Champion Portable Generator Troubleshooting

Bonnie Conrad

With the right care and maintenance, a Champion portable generator can provide many years of trouble-free service, but it is important for owners to know what to do when things go wrong.

A generator is intended to provide emergency power, and it is absolutely critical that it function as intended every time it is needed. For that reason, homeowners should test their portable generators at least once a month, and they should develop the troubleshooting skills they will need to fix common problems.

Fuel Problems

When a Champion portable generator will not start, one of the most common culprits is contaminated fuel. Over time, fuel degrades, and since generators by their very nature are used only occasionally, it is not unusual for the fuel to degrade to the point that the generator will not start. The first thing to do is drain the fuel tank and refill it with new fuel. Simply replacing the fuel will solve many starting problems. Generator owners can reduce the chance of fuel-related problems by starting their generators at least once a week and allowing them to run for a few minutes. In addition, it is also a good idea to head out to the gas station for a fresh tank of fuel whenever severe weather is predicted. Not only will this help alleviate fuel problems but it will also help the generator provide power for longer periods of time.

Blocked or Dirty Filters

Blocked or dirty filters are another common cause of trouble with Champion portable generators. Sometimes these problems will manifest themselves with hard starting or uneven performance, while at other times a severely blocked filter can stop the generator from running at all. If you have replaced the fuel and the generator is still running poorly or refusing to start, consult your owner's manual for the location of the air filter. Remove the filter and check its condition. If the filter appears to be dirty or shows signs of wear, replace it.

Spark Plugs

The spark plug could be another source of trouble with a Champion portable generator. If the generator will not start or if it runs poorly after it does start, the spark plug wire may have come loose. Carefully remove and reseat the spark plug wire and try to start the generator again. If the generator still does not start, remove the spark plug and check its condition. If the spark plug is fouled, it should be replaced. It is a good idea to keep several spare spark plugs on hand for when these problems occur.