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How energize or excite windings on portable generator

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The engine is running but does not have power.


If the generator has been sitting for a long time or was shut off with the load connected it has likely lost the residual magnetism that is required to excite the winding. This is a common problem. Always disconnect the load from the generator before stopping the engine!

The generator needs to be flashed. There are several was to achieve this, but safest would be to use an electric drill.
  • Connect an older style portable 120 volt drill to the running generator.
  • Make sure the drill is in forward not reverse
  • With the switch depressed rotate by hand the chuck of the drill in reverse
  • careful, the generator will flash, power up and rotate the drill in the forward direction..
Hope this helps?

  • Careful the generator will flash the windings and power up the drill

Mar 28, 2016 | Electrical Supplies

2 Answers

How to test the electrical system of the generator for free


Ez test to determine if stator wiring is ok. This test works on generators that have two sets of 115v plugs and 220v plug. Use a 12v, 1amp ac power supply ( smaller ac power supply should work ok ). With generator not running, apply 12v to one of the 115v outlet plugs. Now verify 12v output voltage with meter at another 115v outlet on generator. Also verify that there is about twice the voltage at the 220 v outlet plug (should be about 20v - 24v) . If the adjoining 115 v outlet plug has no output or very little voltage or if the 220 volt plug has no output, most likely stator is damaged or breaker is off. If the stator is shorted voltage reading will be very low and power supply will heat up. If stator is open, there will be no voltage at second 115v plug or 220 v plug. If voltage is ok at the other outlet plugs as per test above then most likely problem is with voltage regulator, or brushes not making contact or armature winding open or just needs to be energized. Unplug the 12v power supply after test to prevent it from overheating. Most generators have two 115v windings that together power the 220v plug. When you energize one of the windings with the 12v power supply, the second 115v winding will be energized also and give you a voltage reading about equal to 12v. You will not damage the generator with this small voltage being input thru the plug. Good luck

Oct 14, 2014 | Electrical Supplies

1 Answer

Coleman powermate generator runs with no power


If we assume for the moment, that the internals of the generator are all ok. This problem is usually caused by not running the unit on load for a long time, a year for instance. During this time the residual magnetism in the field coils will slowly decay. When the unit is running the field coils control the power generated by the main windings. The higher the excitation voltage in the field coils, the higher the voltage generated by the main windings. The field coils are controlled by their magnets which, once a voltage has been generated, they will then self excite themselves.
However, if all of the magnetism has decayed then the field coils cannot generated because they have no excitation to start them off.
What you need to do is to find the field coil windings and while the unit is running with a load plugged in to it, you need to flash a voltage across the field coils.this will excite the field coils, part of that is used to do whats called self-excitation, honest...it is.
If you do this then a 12 volt car battery is a sensible thing to use for a power supply. But, as soon as the field coils start to self-excite then that voltage will increase far beyond 12 vo9lts. That is why you need a good size load connected, As the unit starts to generate then that load will alert you to remove the temporary supply, if you leave it connected the battery acid would rapidly boil and it can split the battery cases. That is why it's called 'flashing' it up. Once generating it wants leaving for a good hour,
If that does not produce results then the fault is deeper and requires testing by a qualified engineer.

Nov 11, 2013 | Coleman Electrical Supplies

1 Answer

Have B&S 7500 Vanguard Genset. No Output. Have checked windings as per info on this site. Applied 12Vdc direct to the brushes and get 160Vac output. There are black/red wires from brushes that go back...


Hi, a word of caution, use a 9volt battery instead of 12v to check the rotating field winding. The 12volts from a car battery or battery charger can burn out windings in a generator. I would say that your avr is pooched. There are 4 leads that go back to the windings in the generator from the AVR. Two of these are connected to the power output and two go to a separate winding in the generator. This is the exciter winding and this supplies power to the avr for the rotating field. The two to the power output are voltage reference only. If your generator has these exciter winding, you should check if you have voltage there with the 9 volts applied to the rotor. If you have voltage on the power output and not on the exciter, then the exciter is shot and your avr might not be. Try this first, if you could, could you take a picture of the windings at the back end of the generator, this will confirm for me what leads you have present.

