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Tips for Generator Oil Changes and Maintenance

by chris@pkwydigital.com 15. January 2019 10:25

Maintaining your generator’s oil is one of the easiest ways to ensure your generator runs reliably when you need it to. From installation to regular oil changes, use these tips to keep your generator’s engine lubricated and running smoothly.

  1. Check your generator’s oil level after installation. Your generator may have been shipped without any oil. If your installer didn’t add oil, you will need to.
  2. Always follow the manufacturer’s guidelines when it comes to oil type. Different generators require unique oils depending on the engine and fuel type.
  3. Consider the temperature your generator will operate at. In cold temperatures, this equates to lower-viscosity oil and in hot temperatures, your generator will require higher-viscosity oil. As Perkins’ operation manuals state, you will generally want to “use the highest oil viscosity that is available to meet the requirement for the temperature at start-up.”
  4. Your first generator oil change will be sooner than other oil changes. Refer to your owner’s manual to determine the specific number of hours before your first oil change. It may be as soon as eight hours into your break-in process.
  5. Change your generator’s oil regularly, at the interval outlined in your owner’s manual. For smaller gas generators, this may be as often as every 50 hours. Large diesel generators may require oil changes only every 500 hours.
  6. If applicable, change your oil filter when you change your generator’s oil.
  7. When refueling, top off the oil reservoir if necessary.
  8. Keep extra oil and filters on hand so you are prepared to change oil regularly during power outages, when your generator may be running for hundreds of hours consecutively.
  9. Take into account the atmosphere your generator is running in when determining when to change oil. Dusty job sites will result in dirtier oil, which should be changed more regularly than oil that is not contaminated by large airborne particles.
  10. After a power outage that required your generator to run for a long time, check your oil levels and change if necessary. This way, you’ll be ready for the next time you need to rely on your generator.
  11. Many generators shut off automatically if oil is low in order to protect the engine. If your generator is not working properly, check the oil reservoir and top off or change before conducting further diagnostics.
  12. When checking oil levels or performing an oil change, clean dirt and debris from the area.

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Generator Maintenance

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