When an unscheduled outage hits, it seems smart to extend the outage so you can perform downtime-dependent maintenance that's almost due anyhow. However, it isn’t always smart for reasons that include:

  • Production resource limitations. Retasking operators may require materials they don’t have, plus setup work that exceeds the outage window.
  • Production delivery dates. The schedule may preclude extending downtime.
  • Maintenance resources and planning. You may not have the parts and materials to do the tasks, even if you can reassign people and fast-track the planning.

If you hate to "throw away perfectly good downtime," work with the operations managers to make contingency plans for the riskiest period (late summer). But don't try to fill every minute of downtime. Instead, aim to shift planned downtime to an unscheduled outage.