Extend Generator and Battery Life Using a Certified Generac Service
A respected certified Generac service technician will tell you that a battery is one of the most important components of any generator, especially when you need the unit to keep running non-stop during emergencies. Batteries are important sources that provide electricity to machines and equipment in the absence of an alternative power backup — and whole-house generator batteries are no different.
It’s not that the other components or maintenance issues with your home backup generator aren’t important — they are. There can be low-fuel issues, engine failures, operating stall-outs, overheating, wet stacking (water vapor condensation in the exhaust system), clogged fuel lines, and even leaks. If you notice any of these problems, you should contact a qualified technician as soon as possible. By ignoring these issues, you’ll end up with more serious costs or emergencies down the road.
Still, it’s important to keep track of your generator battery’s health. If the old battery still seems to be performing its duties, it’s hard to justify getting rid of it, regardless of whether it’s for residential or commercial use. However, replacing your generator battery on a regular basis — or performing routine generator maintenance so your battery stays active — can boost your generator’s lifespan.
Just like a car or truck’s electrical components are powered by a battery, routine testing and running of your generator’s engine and parts can help keep everything in shape as your unit flexes its battery power capabilities. If your generator doesn’t work because of an old, unkempt, unhealthy battery, it’s nothing more than a landscape ornament.
The importance of replacing your generator battery or knowing when generator repair services are needed cannot be overstated, as well as maintaining your battery’s performance so it lasts for a long time.
Replace Your Battery in Confidence with Certified Generac Service
When properly maintained and charged, a generator battery can last for years. If not, the generator will stop charging the battery as effectively as it once did after prolonged use.
If that happens, it’ll take longer and longer for the whole unit to start — or worse, it may not start at all. You’ll want to regularly maintain and replace (as needed) your generator’s battery to reap the following benefits:
- Enhanced battery and generator performance. Especially during emergencies, a generator with a battery that operates at its peak is well worth the investment.
- Smaller wait time. The start-up time for a generator can get longer and longer if the battery isn’t kept in check or starts getting old, causing a lot of inconvenience.
- Peace of mind. During power outages, a generator with a battery in good condition can keep electronics and appliances working.
- Improved safety. The wiring and other components of your generator can be impacted by a defective battery, which is risky if unchecked.
Many standby generators require a 12-volt battery similar to the battery in your car — usually a lead-acid battery. Some homeowners buy a battery alongside their purchase of a new home standby generator to avoid hassles and power outages in the future, safely storing it for replacement purposes.
Lead-acid batteries are popular for several reasons. Their cost per-watt is low, and they are reliable. Because of this dynamic and technology, lead-acid batteries deliver bulk power at a low expense, making them an economical solution for cars, trucks, golf cars, forklifts, boat engines, and industrial equipment that needs uninterrupted power.
Additionally, in some cases an “extra” battery can be bundled together with your new generator’s purchase cost if you’re at the beginning of your ownership journey.
Battery Performance is Essential: Don’t Prolong the Inevitable
Most certified Generac service specialists know that home backup generator batteries need to be replaced every two to three years. Unfortunately, many homeowners wait until a generator fails instead of taking care of the current battery by prolonging its lifespan.
In the short term, waiting to replace a generator battery may cause more harm than good because of the backup-power disruption. For instance, when medical equipment stops working, that’s an emergency.
But it’s more than that. A power outage can cause workers to lose important work from their home office. Generator batteries that are long past their expiration date are the usual culprits behind these critical losses. When you’re in the middle of a power outage and your generator won’t start because you got lazy in replacing or maintaining the battery, it’s a real hassle.
In most cases, home standby generator batteries are wet-cell batteries, which transmit electrical current through acid-covered lead plates submerged in electrolytes. If suggested by your manufacturer’s maintenance recommendations, you may need to regularly check your battery and top it off with distilled water to ensure it’s operating at full capacity. By doing this, you’ll prevent the cells from drying out and causing further damage.
Winter temperatures can also cause generator batteries to malfunction, depending on your geographic location. Blizzards and heavy storms can knock out your neighborhood’s power, which can be devastating. If you live in an area experiencing extremely cold weather, invest in a cold weather kit made for home generators to ensure your unit will function when you need it most. Sometimes a new battery and oil heater is included in the kit so your generator’s engine can start up immediately.
Maintain Your Generator’s Battery Using a Certified Generac Service
Your generator battery deserves proper care and attention to extend its life and performance — and if you’re not up to the job, a local certified Generac service technician is ready to help. Your battery is best maintained by:
- Making sure the oil in your generator is changed regularly. If you keep your unit running efficiently and routinely check the oil level every month, the battery will operate much better for longer.
- Cleaning gunk from the inside out. Generators accumulate dirt the harder they work, as they produce energy. Prevent corrosion and dust buildup by checking the interior and exterior of your unit regularly.
- Ensuring filters are replaced. Regularly replacing filters optimizes air circulation, which means your battery will last longer.
- Running your generator occasionally. When a generator sits for a long time without running, the battery can get damaged. Every two to three months, run your unit for at least ten minutes.
Using these maintenance tips can prolong a generator’s battery life, and relying on a generator maintenance service can enhance its performance as well. As a rule of thumb, regularly checking your battery will ensure you get the most out of it.
Don’t Skip Routine Checkups, Tune-Ups, and Repair
Service costs for generators vary depending on what kind of problem you’re experiencing and the type of certified Generac service technician you hire. Even if your Generac backup generator never breaks down, it still needs periodic maintenance to prolong its lifespan.
A regular climate requires annual tune-ups to prepare for winter storms — something even more needed in colder regions. Depending on the size and type of generator, your maintenance costs and extent of service can change. If your generator runs longer than average each year, you may need to perform more frequent maintenance.
Also, a generator’s size and power are measured by its kilowatt (Kw) rating. A typical unit delivers 20 – 22 Kw for small models and 22 – 45 Kw for medium and larger models, although 20 – 22 Kw units are standard for average-size homes. Service costs will be higher for larger models, due to their complexity, size and power output, which means smaller and less powerful backup generators also have lower repair and maintenance costs.
Regular maintenance is extremely important since most home generators run periodically. There are a number of routine issues that a service technician can handle, including lubrication, cooling, fuel, air, combustion, starting mechanisms, transfers, alternators, engine filters — and most importantly, your battery.
W. Danley Electrical
At W. Danley Electrical, we assist you throughout the entire process. From helping you prepare for installation, repair, and maintenance to anything else surrounding certified Generac service. We even help with obtaining permits, inspections, and much more. We help you optimize and fine-tune your situation. That way you get the most out of your investment, as well as determine the correct generator size.