Preventative Maintenance Checklist For CNC Machines

Preventative Maintenance is Just Plain Smart

Everyone knows solving problems before they become problems is smart. For CNC machines this couldn’t be more true. Due to the variety of CNC machines in operation today, it’s best to keep a Preventative Maintenance checklist short, sweet, and to the point. Preventative Maintenance is as much about taking care of that which takes care of you as it is about smart CNC machining. From before machine startup until after shutdown, preventative CNC maintenance takes place throughout the operating cycle. Detailed below are a few main areas on which to concentrate time and effort.

Day-to-Day Care Checklist

  1. Check all hydraulic fluid and liquid levels and ensure hydraulic pressure is adequate for operations.
  2. Grease Chuck(s) and check the Chuck pressure to ensure proper fit.
  3. Check Lubricant level and Coolant level.
  4. Clean away any chips and wipe down all surfaces.
  5. Visually inspect all tools to be used and check for damage or excessive wear.
  6. Lubricate all parts as indicated by the manufacturer’s guidelines.
  7. Check and clean immediate operating areas to ensure safe transit for CNC operators.
  8. Check all filters and clean or replace filters showing excessive contamination.
  9. Review the manufacturer’s maintenance guidebook to ensure compliance.

Every 90 Days or 500 Hours of Operation

  1. Check/grease chip conveyors and other drive systems.
  2. Check for excessive wear on chucks and tool mounts.
  3. Review the manufacturer’s maintenance guidebook to ensure compliance.

Every 6 months or 1,000 Hours of Operation

  1. Clean coolant tank of sludge and debris.
  2. Remove chucks and jaws for thorough cleaning.
  3. Replace Hydraulic fluid and filters.
  4. Drain and replace Lubricant fluids.
  5. Drain and replace Coolants.
  6. Check machine for leveling if needed.
  7. Review the manufacturer’s maintenance guidebook to ensure compliance.
  8. Contact local CNC machine dealer or service center for any repairs or upgrades.

Annually or 2,000 Hours of Operation

Schedule manufacturer’s service technician to check on the following:

  1. Check headstock for taper.
  2. Check spindle for radial and end play.
  3. Check chuck cylinder for run out.
  4. Check tailstock for taper.
  5. Check turret parallelism and inclination.
  6. Run a backlash program to check the X and Z axis backlash.
  7. Check the X and Z axis gibs.

Take Time

The parables concerning haste-making-waste are entirely applicable in this situation. Taking care of a CNC machine by performing routine maintenance not only ensures keeping costs and repair time to a minimum, but also ensures less frustration and anxiety over time. And isn’t that what all good relationships want to achieve? Minimal frustration and maximum happiness are what preventative CNC maintenance is all about.

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