Generator Wont Produce Electricity? Why?

 
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Old 03-01-2009, 04:57 PM   #1
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Generator Wont Produce Electricity? Why?


I have a fairly new coleman powermate 5500 generator, used on a couple of jobs... about 2.5 years old. was working until sat.

It stop producing electricity, engine starts and runs fine, starts with 1 pull, yamaha engine.

we basically are working on a house with no electric service, no meters or anything. we basically plugged a lead to the panel box into the generator, so we would have lights and use power tools.


i dont know much about generators, but im pretty sure we burnt something. what could it be? the whole generator end? or is a there a part that usally goes bad in threre?
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Old 03-01-2009, 04:58 PM   #2
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Re: Generator Wont Produce Electricity? Why?


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Originally Posted by plazaman View Post
I have a fairly new coleman powermate 5500 generator, used on a couple of jobs... about 2.5 years old. was working until sat.

It stop producing electricity, engine starts and runs fine, starts with 1 pull, yamaha engine.

we basically are working on a house with no electric service, no meters or anything. we basically plugged a lead to the panel box into the generator, so we would have lights and use power tools.


i dont know much about generators, but im pretty sure we burnt something. what could it be? the whole generator end? or is a there a part that usally goes bad in threre?
Reset button or blown fuse?

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Old 03-01-2009, 05:16 PM   #3
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Re: Generator Wont Produce Electricity? Why?


The fact that it was working until Saturday makes me think a cap or a diode failed, but who knows...

Try this.... start the generator. Plug a corded drill into the 120V receptacle. Put the drill on "forward" if it is reversible. Spin the chuck by hand in the forward direction vigorously while holding the trigger in. This will often excite a weak field and the generator will start producing electricity and the drill will come on.

By the way, Coleman is crap
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Old 03-01-2009, 05:19 PM   #4
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Re: Generator Wont Produce Electricity? Why?


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The fact that it was working until Saturday makes me think a cap or a diode failed, but who knows...

Try this.... start the generator. Plug a corded drill into the 120V receptacle. Put the drill on "forward" if it is reversible. Spin the chuck by hand in the forward direction vigorously while holding the trigger in. This will often excite a weak field and the generator will start producing electricity and the drill will come on.

By the way, Coleman is crap
Could he test it with a cordless drill? That sounds like it could be tiring using a corded model having to spin the chuck like that
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Old 03-01-2009, 05:26 PM   #5
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Re: Generator Wont Produce Electricity? Why?


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By the way, Coleman is crap
I have a Porter Cable generator and it is crap too!
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Old 03-01-2009, 05:28 PM   #6
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Re: Generator Wont Produce Electricity? Why?


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Could he test it with a cordless drill? That sounds like it could be tiring using a corded model having to spin the chuck like that
Sorta. You can plug a corded drill in, chuck up a drill bit in it, chuck up a cordless drill on the other end of that bit, and use the cordless to spin the corded drill while holding in the trigger on the corded drill. You're basically backfeeding electricity. Just make sure you're spinning the corded drill in the 'forward' direction, which involves setting the cordless in reverse. If the generator starts making electricity, be prepared to let off the switch of the corded drill quick.
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Old 03-01-2009, 05:41 PM   #7
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Re: Generator Wont Produce Electricity? Why?


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Sorta. You can plug a corded drill in, chuck up a drill bit in it, chuck up a cordless drill on the other end of that bit, and use the cordless to spin the corded drill while holding in the trigger on the corded drill. You're basically backfeeding electricity. Just make sure you're spinning the corded drill in the 'forward' direction, which involves setting the cordless in reverse. If the generator starts making electricity, be prepared to let off the switch of the corded drill quick.

Purdy smart
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Old 03-01-2009, 05:56 PM   #8
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Re: Generator Wont Produce Electricity? Why?


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Sorta. You can plug a corded drill in, chuck up a drill bit in it, chuck up a cordless drill on the other end of that bit, and use the cordless to spin the corded drill while holding in the trigger on the corded drill. You're basically backfeeding electricity. Just make sure you're spinning the corded drill in the 'forward' direction, which involves setting the cordless in reverse. If the generator starts making electricity, be prepared to let off the switch of the corded drill quick.








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Old 03-01-2009, 06:08 PM   #9
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Re: Generator Wont Produce Electricity? Why?


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Sorta. You can plug a corded drill in, chuck up a drill bit in it, chuck up a cordless drill on the other end of that bit, and use the cordless to spin the corded drill while holding in the trigger on the corded drill. You're basically backfeeding electricity. Just make sure you're spinning the corded drill in the 'forward' direction, which involves setting the cordless in reverse. If the generator starts making electricity, be prepared to let off the switch of the corded drill quick.
Sounds like a great recipe for a cordless in the teeth.


Now I gotta find someone to try it on.
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Old 03-01-2009, 07:07 PM   #10
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Re: Generator Wont Produce Electricity? Why?


