fuel problems with auxiliary generator.

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  #1  
Old 12-26-11, 12:13 PM
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fuel problems with auxiliary generator.

I have a 10KW Northstar (Honda 18.0)auxiliary generator with less than 1 hour on it that had 2 year old gas (with Stabile). I replaced the gas 2 weeks ago, got it started after a bit of trouble and let it run for about 15 minutes. I tried to start it today and it will only run if I feed fuel (or cleaner) down the throat. I pulled all the fuel lines and verified that it is getting gas to the carburator but seems to stop there. The choke and linkage all seem to work properly. I tried spraying carb cleaner directly into the fuel line fitting but it didn't seem to be going anywhere internally. I don't have the manual and am hesitant to pull the carb off. Does anyone have any suggestions. Thank you
 
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Old 12-26-11, 05:21 PM
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The carb is going to have to be cleaned. Take some digital pics of the carb and linkage if you are unsure about removing it so that you can see how it goes back on. You might try taking the bowl off and see if it's full of trash or what.
 
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Old 12-26-11, 05:58 PM
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Thanks for the advice. I'm sure you are right but I was hoping I wouldn't hear that. I got a copy
of the manual on the internet and it doesn't show the carb as a separate part or illustrate the
components. It's one piece on the blowup. I'll bet it's one small speck of gunk in the jet.
A mechanic friend suggested shooting compressed air directly into the carb and see what happens
before trying to take the whole thing apart.
 
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Old 12-27-11, 08:56 AM
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Stabil does help, but it's not magic. One thing I've noticed with very old gas is that Stabil can help prevent varnish from forming but it can not stop the loss of the more volatile compounds in gas that make it easy to ignite. I had some really old gas and nothing would really run with it. Cleaned carbs and did everything but nothing would run well on the fuel. I poured some out onto the ground and tossed a match from a safe distance. There was not the usual "whoomp" of fresh gas. Just a lazy flame that seemed like a cross between gasoline and diesel. Still, a clogged passage in your carb. is the most likely culprit.

If you want a fuel for long term storage or if you are bad about remembering to properly prepare an engine for long term storage try 100LL aviation gas. It's more expensive but it stores much better than auto gas and does not require a stabilizer. Since 100LL contains lead I would not use it continuously because it does increase engine maintenance.
 
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Old 12-27-11, 08:03 PM
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Shooting compressed air directly into the carb can potentially cause a lot of damage. Depends on how much pressure and how strong the carb is. They aren't made to hold 90 psi of pressure. You can't properly clean a carb from the outside.
 
  #6  
Old 12-28-11, 10:48 AM
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I carefully shot some air into the carb and at first nothing
happened Then I got a spray of fuel from a small vent on the top. I thought I fixed it when it started immediately but then quit
after a couple of seconds. I don't know if it was residue in the
throat from last night's efforts or some fuel got through. At
any rate, I'm back to square one. I have canvassed the internet and checked You Tube to try and find some kind of manual or
instruction video addressing removal of the carb. I don't see any
bolts or manifold as I know it and am completely stumped; I don't want to mess this thing up. I want to thank you for your help but
think I am going to have to spring for a professional.
Thanks
 
  #7  
Old 12-28-11, 12:49 PM
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The generator is running. I went out to collect the compressor and decided to fool around one last time. The thing started after being primed, almost quit and then sputtered, but ran. I disconnected a
line and fed carb cleaner into the carb. It ran rough for about fjve
minutes on full choke and then smoothed out, but wouldn't run with the choke in. I played with the choke for about 10 minutes until
the unit now runs like a charm. I have no idea what I did, but I
appreciate all your help. God knows the gas is going to be changed in a timely manner in the future.
 
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Old 12-28-11, 01:56 PM
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I'm glad it's running. Maybe it was a mechanical kidney stone and your fiddling was enough to get it to work it's way through the carb.

If you have recurring problems with it shine a flashlight into the fuel tank and look for sediment for flakes in the tank. If so the tank will need to be cleaned and the fuel line flushed out or replaced but hopefully you won't have to worry about it.
 
  #9  
Old 12-31-11, 09:45 AM
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Now that the compressor is running, I have another question. It is in an 8X10 ft vinyl sided shed, about 2 feet from the wall. Note that the exhaust system consists of a perforated plate on one side of the unit. I am trying to attach some sort of exhaust piping that will 1) effectively vent the fumes and 2) not melt or set fire to the siding. Noone seems to offer an attachment and I wonder if this is a dangerous idea or if there may be a safe way to do it. My alternative is to take it out of the shed and leave it outside.
Thanks
 
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Old 12-31-11, 01:41 PM
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Try looking for an aftermarket header or a different muffler with a pipe either in front of or after the muffler section so you can add some more exhaust tubing. I found a number of large can type meant to make them really quiet but their round exhaust pipe would be real easy to extend.

Don't forget to include a flexible section somewhere to separate the engine's vibration from muffler or pipe that is supported off of something non moving. The stock muffler is OK because it's bolted to the engine and moves with it. The minute you mount the exhaust to something else you have to allow for the movement.

If you will be operating the generator in a shed you need a large amount of ventilation. One, to allow any minor exhaust leak to ventilate so you don't die from carbon monoxide and two to provide proper cooling air for the engine. Running an engine that size in an enclosed space will quickly heat the interior of the shed and possibly overheat the engine.
 
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Old 12-31-11, 02:29 PM
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Maybe this is a bad idea. The only ventilation would be the open
door that is directly opposite the machine and through the eaves in the roof. I'd hate to burn the house down when all I have to do is
move the thing outside if I need it. I really appreciate your
advice. You've been a lot of help. Happy New Year.
 
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