New Year Resolution – Exercise Your RV Generator

The new year is here, which means it’s time to make a New Year’s resolution. For example, many campers choose to exercise more during their RV trips. B. by walking more. Most RV owners know how to winterize their generator, but not everyone knows that it’s just as important to get it running once in a while. This is what we call your van generator training.

Why you should exercise your RV generator

  • Running the generator once a month keeps it lubricated and prevents carbon build-up.
  • The heat released by the operation of the generator also eliminates the accumulation of water. Humidity in your aquarium is never a good idea. It will make things rusty, and you want to avoid that.

Gasoline and diesel begin to decompose after about 30 days of inactivity. Gasoline begins to harden, causing problems, and diesel begins to mold and gel in cold weather. So how are you going to stop it? First of all, you need to use a quality fuel stabilizer. You’ll also need to fill your fuel tank and, of course, exercise on your RV generator.

How to exercise the RV generator

First, make sure there is no risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. Check the alternator exhaust system and make sure everything is in order. If you see any damage, do not start the generator!

If you have a portable RV generator, make sure the exhaust is directed away from the campsite. Carbon monoxide is very dangerous because you cannot smell it. If you inhale too much, you will pass out and eventually die.

Therefore, you should have a carbon monoxide detector in your van. Once you’re sure it’s running, it’s time to start the generator.

As you can read in this manual, Cummins Onan recommends running the generator at 50% of its rated power (load) for at least two hours each month. Note that this is just an example, other manuals may recommend other methods.

What is the load on your alternator and how do you find it? Power rating or load index indicates how much power (watts) your generator can provide. In most cases, the load on your generator will be indicated on the front or rear panel. You can also use Google to find the user manual, which will surely mention the download of your generator.

Common load values are 5000W, 4500, 4000, 2500, 2000, etc. You may also want to know that 1000 watts equals 1 kilowatt. Here are some links to user manuals of common brands:

So if we use this Onan example for a 4000 watt generator, you would have to discharge it from 2000 watts in two hours. This can be done by using one high power device or by connecting several low power devices. I found a chart online that shows the typical power consumption of the device. Look at this. You should also be aware that it is preferable to have a two-hour training session rather than several shorter sessions.

Final Thoughts

Commissioning your RV generator is an important step that you should not miss. Here are the steps again in abbreviated form:

  • Make sure there is no risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.
  • Find the guide you need with the help of Google.
  • Determine the load on your generator.
  • Use the quick tip I gave you to find the right chapter.
  • Follow the instructions for using the generator.

Good luck!

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