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Hank F.
Hank F., Technician
Category: Small Engine
Satisfied Customers: 15182
Experience:  Certified on Onan and Generac generators
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My 2000 onan emerald plus BGE model generator will run for

Customer Question

My 2000 onan emerald plus BGE model generator will run for 3-4 hrs sometimes even 7-8 hrs and run very steady with everything working just fine then just die...i can restart immediately and it may run another 15-20 minutes or sometimes another 2 + hrs. Or it may die again right away but usually will run again for a while. I have changed the oil, filter, spark plugs, did the jumper test for the LO sensor and it ran the same as before any of that. I did each one of those things one at a time with running it several days between. It has 251 hrs on it. Can you please direct me? I have also ran with and without a full load on it and same thing.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Small Engine
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
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Expert:  Hank F. replied 2 years ago.
My name is ***** ***** I am going to assist you with this.
This may prove to be extremely difficult to track down - if we can find it at all. Intermittent problems are the worst, and even then, sometimes it just requires a hands on approach. Without being able to see and hear the genset, it will be difficult at best.
The first thing I need is the full model number of the genset. There are 19 different variations of the BGE.
While it is running, is it running smoothly, or is it surging?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thank you and I have attached a picture of the full model number and serial number with other info for you and here it is: 5BGEFA26100P s/n: J9901234. It is running very smooth when it runs everytime - no surging at all. When it first starts up for about 10 seconds it sometimes blows a little bit of white smoke but that goes away quickly and it runs very still and smooth and then just suddenly dies anywhere from 20 minutes to 6 hrs...the last few days it has been about 20-30 minutes at best but then it does restart right away. We are travelling and really would like to get it working so we can run air conditioning. Also we have tried it with and without a load and same thing. Thanks so much for your help and expertise! I will look forward to your reaponse.
Expert:  Hank F. replied 2 years ago.
That is very strange. It is not at all like a BGE so just shut down like that - especially with it being intermittent like that.
You mentioned doing a "jumper test" on the low oil pressure switch. Exactly how did you do that test?
Normally, the only things that will cause this unit to simply shut down like that are if the oil pressure system is activated, the genset quits producing power, or battery voltage is lost to the controller.
Assuming you did bypass the LOPS correctly, check all the battery cables and connections. Make sure they are clean and tight.
Remove the air cleaner. Directly behind the air cleaner is the end bell of the generator. In the middle of the end bell is a rectangular plastic cover. Use a flat tip screwdriver to pry it out and expose the brush block.
In the center of the brush block are 2 round holes with a single bare wire coming out of them. These are the brush leads. Use a small diameter probe to stick down in these holes until it hits the brush. Mark the probe where it is flush with the brush block. Remove the probe and measure from the mark to the tip of the probe. If this measures 1" or more, the brushes are worn and must be replaced.
Leaving all wires hooked up, remove the 2 screws securing the brush block by turning each screw about 4 turns at a time. The brush block must come out straight, as it is made of ceramic and is very fragile. Be very careful to not drop the screws. It can be harder to get them out than to get a lollipop from a 2 year old. Use the wires to hold the brush block and guide it out.
Examine the brushes. They should not have any chips or cracks and should be worn in a smooth arc pattern. They should slide freely in the slots in the brush block.
If they stick or bind at all, clean the brush block with electrical contact cleaner.
Let me know what you find.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Hi Hank, I was in Canada with no internet service while traveling. Since your last response- I did remove the brushes and they were not cracked or chipped at all and looked pretty clean but I cleaned anyways and they were in an arc as you described and when I placed the probe in before removing them the depth was 5/8". In your last reaponse you asked how I checked the Low oil sensor and I did it 2 ways - I first jumped the J-11 with the J-5 wires and it ran same way for about 40 minutes then just shut down like I was hitting thesbutoff switch even tho I wasnt. Then I unplugged it at the sensor and attached the feed wire to the sensor to a good ground point and it again ran for about an hr and shut down the same way. When I just unhooked it from the sensore without attaching to ground the gen would not run at all of I let off the starter switch so when I grounded it then it ran as it normally had been. i have found that when I am in cooler temps it seems to run about 2 hrs before it just shuts down. It will restart right away but not run for more then about 5 minutes if I dont let it sit for a couple of hrs or more. It is now running about 1 time per day for about 2 hrs +/- and then maybe 30 minutes after the rest of the time. I have also unhooked the line to the carburetor from the fuel pump within about 2 minutes of it shutting down and hit the start swith and it produces fuel as normal. So any next steps I can do to try and pinpoint? thanks so much! Sorry took a bit to reapond but I will have steady service now and look forward to your response. Thank you!!
Expert:  Hank F. replied 2 years ago.
Although a moot point, I would like to know what you meant by "jumped the J-11 with the J-5". There is no J-11 on this unit.
But the proper LOPS test was to remove the wire from the switch and ground it. Since you did that, we can rule out an oil pressure issue.
What is getting me here is the fact that it will start right back up. That is just not normal. If it was having to sit for a while before it would restart, I would know exactly where to look.
Just for fun and games, run a jumper wire directly from the battery terminal of the starter solenoid to the positive terminal of the coil, and start the unit.
Will it stay running with this jumper, or does it still shut down?