Commercial Generator Maintenance During Hurricane Season

Oct 4, 2022

If you’re a Florida business owner, you’re probably well aware that hurricane season is already underway. It’s a long stretch – from June 1 to November 30. Winds of 74mph – excess of 157mph could hit our businesses.

These higher winds register on the “catastrophic” end of the scale, which means power lines are likely to be downed and damage will be extensive. These critical months will require businesses to rely on their commercial generators more heavily than any other time of year. 

This means getting real about the threat of hurricane damage and showing our hard-working power sources some TLC. This guide will provide pro tips on commercial generator maintenance so you can keep your operation running smoothly.

PERFORM TIME-SENSITIVE MAINTENANCE REGULARLY

Commercial generators can really be checked at any time depending on what you want to maintain. For example, checking fluid levels such as coolant, oils, and fuels, can be done regularly as well as a visual scan for external unit damage. Weekly care can consist of checking the battery for adequate charge and signs of leakage.

Monthly maintenance may involve visual inspections, testing the coolant tank, and checking drive belt tension. Semi-annual to annual maintenance involves cleaning your commercial generator inside and out to make sure everything from filters and fans to crankcases and control panels are sparkling clean and ready when you need them. Consider Zabatt’s Onelink remote monitoring system to automate a great deal of this process!

It’s very important that you don’t attempt any form of commercial generator maintenance (other than a visual examination) without the proper equipment, skills, and experience to stay safe. This is why it’s always recommended to call in the pros. It’s also recommended to run a comprehensive generator performance check known as a load bank test once a year.

HOW A LOAD BANK TEST WORKS

Running a load bank test is one of the best ways to see how your generator is faring now and how it will handle a hurricane in the future. A load bank test is like a full-body inspection and evaluation rolled into one. The commercial generator is slowly brought up to its kilowatt load capacity to see if it can keep operating right up to the max without experiencing other performance issues.

This maintenance check provides peace of mind because most generators aren’t called on to run at full steam — which may be necessary in a hurricane. You want to know that your generator will operate at maximum load and not let you down. Load bank tests also help burn off any excess carbon, soot, or unused fuel that might be present in diesel generators and could cause a fire hazard. Annual load bank tests are a requirement for many of Florida’s most critical and life-safety applications.

COMPLYING WITH SAFETY REGULATIONS

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) provides essential guidance for commercial generator maintenance and other related best practices in the NFPA 110 resource. There, businesses can read all the necessary regulations that will keep their generators functioning and code compliant. It’s especially important that medical/care facilities follow these maintenance rules.

CHECK EVERYTHING WHEN THE WINDS SUBSIDE

We’re all relieved when hurricanes head off, but the commercial generator maintenance work isn’t over yet. External unit damage is easy to see and should be addressed right away, but businesses should also schedule a follow-up visit from their maintenance provider to give the generator another thorough check-up. They can also look for any vulnerabilities in your current maintenance plan and offer advice on improving it. Keep in mind that extra run time requires refueling and additional maintenance during extended outages.

ZABATT IS YOUR GO-TO FOR HURRICANE GENERATOR PREP

While maintenance can seem like a chore or an avoidable expense, it’s actually a massive investment in business continuity, customer satisfaction, and the safety and wellbeing of your customers and staff.

Our service team has over 40 years of experience in helping businesses stay powered up when hurricanes are bearing down. We’re licensed throughout Florida and serve every kind of company from health care facilities to data centers to residences. We get the job done right the first time. No generator issue is too big or too small for us to handle.

Why wait another minute without absolute certainty in your generator? Visit our contact page to get in touch with our commercial maintenance experts today!

CONTACT US TODAY!