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    2019
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Common Causes for a Generator Failure

Common Causes for a Generator Failure

Generator failure is not something any homeowner wants to deal with, but when you live in Vero Beach, Florida it is necessary. Generators provide power to your home when a natural disaster or power outage strikes. Without a generator you could be leaving your home and loved ones at risk. The main thing people wonder when they realize their generator has failed is ‘why’. Though these causes don’t explain every reason why a generator fails, they are the most common and something you should be aware of as a responsible homeowner.

Battery failure

One of the most common causes for generator failure is due to the battery. In most cases the battery has a loose connection or a sulfation buildup. A loose connection is usually caused by dirty or grime buildup around the connection. If you carry out routine maintenance than you most likely do not need to worry about this problem. Properly cleaning your generator and running it every few months can easily avoid this issue.

A sulfation buildup is when sulfate crystals accumulate on the generator’s lead-acid battery plates. This collection of sulfate crystals keeps the battery from creating a current large enough to produce a charge. Slightly less common than sulfation buildup is a tripped charger breaker. Charger breakers are usually turned off during maintenance and generator testing so it is possible the breaker was not turned on or put in the proper place after an inspection. This is an easy fix, but it’s important to check your charger breaker after any maintenance to ensure your generator is working properly.

Battery failure is difficult to predict but consistent maintenance on your generators’ wiring, circuits and charge readings can help prolong a battery issue. If you notice any fluctuations in the battery’s charge reading month over month, then that might be an early sign of battery failure.

Coolant levels

Just like your car or any other engine, without coolant your generator will overheat. An overheated generator can cause mechanical damages and generator failure. Typically a generator will alert the homeowner of low coolant levels but will not tell you why the coolant levels are low.

One of the most common reasons why coolant levels drop is due to an interior or exterior leak in the generator. Leaks can be hard to spot but one way to see if your generator is leaking is to see if there is any liquid buildup in or around the generator. Most generator coolants are a red color but can vary depending on manufacturer. Monthly generator inspections will help alert you to any leaks or coolant malfunctions your generator is experiencing.

Control panel

As silly as it sounds, one of the main reasons homeowners’ generators don’t turn on is because of the control panel settings. This is a common human error that mimics the effects of a failed generator. When the control panel settings are left in the ‘rest’ or ‘off’ position, the generator moves out of auto mode. This means your generator will not automatically turn on when there is a power outage. Check your control panel to make sure the ‘not in auto’ error message is not displayed on the screen.

You don’t want to realize you’re experiencing generator failure when you need it the most. To help prevent generator failure, schedule an inspection with your local generator company in Vero Beach now.

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