Yet another generator oil question

Messages
324
Location
Iowa
I saw you mention this on other threads...

If I ever used gas in my generator, I intend to use ethanol free. Does the Stabil do anything for E0?
I use the ethanol free in my Honda mower. I've never bothered to run it dry for storage, and every year it starts right up.
Even when I lived in Ohio, and didn't use E0...it always started right up.

Does everybody really run their generators dry?

I have a Wen 3800 that I always leave fuel in. It does however have an auto off that drains the float bowl of the carb. My old generator I just turned the fuel supply off.

I always use E0 and treat with stabil.

Just my $0.02
 
Messages
98
Location
Montague, NJ
I always use E0 when possible. Can't get it locally so I ''import it'' from upstate NY. Large blackout any gas is better than none but it gets switched back to E0 for storage with a marine stabilizer. I buy stabilizer by the gallon as I've got a lot of engines and toys and after decades of cleaning carbs those days are long over now by using the right fuels and stabilizing.
My one gas gen. has a fuel shut off and I just turn off the fuel and let it run dry without a load. It's topped off and ready to go always as I want to only plug 'n play when the power goes out which is usually when it's storming.
I only swap out it's gas if unused for more than a year and a half. Last couple of years that hasn't been a issue.
10+ years and zero issues doing that. Fuel cans are religiously treated with stabilizer.
 
Messages
250
Location
South La
How long you plan on running gen when camping? What is the load you are looking at while camping? The reason I ask is if it is a
small load for camping then you may want to invest in a something like a honda i1000 or i2000. Smaller foot print and weight. I like gasoline
for a generator going away from the house. I have a propane 12k unit but it is fed off a 330 gallon tank in the ground. I do have a 5k gen as backup to the 12 k. I do need to get it converted to propane and run propane only.
 

charles_slc

Thread starter
Messages
9
Location
Salt Lake City
How long you plan on running gen when camping? What is the load you are looking at while camping? The reason I ask is if it is a
small load for camping then you may want to invest in a something like a honda i1000 or i2000. Smaller foot print and weight. I like gasoline
for a generator going away from the house. I have a propane 12k unit but it is fed off a 330 gallon tank in the ground. I do have a 5k gen as backup to the 12 k. I do need to get it converted to propane and run propane only.

Very likely to be running AC while camping...thus the reason I went with the 4500 :)
 

charles_slc

Thread starter
Messages
9
Location
Salt Lake City
5w-40 would work, I have used it a few times.
15w-40 would deal you well down to 0, and protect well at temp.
Gens need heavy duty stout oils, of good weights, heaviest start oils are.
I garage start 20w-50 at moms, 20w-50 or sae40 at a min 50degrees.

harvey

Hmm, good point...the genny will be in the garage until needed...so even if it get's below 0 outside, the genny won't be that cold.

Maybe 15W-40 would be a better idea...
 
Messages
538
Hmm, good point...the genny will be in the garage until needed...so even if it get's below 0 outside, the genny won't be that cold.

Maybe 15W-40 would be a better idea...
15w40 is used in many diesel trucks in winter and are starting unaided even sitting outside. Old school OPE recommendations were straight SAE30 in summer and for below 32F winter use 15w40 was recommended
 
Messages
208
Location
WI
What I did for my 212cc gen was this:
Filled with Shell Rotella T4 15w40 because its what I had on-hand suitable for OPE in summer. I installed a magnetic dipstick, filled the 4-gallon gas tank approximately half full according to the built in gas gauge, tied on a cheap Tach/Hour-meter, and ran it under varying load from zero load to 98% rated running load with 6 steps in between for 0.9 hours or roughly 1 gallon of gas according to the built-in gas gauge (1/4 tank). I drained the glitter oil and cleaned a pile of iron filings off the magnetic dipstick. The next weekend I filled the gas tank back to about half, refilled the engine with SuperTech 15w40 conventional diesel oil (ran out of T4, bought SuperTech) and ran the generator another two-ish hours under the same varying 0-98% load. There was much less wear-metal on the dipstick and really no metallic shine to the oil after the second run. I drained all the fuel, fogged the cylinder, and put it back in the shed for another 2 years or until I need it. Next time I need it I will fill with whatever 0w30 to 15w40 I have on-hand that is appropriate for air-cooled splash-lubed OPE at the current outdoor temp.
 
Messages
196
Location
MI
What I did for my 212cc gen was this:
Filled with Shell Rotella T4 15w40 because its what I had on-hand suitable for OPE in summer. I installed a magnetic dipstick, filled the 4-gallon gas tank approximately half full according to the built in gas gauge, tied on a cheap Tach/Hour-meter, and ran it under varying load from zero load to 98% rated running load with 6 steps in between for 0.9 hours or roughly 1 gallon of gas according to the built-in gas gauge (1/4 tank). I drained the glitter oil and cleaned a pile of iron filings off the magnetic dipstick. The next weekend I filled the gas tank back to about half, refilled the engine with SuperTech 15w40 conventional diesel oil (ran out of T4, bought SuperTech) and ran the generator another two-ish hours under the same varying 0-98% load. There was much less wear-metal on the dipstick and really no metallic shine to the oil after the second run. I drained all the fuel, fogged the cylinder, and put it back in the shed for another 2 years or until I need it. Next time I need it I will fill with whatever 0w30 to 15w40 I have on-hand that is appropriate for air-cooled splash-lubed OPE at the current outdoor temp.
Curious... Why drain the oil and store the engine empty?
I have seen that other people do this also. It seems like risky business to remember to refill the oil before using it the next time (especially if someone borrows it out of the shed).

I always drain then refill immediately and store the engine with fresh oil inside.
 
Messages
1,000
Location
Pennsylvania
Curious... Why drain the oil and store the engine empty?
I have seen that other people do this also. It seems like risky business to remember to refill the oil before using it the next time (especially if someone borrows it out of the shed).

I always drain then refill immediately and store the engine with fresh oil inside.
Yeah, I've got to admit that this is puzzling. Generators are something that need to be ready when needed. That and they need to be exercised once in awhile. I always keep oil in my generators and run them once in awhile just to make sure that they are okay. Every 3-4 months I run them under load.

This being an oil forum, I presently have Rotella T6 5w-40 in both generators. I've also run Mobil1 10w-30 High Mileage with 3.5 HTHS viscosity. Thus far there have only been exercise runs on the 5w-40, meaning target loads but limited hours. I've had several 8-hour runs on the 10w-30 and the oil looked good upon the changes after 20-25 hours of use.
 
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Messages
208
Location
WI
I put it back to the state it was in when it left the factory for long term storage. I don't want to mess around with exercising it monthly and I don't want to have the wrong oil in it when I need it. If I need it in August I don't want to have 0w30 and a tank of winter gas in it....if I need it in February I don't want SAE30 or 15w40 and summer gas in it. I know how to flash the generator if I need to and have the appropriate oil for any season on the shelf. If I had a family member that needed power to keep a piece of medical equipment running I would probably keep the generator fueled and exercised but since its not immenently life sustaining that just seems like a lot of needless futzing.
 
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