Electricity is everything and without it, most of your appliances won’t work — you will be stranded till when it’s fixed.
That’s why generators are there to provide you with reliable power sources to help save the day during unexpected power outages or in off-grid situations.
However, like any other mechanical device, generators can experience issues that require repair and maintenance.
Hence, in this blog post, we’ll discuss some of the common generator repairs you should be aware of to ensure your generator operates efficiently and reliably when you need it most.
The 12 Common Generator Repairs You Must Know
One of the most common generator repair tasks is replacing the spark plug. That’s because, over time, spark plugs become worn out, resulting in poor engine performance causing hard starting, and not allowing the generator to work fine as expected.
Sometimes, the spark plugs you use might be at fault. That’s why it’s recommended you always check your spark plugs and use the right type of fuel.
But overall what keeps a spark plug at its best every time is regular maintenance of your generator.
Statistically, you should work on your generator every 200 hours, that is change the oil, check the spark plug, and other aspects.
To learn more on spark plug replacement and how to choose the right spark plugs for your generator? Check out this article:- How to Fix a Generator Spark Plug: 5 Top Ways
2. Battery Replacement
Secondly, we have battery replacement, but not in all generators. Some generators with electric start systems rely on a battery to provide the initial power needed for startup, and if you have one, this is for you.
At times, the generator fails to start or struggles to crank, as a result of weak or dead battery. Maybe because it’s not charging or the battery was overused or kept over a long period.
If you have battery issues, you should seek assistance from a professional to know whether you should change the battery or just charge it.
Furthermore, he can help you diagnose the generator to know what makes it weak all of a sudden or makes it dead.
3. Fuel System Maintenance
Thirdly, the fuel system is another important part of generators you shouldn’t neglect and needs to be checked always — in short daily.
Fuel sometimes is contaminated with little debris and dirt which later conjoins and clogged the fuel filter, deteriorated fuel lines, and led to poor generator performance or even engine failure.
When something like this happens to your generator, it can even make the generator hard to start, and if you use a battery-type generator, it will weaken or kill the battery.
So, you should regularly inspect and clean the fuel filters, replace any damaged fuel lines, and use clean and high-quality fuel.
Although if you think it’s something you can do, you can invite a professional to help you diagnose the generator.
Proper lubrication should be taken for granted as it’s one of the most important factors that contribute to the smooth operation and longevity of your generator’s engine.
Regular oil changes, along with filter replacements, are important and you should neglect it. If you do, the oil can become contaminated with debris, reducing its effectiveness and damaging the generator’s engine.
When it comes to maintenance, you should always use the right type of engine oil as well as an oil filter for your generator. If you aren’t sure about the oil to use for your generator, contact us.
5. Carburetor Cleaning
Not all generators use carburetors, but if you use one, it’s important you know the carburetors are responsible for mixing air and fuel in the correct proportions for combustion.
Whenever a carburetor becomes clogged or dirty, the generator’s engine may run rough, produce black smoke, or fail to start.
So, you should at least clean your generator’s carburetor every after 200 hours of running as expected, but if your fuel system is okay, you shouldn’t be bothered much.
However, if it isn’t, cleaning or rebuilding the carburetor periodically, especially if the generator has been sitting idle for an extended period, will help maintain its optimal performance and make it always start, not produce black smoke or run rough.
6. Air Filter Replacement
Just like carburetor generators, not all generators use air filters. And the ones that use it are carburetor generators. The work of an air filter in a generator is to prevent dust, debris, and other contaminants from entering the engine and causing damage.
Over time, just like other parts in a generator, the air filter can also become clogged, restricting airflow into the generator and potentially leading to decreased performance or engine issues.
You should regularly inspect the air filter and clean or replace it as recommended. Keeping a clean air filter will help ensure proper combustion and prolong the life of your generator’s engine.
Voltage regulators are there to help ensure that your generator produces a steady and reliable voltage output and does not damage other appliances you are running the generator with.
But in cases you are experiencing voltage fluctuations or your generator is providing inconsistent power, the voltage regulator may be faulty.
What you should do is invite a professional to help you diagnose the issues to know if replacing the voltage regulator will be okay to ensure that your generator delivers the necessary power without damaging your connected devices.
8. Cooling System Maintenance
If you are using a standby generator, then you might be familiar with the generator cooling system.
When generators are running, they generate a significant amount of heat during operation, and a well-functioning cooling system is there to make sure the generator doesn’t overheat.
But sometimes, we forget and it’s normal, that’s why before starting your generator, you should inspect if there’s water in the radiator.
Additionally, if you are lucky, you can also clean the radiator, and check the coolant levels to ensure a proper airflow which will help prevent overheating issues and extend the lifespan of your generator. Although if you can’t clean it yourself, professionals are there to help.
9. Belt Inspection and Replacement
If your generator is using a cooling system, then surely it also has a belt-driven system. Belts play an important role in transferring power from the engine to the alternator or other parts.
However, over time, these belts can wear out, become loose, or develop cracks. And when there’s a worn or damaged belt can lead to reduced power generation or even a complete failure of the generator.
What you should do is regularly inspect the belt for signs of wear, such as fraying, cracking, or excessive slack, whenever you want to start the generator. If you notice any of these issues, you must replace the belt promptly.
When replacing the belt, make sure you select the correct size and type or you contact a professional for recommendations. By regularly inspecting and replacing belts as needed, you can avoid potential belt failures and ensure the smooth operation of your generator’s belt-driven system.
10. Control Panel and Wiring Checks
The control panel and wiring are other important parts that ensure the safe and efficient operation of your generator.
But sometimes, connections from the control panel or wires may become loose or corroded, potentially resulting in power fluctuations, erratic behavior, or even electrical hazards.
You should periodically inspect the control panel and wiring for any signs of damage, loose connections, or frayed wires. If you notice any issues, consult a professional electrician or generator technician to perform the necessary repairs.
11. Muffler and Exhaust System Maintenance
The muffler and exhaust system is another part of the generator that helps in reducing noise and directing exhaust gasses away.
Sometimes, the muffler can become clogged with carbon deposits, leading to restricted airflow and increased noise levels of the generator.
Whenever you notice anything like this from your generator muffler and exhaust system, consult a qualified generator technician to help you diagnose the issue.
12. Automatic Transfer Switch (ATS) Maintenance
Lastly, if your generator is connected to an automatic transfer switch, it’s important to perform regular maintenance on the ATS as well.
The ATS enables automatic switching between utility power and generator power during an outage.
You should inspect the ATS for any signs of damage or malfunction, such as loose connections or faulty switches.
Once in a while, test the ATS to ensure it is functioning correctly and will seamlessly transfer power when needed. But if it doesn’t, seek professional assistance for thorough ATS maintenance and testing.
So far you have known a few or if not all of the common repairs related to generators to help you keep your generator running smoothly, especially in cases you can’t get access to a professional. But in some cases, you can ensure you consult a professional so you won’t go and do things that would add to the problem of your generator.