Find answers and solutions to common generator questions and queries. If you cant find an answer, contact us and we will be happy to help.


What warranty do I get with my Diesel Generator?

As standard, all CPS Generators come with a warranty for either 12 months/1000hrs from date of installation OR 18 months/1000hrs from dispatch (whichever comes soonest), exclusive of the engine, alternator, and consumable parts (Please refer to warranty exclusions for list of consumable parts).

Does using non genuine parts void the warranty?

Using non-genuine parts does void the warranty. If you require any parts for servicing your Diesel generator, please visit our sister company –

When should I service my generator?

Your Diesel Generator should be serviced every 500 hours or 1 year, whichever comes soonest.

What load % should I run my generator?

All CPS Generators are fully tested in increments of 10% from 0%, all the way up to 110% load, for 1 hour before leaving the factory to ensure there are no issues. When on-site, the Diesel generator should be running at a minimum of 60% load, to ensure the longevity of the engine.

If the generator is being used as a standby set, then as a minimum it should run upwards of 80% load for at least an hour every month.

What is the difference with a charge alternator and a battery charger? Are both functions to charge the battery?

At CPS, we fit Deep Sea battery chargers when requested to our standby sets, but did you know that all engines will come with a charge alternator as well? Although both functions are the same, they work in completely different ways.

Charge Alternator – Usually a Dynamo, it runs very much like the alternator in your car. When the engine is running, the charge alternator will supply power to your crank battery. This ensures that your battery is fully charged for the next time you need to fire up your emergency Diesel generator. If you run your generator sporadically, your battery over time will deplete. The control panel is usually powered by the generators battery and over time will reduce voltage. So next time you try to crank your generator after a long period, the battery won’t have enough battery voltage and your engine will not crank.

Deep Sea mains battery charger – Usually fitted on standby sets. This trickle charger will ensure that your generator’s crank battery is fully charged at all times. This requires a mains supply to feed the battery and will keep the battery trickled charged. If you have no mains at all then this trickle charger is defunct and is a reason why we don’t fit these as standard unless requested. Always ask the team if it comes with a trickle charger if you know that there are mains on-site and that the generator is a standby set which will run as an emergency and not constantly.

What is the difference with 1500RPM and 3000RPM and why is there a considerable cost difference when they both produce the same power?

RPM means revolutions per minute. This is the engine speed and not the engine kVA rating. Your generators can be both 20Kva, yet one could be 1500RPM and the other 3000RPM. They are both suited for different applications. A 1500rpm set can be used for both Prime power and Standby power. The engine speed is slower than a 3000rpm meaning that the engine is not being overworked and can produce the power required in a calmer fashion.

Also, 1500RPM sets are a lot quieter compared to a 3000RPM set as they vibrate a lot less. If you require a generator to run for short periods of time, and not as emergency or critical power, then a 3000RPM Set is best suited for your application. Should you need your diesel engine to run more than 1 hour at a time, it is always best to purchase a 1500RPM set as opposed to a 3000RPM set.

My fuel level sender on control panel / fuel gauge is not showing the correct fuel

At CPS, we fit a manual fuel gauge for ease of filling to ensure you don’t overfill. For some clients who require it on the control panel, we also fit an electrical sender which will show the fuel level on the control panel.

Most fuel senders use the same function using a float. As the fuel level reduces, the float mechanism will drop and the fuel level will be showing as so. If the float mechanism is stuck from sticky fuel etc, then the fuel level sender won’t show the correct fuel level. Always check with a technician first. You will have screws on your fuel level sender. Please safely unscrew and pull out the mechanism. Check that the float mechanism is working correctly by moving the float up and down. If this is moving fine then you may have a faulty manual gauge. For the electrical control panel reader, you may want to check the wiring that the fuel level wires have not come loose.

If the problem persists please contact an engineer or technician.

Are diesel generators just used for Standby / Emergency power or can they be run as Prime Power?

Generators can be used as both Prime Power or Standby Power. You may see on our brochures that our generators are rated for prime and standby, yet the kVA rating differs. This is because we rate all our generators at 100%. Yet our Diesel engines can take a spike load for up to 1 hour at 110% or what we call Standby power. Our Diesel generators are all 1500rpm rated, this means that they can run for long periods of time for applications that either need critical power for several hours or they can just run for standby whilst you get the mains load back on. We would always recommend that you service your generator for 250 hours or 500 hours depending on the engine (please read the engine manual) and well looked after for prime running sets. Other than that our CPS sets can run at either emergency, standby or prime power.

Can a Diesel generator be used outdoors?

The simple answer is yes, as long as it is housed in a weatherproof canopy. Things to be made aware, your generator will need to release hot air. Otherwise, the engine will overheat. Canopies will have an air grill on the top side of the generator enclosure and this will allow some water ingress but minimal. Once the generator runs this water ingress will either be pushed out of the canopy or during the heat of the engine, the water will evaporate. It is always best to run your generator often anyway even if this is a standby set. So yes it can be left outside but of course, run it often and ensure that if possible ensure that there is a possible rain cover for harsh weather conditions.

Will the Diesel generator create a lot of noise?

