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3 Factors to Consider When Maintaining Safe and Efficient Electrical Rooms

Most electrical rooms house medium voltage or low voltage electrical distribution equipment including switchgear, circuit breakers, transformers, fuse-switches, relays, electrical panels, and busbars, to name a few.

 

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For corporate maintenance teams, operation managers, and facilities staff who manage electrical rooms, safety, smooth operation, and service continuity are the primary concerns. Achieving these objectives depends on disciplined practices that involve keeping the electrical room clean, performing annual checks and periodic recommended manufacturers’ maintenance, and documenting all completed maintenance work. Without the proper care and attention, electrical equipment could be at risk, and component wear can lead to electrical equipment failure and unanticipated shutdown.

Key Differentiators that Boost Electrical Installation Performance and Safety

In this age of higher sustainability care, diagnostics are emerging as a critical success factor in improving electrical room safety, durability, and performance. Proper electrical equipment diagnostics is a key differentiator as it requires a high level of human experience and expertise, sophisticated software tools, and broad access to equipment field performance data.

ProDiag report

 

In today’s marketplace, not all electrical room maintenance diagnostics are created equal. When selecting a maintenance and diagnostics partner, operations teams should consider the following elements for securing operational consistency, safety, and peace of mind:

  1. Technician knowledge levels– The lowest risk approach is to work with the manufacturer of the equipment. Since the manufacturer has designed and built the equipment in question, their depth of knowledge is greater. Unaffiliated third-party providers usually possess a general knowledge of components but may not necessarily be familiar with the intricate details. In addition, the manufacturer’s field service representatives have direct access to the research and development experts who originally designed the individual components. Therefore, they have the option of “going directly to the source”, thereby minimizing length of downtime, should an issue occur.
  2. Diagnostics technologies available– One example is Schneider Electric’s ProDiagTM diagnostic tools. These are a combination of dedicated sensors and an internal software tool that Schneider Electric field personnel use to analyze trip units (i.e, MicroLogic), relaysbreakers, fuses, and other electrical components. Field use of ProDiag could help to detect some potential electrical equipment. Some ProDiag tools, like ProDiag Corona for partial discharge and ProDiag breaker, enable the practice of condition-based maintenance. By using ProDiag breaker to diagnose that the speed of a particular breaker has slowed down over time, for instance, the tool highlights which breakers should be proactively repaired with genuine spare parts or replaced before they generate unanticipated instances of downtime.
  3. Breadth and depth of accessible predictive maintenance data– The trend of big data has now evolved in a way that can greatly boost the effectiveness of electrical room maintenance. A global technology provider like Schneider Electric, for instance, collects electrical room component performance data from up to 50,000 customer sites a year. This anonymous “data lake” tracks the history of electrical components, the onsite visits, the findings, and the actions taken to resolve the issues identified. Under such a scenario, the larger the pool of data, the more precise and accurate the information that is analyzed, and the lower the instances of unanticipated downtime and safety-related accidents. Armed with this big data information surrounding behavioral trends, stress points, and projected component failure timelines, field service representatives are prepared, before they even open a cabinet, for what they will find.

For More Information

To learn how Schneider Electric ProDiag diagnostic tools can help your organization achieve a higher level of electrical room resilience, safety, and business continuity, visit our onsite maintenance web page.

To learn how other Power Services from Schneider Electric can help you, see below.


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