ipc valves

Have you heard of Data-driven maintenance for valves?


The one powerful tool that you could use to maintain a network of diverse valves is data.

Valves are critical components of any flow system, and companies are setting aside huge budgets for their maintenance. Over time, flow networks have expanded and grown complex using different valves at different points. 

Every individual valve could have different maintenance requirements. Sometimes, companies have fixed maintenance schedules, and do not maintain detailed records of each valve. This often results in many valves being replaced prematurely, wasting the valve’s value to the firm. 

The one powerful tool that you could use to maintain a network of diverse valves is data. 

Keeping detailed records of inspection can enable the company to maintain each individual valve according to the repair requirements of that particular valve only. 

Take a look at how data-driven maintenance regime could help you optimize maintenance spending.

Data can turn risk into a positive indicator

Here, the intent of inspection itself is to determine how likely a valve is to fail. The data gathered from the inspection is compared to that from the previous inspection to tell you how much time is at hand till the valve fails, and arrange for it to be repaired accordingly. Studies suggest that around 60% of the valves are replaced prematurely, unnecessarily increasing maintenance costs. Risk Based Inspection (RBI) approach can prevent this and at the same time help to focus on valves that require maintenance.

Data enables you to act in time

A wise scrutiny of inspection data could tell you what exactly could go wrong with the valve. Once you have an estimate of how a valve could fail, you can contemplate the right course of action in advance. Interestingly, this Failure Mode and Effect Analysis (FMEA) approach originated in the US military in 1940.

An example of FMEA Chart for Valves

Knowing what are the modes of failure for valves and what actions could be taken helps firms change not just the valves, but also change any of the faulty processes that might be causing extra wear and tear of the valves.

Data can tell you where to focus

While companies can rely heavily on pro-active approaches such as RBI and FMEA, not everything can be predicted accurately and failures do happen. Such times call for focusing on causes, not symptoms of the fault in the valves. Root Cause Analysis (RCA) approach can help companies review and update the FMEA policy. RCA method is a good way to discover new possibilities as it drives one to ask focused questions. 

Thus, data is a tool that you could use in both pro-active and reactive maintenance approaches. 

Having the right information about the valve network lets you customize your inspection and maintenance schedule according to the needs of the business.