Is your back up generator at risk of wet stacking?
You may have noticed recent emails about our stand at Offshore Europe last week.
We had a great time at the show, and as it turned out we were in the right place at the right time to help one of our clients with an easily preventable problem.
While we were in Aberdeen, we got a call out to investigate an issue on an MTU 12V1600 back up generator and our MTU trained engineer Charlie responded with a site visit.
The client had reported a coolant leak from the engine, and sure enough, Charlie found a pool of coolant underneath the engine on A bank side at the free end.
He traced the leak to the jacket water heater on A bank and discovered that the hose connection to the engine block was the origin of the leak.
Whilst securing the hose correctly, Charlie noticed that the hose had suffered from some degradation and was starting to disintegrate at the end.
This was because the hose was a multipurpose hose and not a dedicated coolant hose.
The engine had also failed to start up the previous day, due to low coolant levels, so after refilling, we were asked to start it up and complete a test run.
There are issues around back up engines and how they are run weekly, and this one was no exception – currently, the engine is run weekly for an hour off load.
We would strongly recommend only running the engine on load, as off load running can cause issues with liner glazing and wet stacking.
There is already evidence of leaks from wet stacking on the exhaust manifold lagging and the air inlet hoses to the turbochargers were also found to be cracked.
The engine was started and run for a few minutes to ensure that it did start. No issues were seen during the engine running.
Along with replacing the hose for a dedicated coolant hose, we strongly recommended the client to only run the engine on load.
If off load running is the only option, this should be limited to a maximum of 5 minutes.
What is your weekly routine for keeping your generator ready for use?