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Old 02-22-2021, 08:04 PM   #1
wickll
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Default generator repair tip

With the recent power outages, we were one of the few who never lost power. I was really lucky since I did not prepare ahead of time. First my generator was about 40 miles away and hadn't been ran in some time.

Second, it took some carburetor cleaning etc, but I finally got it going.
Third: luckily, i decided to put a load on it yesterday and discovered that it was not putting out any power.

After searching youtube and doing some troubleshooting, I learned that sometimes the magnets lose their charge and a small voltage has to be put in to "excite " them.

One way suggested is to hook up a 110V drill, and while it is running, depress the trigger on the drill and rapidly rotate the drill chuck backwards.

Although I was somewhat suspicious, I gave it a try today and it worked. The drill took off . I measured the voltage and was getting 98-99 Volts. But I believe this is due to the rpms being a little low.

I know it sounds strange. I wish I had videoed it.

Some comments on the video say it doesn't work, but it did work for me. My next step is to get the RPM's adjusted properly.
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Old 02-22-2021, 08:22 PM   #2
Greenheadless
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Ive heard the problem that causes this issue is when you disconnect power under load.

Not sure if true, but might help someone if it is.
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Old 02-22-2021, 08:26 PM   #3
wickll
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greenheadless View Post
Ive heard the problem that causes this issue is when you disconnect power under load.

Not sure if true, but might help someone if it is.
I had heard that it can be caused by running out of gas while under load. While this might happen, I doubt it because I used to irrigate my liveoak trees with a generator running my submersible pump. I almost always would fill the tank and leave it running. It would run about 6 hours on a tankful. Never had any issues with it.
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Old 02-22-2021, 09:26 PM   #4
jgard
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wickll View Post
With the recent power outages, we were one of the few who never lost power. I was really lucky since I did not prepare ahead of time. First my generator was about 40 miles away and hadn't been ran in some time.

Second, it took some carburetor cleaning etc, but I finally got it going.
Third: luckily, i decided to put a load on it yesterday and discovered that it was not putting out any power.

After searching youtube and doing some troubleshooting, I learned that sometimes the magnets lose their charge and a small voltage has to be put in to "excite " them.

One way suggested is to hook up a 110V drill, and while it is running, depress the trigger on the drill and rapidly rotate the drill chuck backwards.

Although I was somewhat suspicious, I gave it a try today and it worked. The drill took off . I measured the voltage and was getting 98-99 Volts. But I believe this is due to the rpms being a little low.

I know it sounds strange. I wish I had videoed it.

Some comments on the video say it doesn't work, but it did work for me. My next step is to get the RPM's adjusted properly.
How long did it take to get the drill to start my Fil has one thatís not producing power and Iím going to try this we tried the other day but when itís 10 out side hard to get motivated when you donít have to have it
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Old 02-22-2021, 09:47 PM   #5
wickll
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jgard View Post
How long did it take to get the drill to start my Fil has one thatís not producing power and Iím going to try this we tried the other day but when itís 10 out side hard to get motivated when you donít have to have it
I just gave it a hard twist about 3 or 4 times. Each twist was maybe 1/2 to 3/4 of a turn. Keep in mind you have to be depressing the trigger and the generator running. Turn it opposite that the drill normally turns. I tested it by putting probes on the drills plug prongs. I saw that I could get up to about 7 volts. There are a few videos where they hook a car jump starter and one even going directly to the brushes. I was worried about using a battery or especially a jump box because then you are sending 120 volts back. Could blow a battery or jump box if you do it too long. Using the drill, it simply starts running.
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Old 02-22-2021, 10:38 PM   #6
Benno
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Did the same thing several years ago with a generator I was about to give up on. Tried it again last year, didnít work. It was trash this time.
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Old 02-22-2021, 11:08 PM   #7
Dale Moser
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Put a bit in the drill and lock it down, then put your cordless drill on the other end of the bit, and use it to turn the power drill.


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Old 02-23-2021, 10:29 AM   #8
SaltwaterSlick
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dale Moser View Post
Put a bit in the drill and lock it down, then put your cordless drill on the other end of the bit, and use it to turn the power drill.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Maybe a wooden dowel that will break when the genny takes over and wants to spin the drill the other way... if you don't get off the trigger of the drill quick enough...
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Old 02-23-2021, 10:51 AM   #9
Lungbustr
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Ive never had any problems other than carburetor issues that are really my fault.

My little hondas dont take much to plug up a carb with debris.
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Old 02-23-2021, 03:08 PM   #10
Brotherbill
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I've lost a capacitor in my 11 HP just replaced it all is good.
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Old 02-24-2021, 11:48 AM   #11
wickll
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Unhappy Update:::

OK, I need to confess that this tip doesn't really fix the problem. So I restarted the generator yesterday and discovered that once again I didn't have power. I was able to to the "drill trick" again and got it putting out power. But the volts are not "up to snuff".

I talked to a professor who teaches I&E students about it. Right away , he knew what I was talkin about and said something is wrong with the exciter circuit. So it looks like I will be taking it to a shop pretty soon.

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Old 02-24-2021, 11:53 AM   #12
Arrowsmith
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My Champion 4000/3500 quit generating power right after we move up here to Iowa. I tried the drill trick but it didn't work. I took it to a small engine repair shop. It was a small part....I think it involved the the voltage. Anyway $100.00 and it is good as new again.
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Old 02-24-2021, 01:14 PM   #13
wickll
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Arrowsmith View Post
My Champion 4000/3500 quit generating power right after we move up here to Iowa. I tried the drill trick but it didn't work. I took it to a small engine repair shop. It was a small part....I think it involved the the voltage. Anyway $100.00 and it is good as new again.
That's what I am hoping. I think it is probably the AVR. I am not sure is the exciter circuit goes through the AVR , but from the schematics, I believe it does.
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