Feb 15, 2011 | Briggs & Stratton Electrical Supplies

1 Answer

My generator is only putting out 2.5 volts it is a powermate 5000 what is the most likely cause


Most likely the excitation DC circuit is broken or exciting rectifier (AVR if present) is damaged. If the field has been demagnetized it can be recharged by a 12 V battery, connected for a short time to +, - of the excitation winding, with engine running.

Jul 29, 2010 | Coleman Powermate Powermate 5000W...

1 Answer

How to flash or remagnitize Coleman Powermate 6875 or Husky 40500


Field Flashing of Portable Generators This tip comes from the Briggs & Stratton Customer Education Department. As an alternative to flashing a rotor winding with a battery applied to the brushes, an electric drill may be used. Follow these steps to flash the generator:
  • Plug the electric drill into the generator receptacle. (Cordless drills do not work)
  • If the drill is reversible, move the direction switch to the forward position.
  • Start the generator
  • While depressing the trigger on the drill, spin the drill chuck in reverse direction. This will excite the field and the generator will now produce electricity. If spinning the chuck one direction does not work, try spinning the chuck in the other direction as you may have the reverse switch positioned backwards.
Use caution not to get your hand or other materials caught in the chuck. As soon as the field is excited, the generator will produce power and the drill will turn on.
The reason this works is because the electric motor in the drill will act as a small generator when spun backwards. The magnets in the drill's motor induce a voltage into the motor windings, which is fed back through the trigger, cord and into the generators receptacle. From there it goes into the power winding of the stator. The voltage going through the power winding creates a magnetic field, which is intensified due to the iron core of the stator laminations. The rotor intersects this magnetic field as it is spun past the power winding, thus inducing a voltage in the rotor winding. Once current flow is present in the rotor winding the rotor has been flashed.
If flashing the field does not make the generator work, you may have additional problems, besides a lack of magnetism in the rotor. Further testing will be needed. Hopefully, this will give a simple way to field flash your generator if needed - Bruce Perrault

Apr 27, 2010 | Coleman Powermate Powermate 5000W...

1 Answer

No output voltage for powermate generator


NO. the capacitor resonates with a winding it is in parallel with as part of the voltage regulation.

Recharging a brushless generator can be tricky. I have had success using two 150 watt lamps in series between the running generator and the electric utility power. Search google for this method.

Apr 01, 2010 | Coleman Powermate Premium Plus 6250W...

1 Answer

Porter Cable Generator does not produce electricity


Here are a a few possibilities to look at:

1) Bad connection at the outlets themselves (loose wire) regarding neutral, hot wires.

2) Bad Excitation Capacitor. The Exc. Cap. is responsible for energizing the field wiring of the alternator. If the field is not energized, there will not be a magnetic field developed, therefore, no electrical output.

3) Open Field / Stator winding. If Field winding is open, no magnetic field will be developed. If Stator winding is open, no voltage will be induced.

4) Generator speed is too slow. If the RPMs of the engine are too slow, the output of the alternator will fail as well. Note that from normal speed, voltage output will occur but at reducing frequency until ouput ceases altogether, usually at about 47Hz. If your alternator is a 2 pole, engine speed should be 3600 rpm nominal. If alternator is a 4 pole (most aren't), engine speed would need to be about 1800 rpm nominal.

5) Generator speed too fast. If RPMs are too fast, output may fail as well. See above.

6) Excitation Fuse has blown. There is sometimes a fuse in the excitation circuit. To check this, you will likely need to pull the end housing off the alternator. Pay attention to bearings / bushings.

Nov 26, 2009 | Porter Cable Electrical Supplies

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