Proactive, Preventive Maintenance vs. “Drive-By”

Proactive Preventive Maintenance vs. “Drive-By” Maintenance is an interesting topic. “Drive-By” is an industry term used to describe the style of service typically delivered by HVAC contractors who win bids with half-price quotes. Simply put, the contractor cannot do the preventive work promised in the low number of hours billed in order to win the bid. Corners have to be cut to make the low price work!

Rather than losing money by taking the time to do the work required for true proactive preventive maintenance, most low-bid winning contractors drive by the building and simply make sure the equipment is still there – thus the term “Drive-By”. Our new customers are shown pictures of how dirty and clogged their equipment’s critical parts have become, and quickly understand how their previous “Drive-By” contractor was able to offer such a low quote. In the long run, the “Drive-By” contract actually costs more, sometimes a lot more, because of all the additional follow-up service calls.

The World English Dictionary defines “Proactive” as tending to initiate change rather than reacting to events. “Preventive” is defined as something that serves to prevent or hinder. Our job as professionals is to “initiate change” to help “prevent” failures of mechanical equipment.

This article, written by Rod Bachman, Vice President, Bachman’s, Inc., can be read in its entirety here.

Newsletter, June 2013, Volume 4, Issue 2