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Old 07-10-2015, 17:05   #1
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20 kW generator replacement ?

I am looking for any advice on replacing a 20 kW generator in a 1993 63' Super Sun Sport.

I would like opinions on brand and price to expect.

My current generator has 5500 hrs and needs work. The boatyard said it would cost about 4500 to repair. I am getting a second opinion as I don't trust the boatyard. They have been less than reputable before.

They had previously charged me for work on the generator and said it was working. Now it doesn't work and they just shrug and say things happen.

It will start and run if you have your finger on the preheat button, but shuts down as soon as you release the button. It sounds strong when running so it might be worth repairing.

Any thoughts as to what the issue might truly be or opinions of replacement are appreciated
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Old 07-10-2015, 17:11   #2
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Re: 20 kW generator replacement ?

That is a Sea Ray Super Sun Sport
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Old 07-10-2015, 17:14   #3
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Re: 20 kW generator replacement ?

If it runs with the preheat button activated it sounds like an electrical problem. Probably not that complicated or expensive. you should most certainly get another opinion. Try to find an actual generator guy
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Old 07-10-2015, 17:21   #4
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Re: 20 kW generator replacement ?

That's kind of what I thought. The boatyard has been milking me for a while. I am currently in the process of moving to another marina as they won't allow anyone else to look at it at their facility for a second opinion as they say they have their own mechanics.

How many times do they expect me to pay for the same repair. It has been at their facility for 6 months and they have broken the bank.

Thanks for the reply
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Old 07-10-2015, 18:25   #5
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Re: 20 kW generator replacement ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by autolake View Post
.

It will start and run if you have your finger on the preheat button, but shuts down as soon as you release the button. It sounds strong when running so it might be worth repairing.
sounds like a sensor, either oil pressure, water temp etc. the preheat button generally bypasses sensors at start up. if it runs good while holding it. probably something easy...


you'd need the wiring diagram for that gen to see exactly what sensors are bypassed by the preheat. alternator error could be another. then you can probably manually bypass each sensor one at the time to figure out which one cause it to not run.
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Old 07-10-2015, 20:32   #6
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Re: 20 kW generator replacement ?

Does it have oil in it and does the oil pressure gauge come up to normal when it starts? If there is no oil pressure then this will be the exact symptom.

Had a friend with a generator that did the same thing. He had paid someone to change the oil. Apparently they drained the oil and then forgot to fill it back up. The oil pressure automatic shutdown system saved the engine.
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Old 07-10-2015, 21:36   #7
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Re: 20 kW generator replacement ?

..looks at sensors or relays.. easy job if you find the right guy (generator specialist are scarce..) For somebody with experience, could take no more than 3 hours... run away the yard!!
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Old 07-10-2015, 21:43   #8
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Re: 20 kW generator replacement ?

Wow, you are all fantastic help. I am going to have to check on these items. The feedback is highly appreciated. I am hopefully getting it out of the boatyard tomorrow. I have someone lined up to move it. The boat is in Florida and I am in South Carolina. As soon as I can get this rectified, I will be bringing to Charleston.

These ideas seem much more plausible than what they were trying to sell me.

Your advice leaves me with more education. I may be able to go myself next week if I can't get someone reputable on the fix immediately.

Thanks again for replies.
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Old 08-10-2015, 09:41   #9
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Re: 20 kW generator replacement ?

Most likely the oil pressure sender or very low oil level as smac999 and transmitterdan have suggested. 1) check dipstick for oil level. 2) short the two terminals on your oil pressure sender. I prefer a short wire with two alligator clips but any means of connecting the two wires from the sender will work.

This is not likely the water temp sender or the alternator. Low oil level is the probable culprit followed by a corroded terminal on the sender or a bad sender. All simple, cheap fixes.
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Old 08-10-2015, 11:25   #10
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Re: 20 kW generator replacement ?

This definitely sounds like a sensor issue. I would also check your stop solenoid. Jump that connection and if it still runs after you release your finger, you will have the culprit.

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Old 08-10-2015, 11:52   #11
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Re: 20 kW generator replacement ?

This is all great information. .. Thanks
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Old 08-10-2015, 12:04   #12
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Re: 20 kW generator replacement ?

Many generators, ( I know Northern Lights do) require the start button held in until the windings generate enough current to hold in a latching relay, which maintains ignition circuit on a gas engine, or fuel solenoid hold-in ( or out, depending on type ) in a diesel. You sometimes have think backwards to get the sequence. It can take time to sort out. Have done a few of these.
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Old 08-10-2015, 12:13   #13
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Re: 20 kW generator replacement ?

If I am not mistaken and I'm pretty certain I am not, those Super Sun Sports came standard with a 20.0 kW Westerbeke diesel with remote start.

The oil pressure sensor has two spade connecters on them that are prone to breaking off.

If your oil level is within limits look for broken or corroded terminals on this sender.
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Old 08-10-2015, 12:20   #14
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Re: 20 kW generator replacement ?

I have a 5.5kw Onan that did something similar. I had to hold down the start button to keep it running for longer than 1m. Something about a Sensor Bypass built into the switch while pressed. In the end it turned out to be an easy fix. The fuel pump was the culprit so $100US, and 2+hr of my labor, I was back up and running.
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Old 08-10-2015, 15:09   #15
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Re: 20 kW generator replacement ?

Yes Seasick. You are right on the money with the Westerbeke diesel with remote start.
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