View Full Version : Generator help PLEASE!!!

12-18-2008, 10:17 PM
So I went out to crank up my portable generator today, and I can't get it to turn over!!!! I will admit that I probably don't start it as often as I should, but the last time I started it (less than two months ago) it took off like a champ. I am not very knowledgable about these sort of things, so any help you can lend is appreciated. What I have done so far:

I put plenty of gas in it. I checked the spark plug, it looks fine. I cleaned it a bit. I took the air cleaner off the carb and there is fuel flowing into the carb. I even sprayed a little wd-40 into the carb to see if that would get it to take off, and it didn't do anything. Oh, and the switch is in the "on" position.

Thanks a lot!

12-18-2008, 10:24 PM
Is it getting spark?

12-18-2008, 10:27 PM
Is it flooded? Is it cold out and your line froze? HEET? Call CarTalk and see if Click and Clack can help, lol

12-18-2008, 10:28 PM
Is it prefectly level? there is a "LOW" oil auto shut-off, and no start.

12-18-2008, 10:51 PM
Hope, I'll check the oil situation. I know that I did flood it at one point, so I let it sit with the air filter off for half an hour and tried again, but still nothing. Thanks for all the quick replies!

12-18-2008, 10:53 PM
you said it was getting fuel into the carb,did you check for water in the fuel? condensation can leave enough water to foul the carb.

check for spark by removing the spark plug and grounding the "hex" part of the spark plug to a bare metal part of the engine. Remove any spilled gasoline that is nearby, then spin the engine by pulling the rope or turning the key. You should see a blue spark jump across the plug gap,if no spark,or very weak (yellow) replace the plug,and try it again,if no spark,then your coil,or ignition module has failed,time to replace it.

Could be as simple as the muffler being plugged up,insects are notorious for building nests in mufflers,gotta have exhaust to run properly in addition to getting air/fuel/spark.

12-19-2008, 01:28 AM
Did you use the choke?

12-23-2008, 11:44 PM
I went out today to work on the generator some more, and the darn thing started on the second pull of the rope.

The only thing that I can think of is that it was much warmer today than it was the other day that I was trying to start it (it was mid 20's today and it was about 0 the other day when I was working on it)

Thanks for all the input!

12-23-2008, 11:52 PM
I would put a very small amount of gas line anti freeze (red bottle) in the tank. I use to have a problem with my snowmobile when it was in the single numbers, but a mechanic suggested this to me, and haven't had a problem since, and that was 5 years ago. Good luck and Merry Christmas.

12-24-2008, 12:19 AM
Ah - didn't realize the temps when you were asking. A gas line anitfreeze should work well.

12-24-2008, 12:32 AM
I guess yours is not one of the new, tiny fuel-efficient generators? We have one of those and it spends the whole winter inside the cabin to avoid problems with freezing condensation (of course it goes outside when we run it!). For the old, heavier generator we used to use the sauna in the winter to warm it up before starting it, never had a problem with it.

12-28-2008, 10:29 PM
One quick question, You said you put plenty of gas in it. Was that the day you tried it or the last time you used it. The older gas gets, the harder it is to start something with it.