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How to Clean a Diesel Generator Set

How do you clean a diesel generator set?

  1. Oil stains
  2. Engine oil
  3. Air filter
  4. Cooling system
  5. Fuel
  6. Batteries
  7. Carbon deposits


A diesel generator set provides numerous benefits for businesses. It is durable enough to withstand daily wear and tear, can handle larger power loads, is fuel-efficient, and can reliably provide continuous power. But with regular use, the components can get dirty and clogged over time. To maintain peak capacity, you need to know how to clean a diesel generator set! Keep on reading.


Oil Stains

The surface of your diesel generator set can accumulate oil deposits over time. When this happens, you might have to spend extra effort removing the stain. If the build-up is thick, you can use a tool to scrape off the oil. Then, you can use a clean rag with a degreaser to scrub off the remaining oil and dirt.

To prevent the oil from accumulating, it is recommended to keep your generator set clean. With daily cleaning, you can reduce the effort needed to get rid of thick deposits. Don’t use a pressure washer when maintaining your Genset as this can damage it.


Engine Oil

Engine Oil

Just like a car, the generator set’s engine oil must be changed frequently to ensure that it’s in peak condition. This can lubricate the engine parts and reduce the chances of overheating. Other than that, it also helps get rid of the impurities such as dust and coolant and maintains engine function.

To change the oil, the first thing you need to do is to heat the existing oil to make it easier to drain.  After that, remember to remove the spark plug and oil plug before draining the oil into a container. Then you can pour the new oil in and change the filter. Consult your manufacturer’s manual about the recommended frequency of oil changes.


Air Filter

The air filter is an important component of your diesel generator set because it stops impurities from damaging the piston rod, valve gear, and cylinder. Depending on the model and manufacturer of your Genset, the frequency of your replacement might vary. Generally, you need to change it between 300 to 500 hours of use and clean it every 50 hours.

To clean the air filter, you can use compressed air to get rid of the impurities. It is recommended to use a special cleaning fluid if the component is heavily soiled.


Cooling System

Cooling System

The cooling system of a diesel generator set stops the engine from overheating and prevents metal components from rusting. That’s why aside from ensuring that the coolant level is properly filled, you need to inspect this area frequently for dirt. In most cases, the coolant liquid is replaced every 6 months.

To clean the radiator, use a soft brush to carefully remove foreign materials. It is not advised to use a high-pressure gun as this can do more harm than good.



One of the most harmful things you can do to your diesel generator set is to use it with old and dirty fuel. This can affect the performance of the engine and reduce the lifespan of your equipment. For this reason, you need to keep up with annual cleaning and filtering. Aside from that, you should also drain old fuel and make sure to use clean ones.

To make sure that the fuel tanks only use clean fuel, make sure to check for clogged and damaged filters, lines, pumps, and injectors. It is recommended to make an appointment for a contamination test so the fuel tank is kept clean.




Diesel generator sets have batteries to provide them with start-up power. Aside from ensuring that it is charged, it is also vital to keep it clean.

To clean the batteries, you can use a cloth to wipe away the dust and other foreign materials. You might also notice corrosion around the terminals if the battery is old. In this case, you can consult your manufacturer’s manual for the right cleaning solution that is appropriate to remedy the problem.


Carbon Deposits

Over time, your diesel generator set engine can accumulate carbon deposits due to the incomplete combustion of fuel. These are commonly found in the piston, valve, and cylinder head. If neglected, the build-up of these substances can affect heat transfer, dissipation, and lead to overheating.

To remove the carbon deposit manually, you can use a wire brush and scraper. Consult your manual if you can immerse some of the components in a cleaning solution specially made to soften the carbon deposits.


Key Takeaway

From the oil, fuel, coolant system, and more—different components of your Genset can get filthy especially if it is used in dirty conditions. It is beneficial to regularly inspect the components so you can lessen the effort in maintaining them later. Now that you know how to clean a diesel generator set, you can run it at peak condition every time!

If you’re interested in generator sets, you can send a message to Multico for assistance.

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