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How to Change Your Generator’s Oil

How do you change your generator’s oil?

  1. Prepare your tools
  2. Heat the existing oil
  3. Remove the spark plug
  4. Drain the old oil
  5. Pour the new oil


Your generator set is an essential device that helps you power your work site. Because of this, you need to perform regular maintenance activities to keep it in optimum condition. That includes knowing how to change generator oil. The new oil will help lubricate the components of your Genset and provide you a convenient experience when starting up your generator. Keep on reading to learn more!


Prepare Your Tools

Depending on the brand of your generator, how often you use it, and where you use it, the frequency of your oil change will vary. As a general rule of thumb, it is a good idea to change your oil every 6 months. For new generator sets, the oil must be replaced after the first 20 hours.

You can refer to your manufacturer’s manual for the recommendations. This means that you need to stock up on oil and filters if you want to perform oil changes yourself.

But before you start, make sure that you wear personal protective equipment. This includes eye goggles and safety gloves. Other than that, you also need to prepare your tools:

  • Drain Canister
  • Oil Funnel
  • Ratchet
  • Oil Filter Wrench
  • Philips screwdriver
  • Flathead screwdriver
  • New Oil
  • New Filter


Heat The Existing Oil

Heat The Existing Oil

To make the draining process much more convenient, it is recommended to heat the existing oil first. This gives the oil a more liquid texture which makes it flow out faster. To do this, you need to turn on your generator and leave it running for a few minutes.

After ensuring that the oil is warmed up, you need to place your generator on 2 pieces of blocks so you have ample space for the oil to drain out. Be careful when doing this because generators can vary in weight. Enlist the help of at least 2 people or use lifting equipment to make the job more convenient. The surface can also be very hot, so be sure to have to wear heat-resistant gloves before touching it.


Remove The Spark Plug

Before you can drain the oil, you need to remove the spark plug so you can ensure that the generator won’t accidentally start when there is no oil. Depending on the model of your generator, the location of this plug will vary. Some brands also have more than 1 plug while others have them hidden beneath a plastic cover. If you have your manufacturer’s manual with you, locating it will be easy.

If you know the location of the spark plug, you can now remove the wire it is connected to. To do this, twist the spark wire boot and pull it off carefully. Place it on an area away from the spark plug before you change your oil.


Drain The Old Oil

Drain The Old Oil

Next, you need to remove the oil plug. This is typically a small square or hexagon shape nut you can remove with a ratchet.  Make sure that the drain canister is placed beneath the opening before doing this. Now that everything’s ready, you can drain the oil!

Ensure that every drop of oil collects in the canister because it can pollute the soil and water in the environment. After that, it is a good idea to find a recycling facility that accepts used oil.

After draining the oil, some people also take this opportunity to replace the filter as well. To do this, you can use an oil filter wrench to remove it. Clean the oil filter adapters for any dirt before placing the new one. Lubricate the gaskets with engine oil before tightening the filter into place.


Pour The New Oil

With a new filter in place, you can prolong the life of your generator and prevent malfunctions! After that, you can put back the oil drain plug and tighten it with the wrench.

Next, you can remove the oil fill cap on your generator and put the oil funnel on the opening. But before you pour your new oil, verify with your manufacturer’s manual that it’s the right one for your generator. Slowly and carefully pour the recommended level of oil into the funnel. Replace the cap afterward.

Before you can use your generator again, re-attach the spark plug and the wire. Hold the spark wire boot and slide it over the plug. Ensure that it goes all the way in. After that, you can turn on your generator so the new oil can lubricate the engine. Check if it is still at the recommended level or you’ll need to fill it again.


Key Takeaway

Now that you know how to change generator oil, you can perform it regularly! This way, you can rely on your generator to power your tools and appliances anytime. Just make sure to consult the manufacturer’s manual for the recommendations regarding the type of oil and filter required, the amount of oil needed, and how often does it need to be changed.

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