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Dumb Mistake

5786 Views 7 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  MowersGalore
Ok, I am new here, but need a little help. I was feeding my house with a generator (standard 5500W B&S branded contrator type generator). Since I don't have a transfer switch or interlock, I used a breaker LOTO device and applied my own work lock from work to lockout the main. I asked the power company guys if they wanted to lock out on my stuff and they said they were ok with me locking it out and they would let me know when they were done and when they turned the power back on. Well, they came and told me it was back on and they left (there was an exteded outage in my neighborhood, and I live right by the feed to the substation). I turned off the generator, went and removed my lock and turned the power on......Dang, that was stupid...anyways, I smoked something, and not sure what it was. I heard a pffft, and smoke came out of the end of the generator.....What did I smoke? Brushes? some kind of board? I know I may get flamed on here, but it was just one of those boneheaded moments.


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i'm not going to be any help with your problem but wanted to say welcome to PEF and also let you know that any flaming or personal attacks will not be tolerated on this site accidents and mistakes happen good luck with getting your problem sorted out we have a few guys on here that really know their stuff and one should be along before too long to give some great advice.
I doubt brushes, more likely a board and the converter that goes from DC and Converts it to AC voltage. :eek:
Pulled it apart today and found the little rectifier board and brush assembly. I saw a MOV on there and it is blown. That would explain the PFFFT I heard and the small amount of smoke that came out. I just ordered one for 22 dollars from Amazon. That should get it. Thanks!
Thanks! And thank you to those who helped me. As side note, I forgot to post my results. Changed out the rectifier board and cranked it up and the generator wouldn't create any voltage. Turns out, I had to "excite" it a little. I used a 12vdc battery and hooked up two wires to a male 110v plug. Plug it into the generator, WHILE OFF, and pull the pull cord easily just allowing the rotor to spin easily a couple times without it cranking up. You could safely do this with the fuel line disconnected or however to prevent it from running, because you don't want to fire it up and feed the 12vdc battery you are connected to! Voila! Disconnected, fired it up and all is well.

You can also excite, or "flash" your generator using a drill: just plug it into the running generator and turn the chuck backwards by hand a few times, and the generator should start to work. Just be careful as the current starts to flow the drill will start to spin on it's own.
My money is on a blown capacitor or fried windings
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