Electrical Preventative Maintenance (EPM) Programs Explained

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Posted by: CMR October 9, 2023 No Comments

It’s important for businesses to maintain their electrical systems to avoid unexpected downtime, costly repairs and potential safety hazards. That’s where Electrical Preventative Maintenance (EPM) programs come in. By proactively identifying and preventing electrical problems, businesses can minimize risks, increase efficiency and save money in the long run. This article will discuss the benefits of EPM and provide best practices for establishing an EPM program.

Understanding EPM Programs

Implementing an EPM program is a proactive and organized approach to maintaining and managing electrical systems and equipment in a business or facility. This strategy involves a series of planned and routine activities that aim to identify and address potential issues before they become major problems. EPM covers a wide range of electrical components, such as wiring, switches, circuit breakers, transformers, generators and more. The program typically includes scheduled inspections, tests and maintenance tasks customized to the specific requirements and importance of electrical equipment.

Benefits of EPM Programs

EPM offers a multitude of benefits for businesses:

  • Minimized downtime—Regular inspections and maintenance are important to identify and address potential problems before they cause equipment failures, minimizing unscheduled downtime that can be costly and disruptive.
  • Enhanced safety—Ensuring the safety of electrical systems is the primary objective of EPM. This helps minimize the probability of electrical hazards such as fires and shocks, thus safeguarding employees and assets.
  • Prolonged equipment lifespan—Regular maintenance can significantly prolong the lifespan of electrical equipment, reducing the need for premature replacements and saving businesses money in the long run.
  • Improved energy efficiency—Well-maintained electric systems operate with greater efficiency. Addressing issues like voltage fluctuations and loose connections can reduce energy consumption and lower utility costs for businesses.
  • Reduced costs—Implementing EPM programs may require upfront costs, but the long-term savings are significant. Preventing major equipment failures and associated repair or replacement costs generally outweigh the initial investment.

How to Establish and Implement an EPM Program

Here are some basic steps involved in establishing and implementing an effective EPM program:

  1. Assess electrical infrastructure. Before implementing an EPM program, it is important to evaluate your current electrical system. This includes identifying critical equipment, circuits and components and documenting their age, condition and maintenance history. This assessment will serve as a baseline for the program’s development.
  2. Set clear objectives and priorities. Establish clear objectives for your EPM program. Prioritize these objectives to guide decision-making throughout the program. Objectives may include reducing downtime, minimizing safety risks, extending equipment lifespan or improving energy efficiency.
  3. Assemble a competent team. Gather a team of experts with the required training and qualifications to design, execute and oversee the EPM program. The team may include electrical engineers, maintenance technicians, safety experts and project managers.
  4. Develop a maintenance plan. To ensure proper upkeep of your electrical systems, it’s important to establish a detailed maintenance plan that lays out the specific activities, schedules and checklists for inspections, tests and maintenance tasks. Consider factors such as frequency and documentation while also adhering to industry standards, manufacturer recommendations and the unique needs of your systems.
    a. Frequency—Determine how often inspections and maintenance tasks should occur based on equipment criticality and industry guidelines.
    b. Checklists—Create detailed checklists for each type of inspection or task, specifying what technicians should look for and do during each activity.
    c. Documentation—Establish a system for documenting all activities, including inspection reports, test results and maintenance records.
  5. Allocate budget. Allocate a budget for your EPM program to cover personnel, equipment, tools, training and materials. Preventive maintenance reduces unplanned downtime and costly repairs, often making it a cost-effective investment despite the upfront expenses.
  6. Implement advanced tools and technologies. Enhance the effectiveness of your EPM program by investing in advanced tools and technologies, such as infrared thermography cameras, power quality analyzers and predictive maintenance software. These tools can identify issues before they become critical.
  7. Establish safety protocols. Safety protocols must be strictly enforced in EPM programs to protect personnel and assets during maintenance activities. Ensure team members are trained in electrical safety procedures and follow best practices.
  8. Schedule regular training: Keep your team updated with the latest industry practices and technologies through regular training sessions. This continuous learning ensures that your EPM program remains effective and efficient.
  9. Monitor and evaluate the program. Once your EPM program is in operation, monitor its performance regularly. Analyze data, review inspection reports and track the program’s impact on downtime and maintenance costs. Use this information to make necessary adjustments and improvements.
  10. Stay compliant with regulations. Ensure that your EPM program complies with relevant industry regulations and standards. Compliance reduces legal risks and ensures your electrical systems are safe and reliable.
    By following these basic steps, businesses can establish a solid foundation for an EPM Program that helps prevent electrical failures, enhances safety and ultimately saves both time and money.


    For businesses looking to maintain the reliability, safety and efficiency of their electrical systems, EPM Programs are recommended. Implementing EPM is not just a good practice but a strategic investment that can drive businesses towards greater success. Please contact us for additional guidance on managing commercial property risks.

Article Published By: Zywave, Inc.

Author: CMR

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