December 14, 2023 at 9:23 am #40948Phillip BeallKeymaster
Generators are an important feature of preparedness. Whether yours is a little Honda, one of the Chinese knockoffs from Harbor Freight, one mounted in an RV or on the front of a camper or a mammoth Generac auto-start whole-house; they all require maintenance. I know otherwise very responsible people that do not do preventative maintenance…I’ll be kind, regularly. Some I could say “at all”, but I’ll be charitable and say not often. I also know some people that just don’t have the tools, skills and/or confidence to do preventative maintenance. However, it must be done or you will find yourself crying when you need it to operate.
The two articles here – My Generator: Hard Lessons Learned – Part 1 – and here – My Generator: Hard Lessons Learned – Part 2 – are pretty simple and apply mostly to the smaller generators. But they all need some TLC. If yours is outside I would add to look inside of all the openings for dirt dauber nests. They get into ours if there is the slightest opportunity. Window screen over the louver will exclude them.
Ask for help. Hire it done. Whatever needs to be done, give yours some TLC while the weather is mild. It will reward you with proper performance when the weather is not mild…or some other calamity strikes.
Phillip Beall (W5EBC)December 14, 2023 at 7:40 pm #40959Jerry KeislerParticipant
I agree, also run every month under load for at least a half hour. At work we ran them every month under load at least 1 hour in my 9 counties. We used them for radio, light over the radio and phone system.December 17, 2023 at 12:42 pm #40980Danial BeardModerator
I’ve found a good way to exercise them in the spring and autumn is to use them to power the trash pump and the leaf blower. That said, they just don’t make batteries the way they used to. I rarely get the second year out of the new ones. They are quite a bit more spendy, but I’m trying AGMs this year. For standby, I still also keep a charged up Lithium Ion car jumper in the pantry — just in case.
Regarding mud daubers … methinks Dow Chemical should harvest and market mud dauber spit as the final mil-spec product in the nuclear super-glue spectrum.December 17, 2023 at 6:13 pm #40983Jerry KeislerParticipant
I have found it is best to bring all lead acid up to full charge at least once a month. Especially on items you do not use every month.
For Lithium Iron and Lithium ion batteries that are not used every month. I like to recycle twice a year. Then leave at about 70% charge for storage.
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