No company wants to be constantly replacing their equipment. Not only is it expensive to keep replacing equipment, but it can also be a hassle having to constantly look for new equipment.
By extending the life of your equipment, you can reduce costs and reduce stress for yourself. Below are just a few tips for getting more life out of your business equipment.
Invest in good quality equipment
When initially buying equipment, it pays to invest in something that’s good quality. Don’t skimp out on heavily-used equipment that’s likely to break within a year.
Similarly, don’t skimp out on cheap equipment that isn’t made for commercial use (for instance, a cheap home printer isn’t likely to be built for heavy duty office usage).
You don’t have to splash out on the most advanced equipment available. However, you should consider the condition of equipment and what it’s built for – heavily-used or cheaply-built equipment is unlikely to last long no matter how well you maintain it.
The best way to find out if equipment is good quality is to read reviews and buy from trusted sellers.
Make sure that the environment is right
The environment that you store and use the business equipment in matters. Certain equipment may rust or rot if you leave it outdoors – it could be better to keep equipment like tractors and diggers in a warehouse/barn or under a tarpaulin.
As for computers and machinery indoors, you should make sure that they’re not stored near heat sources or exposed to high dust levels. Such machinery is more likely to overheat if exposed to high temperature or allowed to clog up with dust.
In some cases, you may be able to improve the environment for your equipment such as improving ventilation in a building to reduce dust in the air.
Keep it cleaned and well maintained
A cleaning and maintenance schedule could be important for your equipment. When it comes to machinery in a factory, it could be important to regularly replace filters and add lubricants to keep the machinery functioning properly.
This could be a job that you’re able to carry out yourself or it could be a job that you’re able to delegate to employees.
When it comes to complex machinery, it may be worth hiring specialists to carry out this cleaning and maintenance (for instance, when it comes to air conditioning units, it’s best to hire an air con expert to annually inspect them).
It’s worth researching into the recommended maintenance schedule when originally buying equipment so that you know exactly what to do in order to preserve your business equipment from the start.
Make preventative repairs
Within your regular maintenance schedule, you should run a thorough inspection of your equipment, noting down any notable faults or damage (some modern automated machinery may be able to detect faults for you, in which case a manual inspection may not be necessary).
Finding faults early allows you to seek out necessary repairs early before the damage gets serious. A computer that is starting to lag or periodically crash could be worth getting looked at before it permanently crashes and causes potential downtime.
There could also be times when making repairs earlier is cheaper in the long run. Replacing a worn part early could prevent knock-on damage on other parts. For instance, a damaged wheel on a forklift truck could lead to damaged suspension and damaged brakes if not repaired early.
You can save money on repairs by shopping for your own parts. For instance, if you need a new powder coated pipe for an industrial machine, you could find that it’s cheaper to buy one online than it is to ask a repair service to do it for you.
Always use a qualified repair technician so that you don’t end up with a botch repair (this will end up more expensive to fix).
Keep your equipment secure
It’s not just wear and tear that can cut short the life of your business equipment. Equipment could get vandalised or stolen if not kept secure.
When storing tools, make sure that these tools are always locked away and kept out of sight. It’s best not to keep a toolbox in the back of a van, but if you have no other option make sure that the van is securely locked and parked somewhere that can be monitored.
Equipment can sometimes be stolen by employees, which is something that is harder to prevent. By taking regular stock counts, using CCTV and doing criminal background checks on applicants, you may be able to discourage this from happening.