We get this question A LOT! Some customers buy new MEP002A or MEP003A re-manufactured engines from GMG. Some buy our refurbished generators complete. In either case, we recommend a Break-In period, especially for re-manufactured engines. For refurbished generators, we recommend an early oil change in the 50 hour range (vs the normal 100 interval) to ensure that any debris, corrosion, sand, etc. that may have entered or built-up while the unit was sitting for a long time is eliminated from the system.
So for re-manufactured engines, follow this break-in routine:
- Use new clean 15W40 oil (no need to use synthetic, but synthetic is fine). You may also choose a formal break-in oil such as: Lucas, Amsoil, Royal Purple, or John Deere – they all make break-in oils of 30W. This weight is better suited to above freezing temperatures, so if you need to break-in your engine in the cold, straight 15W40 is safer. Either will do. If above freezing, use special break-in oil. Below freezing use 15W40.
- It is common to burn oil at first as the rings need to seat on the cylinder walls. Because of this you should check the oil level EVERY time you use the unit or once every 8 hours of use, whichever comes first. Top off oil as needed.
- Do not idle the engine. Run it at 1800 rpm/60Hz ALWAYS. Same goes for normal use.
- Do not baby the unit. You should run it at 1800 rpm/60Hz with a LOAD on it. Same goes for normal use.
- Run for hours (not minutes) at a time, esp. if it is colder outside. These units are rated for continuous use and they should be used for hours. So on your first run, you can run for 2-4 hours straight. Do it again a few times, checking oil level every time.
- Change oil and filter after 50 hours of use (This is half the normal interval).
- The above assumes that your fuel system has been cleaned out as all of our refurbished units have been. It also assumes you have a clean air-filter.
For refurbished generators, follow the above, but do not use break-in oil. Simply use 15W40 oil.
Change your oil and filter one time a year or every 100 hours for optimal performance. Clean/fresh oil is more important than the brand you choose;-)
Comments welcome on all fronts.