Generator Upkeep

The generator is enclosed with a sound shield that reduces the cabin noise while it is running. The five panels attach to a frame and each panel is lined with foam insulation to absorb the noise. After eleven years the foam insulation deteriorated on the top and front panels and needed to be replaced.

I searched for a direct replacement with no luck. Instead I purchased an automotive hood liner with an adhesive backing and cut it to fit. But first the old insulation needed to be removed and surprisingly it was easy to remove with a putty knife. Once the insulation was removed, some adhesive remained and was still sticky so I left it in place hoping it would help adhere the new insulation.

With regular scissors I cut the hood liner to fit, peeled off the adhesive backing, and pressed it in place. This was a much easier job than I expected and it turned out well. Hopefully it will last another eleven years.

While I had the sound shield off I checked the sacrificial anode in the heat exchanger. The heat exchanger uses salt water to cool the engine coolant and it will corrode the heat exchanger if not for the sacrificial anode. The anode is made of zinc that corrodes instead of the heat exchanger, thus prolonging the life of the heat exchanger. I check all of the engine anodes quarterly.

To my surprise, when I unscrewed the anode to check it, there was no anode attached. It had come unscrewed from the holder and fallen into the heat exchanger. You can see the anode in the picture below after I removed the end cap from the heat exchanger.

With the end cap removed, I was able to easily retrieve the anode. However, that led to another issue. The end cap was cracked and was weeping salt water. I have spare end cap gaskets, but no spare end cap. So I cleaned up the heat exchanger and delayed finishing the project while I waited for a new end cap to arrive.

I ordered two end caps and gaskets so I could also replace the other one. Once those were replaced I started the generator and checked for leaks. Finding none, I put on the sound shield and was ready for the next outing.

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