How to lower business maintenance costs over the long run

By Brooke Chaplan

Given its indirect relationship to your bottom line, maintenance of various types can seem like a necessary evil or even a distraction at times. The fact is, though, that if your building and equipment aren’t properly maintained, you risk major disruption to your business that could be far more costly than any required maintenance. Fortunately, though you can’t eliminate maintenance completely, there are ways to lower its costs over time. To help you re-evaluate your maintenance expenses, here are a few tips to help you keep them under control.

Invest in quality

At some point, most equipment in your business will move beyond the need for maintenance and to the need for replacement. When that time comes, it’s important to replace your current equipment with the highest-quality new equipment you can afford. Don’t be tempted by something that’s priced low if it’s not going to last you as long as it should or if it will require major maintenance expenses while you own it. To be sure you’re making a wise investment, be certain to do research before you make a purchase.

Perform the proper repairs

As buildings age, they begin to deteriorate. Increased building maintenance costs come with this deterioration. Fortunately, if the proper repairs are performed, a building can be rescued, preventing expensive replacement down the road. The key to successful building maintenance is catching the damage early before so much of the building has deteriorated that it is impossible or impractical to salvage. The right repairs done in the right way, though, can help save you a lot of money in maintenance over the life of the building.

Regular inspections

Though major maintenance costs don’t necessarily have to be an ongoing expense, ongoing inspections should be an ongoing cost. When it comes to buildings or any type of equipment that your company uses, regular inspections are crucial to help prevent major maintenance headaches. Even items that are considered “maintenance-free” should be inspected at regular intervals to ensure that no unexpected wear and tear has taken place. Without these inspections, you’re simply setting yourself up for expensive maintenance or potentially catastrophic failures down the road.

Change your procedures

Sometimes, all that is required to lower maintenance costs is to change how you use the equipment requiring maintenance. Every piece of equipment, no matter how simple, has a specific way in which it should be used. It’s important to be aware of these best practices and then inform those employees who use that particular piece of equipment. By taking care of the equipment, the need for maintenance will likely be less frequent and will typically be less expensive when it is required.

Ask around

When it comes to reducing maintenance costs, it’s important to get input from as many stakeholders as possible. To be sure, the company that designed and built a certain piece of equipment should have a say, as they know the parameters in which the equipment best performs. Employees who use the equipment should also have a say, though, as they know how the equipment actually performs in the context of your specific business. By gaining input from multiple parties, you will arrive at accurate conclusions and ensure everyone takes ownership in reducing your company’s maintenance costs.


Brooke Chaplan is a freelance writer and blogger. She lives and works out of her home in Los Lunas, New Mexico. She loves the outdoors and spends most of her time hiking, biking, and gardening. For more information, contact Brooke via Facebook at or Twitter @BrookeChaplan

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