Why Is My RV's Generator Revving Up And Down?
troubleshooting an RV Generator
What causes the generator to rev up and down? The only thing I am using is 1 interior light at the time. When the generator acts up like that, the lights blink as well.Good Sam Extended Service Plan is mechanical breakdown insurance for your RV, 5th Wheel, Trailer, and Tow Vehicle! FREE Quote
ANSWER: Hi Perry there are two possible problems that could be causing this revving up and down of your RV's generator. The first is a fuel problem or possibly a problem with the governor on the generator. I am inclined to believe your problem is in all likelihood a fuel problem.
Since you don't tell me, I am going to have to assume that your generator is a gasoline generator. There are two important facts that you need to know about your generator.
1. Generators need to run at least once a month for a couple of hours with a load on them. This is called "Exercising Your Generator" and generators love and need exercise.
2. The carburetor’s on generators that do not get exercised regularly can get varnished and lacquered up in as little as a month's period of time. Based on your description, this is what I think is causing your generator to surge up and down.Save 50% off of Campsites With Passport AmericaFixing It
Since I do not know how mechanically inclined you are or what make or model your generator is; I can only give you some general guidance here.
The first thing I would do is check all the fuel lines leading to the generator for leaks and/or cracks. If all the fuel lines seem good, the next step I would take is to change the fuel filter leading to the generator. Once you check the fuel lines and change the fuel filter try running the generator and if the problem disappears consider yourself very lucky.
If the fuel filter does not correct the problem, then you are going to have gain access to the generator's carburetor, remove it from the generator and soak it in some Carburetor Cleaner
to try to get it cleaned out. If that works then you should still consider yourself lucky.
If that doesn't work then depending on the make and model of your generator you will have to either rebuild the carburetor or
buy a replacement carburetor.
If everything I described above is something you are not comfortable doing yourself then you need to take your RV in and have a Qualified RV Technician diagnose and repair the generator.Preventing The Problem From Happening Again
The easiest way of preventing this gummy fuel problem is to run (exercise) your generator for at least 2 to 3 hours once a month. When I say 2 to 3 hours, I don't mean 1 hour one day and 1 hour the next day. I mean 2 to 3 hours straight.
When you exercise your generator it needs to have an electrical load on it. For example if you are exercising your generator in the summer, you should run at least one of your RV's roof air conditioners. If you are exercising your RV's generator during the winter you should plug in at least one or two 120 volt space heaters inside the RV. Running a TV set or a coffee pot is not going to provide enough electrical load to properly exercise your generator.Over 1,500,000 successful roadside rescues—Good Sam RV Emergency Road Service
What if your RV is in storage for more than a month and you are unable to exercise the generator on a monthly basis? The least you can do is get some Sta-Bil Fuel Stabilizer
and add the proper amount for your RV's fuel system. Once you have added the fuel stabilizer to the RV's fuel system you should run your generator for about 10 minutes to make sure that stabilizer makes it to the generators carburetor. You should always use a fuel stabilizer in your RV if it is going to sit for a month or longer.Just a reminder!
Using a fuel stabilizer does not take the place of exercising your generator, but it does help if it is impossible for you to exercise your generator.
As I said earlier problems with the generator's governor could also cause surging problems. The bottom line is the only way you will know for sure is by taking your RV in and having it looked at.
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