A backup generator must have a comprehensive maintenance routine in place to gain reliable performance. Testing is a critical part of your scheduled upkeep because it allows a professional to detect any present problems as well as evaluate current operation capacity. Generator testing involves evaluating components such as the automatic transfer switch, switchgear, and circuit breakers. Specific components may be inspected or an entire infrared scan could be necessary to obtain data regarding the unit.
Load bank testing is one of many services professionals supply at regular intervals to observe how your backup generator performs under certain operating capacities. This service is typically performed on a yearly basis if your unit is run at thirty percent capacity throughout the year. It may be completed more frequently if your backup unit sits idle for significant periods of time. Testing helps a technician determine whether or not the system will perform correctly during full operation.
Emergency Power Equipment Testing: Load Assessments Have Many Purposes
Emergency power equipment testing is necessary because your backup supply rarely runs at the manufacturer's advertised maximum output capacity. These checks assist with evaluating how capable the engine will be at providing the horsepower necessary in an emergency. Your system is subjected to an artificial load meant to create the appropriate operating temperature. Non-load testing may be performed by your facility on a weekly basis but does not create the heat needed to fully test the system. Consistent non-load procedures can lead to a condition called "wet stacking" which is the accumulation of unburned fuel in the exhaust portion of the engine. Continual buildup creates a fire hazard, reduces efficiency, and decreases the overall life of your unit.
The benefits of emergency power equipment testing in regards to capacity are abundant. Having this test run at least once a year allows the engine to operate under real emergency conditions and burns up any accumulated fuel. When this buildup is not present, the buildings secondary power source has cleaner operation and is far more efficient. The evaluation also provides you a little peace because the technician is verifying generator performance long before backup power will be necessary.
Oil, temperature, pressure, and other critical items are monitored during this process. The readings are recorded to allow further evaluation after the test has been completed. A load bank test can be completed separately or as part of your budgeted maintenance agreement. It does not affect the operation of your business and is recommended by most generator manufacturers.
Automatic transfer switch and breaker inspections should be performed as well to ensure the generator will turn on when main power is inaccessible. Generator testing is an essential component to your set maintenance routine. It can extend unit life, increase efficiency, and provide a reliable backup power source to your building.
Prime Power uses the most innovative procedures to ensure your unit is ready for the unexpected. Our technicians can inspect the current condition of your secondary power source and make recommendations for preventive maintenance. We can help you set up a regular schedule along with load bank testing to provide optimal performance when your emergency system is essential.