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Obsolescence

A loss in the utility of an asset which arises not due to physical deterioration, but other factors such as the development of improved or superior equipment.

Obsolescence is one of three kinds of asset condition that is used to derive Overall Asset Condition (OAC).


Types and Classification
Separate from physical deterioration, the five primary type of obsolescence are identified as follows:
Obsolescence can also be classified in a variety of other ways, including:
  • External obsolescence vs. internal obsolescence
  • Curable obsolescence vs. incurable obsolescence.


Measuring and Assessing 
Obsolescence is measured and indexed using:

Functional 

Obsolescence is determined by the following types of assessments of a facility:



Causes of obsolescence
Obsolescence can arises as a result of a variety of factors impacting upon individual assets and facilities. Some common drivers are listed below:
  • Physical aging
  • New codes and standards
  • New products 
  • Planned obsolescence

Management Principles
The effects of obsolescence can sometimes be managed and mitigated through the following:

Style obsolescence
Fig. 1970's style furnishings in the lobby of a building upgraded is an example of style obsolescence.


Chessboard analogy to illustrate obsolescence as one of the forces of retirement impacting upon the assets in a building
Fig. Chessboard analogy to illustrate obsolescence as one of the forces of retirement impacting upon the assets in a building.



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Fig. Elevator relay controls replaced with elevator solid state controls is an example of technological obsolescence.


Facility Life cycle model indicating get ahead costs
Fig. Lifecycle model to indicate the stage at which functional obsolescence ("yellow") is most prevalent.


VFD retrofit
Fig. Triplex booster pump package replaced with package that includes VFDs is an example of economic obsolescence.

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See also:
Expert system by cohort to identify obsolescence of elevator components
Fig. Expert system by cohort to identify obsolescence of elevator components.


I. Care is in a panic as some of his assets are "fading" away while others are "degrading"
Fig. I. Care is in a panic as some of his assets are "fading" away while others are "degrading".

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