5 Emergency Generator Inspection Tips

Posted on: 4 March 2016

A portable generator can be the one thing that ensures your comfort during an extended power outage. If you live in an area where power outages are a possibility due to storms, keeping a generator on hand is a must even if you only use it for a few hours a year. Just because it is used minimally doesn't mean that it won't need maintenance, though. It's important to keep up with the annual maintenance routines to ensure it does work when you need the generator most. These tips can help.

Tip #1: Store It Under Cover

Don't leave a generator exposed to the elements. When it isn't in use, keep it in a garage or shed. If you do store it inside the house, remember that it will need to be moved outside before use; otherwise, you can die from carbon monoxide poisoning.

Tip #2: Run It Regularly

Most generators have a stand-by, test, or no-load setting. It's a good idea to run the generator on this setting for a few minutes at least once a month, or at the testing frequency recommended by the manufacturer in the owner's manual. Check that the generator starts and runs smoothly with no alarms triggered. Have it professionally serviced if you notice a problem.

Tip #3: Check for Leaks

Get out a flashlight and look closely at the exterior of the generator. You are making sure there are no visible signs of leaks. Also, check under the generator for leaks. It is normal to see some grease around belts or moving parts – this is just standard lubrication – but you don't want to see it dripping from hoses or the engine. If so, you will need it inspected by a professional that can locate and repair the leak.

Tip #4: Verify Fluid Levels

Generators, just like a car, will need their oil checked. You will also need to check the coolant. Do this each time you run the generator in test mode. If the fluids are low, you may have a leak that needs to be addressed. Otherwise, only replace these fluids if they have become dirty. The generator will have a drainage plug to allow for easy emptying and refilling. Also, replace the filters when you replace the oil. Your owner's manual can point you to the location.

Tip #5: Perform an Electrical Inspection

At least once a year, make sure that all the electrical connections are properly working. Fire the generator on completely and test each connector to make sure it is sending power. You don't want to have a power outage and then discover an electrical short that results in no power delivery. Make sure all connections are secure and check for corrosion or other signs of shorts, such as black marks or frayed wires. If you notice any issues with the electrical connections, schedule a generator repair.

For more information, contact a local generator maintenance company like Alltech Services NV


Making Your Customers Comfortable

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