Of course they will, it is a Diesel engine for starters so the noise levels will be loud. How we combat this is that we fit our generators into our acoustic canopies. With Multi-density polyester soundproofing material, we can reduce our noise levels depending on the size of the generator. Please check our brochures for our sound levels. Our standard levels are 82dBA@1m / 69dBA@7m. Here at CPS working closely with our R&D team and technical team, we can reduce noise levels of our acoustic soundproof sets depending on the dBA readings required. We also test and measure our noise levels at 1m and 7m running at 75% load. For containerised sets, we have reduced the noise own to 65dBA@1m and for canopied sets usually between 72Dba@1m to 75dBA@1m.

To put this into context, the standard office noise level is about 62dBA@1m, Whereas a hairdryer will be 90dBA@1m, which is louder than our standard sets. Busy traffic is usually about 74dBA@1m and a truck can reach in excess of 86dBA@1m.

Do I need an Automatic Transfer Switch (ATS)?

An ATS is not essential, however, if the application of the generator is standby to emergency lights or a lift for example, then the ATS will be highly recommended, as it ensures the smooth operation, and switch from mains power to the generator, then once the main power is backup and working, it will transfer the power from the generator.

If for example the generator is being used to run a piece of specific machinery within a workshop, simply using the control module will suffice. You may also not require an ATS if the generator is wired into a switchboard.

Oil Pressure warning on Deep Sea Control panel

Firstly this might not always mean that there is an actual oil pressure problem. So we have a few simple checks. Firstly some generators can run in harsh conditions, chances are some dust or soot particles can affect the switch or sender. Always give it a clean to ensure that it is not a simple cleaning issue. Reset your generator and start again. If the problem persists then check the generator wiring. You should have a wiring diagram which on our CPS Sets is standard by colour coding ensure there are no loose wires. Finally, if the generator is well used it could be a simple case that the oil sender or switch is at fault, if possible replace this.

After all these checks it seems that the fault is with the generator and not the switch/sender then please see below common faults.

a. Check the oil level, the low oil level can cause Oil Pressure. Check the dipstick on the engine and fill it accordingly with the correct oil
b. Check the oil type – You can have Low oil pressure if using the incorrect oil. If you are aware of this then please check with a trained technician for a full oil change.
c. Check the oil conditions – have you checked the latest service report? Is the oil thick like tar or flowing freely? Oil that doesn’t flow won’t easily pump, thus effecting oil pressure.
d. Are there any oil leaks at all? Ensure that all engine bearings to ensure there is no leakage.
e. Is the engine pressure relief valve ok? If it is stuck open then the engine won’t have any oil pressure, ensure that the relief valve is closed.

Coolant Temperature switch is showing on the control panel

Most generators are supplied with a coolant temperature switch or coolant temperature sender. The idea is that the switch will protect the engine and turn off if the engine is suffering from a high coolant temperature.

Usually fitted/screwed into the engine block and states either open or closed. Switches are often provided by the engine manufacture, rather than the generator manufacturer.

Again these can be temperamental so always check that there are no dust or soot particles. To check the engine temperature switch then the simplest way is to use a multi-meter that is reading resistance. Ensure that the engine is at rest otherwise you will get an incorrect response. As standard, the switch should be open to the earth, when the engine runs and overheats it should then close. If the switch does not change its state when the engine runs, this is a sure tell sign that there is no generator fault.

My Generator won't crank

A diesel generator needs to have enough power from a 12v or 24v battery to crank the engine. Over cranking your generator could end up having a detrimental effect on the battery causing the voltage of the battery to decrease. If after 3 cranks you are not having luck with your Diesel generator, it is always best to have a trained engineer or technician to look over the set. There are a few steps and reasons for the generator failing to crank such as:
– Fuel starvation
– Airlock in the fuel system.
– Low battery voltage

Before you speak to a generator technician please,
1. Check the battery voltage is at an acceptable level. (ensure it is fully charged and working fine)
2. When cranking check to hear any hissing noises from the fuel pipes, there could be a loose value or damage to the fuel pipe
3. Consult with your engine manual and ensure that the generator is fully primed.
4. Check warning lights on your generator control panel such as fuel/oil/coolant levels or temperatures.

My Generator has abnormal blue smoke

Blue smoke from diesel generator occurs usually because the generator is under load and the main reason for blue smoke is because of oil being burnt in the cylinders. Blue smoke is a concern, as oil would not enter the combustion chamber, so please ensure a qualified engineer or technician looks at your Diesel generator

Other causes for blue Smoke:
– Faulty Injection Pump or lift pump
– Worn cylinders
– Worn Piston rings

Can you deliver the generator to me?

Here at CPS, we work with a number of freight forwarders and haulers to ensure that we can meet your delivery requirements, whether you are based in Northern Alaska or New Zealand, (As long are there are no legal implications or restrictions) we can deliver to you.

Whats the difference between three phase (3PH) & single phase (1PH)?

Single-phase is made of 3 cables, live, neutral and earth, 1PH is usually between 180-240V depending on whereabouts in the world the generator is being shipped. Here in the UK, the domestic household is 1PH supplied.

Three-phase is made of 5 cables, 3x live, a neutral and earth, same as 1PH, the voltage depends on the region, but typically between 380 – 440V, 3PH is typically used commercially in hospitals, hotels, etc.

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