decision making. This can help to optimize maintenance schedules, prioritize tasks, and improve resource allocation, resulting in increased efficiency and productivity.

Benefits of Using a PPM Checklist

Preventive maintenance is vital to the success of your business and has many advantages. The biggest benefit of using PPM maintenance checklist is keeping your business running smoothly. It's the most effective way to avoid costly and time-consuming equipment failures and downtime, employee absenteeism, and low productivity while increasing employee morale and the efficiency of business operations.

PM checklists identify and fix problems before they become larger issues. When you create a preventive maintenance schedule, you are advising yourself to inspect your assets at regular intervals. If the asset is working properly, it will be annotated on the checklist. However, if it’s not working as intended and needs some attention, the item will be noted as such and added to a maintenance to-do list for follow up.

By creating a PM schedule and sticking with it, you are able to proactively address issues with your equipment in a timely manner before they become larger (and more expensive) issues down the line. In addition, failing equipment that gets fixed quickly is less likely to cause production delays or safety hazards.

Preventive Maintenance Checklist and Floor Plan with Checkpoints
Preventive Maintenance Checklist and Floor Plan with Checkpoints using Singu FM

What Key Items Should Be Included in a PPM Maintenance Checklist?

A PPM maintenance checklist should include the following key items:

  • Equipment information: A description of the equipment being maintained, including its location, model, and serial number.
  • Maintenance tasks: A clear and detailed list of the tasks that need to be performed during maintenance, such as inspections, lubrication, cleaning, and replacements.
  • Schedule: The frequency of the maintenance tasks, such as daily, weekly, monthly, or annually.
  • Tools and materials: A list of the tools and materials required to complete each task, such as wrenches, lubricants, or spare parts.
  • Safety precautions: Instructions for safely performing the maintenance tasks, such as personal protective equipment requirements or electrical safety measures.
  • Documentation: A section for recording the completion of each task and documenting any issues or discrepancies found during maintenance.
  • Signoff: A space for the person performing the maintenance to sign and date the completed checklist, indicating that the tasks have been completed.

By including these key items, a PPM maintenance checklist provides a comprehensive guide for completing preventive maintenance tasks efficiently and effectively.

How to Create a Preventive Maintenance Checklist

Before you can start creating a building PPM maintenance checklist, you need to have historical knowledge of your equipment. You need to be able to answer questions like:

  • How long do certain components typically last?
  • What’s the average replacement frequency for key parts?
  • At what mileage or hours does the equipment start experiencing problems?

This information is crucial for designing a meaningful and effective PPM maintenance program, as it helps determine how often each specific task needs to be done.

How to Create a PM Checklist?

  • Create a list of all your equipment and assets.

In order to make the most out of preventive maintenance, you must first create a complete list of all your equipment and assets. That way, you can ensure that you have preventive maintenance tasks for each item on the list.

  • 2. Identify the critical assets.

You’ll want to create extra time in your schedule for preventive maintenance tasks on critical assets. You should also include contingency plans if something goes wrong during or after one of these inspections (e.g., a backup generator in case there are power issues).

  • 3. Determine the frequency of maintenance checks based on past performance and manufacturer recommendations.

For example, if you notice that an asset is failing more than it should be based on manufacturer guidelines, then you might want to increase how often it gets checked as part of its preventive maintenance program.

  • 4. Assign a person to each task so that it gets done regularly.

You can use software like Singu FM to do this efficiently by assigning work orders directly from the mobile app!

  • 5. Record and review the results from each inspection or repair job so that you can see what works best for which piece of machinery or type of asset over time.

How Often Should PPM Checklists Be Reviewed and Updated?

The frequency of review and update of PPM checklists depends on several factors, such as the type of equipment, operating conditions, and maintenance history. However, as a general rule, a PPM checklist should be reviewed and updated at least once a year.

By regularly reviewing and updating PPM checklists, organizations can ensure that their maintenance activities are up-to-date and in compliance with industry standards, improving the efficiency and reliability of their maintenance operations.

What Are Some Common Mistakes to Avoid When Creating a PPM  Checklist?

Here are some common mistakes to avoid when creating PPM checklists:

  • Lack of detail: The checklist should provide clear and detailed instructions for each task, including specific steps, tools, and materials required.
  • Infrequent updates: Regular updates to the checklist are necessary to reflect changes to equipment or maintenance procedures. Neglecting to update the checklist can result in outdated procedures or missed tasks.
  • Overlooking safety precautions: Safety should always be a top priority when performing maintenance tasks. The checklist should include detailed instructions on how to perform each task safely and any necessary safety precautions.
  • Not involving maintenance personnel: Maintenance personnel who will be using the checklist should be involved in its creation and review. They can provide valuable input on the accuracy and practicality of the tasks and procedures listed.
  • No tracking or documentation: PPM checklists should include a method for tracking and documenting the completion of tasks, as well as any issues or discrepancies found during maintenance. This information can be used to improve future maintenance operations.

Using maintenance management software can help avoid these mistakes by providing an organized platform for creating and updating checklists, tracking task completion, and storing maintenance records and history, leading to a more efficient and effective maintenance process.

Example of a Preventive Maintenance Checklist
Example of a Preventive Maintenance Checklist using Singu FM

How Can Technology Help Streamline the PPM Maintenance Checklist Process?

Technology can help streamline the PPM (Preventive Maintenance) checklist process in several ways:

Automated PPM Scheduling

Maintenance management software can automate the scheduling of preventive maintenance tasks, ensuring that they are completed on time and reducing the risk of equipment failures.

Mobile Access

Mobile devices can provide real-time access to PPM checklists and maintenance schedules, allowing maintenance personnel to complete tasks and update records in real-time.

Data Tracking and Analysis

Electronic PPM checklists can provide real-time tracking and analysis of maintenance activities, including information on the completion of tasks, equipment performance, and resource utilization.

Paperless Process

Electronic checklists eliminate the need for paper-based records, reducing the risk of errors and lost information, and making it easier to store, access, and analyze maintenance data.

Integration with Other Systems

Maintenance management software can integrate with other systems, such as work order management systems, to provide a comprehensive view of equipment and resource usage.

By utilizing technology to streamline the PPM maintenance checklist process, organizations can improve efficiency, reduce costs, and improve equipment reliability.

Want to Improve Your Preventive Maintenance?

Contact Velis Real Estate Tech and take advantage of a free trial of Singu FM.

Our experienced team can also assist you in creating the most effective preventive maintenance PPM checklist using Singu FM to streamline your facility and maintenance management operations. Why not give it a try?

Written by:
Kacper Troć
Team Lead at Velis Real Estate Tech

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