yellow commercial generator

You rely on your standby generator to supply dependable power in an emergency. Although many owners diligently clean and check their hardware to ensure proper start-up and operation, the importance of fuel maintenance is sometimes neglected. Here’s why it’s important.

A Guide to Fuel Maintenance & Standby Generators

Why Fuel Maintenance Matters

If your generator fails to function properly, issues with the fuel system may be to blame. The complex injection systems used in most models require a bit of maintenance to avoid fuel problems. Clogged filters, dirty fuel, and sludge in the tank can all diminish efficiency. 

Long-term exposure to heat, condensation, pressure, or contamination can contribute to fuel breakdown, as can long periods of idle storage. Engine problems like excessive exhaust, power decline, and unit failure can follow. Diesel fuel in particular is a less stable fluid, so engines that use it are more vulnerable to problems.

Thankfully, there are a few simple steps owners can take to prevent issues.

How to Perform Proper Maintenance

Man with red hat performing fuel maintenance

Changing fuel filters, removing water, and testing fuel quality all help prevent problems. Tank samples should be checked for water and sediment every year. Tests should occasionally be run for flashpoint, or how easily fuel ignites, as well as for gelling, or thickening.

Using the right fuel grade is another key part of upkeep. Grade #1 is more resistant to gelling in cold temperatures. Grade #2 delivers more energy in warmer seasons, when the risk of gelling is reduced. Grades can be blended for peak performance in prevailing conditions.  

How Fuel Treatment & Polishing Affect Generators

Fuel treatment and polishing both extend fuel life and maximize engine performance. Treatment involves additives that guard against deterioration and inhibit solids from precipitating out into the tank. Treatment also combats the growth of microorganisms and guards against gelling.

Polishing is a filtering process that physically removes damaging sediments and water from the tank. Most manuals recommend performing treatment and polishing at least once annually. In the absence of these steps, it’s important to replace fuel regularly with a fresh supply.

Powers Guaranteed Services in Swanzey, NH, has provided quality, affordable generator installation, service, and repairs throughout New England since 1994. Serving both residential and commercial clients, our team takes pride in offering state-of-the-art technology and exceptional customer service to meet your specific needs. Call 800-853-7202 to request an appointment today. Or visit our Fuel Maintenance page to learn more below!