The relationship between preventive maintenance and manufacturing system performance

Diwakar Gupta, Yavuz Günalay, Mandyam M. Srinivasan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


A common lament of the preventive maintenance (PM) crusaders is that production supervisors are often unwilling to lose valuable machine time when there are job waiting to be processed and do not assign high enough priority to PM. Maintenance activities that depend dynamically on system state are too complicated to implement and their overall impact on system performance, measured in terms of average tardiness or work-in-process (WIP) inventory, is difficult to predict. In this article, we present some easy to implement state-dependent PM policies that are consistent with the realities of production environment. We also develop polling models based analyses that could be used to obtain system performance metrics when such policies are implemented. We show that there are situations in which increased PM activity can lower total expected WIP (and overall tardiness) on its own, i.e., without accounting for the lower unplanned downtime. We also include examples that explain the interaction between duration of PM activity and switchover times. We identify cases in which a simple state-independent PM policy outperforms the more sophisticated state-dependent policies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)146-162
Number of pages17
JournalEuropean Journal of Operational Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 1 2001
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported, in part, by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada through a research grant to DG (research grant #45904).


  • Polling models
  • Preventive-maintenance
  • Queueing
  • Stochastic production models


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