To repair or replace your industrial equipment – that is the question

Equipment breakdowns can and will happen, and malfunctions involving electronic pieces of equipment can be tough to deal with. When the inevitable happens business owners need to face the difficult questions of whether they should repair the malfunctioning piece of equipment or have it replaced.

What are the malfunctioning pieces of equipment?

Before advancing with any repair or replacement process, one must first identify the problematic pieces of equipment and evaluate them.

Examples of industrial equipment that may malfunction include but are not limited to:

  • inverters
  • multimeters
  • power converters
  • power supplies
  • printed circuit boards
  • resistors
  • semiconductors
  • transistors
  • transformers
  • various types of robotic equipment

There are several more items that can be classified as industrial equipment that may be present in an office or other areas for work.

Does the malfunctioning item still have a warranty?

Checking to see if the malfunctioning item is under warranty is a great first step.

If the item needing repair is still under warranty, there is no need to consider having it repaired or replaced because the manufacturer will be the one responsible for fixing the malfunction.

Depending on the warranty and the product, the malfunctioning item may be replaced entirely so it will be brand-new and functioning properly again.

How old is the problematic item?

It’s probable that the malfunctioning item’s warranty has already expired because newer products are less prone to having issues. In that case, the next step that must be taken is to evaluate the age of the equipment.

Pieces of equipment that have only been in use for a few years shouldn’t be nearing the end of their life spans yet, and so the chances that they can be returned to normal by working with a repair shop are high.

Computer hardware IER
Pieces of equipment that have only been in use for a few years shouldn’t be nearing the end of their life spans yet, and so the chances that they can be returned to normal by working with a repair shop are high

Conversely, if an item has already been in service for an extended amount of time, the emergence of issues may just be a symptom that it is no longer capable of functioning like it once did. At that point, a repair may still be possible, but even then, its restorative effect may only prove temporary.

Replacing the item may be the more cost-efficient step to take when that point is reached.

How much will the repair/replacement cost?

Speaking of cost-efficiency, price will play a big role in whether or not a piece of industrial equipment should be repaired or replaced. These costs vary significantly based off the product, resources and supplied needed, labour for fixing the issue, and other factors.

It’s easy enough to look for replacement items online but what some business owners may not know is that there are also websites that offer free quotes for repairing industrial equipment.

When coming to a decision on if a product should be replaced or repaired, replacing the item would probably be the better choice in ensuring the product is new and without fault. However, trusting a reputable company to repair the product would be more cost-effective and can provide quality results that make it feel brand-new.

Robotic equipment

Pieces of robotic equipment are often high-tech, complex, and quite expensive, which is why they are often the items guarded most closely. These are also the reasons why replacing them is thought of as a last resort.

PULL QUOTE: Owners of manufacturing businesses may be using robotic arms for their production lines, and those items can be pricey.

According to Robots.com, new industrial robotics may cost around $50 000 to $80 000 on average, but some prices can be up to $100 000 and $150 000 if specific peripherals are included. That’s a lot of money to spend on replacing equipment, but business owners may not have much of a choice.

Unless warranties are still in effect, it will be hard to send industrial robotics in for repair because many independent stores are unfamiliar with them, and even those that are familiar with how to fix the product may not have the items needed to move forward with repairs. In this case, there may be no other choice than to secure replacements.

However, business owners can opt to purchase used robots instead. Used robots are still expensive, but with a price range that goes from $25 000 to $40 000 or $50 000 to $75 000 with specific parts included, they are the far more economical option.

Some final reminders

If the malfunctioning item in question has some kind of memory storage, then it would be best to try to have it repaired first so that the valuable information can be retrieved.

Warranties don’t necessary translate to better repairs. As pointed out by ConsumerReports.org, not everyone is happy with the types of repairs carried out under warranties and service contracts. It would be better to take the troublesome item to a reputable repair store to increase the chances that it will be returned in fine, working condition as soon as possible.

Cost should not be the determining factor for either repairing or replacing an item. As discussed earlier in this article, cost is just one of the factors that must be considered. While it would indeed be preferable to save money by having something repaired instead of replaced, it is always important to remember that repairing an item that is already faulty may put off a problem instead of resolving it.

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