Maintenance Checklist

What is a maintenance checklist?

A facility maintenance checklist, also called a preventative maintenance checklist, is an invaluable security tool to keep a building safe by periodical planning, checkups, and maintenance activities. It is the job of facility management teams to upkeep various aspects of building maintenance that get weathered by environmental conditions, worn-out by frequent use or expire because of the technical capabilities of the materials included.   

Irregular adhering to a facility maintenance checklist can cause mild issues in shorter periods and severe, even life-threatening security problems down the line. A mild issue can include failure of parts of the IT infrastructure that can prevent people from doing their daily work. A severe issue can be a power cut in a facility that doesn’t have a backup generator, which endangers substances or materials that must be kept under specific temperature conditions, in turn causing serious consequences to people’s health or life. Therefore, every facility must create a facility maintenance template, in which it will describe the necessary steps needed to be taken to keep everything safe and in order.

Checklists can be a great tool to standardize routine tasks that have to be run regularly. In the same fashion, a preventive maintenance checklist can be used to streamline a variety of preventive maintenance tasks.

However, preventive maintenance checklists are only useful if created with a purpose and include all of the necessary information.

To ensure your PM checklists are practical to use, continue reading this article as we:

  • briefly discuss the main benefits of preventive maintenance checklists
  • list information sources you want to check before creating them
  • outline information that should be included on a preventive maintenance checklist
  • look at a few examples used in practice
  • show how you can easily create maintenance checklists using PM Builder

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What is preventive maintenance? 

Any maintenance activity, such as an inspection, servicing or replacement, that’s performed as part of a scheduled plan, rather than as a response to a breakdown, can be considered preventive maintenance. And what is the purpose of preventive maintenance? By identifying components or parts that are wearing out and repairing or replacing them before they fail, an effective preventive maintenance program can help limit production downtime and extend the service life of equipment and facilities.

In these theoretical terms, preventive maintenance is a simple idea. But like many simple ideas, it can be challenging to make it a reality. In practice, a preventive maintenance program can be quite complex: there’s a great deal of data to be collected and analyzed, and many competing tasks to schedule, prioritize and cost.

Any preventive maintenance program can be thought of as having four general components, according to “The Complete Guide to Preventive and Predictive Maintenance” (2003). For a program to be effective, each component has to be working well. “The Complete Guide” describes the components as follows:

  • Engineering: Does the maintenance schedule include the right tasks, at the right frequency, to identify and remedy critical wear?
  • Economic: Are the scheduled maintenance activities worth doing economically? When all the costs associated with equipment failure are factored in, such as downtime and safety considerations, does it cost less to keep maintaining the asset than to replace it?
  • People-Psychological: Are the employees who perform the preventive maintenance sufficiently motivated and trained to do this detail-oriented work correctly?
  • Management: Is preventive maintenance built into business processes and operations, and are operations systems designed to produce good preventive maintenance outcomes?

And according to technical training resource ODESIE, any preventive maintenance program should be clearly defined, with well-documented maintenance activities for each piece of equipment. It should also be regularly reviewed and adjusted as necessary.

Assembling a program like this can be a challenge. Still, the basic building blocks of what “The Complete Guide” calls the engineering component—which is arguably the most critical part—are simple processes and schedules. Consider these preventive maintenance checklists as a starting point as you think about the maintenance activities that can help keep your facility functioning.

Maintenance Checklist

Things To Do Before Executing Preventive Maintenance Plan

Before coming up with the preventative eForm and its items that will depend on the type of asset you’re evaluating, it’s advisable to follow these six steps that will inform the checklist you’re building with greater accuracy.

Delegate preventive maintenance duties to the relevant team of people: Before creating the actual preventive maintenance checklist, it is hugely important to decide on the people who will be part of the maintenance team and who will use the checklist. Selecting top management individuals, maintenance technicians and managers, as well as any staff that understands the technical side of the equipment and how it operates, ensures the maintenance program runs effectively.

Set goals for the preventive maintenance program: According to the resources, structure, industry, size and other unique factors of your company, create a scope of a PM plan that can include fixing certain assets, replacing them or making a general long-term strategy for the equipment.

Gather in-depth details about the existing equipment: The very foundation of any preventive maintenance checklist is familiar with the existing equipment that will be included in the checklist. Document the model and a serial number of every piece of equipment and its installation, repairs and parts replacement guidelines. A technician should also assess the functioning of specific assets. With this information, you can calculate the cost of equipment downtime and acquire a basis for evaluating the PM program.

Shortlist equipment before including it in the checklist: After making a full list of inventory, a decisionmaker should establish which equipment items should undergo a maintenance program. Assets that should have priority in this regard are those with high repair/maintenance costs that need routine maintenance and those that are decisive for successful business operations.

