Find out why your Generac generator won’t continue to run

When there is insufficient airflow or fuel supply to the engine, when the low engine oil sensor activates, or when the generator is overloaded, a Generac generator won’t stay operating and will keep switching off.

This could be caused by a clogged fuel tank vent, a dirty carburetor, a dirty air filter, an improperly set throttle, a low level of engine oil, a defective ignition coil, or too many electrical devices linked into the generator.

Before making any repairs, remember to unplug the spark plug wires and let the generator cool. Observe any extra safety instructions listed in the operator’s manual.

Generac Generator
Generac Generator

Six causes of Generac generator failure

Too much weight given the size of the Generac generator

The generator will cut off and stop running if you try to power something that exceeds its load limit. Check the load limit of your Generac generator model to make sure you aren’t overloading it.

Then, multiply the total wattage needed to power all of the devices you are simultaneously running on the generator. The total wattage of the goods must be less than the generator’s maximum load.

To estimate the wattage capacity, use the following advice:

  • Most electrical items have a tag affixed to them that lists their wattage.
  • Some motors need more power to start the object. In this instance, wattage requirements should be computed using the initial wattage.
  • To reach a total, add the combined wattage of all the devices that will be hooked into the generator simultaneously.
  • The total wattage must be less than the wattage capacity of the generator.

Lack of Air in the Generac Generator

Dirty Air Filter: If the air filter isn’t consistently cleaned or replaced, it may clog. The engine may be unable to receive enough air to continue running if the filter is clogged.

Examine the condition of the filter after removing it. When the filter is severely damaged or unclean, replace it with a new one. If it’s in good shape but just a little soiled, clean it.

Incorrect Choke Setting: When starting a cold engine, the choke is used to limit airflow. To ensure that the warm engine receives enough air to continue running, the choke must be switched to the off position.

If the engine turns off immediately after starting, the choke setting may be off, or it could be locked in the closed position. The choke should be in the run/open position when starting a warm engine to prevent it from shutting off.

Lack of Fuel in the Generac Generator

Empty Fuel Tank: This is the most obvious cause of a generator shutting down, but occasionally people forget to fill the tank with fuel. A fuel leak or a malfunctioning fuel gauge could also be to blame.

Fill up the tank with new petrol. If you detect one of these issues, repair any fuel leaks and replace the damaged fuel gauge.

Clean Carburetor: The carburetor controls how much fuel is combined with air to create combustion. Old gas can build up a layer over time that prevents the carburetor from working properly, depriving the engine of the gas it needs to continue running.

When this occurs, the carburetor must be taken out of the generator and thoroughly cleaned with carburetor cleaning to get rid of the crusty buildup that old fuel leaves behind. To ensure that a carburetor is correctly reassembled, I find it essential to take pictures while I disassemble it.

Replace the carburetor with a new one if you don’t want to deal with cleaning it or if you can’t get it cleaned and working again.

Plugged Fuel Tank Vent: The fuel cap vent or the vent on top of the fuel tank are both used by Generac generators. The vent may clog up, making it impossible for air to flow through and bring the pressure inside the tank to atmospheric pressure.

A vacuum is created when the fuel tank is unable to vent, preventing fuel from reaching the carburetor. The generator can halt operating as a result of this. When the generator won’t restart unless the gas cap is removed and air can enter the tank, the vent may be the issue.

Lack of Spark in the Generac Generator

Bad Ignition Coil: When the generator heats up, the ignition coil may separate and short out. As a result, the spark plug won’t be able to produce spark because it won’t be receiving the necessary voltage.

Check the condition of the spark plug first. Next, use an ohmmeter to check the continuity. If you see a gap in the continuity, replace it.

Low Engine Oil Level in the Generac Generator

The Generac will turn off to safeguard the engine from harm when the oil level is too low. To achieve an accurate reading, place the generator on a level, flat surface before measuring the oil level.

Utilize the oil dipstick that is linked to the oil cap to check the oil level. If you notice that the level is too low, add oil until the dipstick indicates that it is at the proper level.

You might have a malfunctioning sensor if you notice that the engine oil level is correct yet the low oil sensor light continues to illuminate.

Pugged Spark Arrestor on a Generac Generator

To stop hot exhaust material from blasting out of the muffler and potentially igniting a fire, a spark arrestor screen is attached to the muffler.

When the spark arrestor screen in the engine’s exhaust system is blocked, the engine may bog down and perhaps shut off.

The spark arrestor screen should be taken out and cleaned using a solvent or a small metal brush. It must be replaced with a new screen if you discover that it is damaged or has a hole in it.