(Provided by Steven Nameroff - Friday, October 28, 2016)
There’s nothing worse than spending a wad of cash on a temporary power system and then the whole thing stops working when you most need. Here are a few things to look out for to prevent possible failure…
The most frequent service call that Power Plus, an emergency power generator service company receives is re: battery malfunction. Batteries use water. Get a maintenance-free battery, they allow water to condensate and refill their cells.
Also, don’t expose your battery plates to the air, it can result in low electrolyte levels. And replace them every three years.
Your generator unit should also come with various alarms installed. These alarms will indicate if your battery is low or if your charging is failing. Regardless, monitor this month-to-month.
Check for leaks. You have low coolant levels, your system WILL shutdown. If your heater is blocked, your generator will boil. Keep it cycling. This will prevent the oil from becoming too thick in cold temperatures. To prevent all this, hire a trained professional like Power Plus to fuel your generator.
If your generator shuts down itself for any reason (mainly due to a control switch being set to the wrong position), you’re going to have to physically reset the control panel to clear the alarm. This panel controls all aspects of your generator’s settings.
If your fuel bleeds back into your tank you’re screwed. Your generator has to be exercised on a regular basis. Now, we don’t mean putting a leash around it and circling the block a few times, we mean releasing a little bit of air in the system to meet emission requirements.
It’s true. Sometimes the fuel gauges aren’t accurate. This is unlike your car. Your car’s always on the road, it’s moving and using your tank’s capacity. A generator tank isn’t mobile. The fuel becomes stagnant and it doesn’t show up on the gauge. Sometimes you’re going to have to check for yourself. On occasion you may even have backed up fuel that isn’t required. You’ll have TOO much fuel. Disastrous results.
This is a common slip up, a basic human error…sometimes someone accidentally hits the “Emergency Power-Off Switch”. Let’s say you’re having a power outage, you’ve done all the routine maintenance checkups, but your generator is not working! Something as simple as checking to see if the emergency power switch is off can avoid panic.
But here’s the thing: never, ever try to manually operate an automatic transfer switch if you don’t know how to do so. It can lead to deadly consequences. The transfer switch, if someone hasn’t accidentally hit it, may have a specific reason for being in the position that it’s in. Also, check for timer delay. The time delay keeps the generator online until the automatic transfer switch sees a steady supply of power coming from the utility grid. Sometimes the timer will be set to 15 to 30 minutes to boot the generator back up.
Lastly, if your diesel engine is operating below the rated operating temperature “wet stacking” occurs. If your generator is not opening at more than 30% of the rated load during exercising and testing, it needs to be load tested. You should do this once a year. Again, call Power Plus. They can notice if a black ooze is seeping around the exhaust pipe connections.
The ooze means that the fuel in the tank is not being completely burned in the combustion process. This leads to generator over fueling and “wet stacking”. If this happens you’re going to have to burn off the excess fuel and carbon.
In conclusion, you’ve spent money on your industrial generator, keep it maintained for longevity, it’ll be reliable and you will receive great results.
Power Plus! is a leading provider of reliable non-radioactive power generators across the United States and Canada.
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