It might not be every day when you need a generator. In places with rare power outages or need for additional supply generators are hardly in use. But if you are not using them, then where to keep your generator? This is where storage comes in. If for a long time you have little to no use for your generator, you can store it in a proper place. So, let’s find out How to Store a Generator.
Safe storage must not be at the top of your priority list now but it is very important. The right kind of storage will increase the life of your generator. It will also prevent any damage to sensitive parts and make sure that it runs smoothly.
And this is not it. There is a proper procedure to store your generator. Let’s look at all the possible ways you can store your generator.
Why Is It Essential to Properly Store Your Generator?
Generators can be lifesavers in times of emergency. Places, where power outages and bad weather are frequent, might benefit from this. However, to fully benefit from your generator you need to properly store it.
Your generator won’t work that great or that long unless you maintain it properly. This maintenance includes the storage as well. Good storage is most likely to protect its body as well as parts. In result, this will improve its durability.
It is very important to protect your generator from changing weather and climate. Factors like snow, rainfall and humidity can damage your generator. Any form of water is bad for your generator. It can corrode the metal parts inside out. That is why small covers and spaces are best to store a generator. They do not let much moisture in.
Getting a cover or enclosure will ensure that dust and dirt particles remain at bay. People usually tend to store generators in large rooms or work sheds. However, this might not be a good option. Generators are very sensitive to temperature fluctuations, dirt and rust.
This is essentially why you need to properly store your generator.
Factors Affecting Storage of Generator
Storing your generator is not as simple or plain as it sounds. Many factors determine how to store a generator. Few of them are listed below:
Type of fuel
While deciding the right storage, it is important to know what type of fuel generator uses. There are different storage methods for each of them. For example, you might need to empty the tank for a gas generator but that might not be for a propane one.
A large storage area is not good for storing the generator. This means more moisture can seep inside and access the generator. It is preferable to store generators in a small space.
The temperature and weather can affect the generator a lot. If you live in a hot climate you will have to store your generator in a cold and dry place. Heat may damage your fuel lines otherwise. It is especially dangerous when you have leftover fuel in the tank as well.
If you live in the colder areas, fuel inside may freeze. This may freeze the fuel lines. Also, melted snow may cause rust and corrosion.
For areas with a lot of rainfall, you might need a dry place to store your generator.
Along with these, there are many other factors too. You must consider them before trying to store a generator.
How to Store a Generator?
When your generator is not in use for a long period it is essential to properly store it. If you don’t store it properly your generator might damage. Also, due to this its life may reduce too.
Generators mainly rely on gasoline as fuel and it plays a vital part in the method for storage. But, storage isn’t just about removing the gas. You need to have more knowledge than that. There are different requirements for different generators. Another factor is the time of storage. You need to store the generator differently depending on whether it’s for long term or short term.
How to Store a Generator for a Short Term?
Short Term storage implies that the generator is not in use for a week or so. Anything less than 10 days can be called short term storage. The storage can vary depending on the type of generator. If it’s a gas generator it will be dealt with differently than propane or dual fuel ones.
For a week or less than 10 days, you don’t need to drain the gas. It won’t harm your generator during this time.
But, if the gas lays in the tank for 10 days or more it would start corroding your generator. Moreover, it will then clog your carburettor and damage it.
So, if the storage is around 10 days, you should drain the gas and clean the carburettor.
To clean your carburettor, you have to remove it first. Then you need to take it apart and clean it. You can do this by putting it into the ultrasonic cleaning machine or using a carb cleaner.
Propane and Dual Fuel Generators
Unlike gas generators, dual fuel and propane generators are easier to store.
Propane is a blessing in this case. Generators that use propane only do not need much maintenance. They are already clean. Propane burns without any residue so you won’t need to clean the tank, carburettor or fuel lines.
If you own a dual fuel generator, you might need to confirm when you last use gas in it. If you are unsure of the time, then you should open it and check for yourself. Cleaning it just in case would probably be the best idea.
How to Store a Generator for Long Term?
There are several ways to store your generator for a much longer period. Even while you are using your generator regularly you will want to keep it dry and clean. 2 ways to do that can be treating your generator, getting a cover or building a shed.
Treating the Fuel
One way to store your generator away for months is to use a fuel stabilizer. If you don’t want to drain out your gas and waste it, you can use a fuel stabilizer. These stabilizers can be added to fuel in your generator. This will prevent the fuel from reacting. A fuel stabilizer can keep the fuel good for a year. It is better not to use the fuel treated with stabilizer after 8 months.
An ethanol fuel treatment will ensure that your fuel does not absorb any water from the surroundings. It will also protect the plastic parts of the generator from corrosion.
The easy way to do it is to treat your fuel and then run it for a few minutes. This will ensure that the fuel gets evenly distributed. Now it is ready for storage.
In short, by using a fuel stabilizer, you can save your gas while you store your generator.
Getting a Generator Enclosure
If your generator is outside your house or in the garage a cover for your generator is a good option. A cover will protect the generator from any dirt or grime. It will also act as a shield from harsh temperatures.
There are many generator enclosures available that will protect your generators. Even if it is intense heat or snow, you can remain tension free.
There will be no signs of corrosion or damage and this will vastly improve your generator’s durability.
Mini Storage Shed
Large places to store your generator aren’t a good idea. That is one of the reasons a big shed is not preferable. If you want to store your generator, a mini shed would be best.
A mini shed would not allow any moisture to seep inside. This will prevent your generator from corrosion. Sheds mainly work by controlling the temperature and environment for the generator. There are many such sheds available in the market specifically for this use.
The process to Store a Generator
Before you store your generator whether, for short term or long term, you need to go through a process. You cannot just up and store it in a small place. There is a procedure to go through to make sure it doesn’t get damaged.
You can start by removing all the load connected to the generator. After disconnecting all the appliances, run the generator for a couple of minutes. Once, you know it runs smoothly, you can check for the oil levels. If the oil levels are low, add more.
At this point, you have 2 options. You can either empty the tank of any gas or you can use a fuel stabilizer. If you use a fuel stabilizer, you don’t need to empty the tank. Add a fuel stabilizer and make sure the tank is filled till top.
Or you can empty the gas in an approved container. Here you can separately add stabilizer in the container to make sure your gasoline remains alright. If you have emptied the tank, run the generator until all the leftover fuel is also used as well.
Now check the spark plugs or any parts that need replacement. You can now store the generator in a small shed or a detached garage.
Time Limit to Store a Generator
Done rightly, you can store your generator for a few years. Yes, you can store in your generator without using it for a few years. But you will need to oil the cylinder walls. This will prevent the rings from sticking and rust from forming.
If you are planning to store your generator for a long time it is best if you keep some spare parts like rubber gaskets. Rubber tends to get weaker over time so it might be useless when you use your generator again.
To conclude, storing your generator properly will save you a lot of money on repairs in the future. This will make sure the generator works smoothly when you use it again and the parts are not damaged. The above process is simple to understand. It might seem a bit too much now, but once you get the hang of it, it is pretty easy.
Store your generator wisely. Also, make sure your generator is safe from any kind of moisture or temperature fluctuations. This will improve durability and performance.