July 27, 2016

Save Time and Cost with Disciplined Insulating Glass Line Maintenance

by Guest Blogger

The demands faced by insulating glass (IG) manufacturers seem to grow stricter as time passes, with shorter production schedules, higher order volume and greater efficiency standards all driving our industry.

One way to ensure that we’re meeting our demands is employing good IG line maintenance practices. While it sounds simple, regular and consistent maintenance can tend to fall to the bottom of our priorities list in the face of all the other complexities that take priority on a daily basis. But that’s no excuse—a robust maintenance schedule is one of the easiest ways to ensure quality and consistency in our products.

Creating a process—one that is rigorous yet easy to follow and carry out—is one of the most important things you can do. Here are some ways you can bring that process to life in your facility:

Make Lists. “Out of sight, out of mind” is a well-worn idiom for a reason—it’s easy to ignore or forget something if it’s not right in front of you. For that reason, keeping physical, visual lists of the maintenance tasks that must be accomplished each day, week and month on display on your shop floor can be extremely valuable. Keep lists next to each piece of equipment, and have your employees sign/initial each item with a time stamp when the task has been complete, alerting the next shift to the status of the equipment.

Appoint a Quality Manager. If you do not already have one (it can be an addition to someone’s title), empower the manager to manage the tasks referenced above. Charge that person with regularly meeting with the team to discuss any issues or updates, as well as training new employees on maintenance procedures.

Make it a Priority. Of course, maintenance practices like routine cleaning and upkeep can’t go on while your line is running. Make sure the time is being taken out of each day to accomplish these tasks—no excuses.

Get an Outsider’s Perspective. It can be easy to gloss over small maintenance shortcomings when you’re on the line every day. Consider reaching beyond your own employees for quarterly quality audits or reviews—some glass and IG component manufacturers offer this as an added service.
I’ll be sharing some specific maintenance tips in this space over the next couple weeks. Stay tuned for ways you can keep your glass washing station and spacer application process efficient and effective.

Questions or comments? Contact me directly at Joe.Erb@Quanex.com.

For more information about Quanex visit www.quanex.com
Posted: July 27, 2016 by Guest Blogger Filed under: glass, maintenance, performance