If you’re in the facility management industry, you’ve probably heard the term “deferred maintenance.” But what really is it and why should facility managers care?
Deferred Maintenance Defined
Deferred maintenance is the act of avoiding or postponing maintenance tasks in order to presently save costs. Although it may seem like an easy money saver for facility managers, postponing maintenance tasks may be detrimental to assets such as machinery and may be more costly in the long run.
To put deferred maintenance into perspective, we’ve laid out an example:
Joe is a facility manager a grocery store located in South Carolina.
In March, he received a reminder on his phone that he needed to schedule spring preventative maintenance for his store’s rooftop unit. When Joe pulled up his expense report, he decided to defer the unit’s preventative maintenance in order to save money. Besides, the unit was relatively new and had never had a problem before. He was confident that the unit would make it through the hot, humid South-Carolinian summer without a hitch.
Fast forward to July. One hot and muggy morning, Joe got a call from his store’s general manager reporting that the air conditioner was not working. After having his rooftop unit inspected, it was determined that the unit completely failed and needed to be replaced. Joe immediately regretted his decision to postpone his unit’s spring inspection and maintenance, as he could have easily saved money in the long run.
Why Facility Managers Should Avoid Deferring Maintenance
Deferring maintenance can be a big problem for facility managers as it can have a negative effect on expenses as well as a unit’s efficiency. Learn more below:
Deferred Maintenance Can End Up Being Costly
Deferred maintenance may seem cheaper in the short term but may end up costing a facility manager more in the long run. In fact, facility managers should expect future expenses on an asset to be 15 times more than the average repair cost after deferring routine or needed maintenance.
Deferred Maintenance Can Decrease Machine Efficiency
Deferring maintenance in a facility can have a negative impact on machinery. Equipment, such as HVAC units, refrigerators, or even hot water heaters, need to be inspected every so often to ensure they are operating properly. When inspections and maintenance are avoided, machinery effectiveness may be significantly decreased.
Deferred Maintenance Can Shorten Machinery Life Span
In relation to the last point, deferred maintenance can have a negative impact on a piece of machinery’s life span. If machinery in a facility is not running in an efficient manner, it is using more energy in attempts to keep up.
Further, postponing maintenance on single component may lead to cascading failures, ultimately resulting in asset loss.
Conclusion: Creating a Routine Preventative Maintenance Plan is Key
Deferring maintenance in a facility may seem like an easy money saver, but it may cause facility managers to spend more money in the long run.
Preventative maintenance is the best alternative to deferred maintenance. Having a scheduled and concise preventative maintenance plan in place for your facility’s assets is key for overall efficiency and performance.
Does your large, enterprise business need a consolidated preventative maintenance plan? Contact us and we can help create a routine plan in order to save your business money.
About CBRE | FacilitySource
CBRE | FacilitySource provides an innovative, technology-driven, single-source facility management and support solution to leading brands across North America. CBRE | FacilitySource maintains the industry’s largest and most reliable data repository to provide business intelligence, transparency, flexibility, support and the Elite Network of Service Providers to save clients’ money and get the most out of their facilities while offering peace of mind. Established in 2005, FacilitySource was acquired in 2018 by CBRE Group, Inc., the largest commercial real estate services and investment firm in the world. For more information, visit https://facilitysource.com.