A Do-It-Yourself Generator Check Up

A regular check up is good for maintaining one’s health. The same is true for the health of your residential or light commercial generator. Although scheduled maintenance and repair can be involved and require the expertise of a Cooper Electrical Services professional, a simple generator check up inspection can be done by anyone who’s ever checked the battery or oil in a car. In this post we’ll review some basic do-it-yourself generator inspection tips so you can identify potential issue areas early, before they develop into more serious problems.

Cummins light commercial generator check-up Cummins residential generator check-up

Above are images of Cummins brand residential and light commercial generators, popular backup power solutions for many Myrtle Beach customers. Since Cooper Electrical Services is an authorized Cummins dealer, we’ll walk through an inspection with the Cummins QuietConnect and PowerConnect series. Should you have a different brand generator, you’ll want to check the manufacturer’s guide first.

First Things First, Power Down

Automatic startup and accidental powering of the generator while you are inspecting it or performing maintenance can be dangerous, even deadly. Cummins recommends pushing the control switch to OFF and disconnecting the negative (–) battery cable from the battery before beginning.

A Thorough Look, Listen, Feel Inspection of Your Generator

Once the generator is off and the negative battery cable disconnected, it is time to begin your inspection. As you move through the different bullets below, look and feel for signs of wear or leaks. If you encounter something that seems like it could be a problem down the line, call Cooper Electrical Services for a more complete inspection and testing.

Battery Connections: Since you’ve already disconnected the negative cable, it makes sense to examine the battery first. Examine the terminals for clean connections. Just like an automobile battery, corrosion or loose connections can impact performance. Clean and tighten terminals with approved cleaning products if there are signs of corrosion or loose connections.

Oil Levels: Check the oil with the cap/dipstick. Wipe clean, reinsert, and then remove to measure oil levels.

Turn on your generator to test the items below. Reconnect your battery cables and turn the control switch to ON before proceeding.

Fuel Lines: The fuel supply line is the liquid propane or natural gas line that enters your generator. Look for a tight seal at the connection point. Look for leaks, cracks, or abrasions to the flexible fuel line. Replace worn or cracked lines before leaks begin.

Mechanical Health: While the generator is running, look and listen for unusual movement or sounds from the generator. Are air intakes clear of debris? If something looks or sounds odd, call a Cooper Electrical Services technician to inspect more closely.

After you’ve completed the following checks, return your generator to its regular auto settings.

Cooper Electrical Services Recommends Regular Maintenance and Service

At Cooper Electrical Services, we know that a residential or light commercial generator is a big investment. That’s why we encourage all to protect their investments with Service Agreements. Not only do our Service Agreements cover the above system check and more, but they also include priority service during hurricane season, discounted labor rates, and 24/7 emergency service.

To learn more about Service Agreements for your residential or light commercial generator, contact Cooper Electrical Services today.