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How to keep your manufacturing equipment up to date

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Introduction

Keeping manufacturing equipment up to date is important to a manufacturer for many reasons. Up to date equipment provides a manufacturing plant with the ability to progress, reduce waste from previous out of date methods, and ultimately turn an investment into an update for your company that could mean increased profits and progress.

Instructions

In a manufacturing plant the manufacturing equipment is very much the life blood of the whole organization. Without the equipment that is used, few if any manufacturers would be able to stay in business. It is often times in the area of equipment design that one manufacturing plant can gain an advantage over another manufacturing plant in the same field and it is that advantage that could mean the difference between staying in business and loosing everything. Below you will find some suggested steps for how you can keep your manufacturing equipment up to date.

Steps to keeping your manufacturing equipment up to date

1. Continuing education - There are seminars, publications and research articles being made available all year long. It is important to stay current on the innovations that are available and pertinent to your operation and to the machinery that you are using. This does not mean that you need to always be buying the latest and greatest products, but simply being aware of what options are available to you can help you in determining when it really is time to upgrade. You may also want to consider entertaining the ideas of a sales representative at least once a year. Sales representative are often the source of new ideas in the industry when it comes to equipment and you may learn a lot by listening to what they have to offer.

2. Ease of finding and buying replacement parts - For many their manufacturing plant is a very personal endeavor. There is a sentimental attachment at times to a certain way of production or certain machines that may have been in use since the company's inception. However, old machinery becomes very difficult to maintain as replacement parts become phased out. When you find that replacement parts are becoming less and less available or more and more expensive because of the rarity of the parts, it may very well be time to start thinking about updating your equipment.

3. Take care of what you have -
Regular maintenance is the best way to ensure that the equipment you do have lasts as long as possible. When you make the significant investment of time and money into getting a new piece of equipment, you will want to be sure that you make that equipment last as long as possible by taking good care of it.

4. Upgrade parts instead of the whole piece of equipment -
Just as various parts of a computer can be updated to give the whole machine a newer function, many piece of manufacturing equipment can also be replaced by upgraded parts. After all, why buy an entirely new piece of equipment when a less expensive part can make your old equipment like new again?!

5. Lease your equipment -
Leasing equipment means that by paying a portion of the price of the equipment over time, you have the option of upgrading to a new piece of equipment without worrying about the lost costs and trouble of selling the old piece of equipment. Leasing equipment allows you to make more regular updates without as big of a financial investment.

Conclusion

There are a variety of ways that you can keep your manufacturing equipment up to date that do not have to be as committed as purchasing entirely new pieces of machinery. Keeping your equipment up to date is not the same thing as buying the newest and best available all the time. Rather, you must carefully consider your options and make up dates as your budget and level of performance dictate.

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Posted by DF
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