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Switchgear is a combination of disconnect switches and breakers used to isolate equipment in substations. In any given operation switchgear may well be the source of power to thousands of buildings at once. Since switchgear is highly powered electrical equipment it must be maintained properly and in a timely fashion. A comprehensive preventative maintenance checklist can ensure switchgear operates properly.
On-site maintenance periodically reviews the equipment of switchgear in general. Reviews reveal occurrence of failures and determines repair refurbishment needs, for example a circuit breaker may need to be refurbished. Switchgear drawings should also be reviewed to determine if drawings are current or need to be updated.
Visual inspection includes taking a thorough visual evaluation of thermal scanning, partial discharge testing and any other performance test needed to establish maintenance procedures.
Determining Type of Maintenance
The switchgear preventative maintenance checklist shows what type of maintenance should be performed to keep electrical equipment in proper working order. Before conducting visual maintenance switchgear protective measures should be set in place.
Switchgear maintenance means performing a mandatory outage to conduct maintenance. Preparing the switchgear for preventative maintenance includes following lockout/tagout procedures. Maintenance personnel must install barricades to ensure all staff is safe during the maintenance process. Also, before actual maintenance tasks all persons involved in such maintenance should be made aware of any and all dangers, special circumstances and specific work related assignments.
A switchgear checklist shows particular maintenance that will actually be performed. This includes repairing drawing inconsistencies and connection issues, cleaning and performing other planned repairs, changes and designated upgrades. The checklist also reveals other measurements and tests performed. Once actual maintenance is performed switchgear is powered back up to verify normal operation.
The checklist should show what results switchgear maintenance yielded. It also shows what repairs, refurbishments and tests were implemented.