Does My Generator Start with a Battery?

The engine of a standby generator is a lot like a car engine. Although you need fuel to make the engine run, you also have to have a battery that runs the electronic components.

The battery plays a very important part in the generator detecting when the power is out so the engine can start within seconds of the outage. There are electronic components that have to operate and, just like a car, the battery operates them.

So essentially, the generator does start with the battery, as it wouldn’t be able to start without it.

The good news is that standby generator batteries are relatively low maintenance just like a car battery. This means they also need to be changed periodically.

When you have your unit maintained, the battery is one of the elements that are tested to ensure that it is in good working order. If it is time for a chance, then your generator tech is going to tell you that it is time to replace the battery.

By ensuring that the battery is in good working order, you can have the confidence that the unit is going to come on when the power goes out.

Here are some commonly asked questions about generator batteries:

  1. Will my battery die if my generator is not used often?

Batteries do slowly lose strength as the sit idle, so they need to be charged periodically. If a battery is allowed to self-discharge too much, it may not be able to be recharged.

  1. Will the battery recharge while the generator is operating?

Engine start discharges the battery a little bit, so the generator does have to run a while to replace the charge that was used to start the engine. How often the generator is run, how long it is run each time, the ambient temperature, the age of the battery, the charge level of the battery when the engine starts, and the amount of charge needed for engine start are all factors that come into play.

  1. Does the battery have a warranty?

The battery warranty covers any manufacturing defects. If it is not operating correctly, call your generator company. In fact, any behavior that your generator is displaying that is not normal warrants a call to your generator company because it could be a warranty repair that won’t cost you anything.

Any questions that you may have about your standby generator or any of its components, such as the battery, can be directed toward your generator company. You will get the answers you need when you need them so that you can always be confident and knowledgeable in the operation of your generator.