What to do when your generator is flooded.
Nature doesn’t always comply with well-constructed business continuity plans, particularly in cases of unexpected flooding that forces water into properties and could also reach generators.
In cases of power outages following a disaster, first instincts may be to start up generator power. However, caution must be taken when dealing with generators that have been flooded — even if water does not remain in the building and the unit appears to be dry.
Restarting a wet generator creates a danger because water in the engine could cause a mechanical failure or debris within the unit could become lodged in the moving parts. An attempt to start the unit, in either case, could lead to a blowout and cause bodily injury or property damage.
It’s also extremely important to not attempt to open and inspect the Automatic Transfer Switch (ATS) which starts the backup generator when the main utility source fails. If water has gotten into the ATS, a qualified electrician or generator/ATS technician should open and inspect the switch before sending electricity from the generator to the ATS.
Inspecting the ATS without a qualified electrician or technician creates a safety hazard due to the extreme possibility that an energized wet ATS can create an electrical failure and cause bodily harm or property damage.
Inspection of the ATS is also imperative to prevent back feed or the energizing of nearby power lines. The transfer switch blocks off the utility and generator power to prevent back feeding, which places linemen and other repair workers at risk of electrocution.
Key safety considerations when dealing with a flooded or possibly flooded generator before contacting a qualified technician:
- -Turn the unit off.
- -Disable the battery charger.
- -Close the natural gas valve to the unit.
Safety is our main focus as we work to provide quality service to our customers. Our technicians are ready to assist our customers as they begin their recovery after a flood or any disaster and we encourage our customers to call should they need assistance: 877-835-1070.