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Old 07-14-2016, 11:04 AM   #51
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It is heat related, but also movement related as this only happens when temps are 95+ and when driving down the road. I have camped up to 72 hours running on generator in 95+ temps without once having a problem. But, just get me on the road for 2+ hours in 95+ temps and the problem starts.

My uninformed spidey sense tells me that the heat from the ambient air temp, engine and engine exhaust are all building up to cause a real issue. The problem is, I can't tell if it is a problem with the generator or the transfer switch. I suspect it is the transfer switch as that is where I hear the grinding noise when this starts to occur and the switch is very hot to the touch when this is happening. Meanwhile, while this is happening, the generator is just purring along without issue other than every time the transfer switch drops out and tries to come back on line the generator obviously struggles with the load, which makes the switch drop back out again. When I reduce the load by turning off one of the AC units, power returns and the noises stop. The issue never occurs if I only drive with one AC running.

I hate gremlins like this.
I think we are getting somewhere. It could be that the heat in generator is causing a partial vapor lock and/or at least a reduction in output. This is causing the transfer switch to kick out then try to re-engage with the current load. This constant action is what's making the switch hot, (you essentially have a linear magnetic motor running). When you drop the load, the switch becomes engaged, the load on generator is reduced which allows it to "cool" some. Add the additional load and the process starts all over again.

So, the cause is heat (this we already knew) under way. Why? Could be 1)that the air flow under the RV has created a vacuum or dead air of sorts at or near the generator and it's sucking up it's own exhaust heat. 2) the intake of air is drastically hotter than ambient air because engine and/or road heat.

Solution: Get rid of heat. How? Hmmm Possibly a small air damn between the air intake and the exhaust may provide enough "clean" air to enter, or something in front of the generator that would possibly redirect the engine heat away from it. Regardless, the key is getting cooler air to the generator or getting the heated air away.

Anyone have any other suggestions? I'm game for trying any of these, although not sure I'll get the high 90's days here in OH for the test.
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Old 07-14-2016, 11:26 AM   #52
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I believe it's heat as well, although I had it happen to me yesterday in 75-80 degree weather. I've been dry camping for 4 days now, it only happened once.

So who wants to drive down the road with their outer door removed and generator cover off to test?
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Old 07-14-2016, 11:33 AM   #53
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I am game to try just about anything to get this resolved. While I am some ways out from trying a long cross country trip, I want it resolved for little weekend jaunts until then.

On my next trip I will remove the outer door and generator cover to see if that helps. We are supposed to be up close to the 100s next week so maybe I can get out and play then...maybe. My next planned trip is Labor Day weekend, but we always seem to take impromptu trips at the last minute somewhere within a couple of hours just to get away from town.

Aquaman, if you have a design in mind for some kind of air dam, send it to me and I will try to make something to test as well.

I am intrigued by Kevin's response about a vented door to the generator, as if maybe FR already knows of this issue and is beginning to address it. I haven't contacted him yet, but I will to find out if there is a freebie upgrade to the doors that can be implemented.

Hopefully we can all work out a solution that FR can help us implement as having a brand spanking new unit with an issue like this is just driving me nuts.
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Old 07-14-2016, 11:51 AM   #54
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I don't have a dog in this hunt as I have a 5th wheel but have been following along for the education. How about some fans in the Genny compartment? If it truely is a heat problem, they make some pretty big computer fans or even a 12v radiator fan from the automotive world. A lot of us have done this to our refrigerator compartments, why not the generator compartment?
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Old 07-14-2016, 11:57 AM   #55
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Leave the door on the genset. It intakes air from the bottom and circulations it around the motor and is forced out at the muffler side. Removing the door can cause overheating. Adding a divider under the generator between the to sides may help. Also maybe some type of air diverter to direct air into the underside of the generator on the intake side will help. Add additional insulation to the fuel line from th pump to the carburator. I don't think the fuel injection or propane versions have this problem.

There should be a delay jumper on the transfer switch. If it's knocking this jumper may not be in place.
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Old 07-14-2016, 02:50 PM   #56
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So, as I stand facing the front of the generator, I am assuming the cooling air intake is on the left hand side (underneath the controls and breakers) and that the cooling air output is on the right hand side. Is that correct?
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Old 07-14-2016, 03:07 PM   #57
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stymie71 View Post
So, as I stand facing the front of the generator, I am assuming the cooling air intake is on the left hand side (underneath the controls and breakers) and that the cooling air output is on the right hand side. Is that correct?
Yes, that is correct.

Can you post pictures of the generator install and where it is located.

Though my setup is different, the bottom of my generator is about 4" above the bottom of the opening below the generator. The generator sits on a 4" riser/support base that was welded to the trailer frame. When I installed the generator, had a piece of metal welded to separate the 2 sides of the support base so the exhaust air was not sucked in as intake air. It is located about 12" from the right side and runs from front to back of the support frame for the generator.
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Old 07-14-2016, 03:25 PM   #58
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My generator is open on all sides and bottom. It's actually hanging by steel supports from above.


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Old 07-14-2016, 03:38 PM   #59
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Guessing the generator is located on the drivers side, I would make a air scoop to direct air up into the intake side and install an air dam between the 2 sides.
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Old 07-14-2016, 03:53 PM   #60
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Would have to be a little careful with the scoop. Don't want to create a ram air effect and lean the motor out. I think some type of diverter from the coach engine would be a better bet. A few remote thermometers would be helpful. May see where the hot air is pocketing.


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