If you own a home generator, then you may be wondering what it will cost to maintain it. Having your home generator maintained is a great way to keep it running smoothly and efficiently. There are several steps that you can take to keep your generator running safely and reliably, including cleaning the transfer switch, oiling motors, checking for carbon monoxide, and repairing the unit if needed.
Oil for motors
If you have a generator in your home, you need to know how to change the oil. The right oil will prevent wear and tear in your engine.
Different generators have different requirements for oil. You should check the owner’s manual of your generator to know what type of oil you need. Most generators have a dipstick to check the oil level.
Some models have sensors to alert you if the oil is running low. Oil levels should be checked before each use. During hot or cold weather, you may need to use a higher viscosity oil.
When choosing the right oil for your generator, you should consider the environment. Oils designed for extreme weather will perform better. For example, you should choose an oil with a high viscosity if you’re operating your generator in a warm climate.
Clean the battery terminals
If you want to keep your home generator in tip top condition, you need to clean the battery terminals. This will help the unit perform properly and last for longer.
The battery is the heart of the unit and can lead to failure if it is not taken care of. It should be cleaned once a year or after every few months of use.
Cleaning the battery terminals is a pretty straightforward process. You can start by pulling the cables off the terminals, using a wire cutter. Next, insert a screwdriver to re-tighten the connections.
You may also want to coat the terminals with a spray bottle of silicon gel or some other corrosion protection. These can help delay the corrosion that can shorten the life of your batteries.
Clean the generator transfer switch
Keeping the generator transfer switch clean and in good working order is a crucial step in maintaining your home backup generator. Failure to properly maintain the switch could mean that your generator will not work as efficiently as it should.
There are a variety of different types of transfer switches, and they all perform different functions. For instance, an automatic transfer switch will turn on the emergency power system as soon as your home loses power.
Manual transfer switches, on the other hand, require you to connect your generator to the switch. You can also purchase pre-wired transfer switches.
The best way to find out whether you need an automatic or a manual transfer switch is to consult with an electrician. Having a professional install your generator can ensure that it will work with your home’s electrical system.
Carbon monoxide monitors
If you have a generator for your home, you might want to have carbon monoxide monitors installed to keep track of the levels of this dangerous gas in your home. Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless gas that is produced by burning natural gas, propane, coal, and oil.
Some types of CO detectors have an integrated sensor to detect and measure the carbon monoxide particles in the air. When the levels are unsafe, the detector sounds an alarm.
In some cases, a digital display screen may also be included. This allows you to monitor the CO levels in your home as well as the humidity. It also helps you avoid false alarms and toxic leaks.
Most building codes require CO detectors on each level of a home. However, some states, such as New York, Illinois, and Massachusetts, also require them to be installed in new units.
Whether you own a portable generator or a whole house standby system, it is important to maintain it. This can be done by doing a regular inspection and replacing filters. However, the more complicated repairs are best left to the experts.
If your generator doesn’t generate any power, it could be a sign that you have a problem with the engine. You may have a bad rotor, a broken stator, a faulty battery, or a malfunctioning fuses. These problems can be tricky to diagnose and expensive to repair.
The average price for a repair can range from $60 to $600. This depends on the make and model of your generator, the size of the problem, and the type of repairs needed.