Top Five Equipment Failures in the MRO Industry

    April 1, 2015

Equipment failure is an unwelcome but unavoidable reality that impacts production time, order fulfillment and workplace safety. Fortunately, an analysis of past incidents can help in identifying the areas where failure is most likely to happen, often before a worst-case scenario results. 

Here are five examples of the most common MRO challenges, and what can be done through preventive maintenance to limit their severity. 

oil and gas MRO

1. Threaded Fastener Loosening

Vibration, torque, shock, fatigue failure, thermal expansion and contraction – all of these outside forces can cause bolts to loosen on a wide range of equipment. In many cases, such instances can be corrected or prevented with Loctite® threadlockers. A few drops applied to bolts can help maintain torque and clamp load, while still allowing for easy disassembly when needed.

2. Leaks from Threaded Fittings

Fluid leaks, often caused by vibration and constant pressure changes, can result in a multitude of issues, from simple downtime to potential safety hazards, to time spent on cleanup from a large spill. Depending on the type of equipment, such leaks can occur from more than one place – drain plugs, oiler nipples, fittings – wherever there is air space between the threads. The Loctite line of thread sealant solutions can reduce or eliminate leaks, by forming a protective barrier that moisture and oil cannot penetrate. This not only keeps equipment running, it results in less oil consumption. 

3. Corrosion

Corrosion damage is not always curable with repair – often it means costly part or equipment replacement. Loctite coatings, such as our Nordbak® Chemical Resistant Coating, help prevent corrosion damage and protect equipment from harmful exposure to extreme weather and temperatures, as well as from the harsh chemical environments common to many industries. Preventive care here will improve equipment reliability and longevity. 

4. Abrasive Wear

Wear can happen wherever equipment is exposed to chemicals or subject to intense pressure. In a pump, for instance, pump casings and impellers can become worn from abrasive slurries and solids, cavitation and chemical attack, particularly in the cutwater, ring seats, impeller vane tips and inside the volute. Loctite Nordbak Brushable Ceramic is one of many solutions that can repair minor surface wear. For heavier surface wear, Nordbak Wearing Compound can rebuild worn areas, extending equipment life.  

5. Alignment Issues 

Bolt misalignment, like thread loosening, is often the result of shock and vibration. Clamp load is lost when bolts are loose, which throws alignment out of configuration. Threadlockers are the answer – in this case, High Strength Threadlocker is applied to mounting bolts to secure them in place, maintain clamp load and prevent misalignment.

About the Author, Thomas Buckley

Thomas Buckley is a Global Technology/Segment Engineer focused on MRO. Tom is an expert in adhesives and protective coatings and in his 12 years at Henkel he has focused on several industries including Mining, Power Generation and General Manufacturing. In his role Tom provides direct hands-on support to sales and customers. He has earned a Chemical Engineering degree from Northeastern University and an MBA from the University of Connecticut.

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