Recreational vehicles or RVs have been used pretty commonly for decades. They’re perfect for traveling or camping, and it has that convenience for supplying daily needs. But to use this vehicle, you must know how to run its generator to start it.

For this reason, in this post, I’m going to teach you exactly how to start an

RV generator.

So, let’s get started.

Steps on How to Start an RV Generator

There are many important factors that you need to keep in mind while using an Ideal RV generator. But first, let’s learn how to start it. Below are the steps on how to do that.

Step 1: Get to Know the Location Of Startup Switches

At first, you need to know where the startup control buttons are on your RV’s generator. There are some rocker switches used to connect to the starter motor during its depressed state. These switches will quickly spring up once your finger’s pressure is gone.

Another important thing you need to remember is that during temperatures below 40 degrees, you have to always keep your generator in winter position.

Usually, one of the very important functions of an RV generator is how it charges on the on-board battery when you take your RV out for camping and doesn’t have any marine power connection.

To make sure that no problems arise during this, you have to watch over the condition of your battery’s charge. You shouldn’t allow the charge to decline to the point of which it needs to start with. As long as there’s enough charge, you should have no problem starting up the generator.

Step 2: Find the Fuel Tap

If you have your recreational vehicle manual with you, then you can check the instructions on that. There should be instructions or details on whether your RV has an inline tap for the fuel. This tap prevents gas, propane, or diesel flow to the generator from the tank of fuel. Once you find the tap, make sure it’s open.

Step 3: Check the Fuel

You need to check and see if you have enough fuel in the RV’s tank. For propane generators, there are onboard high-pressure tanks, so the tank’s propane will be the fuel to run your generator. On the other hand, generators fueled by diesel and gas work the same way chassis engines do.

This kind of engine was engineered in such a way that the RV doesn’t exhaust all its fuel too quickly. But for it to work accordingly, you have to fill it at least above the outlet for the fuel so that the generator can access its flow.

And to be on the safe side, you should install a carbon monoxide detector in your RV to protect yourself from the carbon monoxide building up inside the vehicle.

Step 4: Start the Motor

When you’re starting your generator, you have to turn off any appliances that demand anything at or above 110 volts, like an air conditioning appliance.

You’ll find a start rocker switch that’s on the generator. You need to push the switch’s bottom inward and downward. This will make it rock above a pivot at the center and make the generator’s motor start to turn.

There’s a switch that’s on the control panel of the generator.

This switch lets the generator firing be visible and audible. There’s also a wireless switch, which lets you feel the motor’s movement when it starts and transfers the vibrations throughout the whole body of the vehicle. But not to worry, the vibrations will slowly fade eventually after the firing of the generator.

And no matter which switches you use, you have to let go of this very rocker switch after the generator fires.

 Reasons Your Generator Might Not Start-Up

Some problems may occur during your start-up, or your generator might not start up at all. For this, there are some things you can check on to fix these problems.

Fuel or Oil Supply

Most motorhome or recreational vehicle manufacturers nowadays engineer their generators in a way so that they don’t need a fuel line attachment at the bottom of the generator’s main fuel tank. Now it’s attached at the top so that it can pick up fuel even if the main tank is more than a quarter full.

The advantage of this modern design is mostly for campers. Campers are usually out in places like the forest or tundra, where cell service or gas stations aren’t available.

So, when you start up your RV’s generator, it won’t use up much fuel so that you can run the vehicle long enough to reach a gas station.

And in the case of oil, it’s best to check the oil available in your generator, because most built-in generators don’t start if the oil is less than a quarter.

Fuel Filter or Pump

You should always make sure you buy original and good quality fuel filters because sometimes they’re the reason for the generator’s not working. This is because foul quality filters clog the fuel or oil, etc. and cause connection problems to the fuel supply.

Power Switch

When you’re starting your RV, your generator needs power from a coach battery system of 12 volts.

There is a power switch for this 12-volt power, and sometimes it gets cut off to stop any power drainage from the vehicle while it’s parked. This causes the generator to not get power. It’s important for you to read the instructions and find out where this power switch is, so you can make sure it doesn’t turn off.

 Final Words

The above simple steps should now help you know how to start your RV’s generator. You don’t really need to be a person with vast technical knowledge to do this.

Most of your problems can be solved if you carefully read the handbook to your RV. But even without so, I’ve given you a basic overview of how to start your RV generator, thus making your start-up easier.

You might be interested in:

  1. How To Test Your Portable Generator With A Multimeter
  2. How To Install A Generator
  3. The Brief History Of Generator 
  4. Everything You Need To Know About Generator Oil Types

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