Starting a Generator without Keys

Updated by Juan Velez

This covers the following Champion Power Equipment models: All Champion Power Equipment products equipped with electric key start.

Read instructions carefully and completely before performing service.

  • To reduce the risk of injury, user must read and understand the operator’s manual before using this product.
  • DO NOT make any adjustments to the generator without first stopping the engine and disconnecting the spark plug wire.
  • Burns from hot parts — let the engine cool completely before touching hot parts.
  • Injury from moving parts
  • To reduce the possibility of fire or explosion, be careful when working around gasoline. Keep cigarettes, sparks and flames away from all fuel‐related parts.
  1. Standing on the panel side (outlet side) of the generator, locate the group of wires directly under the ignition switch. You will see black, yellow, green, and brown wires.
    See below.
  2. Locate the black wire with a soft black rubber covering on the connection point. This is for the ignition system and is a grounding function wire; unplug this connection.
    See below.
  3. Next, you will locate a single black harness that has two green wires inside the loom. Each green wire will have either a black or white stripe on the green insulation covering the wire. Unplug either green wire. Only one of them is necessary.
    See below.

  4. At this point you will be able to manually start the generator with the recoil starter. One choke pull of the rope and then up to three pulls without any choke before choking again. Repeated choking is counter-productive to an effecting starting of the engine.
  5. When you need to shut the engine down, you can plug either of the previously unplugged wires, or you can choke the engine off with the choke lever.
  6. For additional help or TO OBTAIN A NEW KEY, call the customer service phone number listed below. 
  7. Once you obtain a new key, reconnect the two wires disconnected in steps two and three, and the generator will start normally. 

View and download the PDF version here.

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