This case study shows the progress of the Planned Maintenance Pillar of a food manufacturing facility between 2016 and 2020 (3rd quarter results).

The facility is located in North America.

Situation Before TPM

Analysis of the situation was done using 4M methodology:


  • Low level of skills
  • People with high stress
  • Low spirit of work team
  • Lack of trust and cooperation between maintenance and production


  • A large number of breakdowns
  • High level of deterioration and abnormalities


  • Lack of data tracking
  • Lack of maintenance plan
  • Lack of costs control


  • No proper tools for repairs
  • No spare parts available in the warehouse

Pillar Vision, Mission and Targets


To be recognized as the best supplier of services in the company, guarantee the highest level of reliability, safety, quality, and maintenance costs of the assets.


Through the usage of planned maintenances techniques, we are going to add value to manufacturing activities with a professional team raising the reliability and productivity of the assets, always with a positive attitude.

Planned Maintenance Targets

Pillar Organization

This is the responsible team for the implementation of Pillar Planned Maintenance in Food Plant.

PM Pillar Structure

Master Plan

A Master Plan is a critical factor to success

Maintenance Key Activities

We developed a framework to orient our key activities with an integral vision of maintenance to attend business needs and manufacturing requirements.

Maintenance Framework

It was necessary to become the maintenance concepts into practical activities, this allowed us to make easier our TPM methodology applications toward reaching zero breakdowns and costs reduction.

Pillars of Maintenance Management

Risk Based Equipment Life Assessment

This assessment allowed us to focus on critical equipment and defining a maintenance strategy. We found out that, in the utilities area and aseptic plant, the breakdowns brought a significant waste of time and money.

Equipment Criticality Assessment

Criticality analysis allows us to have an inventory of all equipment in the plant and orienting us to define the type of maintenance required by each one.

Equipment Breakdown Challenge

Autonomous Maintenance Support

Red Tags Management

Back in 2013 we started using red tags to identify and solving abnormalities, because of the high level of deterioration of machines, “Red Tag” became the language between production and maintenance areas.

Red Tag Process

During the activities to support the autonomous maintenance, we detected that a great quantity of work was generated by the maintenance personnel. Many times, solved red tags never brought any benefit into the OEE, creating disappointment and lack of motivation of technicians and operators. We designed and implemented a system that allowed us to set priorities and reflecting the benefit in the efficiency of the equipment.

Red Tags vs Breakdown

The high level of abnormalities in the three departments (plants) Powder, Aseptic, and Liquid required a significant effort to support Autonomous Maintenance activities. It was necessary to train the operators to identify abnormalities and making the proper restorations in the equipment. One point lessons and red tags were the vehicles.

It was important to identify the nature of the red tags to guide the training which was the key to reduce abnormalities. The focus was on Mechanical issues.

Autonomous Maintenance Support in Action

The activities in the Powder Plant were focused to restore mechanical and electrical abnormalities which were the main causes of breakdowns in equipment.

In Aseptic plant, the leakage of water is one of the most important source of contamination, waste water and safety risk.

The high level of dust and difficult access areas were the focus during the autonomous maintenance support in Liquid Plant.

From 2017, in order to support the autonomous maintenance to maintain the correct operation by operators, it was necessary to help them to develop the provisional standards, making easier the job considering on them. Over 6,548 points were transferred.

Due to the number of machines and the characteristics of the facilities, in Powder and Liquid Plants, they were favored with this type of activities.

The next graphics show the effectiveness of the relationship between operators and technicians. More points translated to the autonomous maintenance, less breakdowns in the equipment and better MTBF. A great combination.

Lubrication. Powder Plant Example

Lubrication activities control was one of the most important issue to improve our overall operational efficiency. A high number of breakdowns was related to inappropriate lubrication practices, since maintenance people could not cover all the lubrication points in an effective way. Because of the characteristics of the plant, Powder was the most affected plant about this issue.

Training to Support Autonomous Maintenance Step 4

It was necessary to improve the operators knowledge in order to continue with breakdowns reduction. Operators learn about basic principles concerning mechanisms and incorporating them into their standards.

Zero breakdown orientation

Simultaneously with the support of autonomous maintenance, we implemented the analysis of breakdowns to reduce them and make sure that the most critical ones were deeply analyzed to find their root causes and eliminate them. The recurrence and severity aspects were considered.

We analyzed the following components:

Resistance: is made of nichrome and it loses properties of resistance through the time (more amperage that it needs) Potentiometer: allows the temperature controller to send the pulses, it is made of coal track and with the use, it suffers natural wear.

Temperature Controller: it has the capacity to work in a constant way like vertical sealed, it allows to eliminate risks. The analysis allowed us to know the importance to work in a constant way or by pulses. The system was redesigned and some components were eliminated About this improvement that was carried out in the sealing system, it will be commented in the shop floor.

Time-Based maintenance

When starting, we had a great number of breakdowns, the maintenance was focused on acting until the breakdown appeared. This practice had catastrophic effects, when it affected critical equipment, that it was one of the major cases, we began the planned maintenance, based on time in its first stage and we were supplementing it with maintenance based on conditions, progressively.

Condition-Based Maintenance

We are applying CBM tools in order to improve reliability of critical equipment, serious breakdowns were avoided due to this valuable methodology.

Example: Vibration analysis in Soya Miller. (Very critical equipment)

  • The criticality matrix indicates the type of equipment and type of maintenance
  • Applicable predictive techniques to equipment that in this case are – vibration analysis and electrical tests
  • The corresponding measurements are performed according to the maintenance plan
  • Evaluate the conditions of the equipment’s components in order to gain an advantage about their maximum working life by means of a root causes analysis, concerning failures
  • Failures were reduced from six to zero, by means of the condition-based maintenance study results

Corrective Maintenance

Another important part of our frame developed was Corrective Maintenance activities, in spite to comply with our basic standards, weak points of our critical equipment were analyzed and solved through technical improvements to avoid breakdowns and raise the cycle life of the components.

There were two options to solve our problem, one was to change the diameters of the blue and red gear to raise their torque or to reduce the RPM of the system. In addition, a different device was installed to improve the lubrication method and avoiding the source of contamination.

With this new arrangement, we could reduce from 890 down to 0 of the breakdowns.

Taking advantage of the concept of Karakuri, during 2020 we started to implement systems which help us to make easier our operation and improving the usage of energy available in the current systems.

Karakuri Kaizen

The product was transferred to other direction by pneumatic piston, with minor arrangements we can use the gravity to make the same task.

The product was transferred to blue belt (Check-weigher) by other previous belt (black). With the proposal, we eliminate the black belt and the product is pushing by other product to the belt blue (Check-weigher).

The product was handled by operator to put it into the box, with the proposal we eliminated a human motion to handle the product without additional energy.

Maintenance Budget

According to our expectations, we improved our maintenance budget control in each area. This classification allowed us to orient our decision, considering the management of spare parts, maintenance and costs effectiveness.

Maintenance Budget Type

Maintenance Budget Concept

Spare Parts

We implemented a significant plan to reduce spare part costs, by changing the external suppliers sourcing to local suppliers sourcing, besides this, a reconstruction process of spare parts was Implemented, so that it allows us to improve spare parts control.


Next steps

  • Implement MTTR monitoring system
  • Support widely the Chokoteis reduction in factory
  • Raise continuously the skills and competence of technicians
  • Increase the usage of predictive techniques
  • Implement Planned Maintenance Activities in Management System
  • Implement RCM

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