What is autonomous maintenance and how can it help increase machine lifetime?

There are several types of Maintenance, which we will be covering here on the blog, such as Preventive Maintenance, Predictive Maintenance, Corrective Maintenance and Autonomous Maintenance.

Today we will explain what autonomous maintenance is.

Autonomous maintenance is a type of maintenance that is done by the workers and not by the maintenance technicians.

When a plant has specialized maintenance technicians, they want them to be performing value-added operations that will improve machine efficiency and its overall condition. This being said, there are several maintenance tasks that need to be performed on the machine but that are not difficult, such as cleaning, inspecting, lubricating and even replacing some parts.

If you are able to teach your workers to perform these tasks you will be:

  • Increasing maintenance technicians’ availability for value-added tasks
  • Increasing your workers’ knowledge of the machines they operate
  • Increasing machine lifetime
  • Decreasing the time it takes to identify a malfunction (before the machine breaks down)

To implement autonomous maintenance, you should follow 5 steps:

  1. Restore the initial condition of your machine – have maintenance teamwork on the machine to clean and replace every part it currently needs
  2. Eliminate sources of contamination and improve access to verification points – if you find oil, water or dust leakages, eliminate the source. If you have check-points you need to verify but that is under the machine or hidden inside a compartment, improve their access.
  3. Create the standards – create a route to inspect, lubricate and clean every area of the machine you consider important. These standards must be visual and have a well-defined frequency for each task.
  4. Teach the workers – have the maintenance workers to teach the production workers. This is a partnership and they are all here for the same goal.
  5. Implement!


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