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Qualitative Assessment

Systematically Predicting Useful Life

Over time, as your team interacts with an asset and utilizes it, that asset will eventually start to show wear and tear. As a result, a qualitative assessment should be done to inspect its physical decline and determine remaining life.
Aladon Practitioners are expertly trained in the Qualitative Assessment process and can fulfill your need for a systematic approach. We can help your company determine remaining life and useful life for each asset as well as accurately predict when an asset may need rebuilding or replacing.

Our Method

Our process starts by asking a number of critical questions specific to the assets’ characteristics and failure modes / mechanisms. This information goes into a template, which is then used to develop assessment and scoring criteria to be used in the field for performing physical checks, performance tests (if required), and information from O&M. The assessor will then use the templates to inspect and assess the asset for leaks, corrosion, wear, physical damage, noise, vibration, evidence of lubrication, dirt build up, etc. He/she does this for three main reasons:

  • To validate the data from the quantitative assessment (compliance)
  • To grade the asset based on “appearance” and “performance”
  • To grade the asset where no “maintenance information” is available

From the condition assessment results, the reviewer will be able to determine and adjust the remaining life based on the physical condition of the asset. The basis for the adjustment is the 2012 International Infrastructure Management Manual (IIMM) description of asset condition criteria.
The condition assessment allows for a systematic approach to estimating remaining asset useful life and is a way of predicting when an asset may need rebuilding or replacement. To refine the date of rebuild or replacement, periodic follow up condition assessments should be performed to track deterioration. In doing this, the rebuild and replacement plan can be adjusted annually with the most up-to-date condition data.

Overriding Criteria

Depending on the operating media, equipment type and criteria, some criteria may be overriding (have the highest impact on remaining life) and regardless of the scores of the other criteria, will be the decisive factor for how remaining life is determined (i.e. leaking seals on a fuel supply pump). The overriding criteria is decided upfront based on failure consequences (similar to the RCM process).

Grouping

Where multiple pieces of equipment have similar performance requirements (i.e. piping, valves, gauges and instrumentation), it may be required to group the equipment together and assess a sample of the group. For piping, corrosion-loops may be used for grouping. For valves, grouping may also be according to corrosion-loop or function (isolation, control, check, etc.). For instrumentation, grouping may be according to function (monitoring, control, protective, etc).

Qualitative Assessment Criteria

The qualitative assessment criteria is:

  • Appearance (anything obvious i.e. leaks, corrosion, physical damage, etc.)
  • Performance and asset health (vibration, noise, etc.)
  • Environmental exposure impact (humidity, temperature, UV exposure, etc.)

Each one of the criteria (developed with the review group) will be unique for each type of equipment, various criteria will apply. Templates are available for most types of equipment which speeds up the assessment process – however, the templates need to be reviewed and verified before the assessment is done.