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What Are Major Problems in Spare Parts Management ?



The major problem in the supply of spare parts, is planning, executing, the required spares planning. Spare parts requirement requires articulate planning procedural lead time, and the correct required spares. Drawing/specification should be confirm to standards. The Purchase order should given correct description, code no: drawings and amendments if any in due course. The supplier should be a A class supplier.

The major problem in spares part management is identification and procurement of exact match. Normally

in India, the technicians on the road are not aware of exact specifications and try to fit the materials available with them to make quick money. Standard workshops are the best solution. They procure and manage spares parts from genuine source and exact match.

Identification of spare parts is not a problem, but keeping inventory of the spares is the biggest problem. How do you identify the correct spares, and do allow to keep excess inventory. A good planning for spares, with proper drawing/identification/requirement of spares is required. Forecast the required quantity and keep minimum stock.

The identification of parts are not a problem. now a days most of the international manufacturers have their own EPC.With the correct VIN in automoblles and the so called Serial and Model nos in Industrial or,Marine applications along with a bit of technical knowledge about the product the identification factor is no problem. On the contrary the intelligent stock control by setting the correct re-order levels, interchangeability, procurement span, back to back orders to sustain the required stock status are the basic things to be observed in parts management. Forecasting ability to a great extent is a boon


Do not depend upon the principals only for all your parts.You should have contacts with your fellow deales,distributors and even with the fleet owners.
You can count on them on an emergency to save time and though reduce the down time.

Major problem is human error. If you do not have a controller meticulous with scrutinizing said assets/inventory, then no matter the system; it will all be a bust.

I completely agree all the comments above, I also feel along Planning, Execution & control of spares you should also have well defined & Robust Data Management for better Procurement cycle.

Spare parts does not have consumption prevision, this is major problem.

Since budgeting is the most important thing in providing the spare, we believe that the clear identification what spares and how much spares need to be stocked which shall be aligned with the R&M reliability target performance will take the most major problem. Moreover if we don’t have system in place which providing the complete data base of SPIR (Spare Part Interchanged Record) started from list of parent unit equipment with complete associated spares

Any Spares parts should be procured with the help of Machine Catalogue by mentioning assembly no./sub assembly no./ part nos. Try to procure from OEM or develop in market. In Stores, parts should be stored according to Machines with respective Part nos.


A Complete Data Bank of Spares should be maintained with storage locations. Any Spares should have clearly defined level of storage and condition of storage.

Let us understand that spare parts planning does not coincide with the normal planning of material requirement. Spares are required to tide away breakdown of machines. To plan for spares of any machine, 1. drawings. 2. cataloge 3.Part nos. 4. suppliers of parts. To stock spares since we cannot predict the breakdown we should be able to stock critical parts required for the machine. Spares maintenance is utmost important for the time spent on breakdown will lead to loss. One more aspect is that there should be reliable supplier for spares, and service centers of any machine should hold spares for the on-going supplied machines.

what are you using as a benchmark to determine a "Spare Part"?

I did not understand MTBF. I was only concerned with stocking of spares which is unique compared with the stocking of regular materials. Please let me know more.

There is no levels for spare parts, it is difficult, I do not how you gauge the levels of keeping spare. Please note for any equipment 80% of the spares have to kept. You do not when there will breakdown, and what quantity you require. Only you open up the required machine, and examine you'll understand. You should have all the spares. My experience in working in Steel Pant maintenance spares were foretasted by the respective user department, and they predicted the spares requirement.

In spare parts first we have to identify as per there category Insurance spare , critical spare , general consumable spare in first ins. spare we have to keep it may be used or not and also critical spare , in case of cons. spare we can standardization and keep minimum spare which may be common for other equipment,

i belive it too. We should get an maintenance material forecast. But to get it is not easy. Could you tell us how difficult was it?

If we are talking about spare parts, the major problem will appeare in the critical spares which we doesn't use often and after certain period of time it will be obsolete and should get rid of it in the same time these are the large peices that cost much, so it's forecast is very sensitive.

I believe Marcelo is on the right track ...
Bit I would take this several steps further ...

The term "MTBF" is the Mean Time Between Failure analysis which is performed on all major assemblies or sub-assemblies ...
This is not a new process but rather a very tried and tested one
I would suggest you meet up with your Engineers and have them assist you in performing the analysis of which component, sub-assembly or assembly will have the shortest life cycle

There is no reason for you attempt to carry 1 unit as a spare for every 1 unit in the filed for possible replacement, besides the inventory investment would be extremely high

Also, in performing your MTBF analysis, review those items which an extensive lead time - you may chose to make the investment in this material ...

