Failure to act leads to engine block failure
The dire consequences of not acting on the expert predictive maintenance advice provided by Techenomics International following a routine oil analysis was recently demonstrated at an Indonesian operation.
PT Tekenomiks Indonesia (TI) acting general manager Jim Ellison says failure by the equipment owner to follow Techenomics’ recommendations resulted in an expensive and untimely breakdown which should, and could, have been avoided.
Earlier this year routine oil analysis by PT TI on a Komatsu PC1250-8SP engine identified a number of wear debris abnormalities which were reported to the equipment owner.
A sample taken on March 24 and analysed on March 28 showed an increase in lead to ‘warning’ levels as well as an increase in copper. A further sample taken on April 8 and analysed on April 11 showed that lead levels were more than double the previous level while copper had increased to high levels.
Jim Ellison says based on these findings PT TI’s failure analysts advised the owner of the equipment that there was probable big end bearing damage occurring and that the compartment should be inspected for wear.
“However, the owner continued to operate the equipment and in less than 150 hours the big end bearing failed. This allowed the bearing to weld to the crankshaft, causing a catastrophic failure to the engine block (as shown in the photos).”
Jim Ellison says the innovative condition monitoring and fluid management services provided by Techenomics and the expert analysis provided by the company’s fully qualified staff in accredited laboratories enable equipment operators and maintenance personnel to predict issues with engines or hydraulic components before they develop into major problems.
“Simple issues can lead to complex problems, such as engine or component failure, which then result in downtime, costly repairs and lost production. It makes a lot of sense to nip these issues in the bud before they lead to dire consequences and Techenomics has the innovative solutions backed up by years of experience in condition monitoring to help equipment operators save time and money,” he adds.