Scraponomics Episode 136: Repairs and Maintenance

Jun 10, 2016, 02:12 PM

“The major difference between a thing that might go wrong and a thing that cannot possibly go wrong is that when a thing that cannot possibly go wrong goes wrong it usually turns out to be impossible to get at and repair.” — Douglas Adams, Author, most notably of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

Let’s go back to a previous episode when we talked about the benefit versus the cost of recycling.

In that episode, we discussed costs that anyone may expect; things like electricity, labor, and freight costs.

Here’s one I forgot to mention, but is relevant now, given that a bunch of machinery decided to break down on us all at once; repairs. :)

Again, this kind of thing occurs in any business, but it’s important to keep this in mind when we talk about about recycling scrap material cost-effectively. The thing to keep in mind is that scrap-recycling, or any business, doesn’t occur in a vacuum.

Things break down, and when they do, you have to have a plan in place. Those plans for repairs and preventative maintenance to help avoid repairs in the first place cost thousands of dollars. It’s just one more expense to consider when operating.

So any time we buy a new piece of equipment, be it a baler or a crane, we have to estimate how much we’ll spend on it annually in repairs and maintenance. This, along with the other types of costs we’ve mentioned, ultimately affects what we can buy and sell scrap material for.

The key is knowing to the best of your ability what your costs will be ahead of time. That way, even when everything decides to break down all at once, rather than freaking out, it’s just a matter of repairs and maintenance.

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