When creating a "Spare Inventory", the financial investment is for the contractual period of time - suffice it to say - if you have a contract with Company X for the next 7 years - then you must either have on hand or have access to this inventory.

A financial controller will understand this - and will make the proper reserves for said inventory

Spares parts management should be linked to proper bill of material ( BOM )of the equipment. Each item in that BOM should be properly identified as criticality on operation point of view with lead time to get on hand. Based on which; Material planner can plan for ordering which will in turn can directly have impact on inventory control/reducion.

i have already listened about mtbf, but never seen a pratical application. We have thousands of itens. Could you send me a example? How to select the itens?

we are creating our BOM and the plan is to creat a material forecast. Thanks for the suggestion.

spares comes in raw categories and there are huge quantities with different sizes whether it is mechanical components , Electrical, Electronics components. that all should be properly codified and to be stored with their part number wise. lets take an example of Resistance or capacitor in electronic industries. it is quite typical to manage the inventory with part name. So there should be properly codification with its identification than only it can easly trace out in storage area.



This is a simplified version of the term "MTBF" but in my obersversation it works well
and this where the conversation with the Engineers becomes critical
And to PP Kumar comments - agreed - the more classification - the better

And regarding lead times ...
if this link (back to Procurement) is not dynamic - then it will send off "false signals"
or worse "notice to buy will be always late"

Mean time between failures (MTBF) is the predicted elapsed time between inherent failures of a system during operation.[1] MTBF can be calculated as the arithmetic mean (average) time between failures of a system. The MTBF is typically part of a model that assumes the failed system is immediately repaired (mean time to repair, or MTTR), as a part of a renewal process. This is in contrast to the mean time to failure (MTTF), which measures average time to failures with the modeling assumption that the failed system is not repaired (infinite repair rate).

The definition of MTBF depends on the definition of what is considered a system failure. For complex, repairable systems, failures are considered to be those out of design conditions which place the system out of service and into a state for repair. Failures which occur that can be left or maintained in an unrepaired condition, and do not place the system out of service, are not considered failures under this definition.[2] In addition, units that are taken down for

routine scheduled maintenance or inventory control, are not considered within the definition of failure.

For each observation, downtime is the instantaneous time it went down, which is after (i.e. greater than) the moment it went up, uptime. The difference (downtime minus uptime) is the amount of time it was operating between these two events.

MTBF value prediction is an important element in the development of products. Reliability engineers / design engineers, often utilize Reliability Software to calculate products' MTBF according to various methods/standards (MIL-HDBK-217F, Telcordia SR332, Siemens Norm, FIDES,UTE 80-810 (RDF2000), etc.). However, these "prediction" methods are not intended to reflect fielded MTBF as is commonly believed. The intent of these tools is to focus design efforts on the weak links in the design.

There are many variations of MTBF, such as mean time between system aborts (MTBSA) or mean time between critical failures (MTBCF) or mean time between unit replacement (MTBUR). Such nomenclature is used when it is desirable to differentiate among types of failures, such as critical and non-critical failures. For example, in an automobile, the failure of the FM radio does not prevent the primary operation of the vehicle. Mean time to failure (MTTF) is sometimes used instead of MTBF in cases where a system is replaced after a failure, since MTBF denotes time between failures in a system which is repaired. MTTFd is an extension of MTTF, where MTTFd is only concerned about failures which would result in a dangerous condition.

1.^ Jones, James V., Integrated Logistics Support Handbook, page 4.2
2.^ Colombo, A.G., and Sáiz de Bustamante, Amalio: Systems reliability assessment – Proceedings of the Ispra Course held at the Escuela Tecnica Superior de Ingenieros Navales, Madrid, Spain, September 19–23, 1988 in collaboration with Universidad Politecnica de Madrid, 1988
3.^ [http:\\www.tuv.com/web/media_get.php?mediaid=29575&fileid...2 "B10d Assessment - Reliability Parameter for Electro-Mechanical Components"]. TUVRheinland. Retrieved 16 April 2012.

[edit] References
Jones, James V., Integrated Logistics Support Handbook, McGraw–Hill Professional, 3rd edition (June 8, 2006), ISBN 0-07-147168-5

As I have stated before ...

this is where the Engineers have to come to the table ...

it would be ludcrious for anyone to start a process whereby a 1:1 spares relationship needs to be installed

also, P P Kumar has this right - categories components, subassemblies, major assemblies into critical MTBF mode analysis

I believe, even though the cost would be greater - it would be "smarter" for us to carry sub-assmblies, et al rather than try to carry each individual component.

So let me ask this, when was the last time you actually tried to perform troubleshooting on a sub-assembly which may have >1000 components?