Generators aren’t cheap, so it’s important to get them regularly serviced. Typically, you’ll need to get them serviced once or twice a year.
The frequency of maintenance will depend on how frequently the unit is used, its environment, and the size and type of generator. Some units may need more frequent or thorough inspections than others.
Like your lawn mower or car, a whole house generator needs regular oil changes. This helps prevent the engine from heating up and breaking down or developing an unwanted smell.
The frequency of changing your oil depends on how much you use the generator. Typically, it’s recommended that you change your oil and filter every 100-200 hours of usage.
Your owner’s manual will also have recommendations for oil weight and viscosity. These are important to understand.
You’ll need a low-viscosity generator oil during winter to ensure that your engine starts up properly, while a higher-viscosity generator oil is better for use in hot weather.
During the oil change process, you’ll drain the old oil from the generator and replace it with new oil. Most generators use a 5W-30 synthetic oil, but you’ll want to check your owner’s manual for the correct type.
Air Filter Change
Just like in your car, a generator’s air filter helps protect the engine from dust and other debris that could get in the combustion chambers. This prevents premature wear and ensures your generator runs at its best.
Regardless of how often you use your generator, the filter should be changed on a regular basis to ensure its optimal performance and lifespan. Dirty air filters reduce the engine’s efficiency and can even cause serious damage.
As part of a whole house generator yearly maintenance, your technician will check your fuel filters to make sure they are clean and not clogged with tiny metal fragments. If they are dirty or old, your technician will replace them with new ones during the inspection.
Another crucial component of a whole house generator yearly maintenance is a check of the wiring. Wires are often corroded and loose, which can lead to issues with the unit’s electrical output.
To ensure your generator continues to provide uninterrupted power, you should regularly perform routine inspections. Typical maintenance schedules include weekly, monthly, semi-annual, and yearly.
The frequency of maintenance will depend on how often your generator is used, as well as the environment in which it operates. Typical preventive maintenance includes a battery check, oil change, air filter change, and coolant change.
During the battery check, the battery is removed from its terminals and the voltage across it is checked using a multimeter. This test can reveal if a battery is dead or not working properly.
This can indicate that the battery has a corrosion buildup, which can reduce its life and capacity. You can remove the corrosion by using baking soda or a battery cleaning kit. Alternatively, you can replace the battery. Most generator manufacturers recommend replacing batteries every two to three years to extend their service life. These recommendations can be found in the generator owner’s manual.
Just like your car, your home standby generator is a machine that needs regular maintenance to stay in tip-top shape. Routine upkeep keeps minor issues from becoming major problems that could require costly repairs down the road.
Coolant is a crucial part of keeping your home standby generator running smoothly and safely. It prevents rust, lubricates the water pump and helps remove contaminants from the engine.
It is important to flush and change the coolant supply in your gen-set at least once a year or every 100 hours of operation — whichever comes first.
A full system coolant flush will help eliminate a buildup of caustic coolant in the cooling system. This will improve the engine’s performance and extend the block heater’s life.
Load bank testing should also be conducted annually. It allows your technician to run the generator under load for a short period of time to make sure it will be capable of producing its full nameplate kW under actual emergency conditions.