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How to determine Preventive Maintenance and Calibration Grace Periods

SGquality

Quite Involved in Discussions
#1
Any thoughts on determining the grace period for Preventive Maintenance or Calibration schedules for daily, monthly, semi-annually and yearly activities ?

Is there any ISO or regulatory documents to support this claim ?

Thank you !
 
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Jerry Eldred

Forum Moderator
Super Moderator
#2
Re: How to determine the PM and Calibration grace periods ?

I think the general answer is none. I ran a high quality calibration lab a few years back where they were so strict that anyone who did not turn in their instruments on time got into trouble. They had about zero tolerance for late turn ins for calibration.

The philosophical answer is that the interval is the defined period of time to a given confidence that an instrument can be expected to remain in its specifications.

It is often written into quality systems to allow for extensions to calibration interval based on historical performance (if there is data to support that the instrument has a documented probability to remain within specifications).

If you don't have to comply with any ISO or other document, some companies to write into policy the ability to includle a grace period. But, if you are audited by an ISO auditor or other such auditor, you might have to defend such actions.

One way I can think of to build in a legitimate (in my opinion) "grace period" would be to make the due date 15 days prior to the end of the interval. For a one year calibration, if you calibrated on Jan 15 2013, the due date could be Dec 31 2013, but you have to define in your quality system that the due date will occur 15 days prior to the defined interval. The subsequent 15 day period could be the "grace period" (but you might not want to use that term) - perhaps say you allow that 15 day window for the instrument to be delivered for calibration. You could get your grace period and still abide by the defined intervals. Just my thoughts. Perhaps others may find a problem with the idea.
 

dgriffith

Quite Involved in Discussions
#3
Re: How to determine the PM and Calibration grace periods ?

One way I can think of to build in a legitimate (in my opinion) "grace period" would be to make the due date 15 days prior to the end of the interval. For a one year calibration, if you calibrated on Jan 15 2013, the due date could be Dec 31 2013, but you have to define in your quality system that the due date will occur 15 days prior to the defined interval. The subsequent 15 day period could be the "grace period" (but you might not want to use that term) - perhaps say you allow that 15 day window for the instrument to be delivered for calibration. You could get your grace period and still abide by the defined intervals. Just my thoughts. Perhaps others may find a problem with the idea.
The 15-day period would have to be company policy; the quality document could say 'all MTE ar required to be turned in 15 days prior to the due date on the cal label'. If you put the 15-day-early due date on the asset, and they don't remove it from service as they should, it would be overdue anyway. I would leave the 1-yr due date on it and require them to turn it in early as a matter of policy.
 

Michael_M

Trusted Information Resource
#4
Re: How to determine the PM and Calibration grace periods ?

We have, per procedures, the ability to extend calibration 90 days when justified (in use for example) so long as the reason is reasonably justified and documented.

On thread gages, I have the ability to extend calibration 1 year if the gage has not been used since last calibration. Per our procedure, if the gage is not used after the second year, it gets pulled from service and placed in bond. If it is determined that the gage is needed later, it can be put back into active service and will require calibration after completing the current job. We have some thread gages that get used maybe once every 3-4 years.

All this is specified in our internal procedures. We got to determine what we wanted to do.
 
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