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How To Prepare for Equipment Installation: A Checklist

Getting ready to have new equipment installed in your plant? Industrial equipment installation, whether in a brand-new production line or for an existing line, can be challenging. To make the process as easy as possible and to save yourself time and money, we’ve created a comprehensive list of steps to take before any new machine is installed.

Let’s Get Started

Preparing to install equipment can be daunting, but we’ve broken it down into three main sections.

Preparing to install equipment can be daunting, but we’ve broken it down into three main sections.

Something you’ll want to do right away is set up a call with your supplier’s project manager. They may have information that will help you get started and they’ll serve as your main contact for questions regarding machine installation.

1. Establish electrical (and other) requirements.

Ask the project manager which requirements need to be on-site for proper installation, specifically:

  • Power (460V/3Ph/60hz, 120V, 24V or other)
  • Pneumatic (compressed air); 90 psi, 60 SCFM …
  • Dedusting (port diameter, multi points, pressure, flow rate …)
  • Communication cables (Ethernet or other)

2. Communicate drop sites.

Where are drop sites for these items located? Knowing this can help you save time and will help the supplier position the new equipment. Ask the project manager for the final layout and add drop sites if needed.

3. Communicate environmental conditions.

Are there out-of-the-ordinary environmental conditions at the plant? Installation can be difficult for service technicians when they have to work in such settings.

If installation involves a high-pressure wash down with chemicals or other cleaners, make sure to share these details with the project manager.

4. Ask the following questions:

A conventional palletizer is a rather imposing piece of equipment that requires considerable space, both on the floor and with regard to height.

  • “What are the floor thickness requirements of the new equipment?” Make sure you ask your project manager for the exact weight of your new equipment. Robotic equipment, for example, typically requires a minimum of 8 inches of additional floor reinforcement.
  • “Are anchors included with the new equipment?” Stability is another factor to keep in mind for equipment that includes a robot. If anchors are not supplied, do you have all the anchors required for the new equipment?
  • “Will I need to relocate piping or other items?” Installing new equipment may force you to relocate existing components depending on the size and layout of the new equipment. If you ask about this at the onset of a project, you can make sure that all relocating is done before installation begins, to avoid installation delay and production downtime.
  • “Will I need to adjust lighting?” Consider how you’ll provide light to the installation technician so he can do his job properly. You’ll also need to think about the positioning of your current light fixtures. For example, if a new bagger is bigger or smaller than the existing one, the location of the light source that currently attaches to the bag magazine may not be optimally positioned once the new bagger is in place.
  • “What will I need to do tests and run my new equipment?” Make a list of everything you need to do tests and to run your equipment. This may include empty bags, rolls of bag film, pallets, wrapping film, labels, labeller, printer and ink, glue, bagger, slip sheet, etc.
  • “Will I need an external contractor such as a millwright to perform mechanical installation?” Ask your project manager if that service is included in your contract. If not, you’ll need to hire an external contractor who can accommodate the installation schedule.
  • “Are cables included with my new equipment?” You may need to buy cables elsewhere and have them on-site in time for installation.

5. Finally, prepare for delays.

In case pre-installation preparation doesn’t go as planned and you’re not ready to install by the planned date, can equipment be stored for an extended period of time in a dry room without deteriorating?

Determine whether you have a dry place to store equipment and prevent deterioration.

Preparing for Delivery

Once you’ve prepared your plant’s environment to install equipment, you’ll move onto preparing for delivery.

1. Determine delivery date and the supplier’s technicians availability to supervise installation, commissioning and training.

As soon as you know the delivery date, make a schedule with the supplier’s service technicians and the appropriate staff at your plant.

2. Schedule a call with your project manager to work through the following questions:

  • “How big does the access door need to be?” What is the size of the door or other access through which the equipment will be delivered? Before delivery, ask your supplier for the dimensions of the largest piece of equipment. That way, you’ll be able to identify the appropriate entrance for equipment delivery and prepare an alternative if the delivery areas you have are too small.
  • “What tools will I need for delivery?” Do you have a forklift or equivalent tools to move the new equipment from the delivery truck to its destination inside the plant?
  • “What other supplies will I need for handling or installation?” Other items and tools that might be needed for equipment handling or installation include ropes, crowbars, a welding machine, slings, etc.
  • “How much time will I have to remove existing equipment and install new equipment?” How much time is the production team giving you to remove existing equipment and install the new equipment? Do you have a “Plan B” in case installation or commissioning last longer than expected? Confirm the time needed with the project manager and develop a backup plan.
  • “Which spare parts will I need?” At a minimum, you will likely need a kit for commissioning.

3. Advise other teams at your plant about new equipment installation.

It is critical to let your team know about installation because it may affect production for a few days. Alerting other team members also lets them know that they may be called upon to help you prepare.

4. Share your plant’s internal safety procedures, safety training needs and all other internal standards with your supplier.

Suppliers serve many clients and deal with multiple safety standards, so make sure that your supplier is aware of your plant’s security rules so that they can follow them properly.

5. Determine insurance requirements.

Do you need the supplier’s installation personnel to take drug tests, acquire proof of insurance or meet other requirements of your insurance carrier? Find out from your insurance carrier and be sure to notify the supplier of any steps its personnel must take before they can work on your property.

6. Take part in the supplier’s FAT (Factory Acceptance Test).

This will enhance your understanding of the equipment and may raise questions you should ask. The goal is to avoid surprises at installation. Involve maintenance and production people if possible and keep production employees aware of and educated about the new equipment.

Post-Installation, Preventive Maintenance and Training

You’re almost there! Here are some final steps to ensure the longevity and proper performance of your new machinery from the get-go.

1. Schedule a post-installation follow-up visit with the supplier’s technicians.

This will shorten the learning curve for your employees and is especially important when you switch from manual to robotic or automated equipment.

Get all the information you need from your supplier; it wants to serve as a source of information and to partner with you to help you reach your goals.

2. Inquire about your supplier’s preventive maintenance program. /strong>

What needs to be performed, and how often? Inform your plant’s reliability engineer that there is new equipment in need of preventive maintenance.

The supplier’s client support team can tell you about all the steps in its after-sales support process. our goals.

3. Schedule training of all operators and maintenance personnel.

If training is needed for night-shift employees, advise the supplier so that this training can be scheduled as well.

Congratulations! You’re Ready for Your New Equipment!

By following these guidelines, you’ve prepared well for delivery and you’re well on your way to entering (or upgrading) your operations with the power of automation.

Still have questions?


The specialists at Premier Tech are always ready to respond to any concerns you may have about equipment installation and the needs of your specific plant. We offer full industrial equipment installation services to our customers and are happy to walk you through the entire process.


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