I'm doing some research on problems that exist with Commercial Gensets. Wondering if you have any horror stories you'd like to share with me about using them? Ever been hurt by one? Or simply frustrated?
What don't you like about the way they are configured now? What works? What doesn't?
Do you ever clean them? Is it a hastle? How's the fluid management? Hard to fill? How about maintenance? Are there parts of the Genset that you have to access frequently that are hard to get to?
Post back and tell me your story. It could have an impact on the way that Commercial Generators are designed in the future...and eventually make the task of using them much easier.
When I used to service gennys back in the '90s, the skid mounted systems with the engine oil drain plug 4 inches above the ground made changing oil messy. I was always cleaning up oil stains after changing the oil.
I'm glad someone asked: - the drawings showing the place where the wiring should be brought under the generator were wrong - the supplier gave us the delivery time but neglected tell the delivery company that we had a crane waiting, so he took care of other business first. - the supplier sent the keys to the customer's head office, in a different city - the schematics for the controls were wrong - the instructions said that installation without the supplied shims would void the warranty on the fuel tank, but the shims weren't supplied - no training for the customer on use or maintenance of the generator or transfer switch - the transfer switch connection box for three parallel runs (9 total) of 500kcm cable was was very small - the control connections in the transfer switch, to start the generator, had to be wired internally - the control fuses in the transfer switch were blocked by the power cables - the construction documents neglected to mention that the wires to start the generator had to be in a separate cable - the fire alarm relays in the generator had the connection points for the end-of-line resisters too far apart for the resistor leads to reach - the supplier neglected to tell the owner that diesel has a shelf life, so the 24 hour fuel tank can't be filled - it takes two people, an 8 foot ladder and a funnel with a 4 foot hose to fill the radiator after a leak
As a couple design notes - these machines are noisy even with the added intake muffler and should't be placed near noise-sensitive areas - diesel exhaust has a little odor to it and shouldn't be near a make-up-air unit
There is no sight as depressing as a 4 foot wide by 2 foot high enclosure with 36 x 500kcm cables sticking out the front. It's nice to turn something like that over to a co-worker to terminate.
HotLine1 (John), you mention that the fuel filter replacement didn't have any issues, what about the oil filters? When changing either (oil of fuel filters), were there any issues that came up with things like heat, ability to reach the filter, etc.? Did you need a wrench or is it like a car filter (with the rubberized grip) where you can do it by hand?
I appreciate everyone's participation. Research like this is done to hear the voice of the people who actually use these products. If any of you have any additional stories to share, please feel free! Any input helps, the more you have to say the better!
Travis: Fuel filter required a strap wrench to loosen, and then 'by hand' with gloves on. Yes, it was warm in there. There was 'bad' diesel in the onboard tank, and we were running the gennie from an aux. tank while we drained & cleaned the onboard tank. (Gen techs took care of that in AM) Total down time was <10 min.
Access to fuel filter was cake. I should add that all the units on site then were from one mfg., and the techs were factory guys. One of the 2 MW units had a coolant failure, caused by metal fatigue which let a few fan blades fly, puncturing the radiator. Gen shut down on hi-temp in <15 seconds. That was a catastropic failure. Solved by doing a 3AM swap out to a 'spare' 2 MW on site. Planning ahead for any disaster paid off!