MMS users occasionally comment that they feel overwhelmed by the number of Maintenance Alerts MMS presents to them. While the number may seem daunting, Alerts are a reflection of the effort required to keep a vessel in top condition. And, most of us who have been around complex mechanical and electrical systems know that chronically overlooking or underperforming maintenance on them is a good way to ensure their eventual failure—and if Murphy has anything to say about it, at the most critical or inopportune time!
Approximately 90% of Maintenance Alerts in MMS are based on manufacturer recommended maintenance and intervals and often the bulk of these are simple inspections. The balance derives from our fleet experience to help improve equipment reliability and assist the discovery of incipient failures (See the Inspections article).
However, owner/operators often use their equipment at frequencies and loads that vary from the manufacturer’s assumptions, so adjustment of maintenance intervals is warranted and recommended in such cases.
To help keep your Alerts list manageable, new in MMS Version 2.4 is a “Task Actions” pull-down menu next to each alert allowing a number of options, as follows:
- Work Completed. Select to record that the maintenance was completed as planned. The History Manager will open allowing you to furnish details, including any spare parts used. The task will reschedule to the next interval and will be saved in Equipment History.
- Reschedule. For example, if the vessel will be hauled in three months and you wish to perform the keel cooler maintenance at that time, select this action to change the date or run time to reflect the haul out schedule.
- Dismiss. Lets’ say your watermaker has not been used recently, so there is no need to perform the recommended maintenance. By selecting Dismiss, you will automatically reschedule the alert based on its normal interval. In other words, if the PM is a quarterly task, MMS will reschedule to 3 months from the dismiss date.
- Change Maintenance Frequency. You determine that the intake screens on your A/C air handlers need vacuuming quarterly instead of monthly. Selecting this action provides several options for changing the calendar or runtime interval for the task. You will still have to complete, reschedule, or dismiss the current alert, but after that the new frequency will be in effect.
- Turn Alert Off. You may want to turn an alert off on a routine task, like clearing seawater strainers. Be careful! Once you turn an alert off the task will not alert unless you turn it back on from the Task Manager.
- View Task Detail. Shows the details of the selected task.
- View Task History. Shows the maintenance history of the selected task.
By using these tools you can adjust maintenance schedules to your specific operating requirements while ensuring that required maintenance isn’t overlooked. We have found that owners who proactively use the MMS Alerts features generally have fewer than 25 active maintenance alerts at any given time. Remember, MMS reflects manufacturer recommendations for “normal” operating conditions—your norms may warrant adjusting or deviating from those. Deferring or rescheduling alerts is expected in such cases.