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Diagnosing a generator fault - HELP!

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Posted by Honkey Lips on December 10, 2007, 1:00 am

Cutting a long story short. On my Trace 3024 inverter, there is a
tolerance setting for the voltage of an incoming AC source. I noticed
that my generator was under 240v when idoling and would take about 5
minutes of warming up before the inverter would start to load it. So,
I made the range really wide, like 180-260v (240v system)

I think I blew a capacitor in the generator because it's not
outputting anything...

I noticed that before when the tolerance was much narrrower (and
closer to 240) that the inverter would nicely load the generator
progressively to to the limit set by me (around 10amps AC) but that
when I widened the range the inverter seemed to 'dump' the load
directly on the generator.

either way the generator now seems to be dead. The engine runs,
there's no burning smell from the alternator. The last time the
generator stopped working in this manner I had blown a capacitor.

Does anyone know where to start wit hte generator? It's got a quality
italian alternator on it and wouldn't have been drawing anything like
a full load. I did try a spare capacitor I had but that didn't make
any difference. (I don't know however if the capacitor I had was ok)

Q. Anyone know how I can dianose the fault. (The repairers say they
can't fix until after xmas) on the generator?
Q. Does anyone know how I can test a capacitor so see whether or not
it's blown?
Q. Do you think setting the tolerance that wide on my generator would
have caused the fault?

Any help would be much appreciated.


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