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October 5, 2010 A Penton Media Publication Vol. VI No. 19

You and CMMS, Part 4

Electrical Troubleshooting Quiz

Some Repairs Matter More Than Others, Part 1

NEC in the Facility



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MRO Insider addresses topics such as:

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    You and CMMS, Part 4
    A computerized maintenance management system (CMMS) provides a full suite of tools for managing your work order system. Unfortunately, many CMMS users simply automate their previous system. This typically means making an inefficient process faster instead of actually improving it.

    Leading CMMS products incorporate best practices gleaned from years of working with end-users and maintenance consultants. Rather than just providing a means to speed inefficient systems, these products provide tools and information you can use to reduce overhead and improve results.

    Thoroughly study your CMMS work order system management system and see what you can learn. If your CMMS vendor has a user group, then see what it offers.

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    See the inspirations you’ve inspired

    Electrical Troubleshooting Quiz
    In one of the buildings on your campus, workers have been complaining about "the terrible lighting." Complaints include excess shadows, low light levels, eye strain, and inability to read box labels without a flashlight. Over the summer, the complaints weren't acted upon because a relamping was scheduled for September. But it's now October, and the complaints persist.

    Two facts:

    1. The relamping contractor used the correct replacement lamps, so it's not a wrong lamp issue.
    2. Records show these complaints started a couple of years ago, long after any reconfiguration in lighting design or equipment configuration.
    We can see the design matches the application, and the lamps match the specifications. What could be causing this "terrible lighting" problem, and what should you do first?

    Visit EC&M's website to see the answer.

    Some Repairs Matter More Than Others,
    Part 1

    In any well-run production facility, operations management knows the following information for each piece of production equipment:

    • Revenue per hour, both capacity and actual.
    • Hours of uptime required to realize 100% potential revenue.
    • Gross margin (or similar metric) per lot, batch, or run.
    They know which equipment makes the most money for the company and how many hours it must run to fill open orders by X deadline. You also need to know this.

    To read more on this story, visit EC&M's website.

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    NEC in the Facility
    The 1993 revision of the NEC brought us Art. 90. It's a short (three pages in the loose-leaf edition) but important introduction to the NEC. However, did you know the NEC also contains an Art. 80? You won't see this in the Table of Contents. If you open the front cover and just start flipping pages, the first Article you will find is Art. 90. Then you get to Art. 100.

    So where is Art. 80, and what exactly does it say?

    To find Art. 80, you need to look in the back of the NEC. Specifically, you need to look at Annex H. You can think of Art. 80 as a supplement to Art. 90. It is seven pages long in the loose-leaf edition.

    Article 80 addresses five major functions:

    1. Electrical inspections.
    2. Electrical fire investigations.
    3. Review of electrical construction plans.
    4. Design, modification, construction, and maintenance of electrical equipment.
    5. Electrical equipment at special events.

    To read more on this story, visit EC&M's website.

    Your digital multimeter (DMM) should have a CAT rating on its case. The CAT rating gives you a transient voltage range for which that DMM (or any other electrical test instrument) is safe to use. If you look at your DMM and don't see this rating, then you cannot know its safety level. Destroy and discard that DMM.

    The categories, in ascending order of transient voltage withstand capability, are CAT I, CAT II, CAT III, and CAT IV.

    The manufacturer achieves a given CAT rating through various means. The basic strategy is to put higher resistance between potential points of crossover within the device. If you compare a CAT I multimeter to a CAT IV DMM, you'll notice the lead jacks on the CAT IV are spaced much farther apart than those on the CAT I.

    We'll look more closely at CAT ratings in our next issue.

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