Tommy
How much snow in inches around the base of the generator would cause a problem by being ingested into the cooling vents? Especially the small rectangular vent on the backside? I've asked this before but I don't remember the answer any advice. Since there may be new members, there may be new answers.
Thank you.

5841 running on NG
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Mike03
Umm, just keep the snow shoveled around the unit if it's nearing the bottom of any of the vents pretty much? I only install the gas lines, but I do plan to have a path shoveled around mine at all times. I don't won't any extra moisture/snow melting into the jacket and sitting at the bottom of unit.
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Skip Douglas SkipD
Tommy;37272 wrote:
How much snow in inches around the base of the generator would cause a problem by being ingested into the cooling vents? Especially the small rectangular vent on the backside?
You must realize that blowing snow is probably more likely to get into the generator's housing than snow that merely fell a few inches deep. Several years ago, I found that snow had virtually filled the space in my 5416 that houses the battery and the demand regulator. We had a couple days of blizzard-like conditions and the westerly wind was impinging directly on the cooling air opening on the right end of the generator. The generator would not run until I removed the snow and melted it off the demand regulator with a hair dryer. To prevent further problems, I laid a heavy plywood board up against the generator with the bottom of the board about six to eight inches from the base of the generator. That did the job but was rather ugly and it could easily fall away from the generator with a strong east wind. To permanently rectify the problem, I designed and built the baffle that you can see in the photo below. 
I agree with Mike's policy of clearing any snow buildup away from the generator. The main reason I do that, though, is for access to the generator for any needed maintenance.
Skip Douglas
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John R
I too keep the snow clear from the rear vent, and the intake side.
The exhaust side melts away pretty fast if the unit starts up.
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MikeCB
Tommy;37272 wrote:
How much snow in inches around the base of the generator would cause a problem by being ingested into the cooling vents? Especially the small rectangular vent on the backside? I've asked this before but I don't remember the answer any advice. Since there may be new members, there may be new answers.
Thank you.

5841 running on NG


Something else to watch for with snow is your external regulator (if you have one, you may not). Regulators have some form of breather vent. If snow builds up around the vent and then freezes the regulator can't do its job.
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BobCanuck
My machine sits up above the surrounding yard, but I still shovel around it periodically.

I concur about the bigger issue being blowing snow. One of my neighbours found his entire battery compartment packed with blown snow last winter. I see he has leaned plywood over his louvers this this year. That plexi baffle shown above is an elegant solution.
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Mike03
I shall have something prepared for the blowing snow situation. Thanks for that nice piece of info.
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Tommy
Thank you all.
The blowing snow is not a problem as the generator is situated in the leeward part of the back of my house and is protected also by the lay of the land, and an A/C unite which shields it also.
I was just wondered if the generator cooling vent on the back sucks air like a shop vac, for lack of a better example.
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Skip Douglas SkipD
Tommy;37291 wrote:
Thank you all.
The blowing snow is not a problem as the generator is situated in the leeward part of the back of my house and is protected also by the lay of the land, and an A/C unite which shields it also.
I was just wondered if the generator cooling vent on the back sucks air like a shop vac, for lack of a better example.
Because I often blow snow off surfaces using my leaf blower, I feel that it would take a lot of suck-power to have the generator inhale snow off an already-fallen layer. Obviously, it seems that it would be possible for the generator to inhale snow that is actively falling if the generator is running.

I don't know if the alternator cooling air can contain rain drops or snow and not cause problems with the alternator. As far as I know, I have not had my generator running with a significant snowfall in progress.

Can any of the techs on the forum tell us if water (snow or rain/mist) in the cooling air has been know to cause problems if it's sucked through the alternator?
Skip Douglas
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ED01
Tommy;37291 wrote:
Thank you all.
The blowing snow is not a problem as the generator is situated in the leeward part of the back of my house and is protected also by the lay of the land, and an A/C unite which shields it also.
I was just wondered if the generator cooling vent on the back sucks air like a shop vac, for lack of a better example.


