My first appointment of the week was a planned maintenance visit, or PMV, to service a 330kVA generator. It was due for a thorough service and as it utilises industry standard engine and alternator, I made sure that I took a complete range of spares with me. As well as taking the generator spares, these days its important that our service engineers take the right documents with them, including a service visit sheet. Customers quite rightly ask for a risk assessment and method statement (RAMS) for major services on generators. The first task with any generator maintenance job is to make everything safe to work on. I transferred the generator to manual so that I had full control I didnt want it starting suddenly. I always do a visual check before I start, including inspecting the canopy condition, hinges, silencer fixings and other parts that are subject to wear and tear. We have a comprehensive 50-point inspection plan that takes in coolant, antifreeze, hoses, and so on. We also change the air and oil filters, and the oil if its due on the service schedule. The main reason that generators fail to start is because of problems with the electrics, typically a fault on the battery, so it always pays to check the electrics very carefully. I checked the battery itself, the charger and all the earth connections. Its satisfying when a generator youve serviced starts first time, gives you the right output (400V in this case) and shuts down promptly when you hit the emergency stop button. Finally, I switched the generator back to auto very important! I just managed to finish my well-earned coffee break before I took a call on my mobile. We had a report of a breakdown and I was the closest. I was sent the postcode and was on my way.