When a product fails, finding the root cause of the problem can often be complicated. It is important to perform a thorough analysis of any failure.
When conducting a root cause analysis, our experts know that they have to understand the design process of a product. Product design requires developing design specifications. Our experts also know that it's important to determine the product's manufacturing specifications as well.
No matter the scenario, it is crucial to retain experienced experts and engineers as soon as possible following products related incidents or accidents. Envista's mechanical engineers and consultants are leading specialists in conducting failure investigations and assessments of complex product and machinery incidents.
Manufacturing Defects and Product Failure Investigations
A product can fail in many ways, but failures can typically be grouped into either a design or manufacturing defect or a failure to warn (labeling issue). These categories help determine the root cause.
When investigating a design or manufacturing defect, our experts will investigate:
- If a thorough risk assessment was conducted that took all components into consideration
- If suitable material was selected and used
- If the product was structurally strong enough to handle the loads it experienced
- If the manufacturing process created a part defect
- If the procured parts met the design and procurement specifications
- Whether the quality control process should have caught the faulty component
- If the part was used in the manner intended
Failure Analysis Process
A root cause analysis often requires data collection, a multidisciplinary review, and numerous tests. Afterward, experts will determine corrective actions to take. If a subject matter expert is required, our engineers will guide the investigation throughout the process and bring all opinions and information together.
Our experts perform a holistic approach to get to the bottom of the problem, performing visual inspections and assessing various aspects using metallographic, environmental, chemical and simulation testing techniques. Depending on the extent of review needed, product testing can include both destructive procedures, which alter the product to examine internal components, and non-destructive procedures, which are favored due to being more cost-effective. Often, an intact sample of the same product is compared with a failed part.
No matter the cause or failure mechanism, the multidisciplinary engineering team at Envista has the experience and expertise to determine what happened.