We all wish that the equipment and systems that we operate would work for ever, efficiently, effectively and productively. Though the reliability factor gets embedded at the design stage itself, there are “Ifs and buts” that get into the operation. With the current corporates culture tends to move towards “No defects”, reliability in operations becomes important.
All the maintenance effort is focused to this end, but in real life, failures do occur and do recur too. This is where the reliability study will help. Root cause analysis is a tool to understand the most likely cause for a specific failure and implement processes and procedures to avoid recurrence.
We all would have done this process mechanically, informally many times. Making such a study formal helps in making systemic corrections.
Here is a link to a very well written article on the topic.
Read and be more well-informed.