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Old 04-05-2017, 07:44 AM   #1
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diesel and generator exercise

It looks like my 2004 Itasca 39W is staying put for a while. So I need a bit of advice about exercising the diesel coach motor and generator.
1. How often and for how long?
2. Do I need to unplug from the house 50amp before I start the coach or generator or can I stay plugged in?

thanks
PaulB
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Old 04-05-2017, 07:51 AM   #2
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I Run both the engine and Gen every 2 weeks. Yes the power needs to be off when running the engine>
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Old 04-05-2017, 07:54 AM   #3
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I run mine every month for about an hour under medium load. There's no need to unplug from your house/shore power if you have an Automatic Transfer Switch.
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Old 04-05-2017, 08:28 AM   #4
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If you can take at least a 30 minute drive running the coach motor is fine, a diesel does not reach operating temperature sitting still. A few months not run is fine, farms do it every year. It is a good idea to uplug, but not necessary as the transfer switch is Gen priority. DO NOT HAVE ANY POWER LOAD ON. Start Gen with no load let it run a couple minutes to stabilise, then add load. Load can be A/C or electric heaters, heat pumps, any thing with a good power draw. Then after session turn off ALL load let Gen run a couple minutes shut down and return to shore. Run time I have seen is a hour to two hours, that is what I use on gas or diesel as the run is for the electrical side not the motor.

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Old 04-06-2017, 08:00 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OLYLEN View Post
If you can take at least a 30 minute drive running the coach motor is fine, a diesel does not reach operating temperature sitting still. A few months not run is fine, farms do it every year.
Absolutely right ..the engine should NOT be idled for "exercise". Take it for a drive, or leave it off.

Quote:
It is a good idea to uplug, but not necessary as the transfer switch is Gen priority. DO NOT HAVE ANY POWER LOAD ON. Start Gen with no load let it run a couple minutes to stabilise, then add load. Load can be A/C or electric heaters, heat pumps, any thing with a good power draw. Then after session turn off ALL load let Gen run a couple minutes shut down and return to shore. Run time I have seen is a hour to two hours, that is what I use on gas or diesel as the run is for the electrical side not the motor.
Good description. As I recall, Onan's recommendation is 1 1/2 hr a month under at least 50% load. And as stated, that is to burn moisture out of the generator side to keep it working well.
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Old 04-07-2017, 07:55 PM   #6
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thanks for all the input.
I will run the generator (under load) every two/three weeks and crank the diesel only when moving.
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Old 04-07-2017, 09:48 PM   #7
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I too only start the drive engine when I will drive the MH for at least 1 hr. The Onan genset manual states 2 hrs once a month.
During cold weather, if we're home, I plug in 2 electric space heaters(not same circuit) to load the genset and heat the interior while working on something in the MH.

That said, our MH had been parked in a barn for 6 years when we purchased it, with no apparent damage to either power unit.
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