Fuel monitoring, sampling, testing, as well as fuel maintenance, are very important aspects of your generator maintenance. If you do not take out the time and energy that is required to do these, then you will have to pay more on the long run in terms of finance, energy and possible breakdown that would eventually result.
Degradation of fuel is natural and almost an inevitable process and if you want a lesser overall cost of operating your generator you had better implement a befitting maintenance program right away.
Diesel generators are very common these days so it is reasonable to discuss diesel fuel itself when we want to talk about fuel maintenance. Big generators and pumps used onshore and offshore are mostly diesel powered. This also extends to many other portable generators. The diesel fuel itself is very complicated and studies have shown that no two separate batches of diesel can ever possess exactly the same chemical properties. This is to say that it is a non-homogenous fluid.
The factors that can affect the shelf life (the period of time it can be stored before becoming unusable as diesel), the deterioration and filterability of the fuel are said to be too numerous. These factors include the forms of transportation used to move the fuel from place to place, where the fuel is stored, a natural chemical process called oxidation. Also, there is the use of biofuel, the source of its crude oil, and the use of additives to mention a few.
The rate at which fuel in generator tanks breaks down is generally affected by factors largely grouped into internal and external factors. By internal factors, what is meant is that these breakdowns can occur or be accelerated due to the processes ongoing in the generator unit’s system of operation.
These factors include exposure to heat and pressure from the engine’s injection system and hot fuel that is returned to the tank of the generator. The external factors mean things that are out of the control of the power generating system. They include things like temperature change and contamination from microbes. These lists of external and internal factors that affect the rate of fuel breakdown are in no way exhaustive and deliberate attempts should be made to find out more if you feel you need them.
Fuel Filters and How to Maintain Them
Almost all IC engines these days have fuel filters which are usually found along the fuel supply line between the tank and the engine. Usually, they look like cartridges containing filter papers. The job of the filter is very important in maintaining the efficiency of the generator, therefore, it should be properly maintained.
Most times maintaining the filter simply means replacing the old one with a new one but there are of course special filters that can be cleaned and re-used a number of times.
It is very important to buy a generator of good quality for reliable and efficient power supply as the truth remains that every generator needs proper servicing. Fuel maintenance and inspection/change of fuel filters are essential parts of the servicing process which in the long run gives your generator a longer life.