Back to blog
Written by Talan

Fleet Optimization with IBM Maximo for Transportation

Optimizing tire, wheel and axle's budget using IBM Maximo for Transportation

The size of automobile and truck fleets has reduced by 50% as of 2018, down from its peak in 1998. According to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics, the Business sector is decreasing their fleet numbers at a high rate. If you are a business with fleet assets what other tactics can be used to gain efficiencies?

Leading fleet companies evaluate their costs in the following four areas:

  • Maintenance Cost
  • Fuel Cost
  • Tire Cost
  • Asset Cost

Costs areas_Fleet Optimization with IBM Maximo for Transportation_Canada_CreatechUsing IBM Maximo for Transportation, businesses can better understand and optimize the costs associated with all the four critical areas: maintenance, fuel, asset & tire. Today’s article will focus on the Tire Cost area and how IBM Maximo for Transportation provides a way to help Managers, Maintenance Managers, Engineers and Technicians make more informed decisions, whether fleet management is your core business.

What is Axle Configuration in Maximo?

In companies that manage transportation assets such as vehicles, buses, trucks, aircraft or trains one of the largest line items in their budget is tires, wheels, and axles.

Axle Configuration_Fleet Optimization with IBM Maximo for Transportation_Canada_CreatechIBM Maximo for Transportation offers the Axle Configuration application to support decisions related to the tracking and management of tires and wheels. These records specify the axles and the positions for the tires or wheels on the asset. Similar records can be used to manage rail assets.

The axle configuration record can also allow the users to create rules or requirements for the tires or wheels that occupy axle positions. It also specifies tolerance values for axle positions at the level of the asset, axle, and the bogie.

Axle Configuration_IBM Maximo for Transportation Software Screenshot__Fleet Optimization with IBM Maximo for Transportation_Canada_CreatechDefine Tires or Wheels Tolerance Values

Axle configuration enables us to create and register tolerance values for measurements that are taken on tires or wheels during inspections or maintenance activities. In IBM Maximo, the tolerance is the maximum acceptable variation between positions on the asset, on the bogie, or on the axle using a measurement such as tread depth. Tread depth is the vertical measurement between the top of the tread rubber to the bottom of the tire’s deepest grooves. Every Maintenance Manager has the responsibility to determine the appropriate value for the tolerance, based on their analysis.

Also, the Maintenance Manager must decide how the tolerances are going to be configured. In IBM Maximo, you can specify up to three tolerance values for an axle configuration:

  • Asset tolerance
  • Bogie tolerance (for rail vehicles)
  • Axle Tolerance

Once the readings are registered in IBM Maximo, the variation on the tires or wheels that are in axle configuration positions are compared to the tolerance value predefined in the previous step. The tires or wheels are out of tolerance if the variation or differences surpass tolerance values.

Example of the use of tolerance

You create an axle configuration to a transportation asset, with the following information:

  • Axle 1 has position 1 and 2
  • Axle 2 has position 3 and 4
  • The tolerance for each axle is 2

After you finish a tires/wheel’s inspection in your asset, you gathered the following tread depth information:

Position Axle 1 Axle 2
Position 1 5  
Position 2 4  
Position 3   6
Position 4   3

Maximo will identify that the axle 2 is out of the predefined tolerance which will trigger an additional work order.

Manage your Tire and Wheels Inventory

Fleet Managers find the Inventory application and its functions useful for tire and wheel items. It enables users to associate tires or wheels from the moment they are ordered through their issue from the inventory to a specific position in a transportation asset which has an axle configuration.

In addition, if required, the issue or return transaction can register different types of measurements such as air pressure, and tread depth in order to identify if the new item allocated in the position is within the tolerances predefined by the Maintenance Manager in the axle configuration. If the record is out of tolerance, IBM Maximo will indicate this variation.

The following applications can issue or return tires or wheels for assets with an axle configuration specified:

  • Inventory (Tr)
  • Inventory Usage (Tr)
  • Assets (Tr)
  • Work Order Tracking (Tr)
  • Quick Reporting (Tr)
  • Mechanic's Clipboard (Tr)

Improve your Tire Maintenance Strategy

As tires are used, it is quite normal for the tread to gradually become shallower and cause the overall tire performance to change. This may lead to the replacement of a tire sooner, rather than later. In turn, this can lead to unexpected cost and non-scheduled maintenance activities. For this reason, it is mandatory to execute frequent inspections of the tread depth on your fleet tires in order to minimize the above-mentioned situation.

One commonly used strategy is to rotate tires in different positions on the transportation assets considering the measures recorded for each of them.

IBM Maximo allows users to rotate tires or wheels into different positions on an asset axle configuration to help prevent uneven wear.

Imagine if you are responsible for a big fleet of several transportation assets and realize how important it is for the company, in terms of saving money, the extension of tires or wheels life cycle. You are going to contribute to reduce the maintenance cost and increase the performance of the tires!

Improve Tire Maintenance Strategy_Fleet Optimization with IBM Maximo for Transportation_Canada_CreatechIn conclusion, here are the main benefits that the Axle Configuration application can provide to different companies that are interested in managing their transportation assets efficiently:

  • Reducing and optimizing budget allocated to replace tires, wheels and axles
  • Increasing tires and wheels life cycle
  • Improving company’s maintenance strategy
  • Reducing accidents due to tires, wheels and axles failures

If you have questions or concerns about Axle Configuration application in IBM Maximo for Transportation, please contact one of our experts!


Want to know more about our Asset Life Cycle Management Software for IBM Maximo? Download our white paper:

Download Whitepaper Asset Lifecycle Maximo

These Articles Could Also Interest You