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A preventive maintenance program, no matter how it is undertaken, has a specific goal: to keep equipment operating efficiently and safely at the lowest possible cost. A preventive maintenance system will not eliminate unexpected maintenance or excessive downtime. It does allow equipment to be scheduled effectively and efficiently. A good way to determine the effectiveness of your maintenance program is to rate your shop. Consider the following categories: parts availability, idle equipment, employee morale, shop cleanliness and organization, and operator satisfaction. In order to increase the efficiency of your program, take a look at how you prioritize repair work--is your method really efficient? Also pay attention to your maintenance records--records can yield valuable information about recurring problems and provide clues to help solve difficult problems.