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Generac Question/Problem

Old 09-16-2015, 11:04 AM
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Default Generac Question/Problem

Installed a Generac LG 8KW a few months ago. The power company switched out our pole so I know the generator kicked on and off a few times while they were switching it over. I noticed the other day it had a red light on and was throwing an "under voltage" error. I reset it by flipping the breaker (on the generator), pulling the fuse, and disconnecting the negative battery terminal.

After about 5 minutes I hooked it back up and got a "fuse error". When I put the fuse back in the error disappeared and the green light came on. It worked both on auto and manual. But, when I put it under load I noticed about half the circuits in the house were working. We had 10 circuits with the previous portable and I told them just to move them over to the new standby. When we put it under load with the Generac, those same 10 circuits worked.

Is there any way I could have blown half the circuits or one side of the auto switch/panel.

The installer should be out in a day or two but I just wanted to see what y'all think.

Thanks in advance.
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Old 09-16-2015, 11:08 AM
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Generic answer for Generac; it sounds like you lost half your output.
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Old 09-16-2015, 11:14 AM
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Originally Posted by mikefloyd View Post
Generic answer for Generac; it sounds like you lost half your output.
I see what you did there.

Anybody know if this could be a "fuse/breaker" type problem or more like a "something blew up" problem?
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Old 09-16-2015, 11:23 AM
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Ya got one phase out, what this means is either a fuse is blown again or one of the two hot wires is not making connection. Lastly you could have bad windings inside the gen, this is worst case..
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Old 09-16-2015, 11:26 AM
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Do you have any 220V circuits working or are they all 110V? Possible you lost one of the 2 hot legs which would cause one side of a panel to go down but not the other.
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Old 09-16-2015, 11:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Alureing View Post
Ya got one phase out, what this means is either a fuse is blown again or one of the two hot wires is not making connection. Lastly you could have bad windings inside the gen, this is worst case..
Thanks.
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Old 09-16-2015, 11:28 AM
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If your comfortable open the panel, open the main for street power, start the gen and take a voltage reading at the main for the gen. Phase to phase should be 240v, and phase to neutral should be 120v give or take a couple. Your probably going to read 120v on one phase to neutral and nothing from the other to neutral. If its under warranty call, if not pm me ill try to help.
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Old 09-16-2015, 11:35 AM
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Originally Posted by Alureing View Post
If your comfortable open the panel, open the main for street power, start the gen and take a voltage reading at the main for the gen. Phase to phase should be 240v, and phase to neutral should be 120v give or take a couple. Your probably going to read 120v on one phase to neutral and nothing from the other to neutral. If its under warranty call, if not pm me ill try to help.
Thanks but it is under warranty. I think it started when they replaced the pole but hopefully it didn't fry anything. It reset the under voltage error just fine and cranked and switched just fine. Then it switched to just half the circuits. Now it won't automatically switch to the house at all.

You don't want me opening a panel. I'll wait on the electrician that installed it. He should be out in a day or so.

Thanks again!
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Old 09-16-2015, 01:05 PM
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I had the "under voltage" error message on my 20kw. Serviceman came out with a new stepper motor as it is usually the issue. The unit maintained a green light for a week or two, but again got the error message. Serviceman came back out a did a test with the Generac tech on the phone. Concluded it was the circuit board. The board was $700 and labor $200. Works perfectly now and for the last 3-4 months. The unit is 6 years old, only problem I've had with it.
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Old 09-16-2015, 04:09 PM
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I have a Generac 15KV generator and I had a similar problem when there was an ice storm last winter. The power would come on and go off repeatedly so the generator would start and stop start and stop. Do you have a separate circuit breaker panel? If so make sure none of the breakers have tripped. I have Square D breakers and they are very hard to tell that they tripped by looking at them. For some reason some of the breakers tripped between the power switching between line and generator.
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Old 09-16-2015, 04:28 PM
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Don't these generators have an automatic transfer switch with a time delay built in? You don't want a generator switching/turning on and off repeatedly. That will cause problems.
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Old 09-16-2015, 04:32 PM
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Meant to post earlier but had a friend stop by. Came home and checked all the breakers on the panel and reset the breaker on the genny, killed the main and now everything works. I still don't understand how it went from throwing errors, to half the circuits working, to working perfectly. Electrician is still coming by to hook up his laptop and check things out. Thanks guys for all the replies!
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Old 09-16-2015, 04:34 PM
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Originally Posted by PXMAN View Post
Don't these generators have an automatic transfer switch with a time delay built in? You don't want a generator switching/turning on and off repeatedly. That will cause problems.
Yes, at least on my 10KW the generator won't start until the power has been out for 10 seconds. If it remains out after that it starts up, once it has reach running speed about 8-10 seconds later the magnetic transfer switch pops. When power comes back on the transfer switch will kick off. And the generator will slow down to idle and do a cooling cycle, this could be 10, 20, 30 seconds and then shut it.
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Old 09-16-2015, 04:35 PM
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Originally Posted by PXMAN View Post
Don't these generators have an automatic transfer switch with a time delay built in? You don't want a generator switching/turning on and off repeatedly. That will cause problems.
Yep, the genny cranks almost immediately but there is a 10-15 second delay before it switches the power over. I think its more like a minute after it comes back on before it shuts it back down.
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Old 09-16-2015, 06:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Shag View Post
Meant to post earlier but had a friend stop by. Came home and checked all the breakers on the panel and reset the breaker on the genny, killed the main and now everything works. I still don't understand how it went from throwing errors, to half the circuits working, to working perfectly. Electrician is still coming by to hook up his laptop and check things out. Thanks guys for all the replies!
You probably erased any clue as to what the problems was (unless it saves the codes and does it's own diagnostic). When the electrician comes out and finds that you messed with it and wasted his time, he'll probably say "everything is working fine, call me if you have anymore problems". What he'll be thinking is something altogether different.

Seriously, unless it's an emergency, do yourself a favor and not touch anything till the electrician can do a full diagnostic. Not what I'd do, but it's good advise anyway.

BTW, did you hear about the robbery at the gas station in HI?
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Old 09-16-2015, 06:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Shag View Post
Meant to post earlier but had a friend stop by. Came home and checked all the breakers on the panel and reset the breaker on the genny, killed the main and now everything works. I still don't understand how it went from throwing errors, to half the circuits working, to working perfectly. Electrician is still coming by to hook up his laptop and check things out. Thanks guys for all the replies!
Glad it is now working, but I wouldn't trusted it until your electrician inspects the unit. We've owned generacs for more than 15 years and never experienced what you described. Something derailed your system.
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Old 09-16-2015, 06:07 PM
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Originally Posted by PXMAN View Post
Don't these generators have an automatic transfer switch with a time delay built in? You don't want a generator switching/turning on and off repeatedly. That will cause problems.
We have a 30 second startup delay and a one minute wind down once the street power is restored.
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Old 09-17-2015, 08:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Tireless View Post
Something derailed your system.
I think it was when they replaced the power pole and the power just kept going on and off. I wish they had let me know and I would have just turned it off until they got thru. Threw it under load again this morning and all seems OK but they are coming out today or tomorrow to check it anyway.
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Old 09-17-2015, 08:50 AM
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Originally Posted by davedowneast View Post
BTW, did you hear about the robbery at the gas station in HI?
Just heard about it. Damned pill heads. Its a shame they didn't get the bridge open.
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Old 09-17-2015, 09:24 AM
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Yes.....Yes we do want you to open that panel and tinker around in there.
Just as long as the wife has the go-pro rolling!
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