When you’re a one-man equipment management crew, with operations spread as far apart as an eight-hour drive, sometimes you need a little assistance. For Dominik Mendoza, equipment manager for New Mexicobased McVay Drilling, help comes in the form of Cat Product Link and the user interface Product Link Web. “I need to be able to look at everything in one place,” Mendoza says. “I’m one person—I can’t be everywhere at once, and it’s too costly to send a service technician after every possible problem.” Instead, he uses Product Link, a remote monitoring fleet management solution, to keep an eye on his company’s gas drilling rigs—all of which are powered by Cat engines—and Cat generator sets.
What does Product Link do?
“It lets me look online and watch the engines,” Mendoza says. “It shows me on a map exactly where they are and how they’re performing.” More importantly, Product Link delivers a warning whenever there’s a potential problem. That’s because Mendoza’s sales representative at Cat dealer Wagner Equipment set up the system to send him email and text alerts. “If a rig is losing fuel pressure, I know about it before the operators notice,” says Mendoza. “I can alert them to the problem and have the crew perform a simple fix.” That not only saves McVay Drilling the cost of downtime, but also the expense of sending dealer service technicians to what can be fairly remote locations in southeastern New Mexico and west Texas. Recently, Mendoza received a text alert at 2am, warning of low coolant levels on one of McVay’s biggest rigs. He was able to call the team on site, diagnose the problem and fix what turned out to be a leaking hose before the rig lost power. Another time he was alerted to low fuel pressure on three gen sets at the same location. It turned out the valves hadn’t been reopened after fuel delivery—a problem Mendoza was able to identify and fix before the fuel delivery person even left the site.
What is the value to the customer?
“Product Link catches things early and fast so we fix problems before they cause costly failures. It’s also really easy to use,” Mendoza says. “It practically runs itself.” Currently, McVay Drilling has activated Product Link on six Cat engines and gen sets; Mendoza hopes to connect other units in the near future. “It makes my job easier and gives our company peace of mind,” he says.