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Old 09-09-2012, 01:35 PM   #1
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Generator Questions..


Hello Friends,

I have a Duromax (Chinese blah blah blah) XP4400 generator. It's about 3-4 yrs old. Only used twice actively and tested every season. We took it and the transfer switch with us when we moved. Anyway, fall is once again upon us and it's time to get ready for what could be a harsh winter. I have to wire the Transfer switch which I'll be doing soon myself but wondering about maintenence on the generator itself. I can't find or locate a manual for this bad boy online nor can I find parts which is why I now know that when something breaks or stops working on it, it's time to get a new Generator, and probably one from a company with a name behind it.

Anyone know what kind of engine this has? I can't remember if it takes a Gas/Oil mixture or not. I don't believe it does? Also, I want to change the oil. How much oil and what type do I use? Sorry, Generator's are new to me. If this were my Jeep or a truck, then I know how to change the oil and how much it takes and what type of engine. Just not sure about this generator.
Anything else I should check for maintenence on this? It is empty as we had to drain it before it was stored in an indoor storage facility while we were moving.

Thanks Guru's.

~S

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Old 09-09-2012, 02:37 PM   #2
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Generator Questions..


That's really a small engine maintenance question rather than electrical. But I suspect that many of us on this forum know small engines fairly well. I'm assuming this is a 4400W generator, and if that's true then the engine is almost certainly a 4-stroke. It needs an oil change just like a vehicle engine. It should probably be changed after the first few hours of use, and then every 50 hours or so after. There's usually a bolt in the crankcase near the bottom that is used as the oil plug, and there will be an oil filler cap somewhere. The filler is usually only a couple inches above the bottom of the crankcase and is much smaller than the cap on a car engine. The filler cap usually has a built-in dipstick. About a quart of oil is typical, maybe a bit more. If the oil type isn't specified on the engine somewhere then 30-weight is probably good for warm climates, or 10W30 for cold. 0W30 may be OK if starting is hard in very cold climates, but could be a problem if it warms up. Check the air filter and clean it if necessary. The carburetor shouldn't require any maintenance, but be aware that if it won't start or doesn't run right the carburetor is probably to blame, and disassembling it completely for cleaning may fix the problem.

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Old 09-09-2012, 04:54 PM   #3
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Generator Questions..


Does it look like this one?

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Last edited by kbsparky; 09-09-2012 at 05:07 PM.
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Old 09-09-2012, 10:20 PM   #4
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What is the engine? Looks like a Briggs.
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Old 09-10-2012, 08:19 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skelleyman View Post
Hello Friends,

I have a Duromax (Chinese blah blah blah) XP4400 generator. It's about 3-4 yrs old. Only used twice actively and tested every season. We took it and the transfer switch with us when we moved. Anyway, fall is once again upon us and it's time to get ready for what could be a harsh winter. I have to wire the Transfer switch which I'll be doing soon myself but wondering about maintenence on the generator itself. I can't find or locate a manual for this bad boy online nor can I find parts which is why I now know that when something breaks or stops working on it, it's time to get a new Generator, and probably one from a company with a name behind it.

Anyone know what kind of engine this has? I can't remember if it takes a Gas/Oil mixture or not. I don't believe it does? Also, I want to change the oil. How much oil and what type do I use? Sorry, Generator's are new to me. If this were my Jeep or a truck, then I know how to change the oil and how much it takes and what type of engine. Just not sure about this generator.
Anything else I should check for maintenence on this? It is empty as we had to drain it before it was stored in an indoor storage facility while we were moving.

Thanks Guru's.

~S
It's a four stroke engine, just like your jeep or a truck. Fuel mixture? Think of it this way, do you check the oil in your jeep? Do you check the oil in the generator engine? If there is an oil reservoir you don't need to mix oil and fuel
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Old 09-10-2012, 08:50 AM   #6
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KB, that's the one!
Thanks for all your responses.
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Old 09-10-2012, 10:14 AM   #7
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Have you tried checking on the Internet for somewhere to download a manual for the generator? I'd bet you can find one.
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Old 09-10-2012, 05:40 PM   #8
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Genset motor maint is a PITA. The motor manuals are always separate from the generator manuals and you often have to go to the motor mfg site to get the instructions including the oil specs. IDK why they don't put a plate on the motor with the oil specs.

In my very limited experience, you need 30W for side valve motors unless it is very cold, and then 10W-30. If you use 10W-30 when warm, you will use excessive oil and possibly damage the motor. If you use 30W when too cold, you don't get good enough lubrication from the "sling" lube. OHV motors generally need 10-30. I would not guess, because you can do a lot of damage fast if you have the wrong stuff.
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Old 09-11-2012, 08:34 AM   #9
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Thanks, so I live 20 miles north of Boston on the Seacoast, almost on the NH line. It gets real cold here in winters and this generator will be kept in my garage. It would be started most likely cold if we have another bad snow/ice storm that shears trees and brings down whole telephone poles etc. So would 10W-30 be ideal? What's a good oil to use that can be used year round in//during any season. I'd probably go with that?

Thanks,

~S
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Old 09-11-2012, 11:09 AM   #10
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I think "ionized" somewhat exaggerates the issue. I've worked with portable generators for years, in all climates, and never had any problems caused by the wrong weight of oil in the engine. Use a quality 10W-30 or 10W-40 and you'll be fine.
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Old 09-11-2012, 12:38 PM   #11
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I quoted a Briggs & Stratton manual on some of the dangers. I tend to follow manufacturer manuals for these things rather than fly by the seat of my pants or listen to anecdotal evidence. If someone thinks that is exaggerating, so be it. I don't have a few hundred bucks to risk about guessing about what oil to use.

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