Buying a used generator is one of the most economical ways to invest in power backup for your home or workplace. However, a small mistake and you could bring home a potentially loss-making machine for the long term.
Don’t get us wrong, used generators are typically reliable like a second-hand car. However, it all depends on how the previous owner handled, maintained, and used the generator.
Considering how most of the workforce is now remote, the power supply is a critical element for a seamless working experience from home. However, since the world is currently facing an energy crisis due to the low supply of natural gas, coal, and other energy sources, power cuts are about to become commonplace. At this point, investing in a generator is a good idea considering they can power anything from a home to a factory.
Generators are usually a costly affair, which makes used generators a viable option. However, a lot of people set a budget for a new unit instead of a used one while planning to buy a generator because of the lingering doubt, are used generators worth it?
We are here to tell you, if you do your due diligence and avoid some critical mistakes while buying a used generator, they are worth it. Here are some mistakes that are typically overlooked by most individuals.
Buy From a Trusted Supplier
As mentioned before, one of the main concerns when buying anything used —including generators— is how the previous owner handled and maintained the equipment. However, if the seller or the mediator is someone you know and trust, the concern is ousted completely. You’ll get a good insight into the condition that the generator is expected to be in.
If you’re looking into industrial generators, know that they are complex types of equipment that deliver the best output but require regular maintenance and testing by certified engineers to perform optimally.
Choosing a supplier that has an understanding of generators and a good track record of selling pre-owned generators. This will ensure that the unit you buy would have undergone complete testing before being sold. If you are in the UK, you can check https://www.bellwoodrewinds.co.uk/used-generators-for-sale/ for options.
Check the Odometer Reading
Once you have selected a trusted supplier and they are showing you the available options, one of the first things to do is to check the odometer reading. Just like cars, a generator odometer will tell you exactly how many hours the generator was used for.
It’s important to find out the age, run-time, and usage case of the generator before you put down your hard-earned money. It’s also helpful to know whether the generator was used as a backup source of power or an ongoing power source.
Needless to say, a generator that has been used as a standby power source of backup will be in a better state and well maintained than the one used for constant power delivery.
However, do bear in mind that most sellers get these generators through auctions and foreclosure, which means they won’t have any clue about the history of the unit or where it was used previously. In such cases, it becomes all the more important to check the odometer, the lesser the hours on it, the better.
Don’t Neglect Load Bank Testing
Imagine the scenario where you purchase a pre-owned generator only to find out it doesn’t deliver enough power to serve the task you want it to. Bummer right? This is why it’s very important to perform a load test or load bank test on the generator before buying one. The test is performed by a mobile load bank unit that mimics the operational load of a generator accurately.
Another crucial test is a no-load test, which helps buyers identify the signs of wet-stacking. Wet-stacking happens when a generator is not used frequently or is only operated on a light load, which can cause unburned fuel and soot build-up in the exhaust system. This can make generators prone to poor performance, damages, fire hazards, and equipment failure.
Perform a Visual Check
Speaking of damages, a complete visual check of the exact unit that you’re planning to buy will give you a lot of insight into the condition of the generator. If you’re not sure what to look for, take along a trained professional to do a visual check at your behest.
It’s best to check all mechanical components for wear and tear as well as corrosion build-up. Replace any part that appears to be questionable along with the bearings and bushings as it’s difficult to detect wear and tear on them.
Don’t Forget to Ask for a Warranty or Guarantee
Usually, pre-owned generators don’t come with any sort of guarantee or warranty unless there’s some of it left. However, second-hand generator buyers presume there won’t be any sort of warranty or guarantee since they are buying it second-hand.
However, don’t commit this mistake. Most genuine and certified sellers will always offer some sort of seller’s warranty to fix any issues that may arise after the purchase. Don’t hesitate to ask for the warranty papers and sign before making the purchase.
There you go! These are some of the most common mistakes committed by buyers while buying a pre-owned generator. Avoid these mistakes and you can be assured that the generator you buy will be worth every dime.