Monday Maintenance

Mornings like this one are what people tend to hate the most about maintenance jobs. When right off the bat, the thing doesn’t work and you’re racing the clock to make it run before it needs to.

What I do is technically industrial maintenance. It’s not bad, in the grand scheme of things. On a good day I do various quality checks, check on and refill materials, little bit of data entry, but often times I still have plenty of time to devote to whatever I wish. I can’t work on equipment that’s running, so as long as it stays running, I have some free time.

Having said that, there are a lot of different ways of handling a job like this. Some are content to just let it run till it stops and then sort it out. I prefer to be quite a bit more proactive than that, but I can’t predict the future. Sometimes strange and unexpected things come up and must be dealt with. Once I deal with them, I try to figure out how to anticipate it if I can and set myself to catch it before-hand the next time around. As such I’ve built a little list of things I watch and go over regularly.

So it was this morning that I got a hit on one of the things on my list. It’s a regular, no big deal. Except when I went to put it back together and something that should have been springloaded wasn’t. I do have a backup plan for these occasions, and switch to a back up unit. Both in the interest of time and my sanity. This gets it running and leaves me to diagnose the stranger problems at my leisure.

At this point I’ve even already identified the broad strokes problem and have a plan to replace the part causing issues. I’m quite interested to take it apart and see why it’s doing what it’s doing.

Unfortunately even once I’m able to identify the issue in question, a seized piston in a fluid regulator, it looks at the moment like it’s going to require replacing it rather than fixing it. Honestly until I get the thing off I can’t even see why it’ seizing.

Before this, I actually had a more management style job, and dirty though it is, I think I prefer maintenance. Machines are far more consistent and reliable than people are. They just do what they’re designed to do. In some ways what I do is a lot like programming, just a lot dirtier and with physical components instead of code.

It’s such a necessary job but when it’s done right everyone seems to think you don’t do anything. Don’t need the maintenance guy if it never breaks right?

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