How Often Should a Whole House Generator Be Serviced?

how often should a whole house generator be serviced

While some generators can last longer than others, they all require regular maintenance to keep them in top condition. This is particularly true of home standby generators that are used for emergency power outages.

A professional service will inspect spark plugs, oil filters, fans, belts, and other parts that need to be looked at more closely than a homeowner can. Having a certified technician do the work means that your whole house generator will last longer.

Oil Change

Your generator uses a lot of oil to lubricate many moving parts. When the oil gets old and burnt out, it can cause serious problems with your machine.

The interval between oil changes depends on your generator’s model and usage, as well as manufacturer guidelines. We recommend getting your generator’s owner’s manual to find the most accurate maintenance schedule for your model and location.

Inspect and change the oil filter on your generator as needed. Changing the filter is an easy way to keep your engine clean and running properly. It helps prevent dirt, debris, and other particles from entering your engine. You may also want to replace your spark plugs if they become dirty after continued use.

Air Filter

Just like your car’s air filter, your generator’s also has an important role in ensuring that it functions properly. It protects the engine from dirt and larger particles that could otherwise get into combustion chambers and cause premature wear of materials.

A dirty air filter limits fresh air intake and forces your generator to work harder to generate power, which is why changing the filter once a year is so important.

While you’re at it, don’t forget to check the spark plugs, too. They’re another key part of your generator and can become very dirty after a year’s use.

Electronic filters, which operate without fans, send streams of negative ions into the air and capture charged particles on oppositely charged collector plates. This process may produce trace amounts of ozone, which is a lung irritant.

Spark Plugs

Spark plugs play a critical role in your generator’s ability to fire up. They need to be clean, sparky and firing correctly, otherwise your engine won’t run.

During your annual maintenance appointment, your Generac technician will check out the spark plugs and possibly replace them if they’re in need of replacement. This is an important part of your generator’s maintenance routine as it helps it to keep up with the demands of power outages and other situations that could cause your generator to go kaput.

Your technician will also change out your generator’s oil and air filter. This may be as often as every 50 hours of operation on average, but it depends on your generator’s make and model. The generator’s oil and air filter can get pretty dirty after a year of use, so they need to be changed out periodically to keep your generator working in top shape.

Fuel Filter

Generators require fuel to operate, so anything that slows the flow of it can cause poor starting or running issues. This is especially true for the more modern engines that have precision tolerances when it comes to how much fuel they receive at any given time.

Another component that should always be evaluated during the service process is the fuel filter. Some filters are simple plastic or metal containers, with fuel line connections around a filtration medium, while others are cartridge-style and house a replaceable filter inside the container.

A fuel filter needs to be changed regularly, typically after a few years of use or after certain hours of operation. Check your owner’s manual or ask your technician for recommended maintenance intervals.