This blog is about our travels in our solar powered "Airstream" and living off grid, in our passive solar home, near Bancroft, Ontario, Canada.

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Sunday, 24 February 2013


We have a back up generator that we use when our batteries get down too low. We've had cloudy weather the past 5 days and once our batteries reach 60% SOC (state of charge) I like to fire up the generator. Allowing your batteries to get below 50% will damage them and shorten their life span.

In the above picture taken October 4th the crew is installing the generator.

Here you can see the propane tank and to the right the generator. The generator runs on propane so I don't have to fuss with gas cans.

Mike set the generator to come on at a set SOC point which gives us peace of mind when we are away. When we are home I can manual choose to start and stop the generator.

So this morning I went to the control panel, selected "generator" and then the "run" option. 

Nothing ............................... just a solid "red" light on the monitor.

"Red" isn't good, so time for me to get out the instruction manuals.

After reading several pages and trying to make sense of the technical jargon  I had several options to check.

First was the "safety switch" at the generator.

We had the  propane inspector here last week and he needed to see the propane hook-up to the generator. 

On with the snow boots and out to the generator. Of course the lock was frozen so I had to solve that first. Once inside the unit ................. sure enough the safety switch was ...... OFF

Back inside I tired the remote start once again and volia .............. we had ignition. 

I'll let the generator run for 4 hours and see what out SOC is at that point.

Very happy to resolve the problem myself and not have to call Mike on a Sunday.

Safe travels everyone and thanks for stopping by.

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