Total productive maintenance

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Total productive maintenance
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Total Productive Maintenance (TPM) is a comprehensive approach to maintaining machines in the highest production efficiency. It assumes that as a result of employee engagement, it is possible to significantly reduce the time lost for downtime associated with untimely deliveries of materials, conversion of machines, maintenance and breakdowns. As a result of the application of this concept, improvements are introduced in the organization of the production hall, sockets, or machine settings. Often, simple machines are also used, which are easily re-set, repaired, maintained and, if necessary, sold, even though comprehensive and very technologically advanced aggregates are available (M. Urbaniak 2004, p. 200-202).

The history of TPM

Total Productive Maintenance was started in Japan, but the first improvement activities were applied at the beginning of the 20th century in the USA. It was the Americans who separated a separate department in the enterprise, which was responsible for the removal of failures and maintenance of machinery and equipment. After World War II, this methodology was transferred to Japan, where it was refined for the concept of "one manufactures, the other repairs". The name TPM was first used by the Japan Institute of Plant Engineers in 1971 (S. Nakajima 1989). Often identified with TPM companies are: Denso from the Toyota group, Tokai Rubber Industries and Mitsubishi.

TPM goals

TPM means a continuous process of using machines and devices inside the company by all employees of the maintenance department. Thanks to the implementation of this system, every machine in the production process is able to perform the appropriate tasks, because there are no disruptions in production (J. Furman 2016, pp. 551). TPM strives for (J. Czerska 2006):

  • maximizing equipment efficiency (improving total efficiency),
  • development of the maintenance system (maintenance service) to extend the service life of the equipment,
  • involvement of all departments in the planning, design and maintenance of machines,
  • activation of employee involvement in machine maintenance.

The main goal of Total Productive Maintenance is to achieve the level of three zeros: zero failures, zero gaps, zero accidents at work.

The main pillars of TPM

Autonomous production maintenance

It depends on the knowledge of machines by operators who know them thoroughly. This allows for earlier detection of irregularities, i.e. noise, creaking, knocking.

Perfecting kaizen

Conducting an analysis regarding the work of the machine, aimed at developing such improvements that will eliminate individual wastage.

Planned maintenance of machines

The main message that results from the activities carried out in this pillar is the sharing of experience in the case of purchase or commissioning of new machines. It is also important to shorten the start-up time of new devices.

Maintenance for quality

The use of appropriate quality tools and carrying out technical analyzes related to the work of individual machine components that are responsible for the creation of potential errors affecting the final product.


Undertaking activities that will improve employees' qualifications. These trainings can be carried out both by the enterprise and external institutions. It aims to increase the competence of employees.

Global maintenance of offices

Undertaking activities that will allow to optimize administrative processes as well as to improve communication between company departments.

Safety, health and the environment

Undertaking activities that have in mind the safety of machines, service and the environment - everything that affects the well-being of employees (W. Mączyński 2012, pp. 56). Safety training.

The foundation of the entire TPM system is the 5S method, which is associated with the organization of the workplace. This is due to the fact that it is difficult to see a machine defect in a poorly organized position. The TPM pillars will not have a solid basis and will not achieve the intended goals without the implemented stable 5S (J. Furman 2014, pp. 250).

Stages of TPM implementation

Preparation for the implementation of TPM can be divided into three main phases:

  1. Education of all employees of the company - starting from the board and ending with line employees.
  2. The creation of the system will be based on all activities when implementing work in teams.
  3. Starting activities from the introduction of 5S, that is, ordering the existing state by removing unnecessary things, thoroughly cleaning the company and visualizing management.

TPM meters

In the Total Productive Maintenance system, the progress is measured mainly by calculating OEE (Overall Equipment Effectiveness). It is an indicator that combines the availability of machines, the efficiency of their work and the quality of the manufacturing process (J. Brzeski, M. Figas 2006 p. 5. Simplifying: OEE percentages show us how many machines they did from what theoretically they should have done. It is calculated using the formula:

  OEE = Availability x Usage x Quality 


  • availability - shows the ratio of time scheduled to the time that can be devoted to the task,
  • usage - shows the ratio of time available to the actual work,
  • quality - shows the ratio of defective to good products.

Many enterprises define their own OEE indicator, which is why the calculation method may be different.

Often, MTBF (Mean Time Between Failures) and MTTR (Mean Time to Repair) are also used to calculate Total Productive Maintenance.

TPM benefits

Among the benefits resulting from the implementation to Total Productive Maintenance, we can distinguish (M. Matysek, J. Orda 2014, pp. 32)

  • Reduce machine downtime.
  • Reduction in the number and duration of a failure.
  • Reducing the number of missing items, defects and complaints.
  • Reduced wear of spare parts.
  • Reducing the consumption of consumables.
  • Increased safety.
  • Improving teamwork.
  • Improving communication.