How to Convert Portable Generator to Propane

There are many advantages to running a home generator on propane. Because propane burns cleaner than gas, it doesn't leave carbon deposits on the engine and plugs. You can also start the generator at idle, instead of full throttle, because propane is already a gas. Propane doesn't break down as it sits, so it won't gum up the fuel system. Unlike gas, it can be stored safely and it's easier to get during a crisis. And best of all, propane burns so cleanly that propane-powered forklifts are approved for indoor use. You'll save money, and double the life of your generator, if you convert to propane.

Installing a Propane Conversion Kit

Step 1

Unscrew the air cleaner cover and remove the air cleaner assembly nuts with the socket wrench.  Pull the assembly off the generator.

Step 2

Remove the gasket and twist the stud extenders that came with the kit onto the existing carburetor studs. 

Step 3

Position the hole punch over the stud holes in the original gasket.  Punch new holes over the old ones to increase the hole size so they will accommodate the stud extenders.

Reinstall the modified gasket. 

Step 4

Attach the hose connector and hose to the adapter.  Twist the 90-degree hose barb into the hole on the side of the adapter until it's snug.

Slip a clamp over the free end of the vapor gas hose and press the hose onto the hose barb.  Tighten the hose clamp with a screwdriver to secure the hose to the barb.

Step 5

Slide the adapter over the stud extenders until it rests against the carburetor flange.  Slide the gasket that came with the kit over the stud extenders and onto the adapter.

Step 6

Bolt the air cleaner assembly back on and screw the air cleaner cover to it. 

Step 7

Twist the reducer and load block onto the outlet port of the fuel controller.  Slide a small hose clamp over the free end of the outlet hose and press the hose onto the hose barb of the reducer and load block.

Tighten the clamp with a screwdriver to secure the hose to the barb. 

Step 8

Twist the high-pressure hose connector onto the inlet port of the fuel controller until it's snug. 

Step 9

Bolt the fuel controller to the frame of the generator. 

Step 10

Crank the engine as you press the manual primer on the fuel controller.  When the generator starts, turn the load block adjustment screw with a screwdriver until the engine runs smoothly.

Tighten the load block lock nut to keep the adjustment screw in this position. 

Things You Will Need

  • Propane conversion kit
  • Socket set
  • Hole punch
  • Slotted and Phillips-head screwdrivers
  • Small hose clamps

About the Author

Dan Eash began writing professionally in 1989, with articles in LaHabra's "Daily Star Progress" and the "Fullerton College Magazine." Since then, he's created scripts for doctor and dentist offices and published manuals, help files and a training video. His freelance efforts also include a book. Eash has a Fullerton College Associate of Arts in music/recording production and a Nova Institute multimedia production certificate.