Mostly during weather changes, whether from heat to cold or cold to heat, the Generac generator does show overcrank errors. And not only do Generac generators experience errors like this, but other traditional generators like Onan or Kohler also bring out these kinds of errors called overcrank.
While your Generac generator might experience these overcrank errors, if not fixed instantly, it can lead to excessive wear and tear or even damage to the generator engine.
Therefore, to avoid all this from happening to your generator, in this blog post, I’ll discuss the causes of Generac generator overcrank errors, provide solutions to help you clear the errors, and how best you can prevent this error in the future.
What is Generator Overcrank Errors?
There’s no actual definition of what generator overcrank errors are. However, generator overcrank errors occur when the engine fails to start and the starter motor continues to turn the engine over, causing the battery to discharge and the engine to overheat. While the overcrank error can be frustrating when it shows up, it’s protecting your generator.
Therefore, no matter what you do at the period, if you aren’t able to do the necessary things, or you just disconnected the overcrank wire to enable the generator to work, you are only putting the generator at risk — Big risk.
Causes of Generac Generator Overcrank Errors
The major cause of Generac generator overcrank errors is lack of maintenance, such as checking and changing the engine oil, and oil filter among others. Having said that, here are some other factors that may cause your generator to bring out overcrank errors.
- Low battery voltage: Firstly, when you have a weak or discharged battery, it may not provide enough power to start the engine, leading the generator to overcranking.
- Clogged air filter: Secondly, dirty or clogged air filters can restrict airflow to the engine, which may make it difficult to start.
- Fuel system, engine oil, or gas pipe problems: Thirdly, lack of engine oil, having a clogged fuel filter, empty fuel tank, or stale fuel can cause starting issues and overcranking. And for gas pipes, that’s if the gas line isn’t providing enough gas.
- Ignition system issues: Faulty spark plug or ignition coil can also prevent the engine from starting, then leads to overcranking.
- Other mechanical problems: Lastly, issues with the generator’s wiring, solenoid, or engine itself can also cause overcranking.
How to Clear Generac Generator Overcrank Errors
Now that we know the causes of Generac generator overcrank errors, let’s look at some ways to clear the errors:
- Check and charge the battery: Firstly, you can troubleshoot this error by checking the battery voltage using a multimeter. If you check the battery and it’s low, charge it using a battery charger. When doing so, make sure the battery terminals are clean and tight, then money to the next step.
- Clean or replace the air filter: Secondly, check the air filter to see If the air filter is clogged or dirty. If it is, clean or replace it to improve airflow to the engine.
- Check and replace the fuel or engine oil if needed: Thirdly, ensure you check the engine oil whether it’s the gauge or needs replacement. And also, you can check if there is enough fuel in the tank and that it’s not stale. Furthermore, you can try replacing the fuel filter if it’s clogged.
- Check and replace spark plugs: Fourthly, check If the spark plugs are worn or faulty. If they are, try replacing them to ensure that the engine has proper ignition.
- Check and replace the starter solenoid: Fifthly, if you have done all the above tips and the error is still showing, you can consider checking if the starter solenoid is faulty. If it is, it may prevent the starter from engaging. Replace it if necessary.
- Get Professional Help: lastly, if the above solutions don’t work or if you’re not comfortable working on your generator yourself, you can seek help from a professional generator repair technician.
Generac Generator Overcrank Prevention Tips
While different factors might cause Generac generators to overcrank, there are also ways to prevent it from happening. Among these include:
- Perform regular maintenance: Earlier, I mentioned that lack of regular maintenance is one of the major causes of overcranking errors. And to prevent it, regularly maintaining your generator can help prevent overcranking and other issues. This includes changing the oil, cleaning or replacing the air filter, checking and replacing spark plugs, and keeping the fuel system clean and properly maintained.
- Use fresh fuel: Using stale fuel can cause starting issues and lead to overcranking. Be sure to use fresh, high-quality fuel and keep the fuel tank full to prevent air from entering the system.
- Keep the battery charged: A weak or discharged battery can cause overcranking. Ensure that the battery is fully charged and the terminals are clean and tight.
- Store your generator properly: Proper storage can prevent overcranking and other issues. Store your generator in a cool, dry place, away from moisture and direct sunlight. Disconnect the battery and drain the fuel tank before storing it for an extended period.
- Warm Up Your Generator: Letting your generator warm up for a few minutes before using it can help prevent overcranking. This allows the oil to circulate properly and the engine to reach the optimal operating temperature, no matter if the weather is hot or cold.
- Use a Fuel Stabilizer: A fuel stabilizer helps to prevent the fuel from going stale and causing starting issues. And if you’re the type that doesn’t usually use your generator, this is one of the things you should watch out for. However, you can always buy a high-quality fuel stabilizer and follow the manufacturer’s instructions when using it.
- Use the Correct Starting Procedure: Follow the correct starting procedure for your Generac generator to prevent overcranking and other issues. This may include turning on the fuel valve, setting the choke, and using the electric starter or pull cord correctly.
Whenever your Generac generator brings out overcranking errors, I know it can be a frustrating problem that prevents you from using your generator when you need it most.
But, by understanding the causes of overcranking and following the solutions we’ve provided, you can fix the issue and keep your generator running smoothly.
Always, remember to perform regular maintenance on your generator to prevent overcranking and other issues. If you need further assistance, don’t hesitate to seek help from a trusted generator repair professional.
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