How do I adjust the valve clearance?
Valve clearance adjustment is critical to proper engine operation and requires special tools and training. Instructions are covered in the Valve Clearance Adjustment section of your owner's manual. However, if you are uncomfortable preforming this service procedure, have your dealer maintain the generator's valve clearance at the intervals specified.
Can I operate my generator in the rain?
Portable generator should never be operated inside an enclosed space or contrary to any provision or warning contained in your Owner's Manual. However, portable generators are intended to be used during extreme weather and for the sensitive electronics on them, it is best if some sort of open covering can be used to protect it from direct rain or snow. Great options would be a car port or boat canopy with four open sides or a tarp hung from a tree. It is very important to provide adequate ventilation for the generator, so any sort of protection should be at least five feet from any side (including the top of the unit) while in use. Additionally, a portable generator should always be stored inside when not in use to prevent unnecessary wear and tear. BE ADVISED, the generator should NEVER be used in any enclosed space including, without limitation, a shed, home, garage, trailer, or vehicle, even if the doors are left open, as this can be a serious fire hazard and carbon monoxide risk.
How long can I operate the generator? Does it need a "break"?
Your generator can be operated continually. The highest priority is to maintain a proper oil level. Each time you add fuel, check the oil level as well. Add oil, if necessary, to keep the level at the upper mark on the dipstick. See the Checking Oil Level and Adding Fuel sections of your owner's manual for complete instructions on adding fuel and oil.
Is there anything special I need to do before I turn off my generator? Should I unplug my electrical devices?
Yes, remove all loads before turning the generator off. First, turn off all appliances, lights and items being powered by the generator. Then, unplug the items from the generator's receptacles and allow the generator to cool. Once you've done this, it is safe to turn the generator off. NEVER turn the generator off while loads are applied. Refer to the Generator Loads section of your owner's manual for complete instruction on adding and removing electrical devices.
If the generator is being used, how do I connect or disconnect electrical devices?
NEVER start or stop the generator's engine with running electrical devices plugged into the generator. When the generator is turned off, you can only connect electrical devices that are turned off. When the generator is turned on, you may connect electrical devices that are turned on or off.
Why do I need to ground my portable generator?
Proper grounding of the generator, when used to back-up a building's utility power, will prevent electrical shock in the event of a ground fault condition in the generator or the connected electrical devices. Proper grounding also helps dissipate static electricity which often builds up in ungrounded devices. The National Electric Code requires that the frame and externally conductive parts of this generator be properly connected to an approved earth ground. Local electrical codes may also require proper groundingof the unit. for that purpose, connecting a No. 10 AWG (American Wire Gauge) stranded copper wire to the grounding lug and to an earth driven copper or brass grounding rod (electrode) provides adequate protection against electrical shock. However, local codes may vary widely. Consult with a local electrician for grounding requirements in the area.
How often should I start/operate my generator between outages?
Generac recommends starting a generator once a month and running the unit for about 30 minutes. Starting the unit monthly will help make sure that the generator is ready to turn on in the event of an outage.