How to Prepare Your Generator for Hurricane Season
With the hurricane season approaching, it’s important to make sure that your generator is ready to handle the load your facility needs at any moment. You can ensure that you are never left without electricity by implementing a preventative maintenance and testing regime for your generator.
If your generator has been sitting unused at your facility collecting dust, you’ll want to get ahead of the season by preparing your generator for potential heavy usage. You’ll need to prep your generator for the upcoming hurricane season with proper maintenance before, during, and after the season. Aside from general maintenance, you should also be performing load bank testing to ensure your generator can handle maximal loads before the first big storm hits.
Many people are unaware of the importance of not only preventative maintenance but load bank testing as well. It’s an essential piece of the puzzle that completes your facility’s comprehensive maintenance plan which prepares your facility for the uncertainty of hurricane season. You should ideally have load bank testing conducted on your generator at least once a year, done around periods of time when your generator has been sitting unused for an extended period of time. Load bank testing ensures that your generator will be ready to run, as well as be dependable and capable of handling the highest possible load at any moment.
Load bank testing for dependability is crucial during hurricane season. Once the path of a hurricane is determined, we usually only have about four to five days to prepare at the very most. Trying to get a technician out to test and prepare your generator for high usage during that period before a storm hits is nearly impossible. If it is possible, that one visit can be much more expensive than what it would cost to have planned load bank tests and maintenance appointments throughout the year. The smart, cheaper, and less stressful route is to test your generator ahead of time.
Once you’ve got a load bank testing schedule set for your facility, you then need to concentrate on the regular preventative maintenance on your generator. Before the season starts, you need to have a maintenance schedule set in place. Even if for some reason you don’t use your generator during the year, it still needs to be maintained to be ready to go when you need it. More times than none, you won’t know ahead of schedule when you’ll need your generator until the very moment power is out.
So, when it comes to maintenance, what should be done to your generator to have it prepped and ready for the upcoming hurricane season? Every scheduled generator maintenance checkup should look like the following:
You should inspect your generators’ physical condition, looking for corroded or damaged parts, or any loose or frayed wires.
Inspect all bolts. Tighten or replace any as needed. The vibrations of the generator can cause bolts to loosen or fall off from gradual wear and tear.
You should change your generator oil at the beginning of the hurricane season and check the oil levels after every use, then changing the oil again if necessary.
Inspect the air filter for dirt, damage, and wear. Replace if necessary.
Check the spark plug to see if it needs cleaning or a replacement.
Going into hurricane season, generator preventative maintenance and load bank testing may seem like a tall order of business to take on, but it doesn’t have to be. Total Energy Solutions can take the task of preparing your generator for hurricane season off your hands. We can perform the scheduled load bank testing and preventative maintenance on your generator before, during, and after hurricane season to ensure you that your facility’s generator is always ready to go.