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Generator thermal shutdown

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  • Generator thermal shutdown

    I own a RD6800 generator.
    It seems to have an issue that causes it to shut down after about 20-30 minutes of running under high load. It will restart again fine, but only will run for a couple of minute or two after that. I am running it inside a van, with the doors open, but i just realized that the exhaust from a large vacuum unit i have, is blowing right on the generator head. So i'm thinking this may be adding some heat to the generator part and causing it to shut down. I would feel confident in this theory of mine if I knew if this generator had any type of thermal shutdown that I might be triggering. If not, will a generator head getting too hot in any way kill the engine, or will it just continue to run hot, maybe causing damage to the head, but not shut down the engine?
    Thank you in advance for any opinions.

  • #2
    Re: Generator thermal shutdown

    There's no thermal shutdown. Neither for the engine nor for the gen head.

    Sounds like your fuel cap may not be venting properly. If it isn't, what's happening is that as the fuel level drops, a vacuum is forming in the tank causing reduction of fuel flow. Also could be an issue with the low oil shut down function... check your oil level and check for excessive oil foaming. Third possibility is a thermally defective ignition coil.

    Try this... next time it shuts off, remove the fuel cap and try running it that way (being careful of fuel spillage, of course). If the problem disappears, there's your problem. If that's not it you need to get it to an ASC for troubleshooting.

    Unrelated, but worthy of note... the engine and the gen head are both air cooled. They both depend on a constant supply of nice fresh air to do their thing. Running the unit in an environment that reduces the supply of fresh air for cooling will lead to premature failure.
    Note that I said 'will', not 'might'.
    "HONK if you've never seen a gun fired from a moving Harley"

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Generator thermal shutdown

      Thanks for the info.
      As far as the gas cap, is there anything to check before I actually running it?
      Are there any tricks to troubleshooting the low oil shutdown? Can I disconnect a wire, or in any other way temporarily disable the low oil shutdown feature for the purpose of troubleshooting?
      Thanks again.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Generator thermal shutdown

        Originally posted by goomer View Post
        ... As far as the gas cap, is there anything to check before I actually running it?
        Not unless you want to run out and buy test equipment to run pressure/vacuum tests on the fuel system. Not trying to sound like a smartass, but how much freakin' simpler can it be to just take the fuel cap off and see if the issue disappears?

        Originally posted by goomer View Post
        ... Are there any tricks to troubleshooting the low oil shutdown? Can I disconnect a wire, or in any other way temporarily disable the low oil shutdown feature for the purpose of troubleshooting?
        Yes, there are steps that a qualified tech can take to troubleshoot the circuit. If you suspect the shutdown circuit is at fault, you need to take it to one. If you tinker around and booger up something, you void your warranty.
        "HONK if you've never seen a gun fired from a moving Harley"

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Generator thermal shutdown

          Next time it quits, if you listen carefully while loosening the gas cap, if there is a vacuum you should hear air being sucked into the tank. Other than that, I don't know what can help.

          Red
          Red

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Generator thermal shutdown

            Well, I couldn't find any obvious problem, so I brought it to the only Rigid service center around. The tested it and found nothing wrong with it. They ran it with 3 load test with no problem. They said all is fine. So I had another look myself when I got it back.
            I also have a rigid pressure washer in my van. Both the PW and the gen have a clear screen gas filter on them. I noticed that when the pw runs, the filter is always completely full with gas at all times. I remember noticing that when the gen was having problems, that the filter was only half full with gas, and as it jumped around from the vibration, it looked kind of bubbly. I got the gen back and noticed the filter was completely full with gas and thought maybe there was too much air in the line before, but the problem is now solved. I ran it today for about a half hour, and slowly but surely, the filter started to fill with air again. I did not have time to keep running it to see if the problem returned.

            So.........

            How is it that the PW runs without accumulating air in the filter, yet the gen does?

            Where is the air coming from and how is it getting into the line?

            Could this be the problem if too much air accumulates in the filter and slows the gas flow?

            Any help would be greatly appreciated,
            Thanks again.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Generator thermal shutdown

              An air pocket in the filter doesn't indicate a problem on a gravity feed fuel system. If it were a pressurized system and the filter was on the pressure side of the pump, it might (or might not) indicate an issue, but not on a gravity feed.

              Try this simple little test...

              With the unit running, listen for it to start running goofy just before it shuts down. When it does shut down, INSTANTLY turn the fuel valve 'OFF' and leave it 'OFF' until you've finished this little experiment.

              Open the bowl drain on the carburetor and catch the fuel that comes out.

              If you get somewhere in the neighborhood of 1/2 ounce or more of fuel, fuel flow is NOT your issue.

              If you get a mere thimblefull (or less) of fuel, you've got a restriction and the carburetor is not getting an adequate supply of fuel and you need to check (replace) the filter and check the fuel cap for proper venting.
              "HONK if you've never seen a gun fired from a moving Harley"

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Generator thermal shutdown

                Change the spark plug.


                J.C.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Generator thermal shutdown

                  Originally posted by Doctordeere View Post
                  An air pocket in the filter doesn't indicate a problem on a gravity feed fuel system. If it were a pressurized system and the filter was on the pressure side of the pump, it might (or might not) indicate an issue, but not on a gravity feed.

                  Try this simple little test...

                  With the unit running, listen for it to start running goofy just before it shuts down. When it does shut down, INSTANTLY turn the fuel valve 'OFF' and leave it 'OFF' until you've finished this little experiment.

                  Open the bowl drain on the carburetor and catch the fuel that comes out.

                  If you get somewhere in the neighborhood of 1/2 ounce or more of fuel, fuel flow is NOT your issue.

                  If you get a mere thimblefull (or less) of fuel, you've got a restriction and the carburetor is not getting an adequate supply of fuel and you need to check (replace) the filter and check the fuel cap for proper venting.
                  Cool beans....I'll try this if the problem pops up again.
                  Thanks

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Generator thermal shutdown

                    Originally posted by JCsPlumbing View Post
                    Change the spark plug.


                    J.C.
                    I am serious.


                    J.C.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Generator thermal shutdown

                      Is the fuel shut off valve, opened up properly?

                      and again check the cap for venting correctly, (the cap if it is causing a vacuum in the tank it will limit the flow of fuel and may cause the filter to fill with vapor),

                      and like JC said the spark plug on small motors can cause one fits, at times, with no obvious signs of any thing wrong with it visually, (my own feeling is that the plug is not the problem you have, but switching out the plug most likely will not hurt one, if does not help any, keep it back for a spare)
                      Push sticks/blocks Save Fingers
                      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                      "The true measure of a man is how he treats someone who can do him absolutely no good."
                      attributed to Samuel Johnson
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                      PUBLIC NOTICE: Due to recent budget cuts, the rising cost of electricity, gas, and oil...plus the current state of the economy............the light at the end of the tunnel, has been turned off.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Generator thermal shutdown

                        OK, I'll Bite.

                        Why do you think I should change the SP?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Generator thermal shutdown

                          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oK0B7v3cFus

                          J.C.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Generator thermal shutdown

                            Originally posted by JCsPlumbing View Post
                            Ok, I get the point.
                            I'll pick up another plug. For what it costs it's worth a shot.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Generator thermal shutdown

                              This is bugging me........ How could air be getting into the filter if it starts off completely full?
                              It can't be coming from the tank because the gas is sealing it.
                              That means it must be coming from the carb end? How can this be?

                              Comment

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