Come up with a PM schedule that informs future checklists: Based on equipment maintenance history, maintenance standards, inspection times, equipment location, production downtime and technician availability, create a preventive maintenance schedule that will provide minimal disruption and optimal maintenance.

Adjust KPIs: To inform the items contained in the preventive maintenance checklist, evaluate cost/benefit effects of previous preventive maintenance programs. Maintenance managers may opt for adjusting PMs and key performance indicators depending on company activities, conditions and other factors.

Most Popular Types Of Maintenance Checklist Templates And Items They Contain

A preventive maintenance checklist must befit the facility’s maintenance plan and be tailored to your enterprise’s needs. Even though they are business-specific, these checklists also have certain common elements regardless of industry.

Let’s take a look into examples of different types of preventive maintenance checklists and common items for each.

Preventive maintenance checklist for machines:

  • Make sure that machine is clear of debris before and after the shift begins
  • Clean the lubricant, dirt and other debris from the machine’s surface
  • Inspect tools’ sharpness
  • Replace worn or damaged tools
  • Check machine’s fluid levels and replace filters if necessary
  • Calibrate machines

Heating, ventilation and air conditioning system maintenance checklist:

  • Check the thermostat
  • Inspect condenser coil and establish if it needs cleaning
  • Check all wiring and electrical controls connections
  • Inspect voltage and amperage on all motors
  • Inspect the compressor contactor
  • Check start capacitor and potential relay.
  • Check the pressure switch cut-out setting.
  • Replace air filter or clean reusable type filter.

Facility infrastructure maintenance checklist:

  • Make sure that safety and caution areas are sufficiently marked
  • Ensure that wires are secured and are not a hazard
  • Inspect walkway and stairway railways
  • Ensure adequate space between machinery
  • Inspect structural elements once a year at least
  • Check building systems such as electrical, plumbing, network etc.
  • Assess external grounds for hazards
  • Examine fire detectors several times a year.

Lightning maintenance checklist:

  • Inspect all the lighting in the facility
  • Check all exit, interior and exterior lighting for proper installation and function
  • Replace nonfunctional lights
  • Check the colour temperature of lamps that you’re replacing
  • Clean dirty lamps and check their aim
  • Check hardware and cabling

Plumbing maintenance checklist:

  • Inspect plumbing according to schedule
  • Investigate any leaks or noises
  • Lubricate bearings in domestic water booster and circulation pump system
  • Inspect couplings
  • Check the sewage ejection pumps
  • Lubricate exposed pumps


  • Inspect lighting on a regular schedule. Make sure your inspection list includes all the lighting in your facility:
  • Check all exit lighting for proper installation and function.
  • Check all interior lighting for proper installation and function.
  • Check all exterior lighting for proper installation and function.
  • Replace any nonfunctional lamps you encounter. When lamps begin to fail, consider relamping them as a group. You can create a schedule for relamping by estimating the average duration of lamp use in a week or a month and comparing that to the expected service life of the lamp.
  • When replacing lamps, check that the colour temperature to maintain consistency.
  • Dust and clean dirty lamps, and check that they’re aimed as intended.
  • Consider any luminaires that have transformers or control gear.
  • For exterior lighting, check that hardware and cabling is intact.

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  • Check inventory and restock all first aid kits.
  • Check eyewash bottles and stations.
  • Ensure safety signs and equipment labels are in good condition.
  • Inspect and clean respirators.
  • Inspect fall protection harnesses and kits.
  • Change batteries in smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, flashlights and test instruments.

HVAC/R And Pneumatic

  • Clean the air intake if necessary.
  • Change all air filters according to your schedule.
  • Check blower motors in operation for excessive noise or vibration.
  • Clean motors and ductwork if necessary.
  • Check that the condensate drain pan is draining properly.
  • Check the flexible duct connectors.
  • Inspect and clean all exhaust fans.
  • Secure loose guards and panels.
  • Inspect all electrical connections and hardware.
  • Test all safety controls.
  • Check for proper operation of the interior unit.
  • During the cooling season:
  • Inspect the condenser motor bearings.
  • Inspect the condenser coil, air intake and discharge.
  • Check all refrigerant piping and insulation.
  • Secure any loose guards or access panels.
  • Check the operation of the exterior unit.
  • Inspect compressed airlines regularly; investigate any leaks in piping, tubing or fittings.
  • Replace or clean air filter elements at least quarterly, or as necessary depending on the application.
  • Monitor oil levels on air compressor pump and replace as necessary depending on usage.

