No machine can run efficiently for a long time without breaking down. It doesn’t matter whether you use it often or sparsely. The funny thing is that even when you pack it up without using and decides to fire it up one day, you’ll be shocked that it’ll not work. If you have a portable generator and want to get the best service always, try to maintain it properly. A portable generator maintenance is compulsory whether it’s in use or not. So, read this generator guide to learn some tips on maintaining your generator.
1. Buy a generator cover
One of the best investments to make on your portable generator is the cover. Sometimes, environmental elements can destroy the machine and cause it to fail. If you allow things like insects, rain, dirt, winds, dust particles, or even bugs to infiltrate the generator, you’re in for a loss. These elements can cause irreparable damages, which will prevent the generator from functioning correctly. So, get a cover and ensure the proper functioning and efficiency of your portable generator.
2. Keep a fresh oil handy
Every small engine demands for appropriate timing on the oil change. To ensure the reliability of your portable generator, follow the instructions on how to change its oil. For instance, the general guide on this is that the first oil used in new generators must be changed after using for 30 hours. Once you’ve observed this first custom, subsequent oil changes can follow the 100-hour routine. It’s not advisable to overuse the oil in your generator before changing as this may cause the engine to break down. To be on the safe side, always keep some liters of oil and oil filters in your home for emergency power outages that exceeds five or six days. That way, you won’t use the generator without changing the oil as required.
3. Empty the fuel tank before storage
People who live in areas without regular power outages may not use their portable generators always. Sometimes, you may need to pack it up for more than one month without firing it up. In such times, always ensure to remove the fuel in the generator tank. This may be a bit difficult but you can do it in two ways. The first method is to drain the fuel with a siphon especially when it is filled up. But make sure you’re using a non-conductive type before you mistakenly generate static electricity. Another method is to add a gas stabilizer and run the engine for fifteen minutes. Allow to cool down and run it the second time until there’s no more gas in it.
4. Clean the plugs and filters
Many times, generator users forget the importance of cleaning or outright changing of the plugs and filters. If you fail to replace these parts of your machine, you’re in for a big disappointment. The generator engine needs a good plug to ignite the petrol or gas in its cylinders. It also needs the air filters to be in good condition and working correctly. Once you keep these two in good conditions, there will be an excellent fuel-air mixture leading to a prolonged lifespan. So, after every two hundred (200) hours, change the air filter and spark plug to keep the machine in a ready-to-go condition.
5. Run the generator and charge the battery
It’s not advisable to pack your generator away for many months without running it. It is a machine and if left untouched will succumb to rusts. The best practice, according to manufacturers, is to run it from time to time to at least charge the electric starter battery. Well, you could also plug the starter battery into a trickle charger. But we recommend that you run the generator instead. This way, you can heat the engine and also charge the battery.
A portable generator can be a lifesaver when there’s an emergency power outage. But to ensure continuous reliability, you must maintain it appropriately. There’re many additional things you can do to keep your machine from disappointing you. You could clean the spark arrestor, buy a fuel stabilizer, ensure that you don’t use your generator until it runs out of fuel, and add coolants when necessary.