Total Productive Maintenance (TPM)

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Total Productive Maintenance (TPM) is a comprehensive maintenance strategy that aims to optimize equipment performance and reliability by integrating preventive maintenance with production operations. You can apply TPM in any manufacturing or production environment and it is particularly effective in reducing downtime and improving productivity.

What is Total Productive Maintenance?

The goal of TPM as a maintenance strategy is to eliminate failures and improve productivity by integrating preventive maintenance with effective operations management. To achieve these goals, TPM requires the commitment of all levels of an organization, from top management down to the technicians who perform the actual work. By implementing total productive maintenance techniques, organizations can improve product quality while reducing costs and waste. TPM does this by preserving and enhancing production efficiency through utilizing resources, personnel, and procedures that maximize equipment availability.

A Total Productive Maintenance Example

Equipment is crucial to manufacturing and other asset-centric enterprises. Production would be flawless in an ideal world, with no downtime while producing high-quality, defect-free goods as quickly as possible. In truth, production losses occur throughout the entire manufacturing process. To achieve nearly flawless manufacturing, organizations want to minimize and control these losses as much as they can. If you track overall equipment effectiveness (OEE), this would mean an OEE value that is as close to 100% as is practical.

However, to achieve 100% production, assets have to be available and reliable. If your equipment isn’t running, it’s not producing and you’re losing money. Hiring more maintenance personnel to be available at all times isn’t a real solution, even if it sounds like a good option. In fact, it can be quite expensive to overstaff or have idle workers.

Instead, what if everyone was in charge of keeping the production equipment in good working order, not only the maintenance crew? What if operators could perform basic preventive maintenance tasks on their equipment to free up the maintenance staff to work on more important projects? To solve these problems, the concept of total productive maintenance was developed.

8 Pillars of Total Productive Maintenance

With the help of lean manufacturing techniques, the Japanese Institute of Plant Maintenance (JIPM) enhanced TPM beyond its original concepts. Total productive maintenance focuses on proactive and preventive maintenance techniques, leading to the development of the 8 pillars:

  1. Autonomous Maintenance: Equipment operators are given control over straightforward preventive maintenance tasks.
  2. Focused Improvement: A team approach to assist in identifying, eliminating, and mitigating all equipment-related losses.
  3. Planned Maintenance: Scheduling of preventive maintenance according to estimated or measured failure rates.
  4. Quality Maintenance: Inspections, spot checks, and root cause analysis (RCA) help identify product defects and take corrective action.
  5. Early Equipment Management: Taking into account the knowledge and experience of operators and technicians when designing equipment plans.
  6. Workforce Training and Education: Cross-training operators, maintenance technicians, and managers to fill knowledge gaps between departments.
  7. Workplace Safety, Health, and Environment: Prioritization of safety-oriented tasks to maintain a safe work environment.
  8. Administrative TPM: Improvement of office design and administrative processes to further reduce losses and eliminate waste.

What Industries Use TPM?

Nippondenso (now Denso) was one of the first organizations to employ total productive maintenance in the 1960s. While the fundamental components are the same, TPM has evolved over the years. In today’s manufacturing and supply industry, total productive maintenance strategies are primarily used in automotive production and supply, although elements can be found elsewhere as well.

The Benefits of TPM

  • Less Unplanned Downtime – Operators are on the front lines and can spot problems early, alerting the maintenance team before equipment fails. This allows maintenance to happen at a time when production will not be interrupted.
  • Expresses the Importance of Maintenance to the Organization – In the past, maintenance has been seen as a cost center without value. But, the value of maintenance continues to grow with approaches like TPM and reliability-centered maintenance (RCM).
  • Safer Work Environment – Safety at work is also an important part of TPM. Safety-related maintenance tasks enable employees to work in low-risk environments. Getting rid of accidents and avoiding potentially dangerous situations can improve the attitudes and productivity of employees.
  • Reduced Backlog – The maintenance team will have more time to concentrate on capital improvements and other projects as the maintenance backlog decreases over time.
  • Lower Maintenance Costs – Unplanned downtime is expensive, as well as the repairs that cause it. The proactive and preventive maintenance that TPM emphasizes lowers maintenance costs in a variety of ways. One is autonomous maintenance enabling operators to spot equipment issues before they develop into costly failures, allowing for possibly inexpensive, less significant repairs.
  • Lower Production Costs – A domino effect occurs when equipment is unavailable including stalling production, product defects, idle workers, and overtime. Then, the pressure of “catch-up” work when the equipment is back online doesn’t help.

Software to Support Total Productive Maintenance

A system for tracking maintenance activities is essential for TPM’s success. With the help of Redlist’s software suite, you can document and track maintenance activities across any maintenance strategy. Schedule a demo today and learn how Redlist can improve your maintenance operations.

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