Building Interior

  • Examine the floors, ceilings and walls for evidence of deterioration.
  • Check for evidence of leaks.
  • Inspect for safety hazards, including electrical hazards, slipping and tripping hazards, and falling hazards.
  • Check the condition and operation of toilets and showers.
  • Test smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.
  • Test the fire alarm system.
  • Check fire extinguishers and any firefighting equipment.
  • Check doors for proper operation and make sure that exits are not obstructed.
  • Inspect door locks and closures.
  • Ensure work areas and walkways are clearly and visibly marked.
  • Check for garbage in storage areas.
  • Check for evidence of insect or other pest infestation.
  • Inspect cart casters for signs of wear.
  • Make sure that shelving is secure, organized and labelled.
  • Inspect electrical receptacle cover plates for tightness and damage.
  • Confirm that controls such as timers and photocells are functioning.

Building Exterior

  • Check the condition of the paint and walls.
  • Check for plants on the building and its foundation.
  • Look for broken windows, doors and railings.
  • Inspect the roof, cleaning it if necessary. Use appropriate fall protection or prevention measures when working in high places.
  • Clean drains and gutters on the roof, testing downspouts and drains by flushing them with water.
  • Make sure gutters are appropriately anchored.
  • Inspect the stack and all roof penetrations.
  • Remove any plant life growing on the roof.
  • Clean up any broken glass or other debris.
  • Examine the condition of the sidewalk, driveway and parking lot.
  • Check the storm drains.
  • Check trees to make sure that no branches are about to fall.
  • Check that the area around the trash bins is clean.
  • Examine the condition of any fencing.


  • Inspect plumbing according to a regular schedule, and investigate any leaks or unusual noises.
  • Lubricate bearings in domestic water booster and circulation pump systems according to a regular schedule.
  • Inspect couplings and check for any leaks.
  • Fire-test domestic water heaters and boilers according to a regular schedule. Optimize efficiency using the flue-gas analysis to adjust the flue draft and combustion air input.
  • Lubricate condenser fan motor bearings on remote drinking water. Check contacts for wear, and run system control tests. Remove the refrigerant according to manufacturer instructions. Drain and replace oil in the compressor oil reservoir, including strainers, traps and filters.
  • Check function of sump and sewage ejection pumps. Lubricate exposed pumps according to a regular schedule.

What Are The Preventative Maintenance Checklist Benefits?

Having a preventive maintenance plan and preventive maintenance checklist to execute this plan has great benefits for the business.

They improve the operation of equipment, boost asset parts quality and reduce overall downtime.

Several other perks include:

Greater job productivity and workflow standardization

Outlining the steps that a qualified technician should perform in order to service and maintain the operational equipment minimizes the time required for doing the job right. Checklists improve productivity, inform newly arrived technicians how to do the job properly and improves the quality of finished work.

There are many wrong ways to do a job, but there is only one way to do a job right in the minimum required time. Outlining steps technicians should take during a PM improves productivity, helps new people to do the job properly with minimal supervision, makes it easier for one technician to jump in and finish the job that someone else started, and, most importantly, improves the overall quality of work.

Great cost-effectiveness and ROI

As a result of increased asset quality and a decrease in operational expenditures, the company can profit from PM checklists as they boost the ROI. Also, preventive maintenance is cost-effective because technicians can be deployed strategically within a facility, taking into account their availability, operation downtimes and equipment location.

Better safety

The descriptive manner in which PM checklists lay out the necessary steps for maintaining assets reduces human errors. Also, by containing safety instructions, they minimize the probability of a work-related injury.

An effective preventative maintenance schedule avoids equipment failure, which can represent decreased not only productivity but also workplace safety risk to employees. Also, a preventive maintenance checklist reduces human errors and contains important safety instructions that minimize the chance of injury.

More efficient maintenance planning

Checklists make it easy to evaluate the time necessary for a technician to finish the task because there is a clearly defined amount of steps they should follow. This makes scheduling and managing maintenance much easier, as well.

Since there is a clear list of steps everyone should follow, it is much easier to estimate how much time a technician needs to complete their assigned tasks. This means that a maintenance manager will have an easier time scheduling and managing maintenance work.

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Faster troubleshooting

Thanks to maintenance checklists, all technicians can perform the same actions in the same way. This makes for a limited number of reasons why something can go wrong, and the fewer reasons to account for also means less time for someone to figure out what went wrong and troubleshoot.

When you know the maintenance plan of each piece of equipment as well as who is responsible for it, it becomes easier to identify why something went wrong. Fewer reasons to account for means less time somebody has to spend on troubleshooting.

A PM checklist is the starting point of any successful preventive maintenance plan. It is an integral part of running a maintenance department with a proactive approach. They improve productivity, reduce human errors, and save you a ton of time, especially if you’re creating them inside your CMMS.

With little to no downsides, there is no reason why maintenance checklists shouldn’t be used in any facility daily.

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