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Old 01-11-2016, 08:00 PM   #1
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Who made the 30 day exercise rule for generators??

The "Rule of thumb" that I have been seeing is that you should exercise your coach (generator and engine) once every 30 days.

In thinking about this, I am curious on how this number came to be.
I would think that a lot depends on where it is stored.

Outdoors in cold or humid temperatures would probably need shorter intervals compared to indoor storage in a dry climate.

Does this make sense?
Would a newer generator be OK with longer intervals compared to an older generator?

My understanding is that exercising the generator is mainly to keep the commutator contacts in good shape. Same for the alternator.

Is anyone going longer between exercising their equipment??

Thanks,

Dan
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Old 01-11-2016, 08:08 PM   #2
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The manufacturer of the generators put forth that suggestion (and in some cases requirement to keep the warranty in force) by going through their records on warranty repairs. And they don't say anything about where it's stored.

Seems like a good way IMHO.
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Old 01-11-2016, 08:08 PM   #3
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Our Coach is kept inside our garage when not in use, I do not start either one if I am not going to use them. Sits all winter....November to April.
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Old 01-11-2016, 08:10 PM   #4
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I think things like this are like the change the oil every three thousand miles, swap tires after 5 years, and a list of others. Technology marches on. Just don't let it go for extended period of time, run it every so often, under load. I try to remember to do it every couple of months. It's about the only time it ever gets run except in the dead of summer when I'll run it going down the road for AC.
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Old 01-11-2016, 08:21 PM   #5
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I think the story goes that after you shut the generator down and it cools condensation forms in the crankcase (this is all anecdotal and I have no idea if it's true). Running the generator once or twice a month under load prevents this condensation from corroding the innards of the generator as the oil eventually makes its way to the bottom of the crankcase from sitting. Is this real? I have no idea. But I run my coach generator at least twice a month and my Honda home emergency generator the same amount.

I know my local Cummins guy says to work those generators. They like to work. Might as well, I paid a pretty penny for them
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Old 01-11-2016, 08:24 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dpinvidic View Post
...Is anyone going longer between exercising their equipment??

Thanks,

Dan
When we winterize in November, nothing gets exercised until it gets started up come mid-late April.

Lori-
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Old 01-11-2016, 08:27 PM   #7
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Who made the 30 day exercise rule for generators??

I did not run either one this month. Here in MN it has been way too cold to fire-up an otherwise dormant machine. Think about the extreme wear and tear setting off explosions in the cylinders of sub-zero engines.
That has to be worse than waiting till the temp hits 35 or 40 degrees
Just my thoughts.
Dan
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Old 01-11-2016, 08:32 PM   #8
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Who made the 30 day exercise rule for generators??

It is mostly the guts of the dynamo that gets corrosion on critical stuff if it ain't run under load. The only folks that I know and have had issues are those that don't maintain them and exercise them on schedule, most where it will run but not put out any electrical power. In example, corroded commutator rings and brushes.
I have have had both gas and diesel gens. When I used to store the rigs, I did 2 hours with load while I planned or carried out mods and updates, or maybe watch a movie.
Now fulltime, I run it monthly between 2 campgrounds.
Best of luck. Mine has all been bueno
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Old 01-11-2016, 08:41 PM   #9
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The consensus of opinions and recommendations that I have
gathered over the years is that diesel engines should not be
run unless brought to full operating temps, and that
translates to driving your coach for 75 to 100 miles. I have
allowed my diesel generator and engine to sit for 5 months
each winter for the last six years. I do put an anti-microbial
additive in the fuel before storage. I've yet to see any
credible professional advice to the contrary.
JMHO.
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Old 01-11-2016, 08:42 PM   #10
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Never think about that here in Fla. Winter IS camping season. Guess you have a point



Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan_S View Post
I did not run either one this month. Here in MN it has been way too cold to fire-up an otherwise dormant machine. Think about the extreme wear and tear setting off explosions in the cylinders of sub-zero engines.
That has to be worse than waiting till the temp hits 35 or 40 degrees
Just my thoughts.
Dan
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Old 01-11-2016, 08:45 PM   #11
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A year and a half ago, I picked up a 1999 MH with 6 hours on the original generator.

I put 500 trouble free hours on it since.

It will now be stored for up to a year with no running.

I did pull the gas line and run it dry.
Wish me luck.
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Old 01-11-2016, 08:56 PM   #12
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I wold think with today's ethanol gas, there is a problem of the fuel clogging up the generator carb. The ethanol added to gas does gum up with time. The guy who cuts my grass will not use the ethanol, 15% ethanol, in his equipment because of the ethanol. He buys pure gas at a large price hit. He said it is worth it to keep his equipment running. Exercising will not allow fuel to sit in the carb for a long time and let it gum up. Just a thought.
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Old 01-11-2016, 09:02 PM   #13
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Another issue with generators is that the insulation on the windings absorbs moisture from the air. Wet insulation is not good........

Running the generator under load will heat the insulation and drive off the moisture, prolonging the life of the generator.
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Old 01-11-2016, 09:02 PM   #14
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Fortunately they have not figured out how to put corn squeezings into diesel yet
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