Advice For RV Generator Repairs That You’ll Love
If you're an RV owner, there's one thing that you don't ever want to deal with: a nonfunctioning RV generator.
A good RV generator of about 4,000 watts will definitely set you back more than a couple of thousand dollars, so many RV enthusiasts do things to ensure that their generators last as long as possible.
Some practices include exercising your generator, topping off the fuel for winter, and even changing the oil.
Despite this, sometimes things go wrong and your generator may stop functioning. If this happens, what can you do to make things run smoothly again?
I've been an RVer for decades now, so I wanted to help those who want to avoid costly generator repairs and replacements.
In this guide, we're going to provide some important RV generator repair tips that can help you get RVing again.
Circuit Breaker Maintenance
Before we get started on tip one, remember, it's always important to work safely. Generators can run hot and work with an electrical current, so take all precautions that you need to protect yourself.
One of the most common problems with an RV generator is that there is a faulty circuit breaker.
All types and brands of RV generator will have a few circuit breakers that are designed to protect the sensitive electronics of your generator.
As a result, if your generator is operational, but you're not getting a current, it's most likely a breaker issue.
Before you take your breaker housing apart, check to see if it's delivering current. If your microwave's time is still displaying, then your issue isn't the breaker.
If it isn't displaying, then you may have a faulty breaker that's in need of replacement. When you need to replace your circuit breaker, always remember to always:
- Remove the wire and boot from the spark plug In order to prevent accidental starting.
- Disconnect the power harness from the outlet housing.
- Note the orientation of the wires as they connect to the faulty circuit breaker.
- Reconnect all of the previously loosened and removed components before moving to another area.
Curt has a great 30 Amp universal circuit breaker that is good for general use.
If you're looking for a step-by-step guide that can help you replace your generator's circuit breaker, RepairClinic's guide on Youtube is also pretty informative.
Check The Connections
A great way to ensure that your RV generator is working up to snuff is to ensure that the wiring connections are all functioning correctly and are attached properly.
As you might know, there are several connection points inside the housing of your outlet.
If any of these are jarred loose, then your RV generator won't function properly.
In order to ensure that all connections are stable, you can open up your outlet housing and check to make sure that the wires aren't loose.
If you're trying this method, always make sure that you are working safely, which means ensuring the wire and boot from the spark plug are removed so that you don't accidentally start the generator.
Also, check the DC cables that are positioned behind the genset. Many times these important connections can college debris, caked on fuel, or just grime.
When this happens, it can really hamper the generator's performance, so just grab a mild cleanser and a rag and wipe them clean. Also, you can tighten these connections with a screwdriver if they seem loose.
Fuel Filter Maintenance
Another reason that an RV generator may cease to function is a bad fuel filter.
Fuel is the lifeblood of an RV generator, so if your fuel line is clogged or in any other way damaged, it won't work properly. A fuel filter should only really need to be replaced every 500 hours or so.
A good way to know if a fuel filter is in need of replacement is to check the quality of the fuel itself.
If the fuel in the filter or around the genset is blackish or brown, then it's definitely time to think about changing it.
When you change your filter, you'll have to get underneath the RV generator because that's where most manufacturers position the filter assembly.
Before you begin changing the filter, it's best to have a few items on hand, including a pan to drain your oil into, a disposable rag, a mat for comfort (remember, you'll be working underneath your generator), and both a socket and open end wrench set.
Additionally, a pair of nitrile gloves will help protect your hands from the oil residue.
For a detailed process description, RVgeeks has a great video for the Onan QuietDiesel fuel filter replacement.
I hope that these tips help you perform your own maintenance and repair of your RV generator.
The majority of issues with your RV generator will come from these sources; so hopefully, this resource provides you with the tools you need.
If you have any questions, feel free to comment in the section below. Just remember, if your generator seems to be having issues:
- Check the breaker
- Check the connections
- Check the fuel filter