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Nov 02

Essential Components For An Industrial Generator Service Plan

By: Patti Dinneen


Poorly maintained generator sets are more prone to failure, and are more likely to fail when you need them most. Typically, generator engine failures are caused by issues with the starting, cooling, lubrication, or fuel delivery systems. You can prevent or minimize these types of failures by implementing a regularly scheduled comprehensive generator maintenance program.

Basic Components For Generator Visual Inspection

The service technician will make sure that the area surrounding your generator is kept free of debris, while ensuring sufficient ventilation during operation. Following this, the exhaust system will be inspected, including the manifold, muffler, and exhaust pipe. The service technician will make sure that all connecting gaskets, joints, and welds have been checked for potential leaks. All adverse conditions should be corrected promptly by a qualified technician. Keeping a maintenance log is essential for more accurate planning of future maintenance; well-kept logs may also be useful for warranty and insurance purposes.

Note:  In-house maintenance and testing should only be performed by qualified technicians.

Generator Fuel System Maintenance

Fuel maintenance is another crucial aspect of generator maintenance, especially considering that gasoline and diesel fuel degrade over time. Ideally, the fuel tank should be equipped with a valve, which allows accumulated water to be drained from the tank periodically. A technician can take a fuel sample from the bottom and from the supply line, which should be visually inspected monthly. Among other tasks, a technician will perform these duties during generator service checkup: a visual inspection for leaks and correct pressure, check fittings and connections, drain and clean fuel filters (as recommended by OEM), examine charge-air piping, and supply hoses for leaks, holes, and damaged seals.

Generator Battery Testing

Weak or undercharged starting batteries are the most common cause of standby power system failures. Even when kept fully charged and maintained, lead-acid starting batteries are subject to deterioration overtime and must be periodically replaced when they no longer hold a proper charge. Only a regular schedule of inspection and testing under load can prevent generator-starting problems.  Your Generator's battery must be tested under load; checking the voltage is an inaccurate method of testing for a battery's power. During your service inspection, you should expect that the battery cables will be cleaned to be free of corrosion. The technician should also ensure that engine wiring forms tight connections that are free of corrosion or other damage.

Generator Cooling System Maintenance

During your routine generator checkup, a technician will make sure the coolant is filled to the proper level. The cooling fluid mix is a balanced solution and will invariably differ from manufacturer to manufacturer, so it's essential to make sure that the solution you use is approved for use in your engine. The technician may also clean the radiator to remove any dust and/or debris.

How Often Should Your Generator Be Serviced?

At a minimum, Kinsley recommends your generator be serviced twice per year, including an annual and semi-annual inspection.  However, if your facility is critically dependent on back-up power, we also offer:

  • Quarterly Preventative Maintenance Plan:  Semi-annual service performed quarterly, plus one annual service.
  • Monthly Preventative Maintenance Plan: Semi-annual service performed monthly, plus one annual service.
  • Custom Plan: Based on the needs of the facility.

If you would like more information on servicing your industrial generator, read this post.  Alternatively, you may want to learn about the benefits of industrial generator load banking.

Kinsley Power Systems

Our goal is to ensure that your system performs when you need it. Kinsley Power offers customized preventive maintenance programs and extended warranties for all customers - hospitals and cable companies and factories and homeowners alike. Kinsley services all major make and model generators, transfer switches, switchgear and PTOs. Kinsley also offers such specialized services as load bank and infrared testing.

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