Preventive Maintenance (PM)

A well-planned preventive maintenance (PM) program, with regularly scheduled maintenance is essential to ensure reliability of all power generation equipment. This approach also minimizes downtime, as operators can arrange to have backup power while the primary unit is being serviced.

WPP’s Preventive maintenance inspections include an 80-point inspection checklist:  

  • Engine lubricating system (6) 
  • Engine cooling system (14) 
  • Engine air intake system (4) 
  • Engine exhaust system (3) 
  • Engine fuel system (12) 
  • Engine electrical system (10) 
  • Other engine related systems (4) 
  • Generator and distribution system (8) 
  • Generator running inspection (12)  
  • Departure inspection (7) 

Benefits of a preventive maintenance program for your generator or engine:

  • Regulatory compliance (NFPA, TCEQ, NEC)
  • Avoid downtime and costly repairs
  • Eliminate damage caused by deferred maintenance
  • Minimize loss of revenue due to unplanned downtime

Regularly scheduled maintenance does more than protect your investment and operating continuity. Unavoidable failures that may occur during operation usually become evident during a load test or inspection when the generator is not being used.

Fuel Polishing, Management & Analysis

The National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA) recommends that “diesel fuel be tested for degradation no less than twice annually with a maximum of 6 months between testing at least once per year.”    WPP offers FREE diesel fuel sampling in order to determine if your fuel is contaminated.  During scheduled maintenance visits, WPP can also refuel or top off your diesel tanks with high-quality fuel.  We also offer optional fuel analysis, sampling and treatment for contamination as an optional service with each visit.

Cold Weather Tips

When generators used for standby or continuous power will be operated at 32°F (0°C) or below – especially for extended periods of time – operators must take precautions to ensure the generator will start reliably, get to the desired load quickly, and continue to run without incident and unnecessary stress and wear on the engine.  Like most equipment, standby generators need to be properly maintained to ensure they will operate correctly when a power outage occurs, and they called upon to carry the electrical load. Cold weather can make it especially challenging for generators to start and perform if the equipment is not properly maintained. Here are some generator maintenance tips to prepare your generator for winter and help ensure your equipment is ready to run when you need it.

cold weather generator tips

Check Batteries & Battery Charger

Batteries are the single most common cause of failure of a generator to start and operate properly in the event of an outage or exercise cycle. These failures are commonly caused by the following:

Battery deterioration: As batteries age, the acid inside will coat the lead plates with sulfate resulting in restricting the battery’s ability to generate enough amps to crank the engine. This same process can lead to shorts if the lead debris from deterioration makes contact between plates at the bottom of the cell.

Battery charger failure: Battery charges commonly fail due to a simple breaker being open or tripped. Always double check to make sure the battery charger breaker has been turned back on after completion of routine or scheduled maintenance.

Poor/loose battery connections: Battery cable connections should always be securely tightened, cleaned and free of debris. Any buildup of corrosion or debris can lead to shorted connections during the cranking cycle, discharge of battery, and deterioration of battery cables/wiring.

Check Block Heater & Jacket Water Heaters

During cold weather, block heaters are working hard to keep the engine warm and this is the most common time for failures. Block heater failure leads to generator alarms for low coolant temp and/or over crank if the engine fails to start within the defined parameters.  One of the best methods to ensure an engine on a generator set starts easily and quickly is to keep the engine warm. The most common way this is done in our area is by the use of engine block heater or jacket water heaters.

Block heaters, which are installed on the coolant circuit, keep the engine’s coolant warm enough that the unit is able to start immediately and attain/maintain the required engine load. They are generally powered by an external power source rather than the generator engine itself.

Check The Fuel                                       

Make sure the fuel in your tank is treated with anti-gel and anti-microbial additives.  Many fuel providers treat their diesel fuel, but you should verify and also make sure your tank is full!