First, can you afford downtime?
If you’re running five welders and one goes down, that’s a much different situation than if you’re running one or two and lose one—that’s at least half of your production lost! Some businesses can’t afford downtime, while others prefer to maintain older equipment.
Next, assess what life is still left in your current automated welding equipment
It’s important to understand what the annual maintenance costs are of all your current welding systems. Tracking those costs over time is one of the best indicators of the longevity of a machine. It’s safe to say that almost all machinery will inevitably wear out. Knowing what you’ve invested into the machine over the past few years will give you a baseline of where it’s at when you’re looking at making the decision to either replace it with a new system or retrofit the welding equipment completely.
For example, if a machine is 15-20 years old and in the past decade all you’ve done is routine maintenance, it’s more likely you’ll soon face a major repair. So, it might be a good time to look into buying a new piece of equipment. However, if you have an older machine you recently overhauled or refurbished, it’s probably better to hold onto it and reap the benefits of your investment.
Finally, are the critical electronic components still available?
In today’s innovative manufacturing world, electronic manufacturers are making components obsolete and discontinuing production of system components earlier and earlier. Make a list—or ask the manufacturer for a list—of the critical components. A quick internet search will take care the rest.
Still not sure?
If you decide it’s time to replace your welding equipment or retrofit an older machine, give Bancroft Engineering a call and let us make the next 20 years worry free!
Bancroft Engineering, located in Waukesha WI has years of experience designing, building and updating automated welding equipment for every sized project.