Check out the photo here on post#16
[url]http://www.zillerelectric.com/forums/showthread.php?t=3598&referrerid=4489[/url]
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Tommy
MikeCB;37281 wrote:
Something else to watch for with snow is your external regulator (if you have one, you may not). Regulators have some form of breather vent. If snow builds up around the vent and then freezes the regulator can't do its job.


You mention an external regulator. Dumb question: What are you talking about?

5841 on NG
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Skip Douglas SkipD
Tommy;37295 wrote:
You mention an external regulator. Dumb question: What are you talking about?
What was being referred to is a gas pressure regulator that reduces the pressure of the fuel gas (propane in your case) to the proper pressure for the generator to use it. The "external" part means that the regulator is mounted outside the generator's enclosure (as opposed to being mounted internally).
Skip Douglas
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MikeCB
Tommy;37295 wrote:
You mention an external regulator. Dumb question: What are you talking about?

5841 on NG


SkipD's got ya covered. ^^^

Again though, not all set ups have one. I'm just used to dealing with that around here cause gas installers still insist on useing the stupid mushroom style vents instead of a candy cane.
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MEC
Skip, do you have a link to the company that you got the plexiglass. I had a unit last year that you couldn't get any more snow in it if you tried. I had to get the shop vac hose into all areas of this unit.
Put up a snow fence as a temporary solution, but I would like a more permanent one as you did. I foresee this unit having the same problems again as its right on the beach.
This one is a post 2008 model, so it has the rounded corners.
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Skip Douglas SkipD
MEC;37300 wrote:
Skip, do you have a link to the company that you got the plexiglass.
The material I had was given to me by some of my customers.

You should be able to find plastics dealers in most larger cities and, for sure, on the web.
Skip Douglas
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MEC
Free is even better.
Yes, I'll resume my searching.
Thanks.
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JonInNY
There's probably a market right on this forum for this! If anyone wants to step up and make these, I'm sure you'll find takers!
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Skip Douglas SkipD
JonInNY;37312 wrote:
There's probably a market right on this forum for this! If anyone wants to step up and make these, I'm sure you'll find takers!
The problem someone would run into is not being able to measure the actual generator housing that the baffle is being designed for. With all the variations in Generac's product (or competitors for that matter), I'm guessing that it would be tough to come up with all of the required sets of measurements. Making the baffle is easy. It's getting the measurements (for the parts, the holes, and the hardware) that would be the tricky part if one didn't have access to the target generator.
Skip Douglas
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Pville
MEC;37300 wrote:
Skip, do you have a link to the company that you got the plexiglass. I had.........


Try tapplastics.com, they sell all sorts of plastics and if memory serves me I think you can buy online if they don't have stores near your location.
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MikeCB
To the techs out there that deal with residential customers. Just be careful of the false sense of security something like this shield can give. I have customers that have done various things to block snow, and I STILL end up going out there for faults because they figured they no longer even had to worry about it.... Snow drifts will find a way in.

(Actually had someone put a grill cover over a whole genset that remained in 'Auto'..... Needless to say this caused other problems)
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Birken Vogt
If that much snow is a foreseeable problem, I put it on steel stilts or a concrete pedestal. One nice side effect of this is that it is very easy to work on also.
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MEC
This one particular instance was all wind driven snow (really fine). There were no drifts at all on the side of the house where the generator was placed. In fact there was less than an inch on the ground. Somehow all of it made its way into the generator.
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MEC
Pville;37316 wrote:
Try tapplastics.com, they sell all sorts of plastics and if memory serves me I think you can buy online if they don't have stores near your location.


Thank you!
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Birken Vogt
MEC;37332 wrote:
This one particular instance was all wind driven snow (really fine). There were no drifts at all on the side of the house where the generator was placed. In fact there was less than an inch on the ground. Somehow all of it made its way into the generator.


I am still willing to bet that if the ground was not right by the inlet vent providing a surface for snow to slide along until it got pushed into the vent, there would be a lot less snow accumulation inside the unit.

There is a lot less snow in midair than at ground level no matter how you slice it.
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