How to Correctly Use Diesel Generator Under Extreme Conditions

by Generator D. Diesel Generator

Due to environmental factors, the operation of diesel generator under the conditions of the high altitude area and the extremely cold climate must adopt corresponding measures. Only in this way can make the diesel generator better care in the process of using or maintaining. The following useful tips will show you how to correctly use diesel generator under extreme conditions. Please continue reading.


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When using the matching diesel engine of the genset manufacturer in the plateau area, especially for the use of the naturally aspirated engine in the plateau area, due to the thin air cant burn a lot of fuel, which will cause power loss. For the naturally aspirated engine, the power loss will be about 3% if the elevation rises by 300m. Therefore, when working on the plateau, it is suggested to use lower power diesel genset to prevent smoking and the excessive fuel consumption.


In the use of the extreme cold weather, it should be increased with auxiliary starting devices such as fuel heater, oil heater, and jacket water heater and so on. By using the fuel oil heater or electric heater, the cooling water, fuel oil and lubricating oil of the cold engine are heated, which makes the whole engine warm up so that it can start smoothly. When the machine room temperature is not less than 4°C, the installation of coolant heater can maintain the temperature of the engine cylinder block above 32°C. In addition, it is recommended to install low temperature alarm of generating set.


For the diesel generators that operate at ambient temperature below -18°C, the lubricating oil heater, fuel passage and fuel filter heater are also needed to prevent fuel curing. It is worth noting that the oil heater is installed on the engine oil pan, which heats the oil in the oil pan that is convenient for the diesel engine to start at low temperature. It is recommended to use -10#~-35#light diesel oil. The inlet air preheater is used to heat the mixture (or air) that enter into the cylinder so as to increase the compression terminal temperature and improve the ignition condition. The electric heating preheating method is to install electric heater plug or a heating wire in the inlet air pipe to directly heat the intake air. It does not consume the oxygen in the air, nor does it pollute the intake air, but it consumes the battery energy.


In addition, it is recommended to use low temperature lubricating oil that can reduce the viscosity of lubricating oil, improve the fluidity of lubricating oil and reduce the internal friction resistance of liquid. Using high energy batteries, such as the current nickel metal hydride batteries and nickel cadmium batteries, and pay attention to the battery heating or heating insulation. If the machine room temperature drops below 0°C, it should be equipped with battery heater to maintain the battery capacity and output power.



Key items to be aware of and tips for successful cold weather generator operation:



Check the Engine Block Heater: Always make sure the block heater is plugged into shore power and functional. Without this important heat source, you will usually have immediate problems. If your generator does not have a block heater and you are in a susceptible area for colder weather then you should look into adding one. If you are in a remote location where you are unable to have grid power, consider also getting a small reliable gas generator to simulate the shore and let the block heater run for a few hours before attempting to start the generator up.


Engine-Block-Heater1-(3).JPGCheck Battery Charger: Make sure the battery charger is also plugged into the main/shore power and functioning. If the battery is dead, you will be going nowhere fast. This is still a leading cause for generator service calls.


Utilize the Manual: The manual will spell out the unique qualities of the generator that fit your application. It should also have a section outlining the service and winter maintenance schedule of your generator.  Also note your genset make, model and know where the local dealer is in case of an emergency or to contact for parts and maintenance.


Inspect the Generator: Do a visual walk around and make sure debris is not collecting around the generator. Check for leaks, stains, and puddles. Check for other visual clues that may need to be addressed.


Perform Basic Maintenance: Have the engine oil changed, spark plugs checked, air filter periodically changed, check the radiator coolant mixture, and as mentioned above always make sure the battery is charged and tested.


Test Your Digital Control Panel when Severe Cold Hits: Be aware that certain models sometimes have issues when it gets really cold (sub-zeros temps). Some of these will simply not even turn on and light up and/or you wont be able to read the gauges. More recent model years do not have this issue but it is something we have seen happen on occasion.  


Check Exhaust and Ventilation Plan: Make sure proper attachments and visual inspection is done periodically. You can consider adding and/or getting a generator with a snow hood to reduce the amount of snow entry. Understand that louvers/shutters can also affect how cold air enters the system during startup. Hydryolic ones are often best for colder climates so you don't in advertently shock the system with a bunch of freezing air during start up.


Check the Fuel: Make sure the fuel in your tank is treated with anti-gel and anti-microbial additives. Gelling from cold temps is not quite as big of a concern as it was in the past, but still something to be worry of. Many fuel providers treat their diesel fuel with some form of anti-gelling component but if you are unsure it will not hurt to add it and be safe.


Consider Cold or Winterizing Packs/Kits: Many local generator service companies now offer something along these lines that involves specific fluids and add-on component to protect your generator in colder climates. These help to ensure your odds of starting without a long warm up time and help to reduce overall failure rates from cold weather condition.


By understanding all the key variables above, and doing some basic planning, you can easily increase your chances of successfully running and starting your generator next time the ice man drops in.



Kindly reminder:


For the different purposes and models of the diesel engines, due to its low temperature starting performance requirement is different, the low temperature starting measures are also different. For such type of engine -the low temperature starting performance requirement is high, to ensure it can start successfully at low temperature, it is necessary to adopt a variety of measures. By installing electric heater plug, it can provide thermal energy for the engine starting performance in cold conditions. The electric heater plug mainly uses proper primer fluid to improve the mixture concentration aether so as to help the engine boot up smoothly under the condition of dirty and dust environment.


We supply multiple brands of generator set, such as: Cummins, Volvo, Deutz, Doosan Daewoo, MTU, Ricardo, Perkins, Shangchai, Weichai, Yuchai etc. The style of genset is varied, such as: container genset, trailer genset, portable trailer genset, soundproof genset, low noise genset, and silent genset, etc. Besides, we also supply design and construction of the noise reduction project up to the customer's requirements.


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About Generator D. Senior   Diesel Generator

101 connections, 1 recommendations, 632 honor points.
Joined APSense since, September 11th, 2017, From Jiangsu, China.

Created on Sep 28th 2017 21:24. Viewed 217 times.


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