Rimutakaman
I have a Generac 44560 and it won't crank. All I get is a clicking - not at the starter solenoid, but in the area of the electronic control board. It was at my home when I bought it, so since I couldn't tell how old the battery was, I replaced it, but it still won't crank. I get 12 volts at the starter, the battery connections are good, and a visual inspection of the wiring didn't reveal any noticeable cracks or breaks.

Looking around online, I read a post that indicated wire 54 at the control electronic control board should have 12 volts, but I don't - I only have about 2 or 3 volts. The post said this pointed to a bad electronic control board. However, I don't know what model Generac the post was referring to.

Before I eat the cost of a new control board, could someone tell me if I should have 12 volts at wire 54 of my Generac 44560? Are there any other tests I can do to confirm my control board is bad? Thanks for any input you have.
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Skip Douglas SkipD
I took a look at the schematic in the user's manual for your generator and don't see a wire #54. However, there is a wire #56 which comes from the controller board and goes to the starter contactor relay. That should go to the voltage printed on the relay (my guess is 12VDC) when the starter is being activated. When the starter contactor relay is activated, there should be 12VDC going to the starter contactor on wire #16. It's mandantory that the starter be well grounded for the return-to-battery circuit connection.

When I write "12VDC", I really mean "battery voltage" which should actually be greater than 12 volts DC if the battery is fully charged.
Skip Douglas
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techntrek
You can find the diagnostic manual at this link, scroll down to the bottom:

[url]http://www.zabatt.com/Generators/ProductManuals.aspx[/url]
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Rimutakaman
Thanks. I downloaded the diagnostics manual. I'm glad to have that. I went through the diagnostics as it described. You're correct when you indicated it was wire 56, not 54. I'm only getting 2 - 3 volts at 56, and only about 3 - 4 volts at wire 16. The battery is fully charged, reading nearly 14 volts. The manual says if there isn't battery voltage at wire 16, but there is continuity at O at the starter relay (and there is) replacement of the starter relay is needed. I will attempt to locate one from Ziller now. Thanks again for your responses.
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Canada_Guy
Rimutakaman;8128 wrote:
The battery is fully charged, reading nearly 14 volts.


A side issue to the one that you are troubleshooting, but you might want to read up on the exploding batteries due to over-charging. A float charge rate of that high of voltage will result in electrolyte loss and potential battery explosion.
I am curious what the electrolyte level was like in the old battery.
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Rimutakaman
I appreciate the heads-up. I didn't even look at the level in the old battery before handing it in as a core for the new one. I'm going to monitor the electrolyte level on this one now that I know that. Thanks.
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Skip Douglas SkipD
Rimutakaman;8133 wrote:
I appreciate the heads-up. I didn't even look at the level in the old battery before handing it in as a core for the new one. I'm going to monitor the electrolyte level on this one now that I know that. Thanks.
If the old charger was floating at 14 volts, get it out of service now. Pick up a battery maintainer type of charger - one that will float the battery at 13.2 volts or a little less. Battery maintainers - either the "Battery Tender" or the [URL="http://www.batterychargers.com/CategoryDetail.aspx?CategoryName=Battery-Charger%2FMaintainer_Automotive_Charge-%2F-Maintain"][COLOR=Blue][U]ones by Schumacher[/U][/COLOR][/URL] - work very well for the purpose. I use the Schumacher SE-1-23S in my generator.
Skip Douglas
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Rimutakaman
I just ordered a Schumacher battery maintainer. I wasn't even aware there was such a device. I already ordered the starter relay, but I think I'll hold off on installing it until the battery maintainer arrives. It would ruin my day if that battery exploded while I was working on the Generator. Thanks again.
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Canada_Guy
Rimutakaman;8139 wrote:
I think I'll hold off on installing it until the battery maintainer arrives. It would ruin my day if that battery exploded while I was working on the Generator. Thanks again.


Just check the electrolyte level. As long as the battery is filled to the proper level, there is little chance of a battery explosion.

The problem happens when the electrolyte levels drops so low that the plates are exposed. The heavy current drain from the starter can be enough to cause a spark to occur between the exposed plates and ignite the explosive gasses in the battery.

Note: You will need to install a generator-backed AC outlet at the generator to plug the battery maintainer into.
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Rimutakaman
Thanks - I'll keep an eye on the electrolyte level. The fact that I need an outlet escaped me, but in retrospect I should have picked up on it. I'll install an outdoor outlet next to the generator this weekend while the weather is still decent.
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Skip Douglas SkipD
Rimutakaman;8141 wrote:
Thanks - I'll keep an eye on the electrolyte level. The fact that I need an outlet escaped me, but in retrospect I should have picked up on it. I'll install an outdoor outlet next to the generator this weekend while the weather is still decent.
I suggest that you mount the receptace INSIDE the generator housing so that nobody can play games and unplug your charger. Also, the receptacle would be completely out of the weather if it's inside the generator housing.

In addition, make sure that the power to the receptacle is from a backed-up source so that the battery charger will operate when on generator power as well as while on utility power. I ran a dedicated 20-amp (12 ga wire) branch circuit to the receptacle in my generator. It powers the charger and (in the deep cold of winter) a battery warmer blanket. I also use the receptacle for power tools at times.
Skip Douglas
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techntrek
Also make sure you get the [I]engine[/I] diagnostic manual, also available at that link.
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