Should I “Load Bank Test” My Standby Generator?

Monday, October 29, 2012

Standby generators represent a sizable capital investment. If the standby generator fails when called into action it is almost always accompanied by potentially dangerous conditions and/or risk of significant financial loss. Yearly load bank testing is an important element of any preventative maintenance program to ensure your standby generator is capable of carrying building loads when required to. If the generator operates as an emergency standby generator for fire/life safety, it is regulated by NFPA 70, 99, 110 (Standard for Emergency and Standby Power Systems), and The Joint Commission standards, which has specific load banking requirements depending on the type of facility.

Standby generators are sized to accommodate full start up loads of a facility and can typically be sized 30-50% over the KW ratings of the facility. This situation can create many problems with your diesel powered stand by generator. Conditions such as wet stacking and carbon build up in combustion chambers, injector nozzles, piston rings, turbo chargers, exhaust piping and silencers can develop. 

Wet stacking is un-burned fuel that collects in your exhaust system. If your standby generator typically runs with little or no load you will begin to see black seepage coming from your generators exhaust connections and continuous black exhaust smoke from your exhaust pipe. These are signs that your diesel engine is wet stacking. To prevent wet stacking your engine exhaust temperature would need to be over 275 degrees Fahrenheit.

Standby generators that don’t achieve the proper exhaust temperature or fail to operate at 30 percent of the generator kw nameplate rating for at least 30 minutes monthly, should be exercised under load for 30 minutes each month and load banked for two hours each year. During the annual test the standby generator should at a minimum operate for 30 minutes at 25 percent nameplate kw rating, 30 minutes at 50 percent nameplate kw rating and 60 minutes at 75 percent nameplate kw rating.

Load bank testing your standby generator annually will not only help prevent wet stacking but will also verify engine and generator performance, reseat piston rings, determine cooling system efficiency, check voltage regulator response, engine governor response and will verify your generator will function properly in the event of a power outage. If you have invested the money to have a standby generator installed, you must have a critical need for back-up power. Including a load bank test with your annual service is the best way of insuring your generator will be ready and able to respond to the next power outage.

Power Plus! is a leading provider of temporary power solutions for emergency power outages.

Post a Comment
Captcha Image

Recent Posts


mini generator power source emergency response tactics rental generators generator safety Utility Companies candles Gas Stations emergency New Jersey atmosphere science ice storm Emergency Planning Tropical Storm Barry duck and cover Buyer’s Guide Public Radio. Spit Southern California Edison Christmas mandatory generators at gas stations New York DMV American Blackout power packs mobile app Blackout camping Mobile hair salons electrical power generator installed safety Gustavo Nunez Emergency Generator Maintenance Generator Maintenance Repair 101 Power Generators at Gas Stations advice emergency kit Common Industrial Generator Repair Issues temporary solutions Diesel Power Generators disaster zone houston anniversary Emergency Prevention Portable Power Generator biomass electrical power evacuation natural power Bangladesh Building Collapse up to date emergency information natural disasters facts bike Texas Prepares Defective Electric Power Plant Emergency Power System generators smartphone apps PECO portable power generators Union Hospital District triangle of life Catastrophic Storm Emergency Services Medical Emergency Evacuation Drill ghost boat Emergency Preparedness App Backup Generator Power Outage northwest Explosion gas generator State of Emergency Federal Emergency Management Agency Washington Texas Department of State and Health Services Relief Shelters All Hazards Mitigation Plan climate change recycling Texas metro Generator Maintenance Maintenance National Emergency Preparedness Month Cyclones Emergency Power Generator Hurricane Katrina Storm Season State Emergency power lines Nature Geoscience earthquake safety NERC Rutgers Emergency Preparation power Generator Recall Install Power Generators Fold-Out Shelter FEMA prevent blackouts Backup Power Power Loss disaster shopping heat wave Southeast Texas Regional Advisory Council safety procedures Old Car Batteries Medical Emergency emergency situation electric power generator Emergency Generator Service Power Generator lightningstrikes powerplus battery powered generator Alternative Heating Methods home improvement projects generator uninterrupted backup power general electric Generator Emergency Plan Emergency Preparation for Pets Solar Power Generator Electrical Power Generators cooling system landlord Emergency Response Portable Generators power Generator Sales cell phone generator installation Hurricane Sandy business Portable Generator Emergency Red License Plates Power Generation Station Disaster Preparedness Emergency Preparadness Mitsubishi Homeowner investments bicycle backup power generator nurses back up generator faulty manufacturing Tornado Season Evacuation Drill temporary power propane generator National Preppers and Survivalist Expo generator rental Tornado Massachusetts Hurricane Irene Emergency Preparedness Hurricane Season Crisis Tornados Generator Law portable gasoline generator critical power Georgia disaster readiness plan Emergency Power Blackout laws emergency power generator installation poweroutage pet safety Hoboken temporary power solutions Power Distribution rental generator heating power Generator safety Power Generator Usage cuomo electrical generator regional climate Pets Emergency Preparedness Kit the forgotten zone USA Today Carbon Monoxide Electrical Generator Replacement backup generators Black Dog Survival School new laws sunbursts Senior safety Hawaii standby generator storms disasters portable shelters Summer GridExII New Bill flood natural disaster generator repair earthquake Arizona San Onofre Power Plant electrical power outage communication emergency generators Temporary Power Solution dirty air PACER home renovations Extreme Heat preparation NESHAP emergency generator power SETRAC Doug Copp Back-Up Power System Temporary Power System energy Portable Generator Rental Emergency Power Supply biomass electrical power generator electricity Winter Storms power generation California Public Utilities Commission NOAA generator service quiet power generators powergenerators Hurricane Chasers New York National Preparedness month Power Conference home improvement License Plates Failing Power Generator power plus emergency checklist diesel generators renewable-energy nyc gas-powered generator landline Electric Generators emergency generator power, powerlines Hurricanes fuel-cell technology Emergency Power Generators Tenafly Britain Hospitals National Emissions Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants battery-powered generators Emergency Management Local Law 111 Emergency Power heaters Hurricane Isaac power solutions New Electrical Power Generators Standby Generators U.S. disaster preparedness power generators repairs Ring of Fire Power Outages power your home emergency powers Local Law 111 of 2013 Disaster preperation Food Safety Solar Power Emergency Backup Generators apocalypse