How Maintenance Work is Done Onboard a Ship?

Maintenance is one thing that keeps any mechanical equipment or machinery going. Weather it is a small machine or a large structure, efficient maintenance can help with prolonged life and favorable outcome. On a ship, maintenance is one thing that keeps machinery up to date and is smooth running condition. In this article we will learn as to how maintenance is being carried out on a ship.

In a ship’s engine room, where the maximum machines are located, engineers and crew carry out the maintenance for safe and efficient operation. Each machine on board a ship requires maintenance which has to be carried out at regular intervals of time.

In the earlier days, the number of crew members and engineers on a ship were large and so the maintenance was carried out fast and easily. However, in the present scenario, the number of crew members and engineers on the ship has reduced drastically.

Many ships carry only 3-4 engineers on board a ship and even the time required to carry out maintenance on the ship has reduced.  Maintenance requires manpower and time which may not be available all the time as the number of crew members is less and the amount of machinery is more.

Maintenance Work

It is for this reason important to plan the maintainence of the machinery in advance so that the machinery can be overhauled and maintained properly. Generally second engineer is required to plan the schedule of maintenance on a ship.

Efficient planning and adequate usage of equipments is the key to productive maintenance. In this article we will have a look at the main types of maintenance procedures followed on a ship.

Types of Maintenance Procedures

1) Preventive or Scheduled Maintenance System

It is famously known as the PMS or Planned Maintenance System. In this type of system the maintainence is carried out as per the running hours like 4000 hrs, 8000 hrs etc., or by the calender intervals like 6 monthly, yearly etc. of the machinery. The maintenance is carried out irrespective of the condition of the machinery. The parts have to be replaced if it is written in the schedule, even if they can be still used.

2) Corrective or Breakdown Maintenance

In this system the maintainence is carried out when the machinery breaks down. This is the reason it is known as the breakdown maintenance. This is not a suitable and good method as situations may occur wherein the machinery is required in emergency. The only advantage of this system is that the working of machinery parts is used to its full life or until it breaks. This system might get costly as during breakdown several other parts may also get damaged.

3) Condition Maintainence system

In this system the machinery parts are checked regularly. With the help of sensors etc. the condition of the machinery is accessed regularly and the maintenance is done accordingly. This system requires experience and knowledge as wrong interpretation may damage the machinery and lead to costly repairs which may not be acceptable by the company.

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  1. Am really impressed by the way the job is done,,i wish am working with an electrical technician

  2. Thanks Marine for this amazing information!

    Maintenance is always the best tool for any engineer or system supervisor needing to ensure the smooth entire system operation. One another reason is you can save a great deal of money and time from it. Nowadays there are many different maintenance strategies. Applying flexibly maintenance strategy helps you get more efficiency in maintenance. So set out a proper proactive maintenance now to get more benefits in the future.

  3. that’s very informative for upcoming marine engineers who desirers to work onboard ship and at sea

  4. very comprehensive and good knowledge it is the best way if we follow the protocols.

  5. Woow, this is an amazing way of planning the work, I study Electronics/Electrical, and I also learn about automatic machines, I wish I have the way to apply for a job, I and to give out the best of my experience.

  6. Hello,
    interested about the price / month,if there is trial period,all conditions to have possibility to use the system
    thank you !

  7. Thanks for the information, please i need a budget breakdown of the machinery . I work with a offshore company as a technical superintendent and i need help and support about what and what to do. Presently facing budget issues.

  8. Ships are full of potential hazards which if not prepared for, could become death traps. Shipowners need to be extra vigilant with their safety equipment as the nature of ship construction facilitates the hazards more than the crew.

  9. Very good insight, do you have any info about maintenance requirement of “any” technical equipment onboard. Thank you.

  10. Very good information on the safety and maintenance of ships. It is good to know when you travel you are in good competent hands. However, I have a few quick questions, what part does thermal imaging plays in ship inspections procedure, if thermal imaging is performed, and who carries it out, independently or onboard inspectors?

    Thanks in advance for your response

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