As any business owner will tell you, running a successful company isn’t just about checking off the to-do list. It’s also about handling all the spur-of-the-moment issues that inevitably spring up throughout the day. Juggling all of this can make it easy to overlook many basic maintenance tasks. However, as easy as it can be to make excuses to ignore some of these tasks, it is almost always cheaper and less stressful to prevent issues than it is to repair them. Generator maintenance is no exception. Your commercial generator gives you security that your business can continue to function, even in the midst of a storm. Ensure that your generator will be running smoothly when you need it with these commercial generator maintenance tasks.
Commercial Generator Maintenance Checklist
Properly cared for, your commercial generator will last for years. Here, we’ll provide a basic checklist for commercial generator maintenance. Because generators come in a wide variety or sizes and styles, your generator may or may not have all of these components. Always familiarize yourself with your specific generator and refer to the manufacturer product guide for components and essential maintenance tasks to avoid system damage.
Change Serviceable Parts
Serviceable parts effect your generator’s lifespan and performance. Just as you have your vehicle serviced regularly, maintain the same service for your generator. Serviceable parts on your generator may include:
- Air Filter
- Spark Plugs
- Fuel Filter
Check Oil Levels
The engine oil is integral to the operation and lifespan of your generator. Regularly check and replace engine oil. Check oil levels cold or wait 10 minutes after operation. Maintain levels close to the “full” mark, but be careful not to overfill. Change your generator’s engine oil after every 1,000 hours in operation, and keep extra oil on hand for emergencies.
Inspect Cooling Systems
Inspect and flush your generator’s cooling system according to manufacturer instruction. Ensure adequate coolant levels, and inspect all lines and connections for leaks.
Clean and Test Battery
Faulty batteries are the most common reason for emergency generator service. Check your battery terminal to be sure it is free of corrosion, the connections are tight and properly aligned, and that your battery is kept at a full charge.
Inspect and Attend Fuel Levels
For a gas unit, inspect the fuel supply piping for leaks or obvious damage. Attend to these repairs ASAP. On a diesel unit, check fuel levels regularly and drain water from the fuel/water separators as needed.
Inspect Drive Belts
Inspect drive belts for tears, cracks, or signs of damage. Replace belts as needed.
Inspect the Alternator and Transfer Switch
Alternators that are producing good power only need a visual inspection for signs of damage. To test your transfer switch, schedule a planned outage outside of business hours. Check the transfer swtich by turning off power at the switch.
Keep the Area Around the Generator Clear of Debris
Regularly remove debris on and around the generator. Remove leaves, snow, dirt or other debris from the generator and the area surrounding it. This will make it easier to spot leaks or issues before they become bigger problems. It will also make it faster and easier to service the generator in an emergency.
Test-Run Your Generator Regularly to Ensure Proper Operation
Most generators automatically run their own test cycle on a regular schedule. This helps them to keep the system lubricated, burn off moisture, and recharge the generator battery. If your generator does not automatically run an exercise cycle, manually run your generator at least 30 minutes once per month to ensure it will be ready when you need it.
Enroll in a Scheduled Commercial Generator Maintenance Program
We know how much you have on your plate. You have enough to worry about even without the burden of remembering to care for your generator as well. However, you also understand the importance of a generator, and you know without it, you would have to close your business during a power outage. If these commercial generator maintenance tasks seem overwhelming, Midwest Generator Solutions can help. Enroll in a scheduled generator maintenance program to ensure a trouble-free season. Contact us to easily check off these essential generator maintenance tasks today.