Why it's already time to plan for summer shutdowns

Posted by Wendy Smith on Apr 20, 2017 2:20:39 PM


In Rochester, the transition from winter to spring came pretty fast!  One day it was 70 degrees and we were getting ready to pull our cars and motorcycles out of storage and the next day there was 3” inches of snow and salt on the roads again.  Friday I did yard work and noticed some buds on the trees, and by Sunday everything was in bloom! 

The same thing happens at work! Your summer shutdown will be here before you know it, but are you ready?

In the manufacturing world, especially when working with continuous processes, there is little time to do preventive maintenance. Even more catastrophic is encountering a breakdown or failure that takes your production line down.

Scheduled maintenance is a necessity, but the key word is “scheduled.”  You can accomplish much more if you plan to take the line down and plan the work that you are going to do.  You can pre-order materials, pre-fab sub-assemblies, schedule extra workers, have the right resources, tools, parts, and you have time to build up a buffer inventory. 

If you haven’t already started … Right now is the time to start planning for your summer shut down.  When will it be?  What things need to get done?  What is the duration?  Do you have the resources you need?  Do you need to enlist additional resources?  How long will you be able to shut down for? How much inventory do you need to build?

Proper planning for your shutdown can make all the difference in what actually gets accomplished.  If you spend time up front planning what you want to do and you have the resources and parts on hand that you need, it can reduce time and cost and get you back into production with literally, a “well-oiled machine.” Running to failure and addressing things as they happen can be much more costly, and could impact your ability to deliver product to your customers. 

Do you need help planning the work you need to do on your summer shutdown?  We can help. Our Engineers can help you identify and plan the maintenance that is required and our Construction and Maintenance team can perform the work.

This can also be an opportunity to integrate upgrades or capacity expansions. The more activities that you can bundle into the shutdown the better (as long as you have the resources to execute the work).

Note that the time for summer shutdowns is just around the corner and some of the parts and equipment that you need to maintain, repair, or replace may have a long lead time … get them on order.

The next time you blink, your pool will be open and the kids will be out of school and ready for the summer vacation. Some of you will be taking that vacation during shutdown at your place of employment. Others of you will be earning money towards your next vacation by working that shutdown.  Either way now is the time to plan!

Topics: Manufacturing

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The goal of this blog is to be helpful to readers by providing useful information about applications in industrial engineering, design and skilled trades, as well as industry knowledge. We're passionate about manufacturing in the United States. We have a little fun with it too.  

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