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I purchased a generator for a friend living in a RV on property that has no power. I'm not certain how long before power can be brought into the property so he may be quite a while using a generator to power his RV batteries to run a gas furnace, refrigerator, etc. that require 12 volts to operate.

He didn't want to spend a whole bunch for a generator and decided on a Duromax XP4850EH 3850 Running Watts/4850 Starting Watts Dual Fuel Electric Start

Later after purchasing we learned that the recommended oil change interval is every 20 hours.

He wants to run the generator every day to charge the RV batteries, for television, AC lamp and microwave.

The Duromax XP4850EH doesn't have an oil filter and the recommended oil change interval is every 20 hours.

Which is quite a short oil change interval. I'm uncertain how many hours per day the generator would be required to run. The RV gas equipment such as the absorption frig and gas furnace requires 12 volts to operate or they simple turn off and stop functioning. I don't believe he has an electric frig or freezer, but that's another possibility is he would need enough AC power to run an compressor frig and freezer.

I suppose I could loan him my 2000 / 4000 watt inconverter and he could add some more batteries and run everything from an inverter by keeping the batteries charged? I only have a 115 watt solar panel which only puts out a max. 7 amp at full sunlight.

Anyway I'm trying to determine if there's any method to extend the generator's oil change intervals. Possibly by adding a magnet to the drain plug?

The only other thing that came to mind is to install a bypass filter i.e. if there is a port on the engine block. Routing a 1/4 in. oil hose from a engine block port to a bypass filter then from the bypass filter to the oil fill opening (with adapter) (if there's an oil pump)

engine oil port ----- bypass filter ----- oil fill

Where a small percentage of the oil could be filtered using a fine micron bypass filter. However I'm not certain about the small engine oil pressure and from what I've read so far is generators without oil filters don't normally have an oil pump?

I suppose it might be possible to add your own oil pump in order to suck the oil from the engine block into the bypass filter and then back into the engine block?

I guess the manufactures don't install a filer and pump to bring manufacturing cost down? and these types of generators aren't really doesn't to be run all of the time? Just once in a while for power tools, etc.?

It's really too late to bring it back to find another generator, which he really needs in order to live in the RV without pud power and utilities.

I'm uncertain how much to bring in power. The city want's $10,000 to connect to their water main and no well digging is allowed in the area.

Were in a rural area with farms and fishing I've never heard of charging $10k for a water main connection, which is on the road next to the property.

Anyway any ideas running this generator consistently everyday? Just follow the recommendations and change the motor oil every 20 hours of use?

Any benefits using a full synthetic vs a synthetic blend?

267 Posts
Wow, it'll be interesting to see how long it lasts. That is presumably not the expected usage pattern.

As you said, very unlikely it has an oil pump. Adding a pump? Probably possible, but sounds rather involved & risky.

He could keep an eye out for a used generator with a filter, I guess.

My inclination would be synthetic, but I'll bet it doesn't matter much here. You won't be wearing the oil out, you'll be replacing it due to particulates, etc. You could also extend the oil change intervals, if they were too cumbersome.

I would definitely put a magnet on the drain plug. Definitely change the oil after a few hours of running, to remove break-in particles. After a few scheduled oil changes, perhaps the rate of particles would reduce, maybe you could get away with some longer intervals. And not all unfiltered engines are 20 hours. My little Honda EU2000i generator is 100 hours, after break-in. First change suggested at 20 hours (personally, I'd do it after 2-3), then every 100 after that.

488 Posts
20 hours is kind of short for an oil change interval for that size generator, although generator engines have it worse than most other OPE. Note that Duromax builds their own engines. Extended run units like Hondas and Onans are built to support longer oil change intervals. I would think you could stretch it out to 50 hours after a couple of oil changes. My generators (none have oil filters):

PowerMate PM0126000 40 Hours/6 Months LCT Engine
PowerMate PM1500 50 Hours/Annually Kawasaki Engine
Generac 3500XL 50 Hours/Annually Generac/Briggs Engine
Onan 2.8KVA 150 Hours/Annually Onan Engine
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