Maintenance and Repair of Industrial Robots is an important issue that many companies may overlook sometimes.
Industrial robots are a great asset to any manufacturing plant, but they require maintenance and repair. You can save time and money by knowing the basics of how to handle issues that may arise with your industrial robot. Today, we'll go over some of the most common problems you might experience with your industrial robot, as well as what you should do when these problems occur.
You'll also learn about some best practices for improving the lifespan of your industrial robot to get more from it before having to replace or repurpose it.
Robots are fantastic tools to make your company more efficient. But like any other tool, they need regular care and maintenance to stay in good working order. So to ensure that your robots are running smoothly, you should establish a plan for regular maintenance.
Multiple problems can arise with robots, other than the complete failure of the equipment.
These include- electrical malfunctions, including damaged cords or cables and wires which could lead to an electrical fire. Dangerous behavior toward staff members due to unpredictable robot actions or malfunctioning behaviors can also occur.
Position deviation in robots is another common problem where a robot is no longer staying within its intended perimeters causing issues for your business processes. Repeatability in robots is a problem where the repetitive motions performed by a machine are not occurring consistently anymore resulting in data loss or software breakdown leading to significant disruptions.
Preventative maintenance is essential to ensure that your industrial robots will function correctly and without errors. Like any other machine, robots require routine checks for them to continue running efficiently and smoothly.
The Benefits of Preventative Maintenance for Industrial Robots:
Smooth Working Conditions:
A robot that's well-maintained will work better and more efficiently. Even if a machine looks like it's working fine without preventative maintenance, you may be spending extra money on operating costs because of this lack of care. We should make sure robots are running as smoothly as possible with minimal energy use. Upkeep is necessary!
By taking care of your industrial robots, you can save money and avoid costly repairs or replacements. Preventative maintenance tasks are generally less expensive than emergency ones in the case that a breakdown happens. You'll also be able to keep everything running smoothly by avoiding unplanned downtime altogether!
By taking preventative measures, you can prolong the life of robots. Even if nothing is wrong with a robot that isn't well-cared for, it could still be putting additional stress on its parts, leading to them breaking down earlier than expected. It will not have an immediate effect, but over time, these stresses could cause severe damage and shorten the lifetime of your machine before its due date arrives.
Preventative maintenance is more cost-effective than repairing issues that arise after they happen. When you do a preventive repair of an industrial robot, it saves your business time and money.
What is the Upfront Cost of an Industrial Robot?
Manufacturers need to consider several aspects when calculating the upfront cost of an industrial robot.
Firstly, while robots require someone with a hefty price tag (approximately $250k) to maintain them, they can help companies save money in other ways, such as increased productivity and reduced labor cost.
Secondly, humans incur many additional expenses that their robotic counterparts don't need to worry about; these include healthcare benefits ($10000 annually) training/recruitment fees ($2-$47 per hour depending on the country).
Human employees also require breaks now and then, which isn't necessary when utilizing advanced robotics technology! However, they also have operations and maintenance costs at around $10,000 annually compared to factory employee hourly wages that range from 2-47 dollars per hour, depending on the country.
Initially, the overall cost of an industrial robot (including systems engineering costs) is approximately $250,000. Furthermore, robots will also have operations and maintenance costs which we calculate at approximately $10,000 annually.
Typically, in the first 3-4 years the cost of industrial robot maintenance will be around $500 per year regarding preventive maintenance like lubrication and upgrading batteries. In the 5th year, the preventative maintenance will cost around $5,000 primarily for replacing wear items like internal wire harnesses.
In the next 6-8 years, there would be another 500 dollars spent on preventative maintenance. Still, this time it's mostly to do with greasing any moving parts and replacing the lithium-ion batteries, which should last up to about 8 or 10 years, depending on usage.
At first glance, it may seem like investing in a robotic workforce is very costly. If you consider all the expenses related to workers, such as recruiting expenditures, payroll hours loss due to accident hospitalization, etc.; they quickly add up over time.
The best robotic preventative maintenance intervals are not the same for all robots. Different mechanical companies will give you additional time frames for when your company should do maintenance on its machines, ranging from every 5,000 hours to 1 year or 3,850 operating hours. By enhancing operations, industrial robots can deliver an excellent return on investment (ROI). They include accuracy, efficiency, safety, and profitability.
Regular Maintenance Schedule for Robots:
Here are some everyday tasks that can be part of a maintenance schedule for robots, depending on the model and its usage:
If you notice any suspicious noise or vibration, don't assume it's nothing. Don't hesitate to talk with the manufacturer about what could be causing that weird sound. They may already know and can help prevent a more significant problem down the road before anything serious happens!
Data backup is essential if your business experiences equipment failure. You can back up data individually or use software to handle all robots on the same network.
However, when it comes down to data, you should always have a plan in place for when something goes wrong. In this case, having proper backups of robot's information will be helpful if there were ever an issue with their performance and function within the workplace.
Electrical Maintenance & Battery Replacement:
Minor and major electrical work is an expected part of industrial robot maintenance. This task should be left to the professionals, as it can become hazardous if not done correctly. Also, replace the batteries in your robot arm and controller if they are not working correctly.
Maintenance needs vary depending on how often the plant operates the machine, what materials have passed through the machinery, etc. Still, your company should consider hiring experienced technicians for these tasks at least twice per year to ensure safety when using their equipment.
To keep your equipment working correctly, you should investigate and clean the vents and filters weekly. Ensure that these areas are free of dust or other particles to avoid clogging. You'll also want to check for signs of wear, such as burned-out lights in light curtains. It indicates that the machine may have wiring issues.
Repairing robots can be difficult and costly, so it's essential to prepare for any eventuality. Industrial robot maintenance is a dynamic process that requires constant attention and understanding of the technology to keep your business running smoothly.
For more information or expert advice contact us anytime!