Here we are at the end of October, meaning the first snow or ice storm could hit Illinois and Northwest Indiana at any time. Along with the storms come the widespread power outages. In worst case scenarios the lights can be out for several days or possibly weeks.
Are you really ready?
You might say bring it on because you have a generator, but have you practiced good generator maintenance? It’s a situation Merts Heating & Air Conditioning sees far too often. The generator is out of sight and out of mind for months at a time. Then, when it’s needed most, it won’t start or run properly, and the homeowner is still left with a dark and cold house.
Starting a good maintenance routine
A good place to start is the owner’s manual. Read it from front to back. Yes, some of it may be boring and stuff you already know but it’s still important. Learn the recommended schedule for things like replacing the air filter and oil changes. After you’ve read the manual start a generator maintenance “to do” list. It could look something like this:
- Start and run the generator for several minutes each week
- Check fluid levels and battery charge monthly
- Every 6 months thoroughly inspect lines, hoses & connectors
- A load test should be done annually
- Add fuel conditioner whenever you fill the gas tank
- For lawn mower style engines consider using ethanol free gas if available
Consider professional maintenance
As the owner, you will have to decide how comfortable you are with your do-it-yourself skills and how much hands-on work you wish to do. Merts suggests you call in a professional for generator maintenance at least once a year. The pros are able to test all functions and perform any needed repairs. Merts is proud to feature generators by Briggs & Stratton. With proper maintenance they can last decades and keep you safe and comfortable during power outages. If you choose to ignore generator maintenance, you might have a disappointing experience when the next storm rolls into Illinois and Northwest Indiana.
Call to learn more
Merts Heating & Air Conditioning is happy to answer any questions you might have about installing a backup generator or doing maintenance on the one you already have. Be sure to like and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.