Power for a new generation
There are many different generator sets in the market, each catering to different needs. Mithilesh Singh offers some practical tips to ensure a long lifetime for diesel generator.
Generator sets powered by diesel engines are a very common sight around construction sites, providing temporary power. One brand, which is well known around the world and has been a player in the industry for over 50 years, is now making a mark in India.
India is a market where FG Wilson has been present since the mid 1990s, although that presence was quieter over the last few years. But no longer. In 2016, FG Wilson launched a new range from 10 to 200 kVA, sourced and fully supported in India, all of which is CPCB II emissions compliant.
Working on construction sites or highway projects are tedious tasks by itself. But picture this, your deadline is approaching, everyone is hard at work, your welding torches and electric saws are up and running, and suddenly you lose power. Instantly bringing your entire project to a standstill and pushing your timelines by a mile, power loss and fluctuation can truly affect the quality of any project. This makes it imperative for you to have a generator set running to provide temporary power, possibly running all day for the duration of the project. To this end, generator sets powered by diesel engines seem to be the resource of choice.
There are many different generator sets in the market, each catering to different needs. The best choice for you would depend on your needs. You have to look into various factors, the first of which is the frequency of use for your generator set. If you would need to use the generator set more often, it would be better to invest in a reliable model.
The next factor to be considered is reliability. A generator set is a long-term investment and must, therefore, be capable of living up to the price you are paying & ought to be producing reliable, consistent and steady power. Mithilesh Singh from the FG Wilson India team says, “With over 640,000 machines operating across the world, FG Wilson takes no risks with quality or performance. Assembling a generator isn’t difficult, the real value comes in the testing and validation before a product launch. We don't accept engine performance data without validating it ourselves in the environmental conditions which our products will see. When someone buys one of our products, we can safely say that wherever it will be operating, it will have been tested for that environment.” Thanks to the extensive testing, FG Wilson can provide you with a generator set that is built to stand the test of time.
Mithilesh says, “We have a modern Engineering Centre in the UK, built with an investment of $26 million, which houses our R&D facilities and also contains Europe's largest fully automated hemi-anechoic chamber, providing state of the art acoustic research and test capabilities.”
At the Centre, every new product design at Larne, Northern Ireland (UK) is tested for 500 hours on a resistive load bank and inspected throughout for design weaknesses which, if found, are then corrected before launch. This includes testing of full load power rating with testing of cold load step and hot load step to ensure the generator set can produce quoted performance. Stating that this is important, Mithilesh says, “The 500 hour test determines the likely reliability of the generator set in a customer’s environment, and the full load power rating allows us to validate the performance data of the engine. For us, the data from the engine manufacturer is a starting point and our test confirms the actual engine performance in the generator set when it’s in action. It’s not always the same as the standard engine data and for us, it’s important to make sure the performance data are exactly right for the customer’s application.”
While finding the ideal generator set is of utmost importance, the ability to source parts and the presence of local & effective support is pivotal. What you need are local dealers who carry parts and are trained to diagnose issues easily. In the absence of finding ideal support options, people often resort to replacing their generator parts like filters, with imitation or fake parts that are available cheaper and locally. This is done with the idea that locally sourced parts would save them some money. However, this may be a bigger problem than it is a solution. Whatever generator set you own, it is imperative that you fit genuine filters and change the oil as specified in your operator manual. Don’t wait until you see a problem before you think about changing the filters or oil. It could be too late. With FG Wilson, the support and assistance comes from a network of dealers who support customers with everything from product selection to installation and aftermarket support through a global parts warehouse stocking 11,500 parts and delivering up to three million parts a year.
The last cog in the machine that you must pay attention to, is the fuel itself. As a generator set owner, you must be careful to buy diesel only from reputed suppliers and make sure that the tanker which delivers your fuel is used only for the purpose of transporting diesel. You must ensure that it isn’t containing diesel one day and something else the next as this could contaminate the fuel. You must also try to keep your tank filled to the top with fuel as this prevents condensation which is the number one cause of algae growth within the fuel tank.
Finally, if you don’t run your generator regularly, remember that the shelf life of the diesel in the tank is limited. Typically, diesel fuel starts to deteriorate after about 100 days. The fuel begins to break down, clusters up and drops to the bottom of the tank as a dark sludge. This can block filters and injectors, reduce engine efficiency and inevitably leads to engine smokeOver and above all of this, there are a few simple steps that you can take up, to ensure that your diesel generator set will have a long lifetime:
Check fluid levels before the onset of cold weather
Check the rubber components such as hoses & fan drive belts weekly
Drain any water from the fuel system
Once started, don’t power off the engine until it has reached a minimum operating temperature of 80°C. This prevents intake valves and exhaust valves from sticking
Check air cleaners and the air intake daily, more often in snowy conditions
Fill the fuel tank only when the generator set is powered off
Keep all the batteries fully charged and warm (this is especially important if the generator set is not being operated regularly)
With these few steps & the consistent and relentless support provided by FG Wilson and its impeccably skilled dealer network, your generator set is bound to go the long run. Investments such as generator sets are often not given much thought but one must realize that every small detail can play a big role in ensuring that you get the best out of your resources.
About the author:
Mithilesh Singh is the Marketing Manager of FG Wilson Asia Pacific
(Communication provided by the management of the company)