Mechanical Instrumentation: A Solutions-Focused Approach

Mechanical instrumentation is vitally important for the safe management of any industrial system. That’s why FUSED Industries takes a solutions-focused approach to instrumentation and industrial I&E services. No matter the industry or the type of equipment, mechanical integrity standards should be maintained at each stage of an instrument’s life cycle. That includes everything from fabrication through installation, testing and maintenance. And we know a little bit about instrumentation — we have 40 years of experience and a 33,000-square-foot fabrication facility that we put to good use. When you’re tasked with an industrial construction project in which instrumentation needs play a large part, here are a few things you should know about keeping things running safely and smoothly.

Craftsmanship Counts
It’s true that instruments can sometimes fail, but that doesn’t always mean there was an issue at the fabrication stage. So, why take a chance with cheaply fabricated work and the potential for ongoing failures? Our Electrical division has executed hundreds of successful electrical and instrumentation projects, and we have the capabilities to install and maintain in-line and rack-mounted instrumentation. An unexpected failure at any point in a system will cause downtime and potentially thousands of dollars (if not more) in lost production time, replacement costs and additional labor to solve the problem. Get mechanical instrumentation fabricated and installed correctly the first time to help prevent unnecessary technical failures.

FUSED Tip: If you already have instrumentation installed, an internal system audit can help identify potential problems before they happen. Conduct regular audits, document potential problems and plan for repairs and replacements before a system failure happens.

Cost and Maintenance Factors
Dig deeper into system failures — how much is it going to cost the company to be down for a few days or weeks versus performing regular maintenance and replacing instrumentation preemptively? And what about health and safety risks to workers when a failure happens? The human cost is too high to be calculated, but there is a definite cost savings to testing, overhauling and potentially replacing equipment versus dealing with a failure, downtime and cleanup. Preventative maintenance will help identify problems before they start. It should include basic, routine cleanings and repair work when there’s an accident or breakdown. New technologies such as web-enabled monitoring have made predictive maintenance easier, so problems are caught before the cause a failure.

FUSED Tip: If you aren’t sure which predictive maintenance technologies are available for your systems, ask the manufacturer or give us a call. Updating systems or adding monitoring may seem like an unnecessary expense, but it can dramatically cut down on failures and make maintenance easier for your team. 

Crew Matters
No matter how advanced technology becomes, it’s still up to the team running and managing the system to make a call on when it’s time to audit or update a system. While there’s tech to test analyzers and control panels, it takes knowledgeable employees to interpret results and make recommendations. Make sure you have qualified and well-trained crew members who can recognize potential problems and proactively address them. We’ve gone beyond fabrication, installation and testing with our clients — we assist with facility maintenance, too. Whether you have an in-house facilities crew or you outsource maintenance, an experienced team will know when to be proactive rather than reactive. And proactive solutions mean fewer breakdowns.

FUSED Tip: People with both in-line and rack-mounted instrumentation experience should be able to interpret data and recognize potential problems. Look for crew members who understand the importance of preventative maintenance and include onboarding and training programs that stress the importance of proactive system checks.

To find out more about the mechanical instrumentation life cycle and how to keep your facilities running smoothly, contact FUSED. We’ve been helping companies like yours for for decades, and we’d love to be a partner in your success.