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View Unit : Carrying Out Fault Diagnosis on Mechanical Equipment

Unit Reference Number
Qualification Framework
Carrying Out Fault Diagnosis on Mechanical Equipment
Unit Level
Level 3
Unit Sub Level
Guided Learning Hours
Unit Credit Value
Date of Withdrawal
4.1 Engineering
Unit Grading Structure
Assessment Guidance

This unit must be assessed in a work environment and must be assessed in accordance with the ‘Common Requirements for National Vocational Qualifications (NVQ) in the QCF’ which can be downloaded from Semta’s website: http://www.semta.org.uk/training_providers__awarding/national_occupational_standard/qca_assessment_requirements.aspx

Additional assessment requirements have been published by Semta. These additional assessment requirements are set down in Semta’s Engineering Maintenance Level 3 unit assessment strategy which can be downloaded from Semta’s website: http://www.semta.org.uk/training_providers__awarding/national_occupational_standard/qca_assessment_requirements.aspx

Learning Outcomes and Assessment Criteria
Learning Outcome - The learner will:Assessment Criterion - The learner can:

1a. Carry out fault diagnosis on mechanical equipment


Work safely at all times, complying with health and safety and other relevant regulations and guidelines


Carry out all of the following during the fault diagnostic activity:

• plan the fault diagnosis prior to beginning the work

• obtain and use the correct issue of company and/or manufacturer’s drawings and maintenance documentation

• adhere to procedures or systems in place for risk assessment, COSHH, personal protective equipment and other relevant safety regulations and procedures to realise a safe system of work

• ensure the safe isolation of equipment (such as mechanical, electricity, gas, air or fluids)

• provide and maintain safe access and working arrangements for the maintenance area

• carry out the fault diagnostic activities using approved procedures

• identify the fault and determine appropriate corrective action

• dispose of waste items in a safe and environmentally acceptable manner, and leave work area in a safe condition


Carry out fault diagnosis on three of the following types of equipment:

• gearboxes

• machine tools

• lifting and handling equipment

• processing plant

• engines

• pumps

• process control valves

• compressors

• workholding devices

• transfer equipment

• mechanical structures

• company-specific equipment


Find faults that have resulted in two of the following breakdown categories:

• intermittent problem

• partial failure/out-of-specification output

• complete breakdowns


Review and use all relevant information on the symptoms and problems associated with the products or assets


Collect evidence regarding the fault from four of the following sources:

• person or operator who reported the fault

• monitoring equipment or gauges

• recording devices

• sensory input (such as sight, sound, smell, touch)

• plant/machinery records

• condition of end product


Investigate and establish the most likely causes of the faults


Select, use and apply diagnostic techniques, tools and aids to locate faults


Use a range of fault diagnostic techniques, to include two of the following:

• half-split technique

• emergent sequence

• input/output

• six point technique

• equipment self diagnostics

• unit substitution

• function/performance testing

• injection and sampling


1b. Carry out fault diagnosis on mechanical equipment (continued)


Use a variety of diagnostic aids and equipment, to include two of the following:

• manufacturer’s manual

• algorithms

• probability charts/reports

• equipment self diagnostics

• physical layout diagrams

• flow charts

• fault analysis charts (such as fault trees)

• trouble shooting guides


Use two of the following types of test equipment to aid fault diagnosis:

• measuring instruments/devices

• dial test indicators

• torque measuring devices

• thermal indicators

• audio test devices

• self-diagnostic equipment

• other specific test equipment


Apply two of the following monitoring or testing procedures to help in the fault diagnosis:

• alignment checks

• force/pressure checks (such as spring pressure, hydraulic or pneumatic pressures)

• leakage

• vibration

• thermal checks (such as bearings, friction surfaces)

• movement checks (such as travel, clearance, levers and links)


Complete the fault diagnosis within the agreed time and inform the appropriate people when this cannot be achieved


Determine the implications of the fault for other work and for safety considerations


Use the evidence gained to draw valid conclusions about the nature and probable cause of the fault


Record details on the extent and location of the faults in an appropriate format


Provide a record of the outcome of fault diagnosis, using one of the following:

• step-by-step analytical report

• preventative maintenance log/report

• corrective action report

• company-specific reporting procedure


2a. Know how to carry out fault diagnosis on mechanical equipment


Describe the health and safety requirements of the area in which they are carrying out the fault diagnosis activities, and the responsibility these requirements place on the learner


Describe the specific safety precautions to be taken when carrying out fault diagnosis of the specific piece of equipment


Describe the isolation and lock-off procedure or permit-to-work procedure that applies


Describe the importance of wearing protective clothing and other appropriate safety equipment during the fault diagnosis activities


Describe the hazards associated with carrying out fault diagnosis on mechanical equipment (such as moving machinery, handling oils and greases, stored pressure/force, misuse of tools, using practices or procedures that do not follow laid-down procedures), and how to minimise these and reduce any risks


Explain where to obtain, and how to interpret drawings, specifications, manufacturers’ manuals and other documents needed in the fault diagnosis process


Describe the procedure to be adopted to establish the background of the fault


Explain how to evaluate various types of information available for fault diagnosis (such as operator reports, monitoring equipment, sensory information, machinery history records and condition of end product)


Describe the various fault finding techniques that can be used, and how they are applied (such as half-split, input/out put, emergent problem sequence, six point technique, function testing, unit substitution, injection and sampling techniques, and equipment self diagnostics)


Explain how to use a range of fault diagnostic equipment to investigate the problem (such as measuring devices, torque and run-out devices)


2b. Know how to carry out fault diagnosis on mechanical equipment (continued)


Explain how to use various items of test equipment, and how to calibrate it and check that it is free from damage and defects


Explain how to evaluate sensory information (sight, sound, smell, touch)


Describe the procedure(s) to be followed for investigating the faults, and how to deal with intermittent faults


Explain how to analyse and evaluate possible characteristics and causes of specific faults/problems


Explain how to relate previous reports/records of similar fault conditions


Explain how to evaluate the likely risk of running the equipment with the displayed fault, and the effects the fault could have on health and safety, and on the overall process or system


Explain how to prepare and produce a risk analysis report (where appropriate)


Explain how to prepare a report and take follow-up action which satisfies the company policy on concluding fault diagnosis


Describe the extent of their own authority and to whom they should report if they have problems that they cannot resolve

Equivalent Units
There are no equivalences to display.