Lesson 7: Sustainablity assesment of the elements of maintenance

In this lesson, we’ll delve into the various elements of maintenance and assess their impact on sustainability. Understanding the environmental and economic implications of maintenance activities is crucial for responsible and efficient maintenance strategies.


  • Maintenance plays a significant role in the sustainability of equipment and operations.
  • We will explore different maintenance elements, including care, cleaning, lubrication, monitoring, inspection, restoration, repair, replacements, and refurbishment, and their implications for sustainability.

Care: The Foundation of Maintenance

  • Care represents a small portion (10%) of maintenance costs but has a substantial impact on equipment longevity.
  • Cleaning ensures early detection of issues, preventing more serious breakdowns.
  • Environmentally friendly cleaning agents can minimize adverse environmental impacts.
  • Lubrication, a vital activity, has evolved to be more sustainable, focusing on reduced consumption and environmentally friendly lubricants.

Monitoring and Inspection

  • Monitoring and inspection are crucial for equipment safety and compliance.
  • Some inspections are mandatory, ensuring equipment meets safety standards.
  • Reducing inspection frequency can help save energy and resources.

Restoration and Repair

  • Repair is the most visible part of maintenance.
  • Unexpected failures prioritize quick restoration over sustainability.
  • Planned maintenance offers an opportunity to consider sustainable repair methods.
  • Circular economy and Industry 4.0 environments emphasize repairability, recyclability, and ease of access to components.
  • Right to repair initiatives promote sustainability by reducing waste and encouraging repairability.

Replacements: Balancing Speed and Sustainability

  • Replacing faulty parts is often the quickest way to restore functionality.
  • Availability of replacement parts is critical.
  • Maintaining a minimum stock level is essential but can be optimized using stock control software.
  • Interchangeability of parts within product families reduces stock requirements.

Refurbishment: Sustainable Restoration

  • Refurbishment is used for valuable components when replacement is not available in a timely manner.
  • It’s considered when the technology for refurbishment is available and cost-effective.
  • Refurbishment of high-value parts with superior quality is a sustainable maintenance practice.


  • Sustainable maintenance practices contribute to equipment longevity, cost savings, and reduced environmental impact.
  • Assessing the environmental and economic implications of each maintenance element is vital.
  • Balancing speed and sustainability in maintenance decisions is crucial.
  • Understanding the importance of care, cleaning, lubrication, monitoring, inspection, restoration, repair, replacements, and refurbishment in the context of sustainability is key to responsible maintenance.
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