Corrective Maintenance is the technical activity carried out after a failure has occurred and its purpose is to restore an asset to a condition in which it can perform its intended function, either by repairing or replacing it.

This does not mean that Corrective Maintenance is only to be implemented by itself. It can be used as part of a wider strategy to plan your maintenance.

The “into the ground” approach

If Corrective Maintenance is used on its own, it is often nicknamed the run-to-failure maintenance. No precautionary actions are performed on piece of equipment which is deliberately left running until it breaks down. Only afterwards is it repaired or replaced.

This “into the ground” approach is actually ideal for low-priority equipment, without which the company’s operations can continue running normally.  It is also a viable approach for assets of lower value where consistent monitoring or maintenance may ultimately prove more expensive than reparations or substitutions when malfunctions occur.

However when applied to high priority equipment, it may eventually lead to downtime since  normal operations will need to be halted as technicians work. It can also lead to very high long-term expenses if applied to assets of higher value.

Corrective Maintenance as part of a bigger picture

Even with comprehensive Preventive Maintenance or Predictive Maintenance plans in place, Corrective Maintenance can (and should) be employed. When it is integrated to other methods, it is known as reactive maintenance.

As useful as these plans can be in some circumstances, these proactive maintenance strategies are not 100% effective. There will always be unexpected failures, albeit fewer, with Preventive or Predictive Maintenance. Corrective measures will often need to be taken to fix unplanned failures and so it is well worthwhile training your team to understand them.

Typically, experts suggest that you observe the 80/20 rule. That is to say that just 20% of maintenance should constitute corrective actions, whilst the remaining 80% should be directed towards proactive maintenance. 

Corrective Maintenance is an unpredictable strategy that requires careful implementation and should be reserved for assets whose failure will not jeopordise your entire operations or cost your company excessive amounts of money.

Find out more about this and other types of maintenance in our article on the subject.

Did you know?

A Computerised Maintenance Management System can help you create, manage and evaluate your maintenance strategy. The Infraspeak CMMS provides you with a multitude of features, including failure reporting, asset, work order management, cost management and more.

Do you think you may need a CMMS? Here are 5 signs you should invest in one and how it can help you save money.

If you’d like to know more, schedule a free demonstration.