By Russ and Tiña De Maris
Autumn is here. When thinking about your winter layup, don’t miss the needs of your portable generator. While these tips are specific to the popular Honda EU series, the principles apply to all portable power producers.
Fuel goes bad, and the results are hard starts, rough runs and breakdowns. If you’ll be using the generator within two months, fill up your can with FRESH gas and add fuel stabilizer per the instructions on the container. Fill up the generator with this fresh mixture and run it for 10 minutes. Now shut it down and top off the tank. Not using the genny for a few months — up to a year? Use these same instructions, but also drain the carburetor, per your owner’s manual.
More than a year before you’ll wake up that beast? Follow all of the instructions but, additionally, drain the gas tank. If instructions aren’t available for this in the manual, some folks carefully tip over the generator and dump the tank in a catch container. Others simply fire up the generator and run it until it runs itself out of fuel. Check that carb, though — it may die before all is drained.
What else? Good time to change the oil and fill with fresh. Do it while the oil is warm. Pull the spark plug and clean it or replace it as needed. Some, before replacing the plug, shoot a couple of squirts of motor oil into the cylinder and pull the rope a couple of times to lube the rings before layup.
Follow all these suggestions and you’ll be far more likely to have your generator ready to be all fired up next time you need it.
photo: kemeko1971 on flickr.com