Happened to my generator couple years ago. Part was called a stator. Mine is 13.5 hp Honda motor on a porter cable generator. Repair cost about 300 bucks but has worked fine since.
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Old 03-01-2009, 08:35 PM   #11
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Re: Generator Wont Produce Electricity? Why?


http://www.powermate.com/pdfs/2007/1..._pm0645500.pdf

i'll try the drill method tomorrow. the manual also states a similar method with a 12v battery. hopefully it work and i wont have to buy parts.

i hate coleman, dad had bought the generator. i would have bought another.


the problem is now .. if the exciting method doesnt work, what parts should i start looking to changing? New rotor? New Stator? Those parts in the the 275-300 range each.
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Old 03-02-2009, 05:16 AM   #12
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Re: Generator Wont Produce Electricity? Why?


First thing I would suggest is take it apart and look for burnt components or something that has come loose. Its been a while since I had a colman open but if I recall you shoudl find a set of brushes on the non-engine end. These contact slip rings that provide contact to excite the field. you may be able to check with a multimeter and see if you have an open in the roter or bad brushes There are a couple diodes in there also. If you have a meter you can check them pretty easy. With at least one wire to the diode disconnected to the circut so you are ONLY testing the diode put your meter on diode check or ohms. They shoud be open one way then reverse the leads and they are close to short. If they are open both ways they are fried. I ended up needing the whole plastic endpiece.


PS instead of chucking two drills together you could chuck a flanged nut in one and a socket in the other. might save a wrist

Last edited by maninthesea; 03-02-2009 at 05:19 AM.
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Old 03-02-2009, 07:02 AM   #13
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Re: Generator Wont Produce Electricity? Why?


forgot to add
Very important to lube up the bearing in the end of the the plastic end cap. When it gets hot and melts the plastic the rotor starts contacting the stator and screws things up.
Cheers Jim
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Old 03-02-2009, 08:02 AM   #14
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Re: Generator Wont Produce Electricity? Why?


Brushes may be stuck in the generator, no contact-no power. Guardians had this problem for a short time, to much grease during manufacturing and the grease would hold the brushes so contact could not be made after they wore down.
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Old 03-04-2009, 04:10 PM   #15
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Re: Generator Wont Produce Electricity? Why?


tried the drill method, didnt work. im going to have open it up
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Old 03-06-2009, 07:01 AM   #16
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Re: Generator Wont Produce Electricity? Why?


"Sorta. You can plug a corded drill in, chuck up a drill bit in it, chuck up a cordless drill on the other end of that bit, and use the cordless to spin the corded drill while holding in the trigger on the corded drill. You're basically backfeeding electricity. Just make sure you're spinning the corded drill in the 'forward' direction, which involves setting the cordless in reverse. If the generator starts making electricity, be prepared to let off the switch of the corded drill quick."

I am curious why you stipulate direction the corded drill needs to be switched in. Either way it will still be single phase AC fed back into the generator and that is not directional. Unless your looking at the the advantage of haveing the the drill allredy spinning in the direction it would want to spin when the gennerator started feeding it.
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Old 03-09-2009, 09:00 PM   #17
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Re: Generator Wont Produce Electricity? Why?


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tried the drill method, didnt work. im going to have open it up
I have a Coleman Vantage 3000 that did the same thing years ago, at right about the same age, that is… worked fine one day… then the next day… no output.
Something else to check when you have it apart and the stator off with the rotor end exposed is the soldered wire connections where the rotor windings connect to the brush plate. That is where I found the problem on mine.
The wire break on mine was not visible to the eye, but if you do a resistance test on those connections and you get an open or fluctuating reading on one of them, you most likely have the same problem.
I was able to repair it though by pulling the tiny bit of slack available and removing the factory varnish from the end of the wire with crocus cloth. After I cleaned the end of the wire and connection point with acetone, I resoldered it.
The generator has been working fine for close to ten years now. This might sound like a pain, but it was much easier than trying to rig a puller to remove the entire rotor from the crankshaft and was also over $240.00 cheaper than a replacement rotor was at the time.
Good luck with her.

Last edited by DuMass; 03-09-2009 at 09:03 PM.
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Old 03-10-2009, 06:38 PM   #18
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Re: Generator Wont Produce Electricity? Why?


Update,

Borroed a friends generator this week( His is a coleman also), the same exact thing happend! Service centers either dont deal with coleman or told me coleman went out of business, dont know how true it is.

Anyways, i tried the 12v method on a batter pack on my friends, 1 touch and back to life! it work! On my coleman, it took a few more touches, but shes back to life! i feel special, i brought 2 generators back from the dead today, lol.


Basically, we are overloading the generators, we are supply the panel box to feed a few circuits on the house, few lights and outlets. There must be another method of doing this?
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Old 03-10-2009, 07:46 PM   #19
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Re: Generator Wont Produce Electricity? Why?


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Originally Posted by plazaman View Post
I have a fairly new coleman powermate 5500 generator, used on a couple of jobs... about 2.5 years old. was working until sat.

It stop producing electricity, engine starts and runs fine, starts with 1 pull, yamaha engine.

we basically are working on a house with no electric service, no meters or anything. we basically plugged a lead to the panel box into the generator, so we would have lights and use power tools.


i dont know much about generators, but im pretty sure we burnt something. what could it be? the whole generator end? or is a there a part that usally goes bad in threre?
I think it may be broken.
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Old 03-11-2009, 04:45 AM   #20
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Re: Generator Wont Produce Electricity? Why?


I missed something. What was the 12V method?

Putting 12V into the 120ac outlets?

Cheers Jim

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