Maintaining Your Diesel Generator Alternator

Maintaining Your Diesel Generator Alternator

Posted in: Diesel Generators Engine & Drivetrain Performance

The alternator within your diesel generator is responsible for converting the mechanical energy of the engine into electrical energy that is used to power your business. Therefore, it’s an incredibly important element of your generator.

Bad Alternator Symptoms

If your generator’s output has declined, the alternator may be to blame. Overheating, condensation and a short circuit can all affect an alternator’s ability to create electrical energy. Regular maintenance helps extend the life of your diesel generator’s alternator.

Generator Alternator Maintenance

The best way to keep your alternator and generator running smoothly is regular maintenance. Alternator housing, windings, bearings, controls, rectifier and cooling system should all be included in your maintenance. Use this maintenance schedule, based on recommended maintenance for Stamford Alternators, as a guide. Follow your specific alternator’s manufacturer’s guidelines on service and maintenance to lengthen the life of your alternator.

After 250 Hours of Usage

About 6 months or 250 hours of usage after installation (whichever comes first), a brief check should be performed to ensure your alternator is working as intended. Inspect the alternator’s cleanliness, terminal connections, diodes and cooling fan. Also look for loose parts and excess vibration. You should also test:

  • Ambient temperature
  • Winding, rotor, exciter and PMG insulation resistance
  • Temperature sensors
  • AVR and PFC settings
  • Auxiliaries function
  • Controls synchronization
  • Air inlet temperature
  • Air filter

A more thorough inspection and test of these elements should also take place at 1,000 hours (or 1 year) and 10,000 hours (or 2 years).

After 5 Years of Usage

After 30,000 hours or about 5 years of use (whichever comes first), you may need to replace components of your alternator. Inspect these elements for wear as you approach 30,000 hours of use and consider replacing them:

  • Sealed bearings
  • Anti-condensation heater
  • Diodes and varistors
  • Air filters
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