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Old 03-08-2016, 03:33 PM   #11
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I agree with VinceU, it sounds like low voltage to the starter causing the starter to not fully engage the flywheel. I believe a 12 volt battery voltage reading should be in the vicinity of 13 volts.
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Old 03-08-2016, 08:41 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ericlakin View Post
That's good advice, thanks. Warmer weather is here this week. I might just get the damn thing out and drive it for an hour to get the house and chassis batteries charged up fully. I assume the generator uses the chassis battery to start. Is this correct?

Sorry I forgot to answer you in previous post. Normally in order to preserve the starting battery capacity, it's reserved for engine starting only. Therefore the generator uses the coach battery for starting. If something goes wrong you can always start the chassis engine and after a few minutes start the generator.


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Old 03-09-2016, 07:46 PM   #13
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Well I got everything warmed up and charged up and the problem still exists. I dropped the motor home off at the local Cummins service center today. They said they should have it back to me in a week. Really impressed with Cummins service. You call, they actually answer. A very professional group. And their service dept is open until 10:30 pm, probably for their commercial customers mainly. 2 year warranty on the generator so I shouldn't have to worry. They do a lot of maintenance on big diesel pushers. Bet those oil changes aren't cheap.
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Old 03-10-2016, 09:15 AM   #14
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Update: Cummins called this morning. It seems there was a bad ground to the generator. They replaced the end and reattached the ground and everything is working fine.

This is actually the 2nd time I have had a ground wire problem. The first was when the entire Sprinter heater/AC system stopped blowing air. All the lights on the heater and AC controls still functioned, but the blower was not working. The local Mercedes dealer tracked it down as a bad ground. Apparently FR had attached other items to that same ground point and had not reattached the HVAC ground wire solidly.

Sadly, the generator issue was not a Cummins/Onan defect so this wasn't covered under warranty. Out of pocket expose will be $170. I suppose I could have taken this to the FR dealer but I'm sure I would have waited weeks for them to track down the issue, and they would have likely just taken it to Cummins which would have added additional time to the resolution.

There is a lively thread going in the Mercedes Sprinter motorhome forum about build quality. Sounds like more and more people are just taking their lumps and either fixing things themselves or paying for them to be fixed out of pocket rather than dealing with dealerships and the FR warranty.
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Old 03-10-2016, 09:34 AM   #15
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The F/R warr procedure is not Perfect BUT If you had taken it to Dealer they are Required to get F/R OK BEFORE work is started! They would have also had to get OK to have "Cummins/Onan" work and Pay as well! Since you went to "Cummins/Onan" you should have got the F/R authorization Before they started, you would Pay,BUT F/R would have reimbursed you,If you had the F/R approval number! That is how F/R has treated us! Try to contact F/R Warr. and see if they might pay your Bill also! Youroo!!
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Old 03-10-2016, 09:38 AM   #16
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Yep... I would contact FR, explain the situation and be nice about it.
You may be surprised.
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Old 03-10-2016, 10:11 AM   #17
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It may be that you don't enough voltage to actually cause the state to engage fully. Charge up the coach batteries and see if that doesn't help. Even with very cold weather the generator should engage and turn over it may not start but it should turn over without grinding noise. First step charge the coach batteries.
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Old 03-10-2016, 10:29 AM   #18
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SeaDog... he already posted the problem was a ground cable.
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Old 03-10-2016, 10:55 AM   #19
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Somehow I missed that, darn here I had a perfect record of reading posts! lol
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Old 03-10-2016, 11:52 AM   #20
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I would agree with youroo and 5picker. The talking points: This is a recurrence of a ground issue. The $170 is money and inconvenience that you should not have to endure on a new coach. Explain that, being a lay person on mechanics, the first thought would be the generator. Supposedly, the factory grounding issue had been fixed. The $170 fix is not out of line with what it would have cost for warranty work. You might also suggest that they address this issue in future production. As a PR gesture, they should pick up the tab. The satisfied customer is the best advertisement.

This may be off topic, but the following account shows that follow up and persistence pays off. This is not so much the matter of money, but a matter of principal.

Last November, while we were out-of-state, a semi passing in the opposite direction pinched a stone off of a tire and damaged our windshield . We were returning home in a few days. We immediately went to one glass shop. Viewing the damage, they said it should be replaced. We contacted the insurance company to make a comprehensive claim-our first claim ever in 10 years with the company. Without seeing the damage, the adjuster would only authorize a repair basing damage by the size of a coin. The glass shop advised that with the severity of the damage, the repair would be very visible and spider webbing would not be contained. The adjuster still insisted on a $50 repair.

We went to a another glass shop for a second opinion. Without hesitation, they also stated the damage justified a new windshield. The shop contacted the adjuster and we both spoke with the adjuster, on the phone for over a half hour. The adjuster would only authorize the repair. We had a new windshield installed and paid the difference.

On our return home, an insurance rep contacted us to go over our policy for renewal. I advised her that there was no need to waste either of our time because we were insurance shopping and why. The rep asked that we contact the claims dept. and speak with a manager. I called claims and talked to a rep and explained what happen. Without having to go further, the rep advised to write a letter with the claim number and enclose the bill. The company would pay the claim. I asked," That simple?" The reply, "That simple"

In processing the claim, I got an apologetic call with a question about the payment. The claims rep stated that there was a miscommunication in the process and the incident should not have happened. I countered that there was no miscommunication, it was the way they did business. I also told them that the initial two calls to claims, the call from the rep, the call to claims and the subsequent follow up to pay the balance of the windshield replacement had cost the insurance company more that the $230 for the replacement-aside from poor customer relations. They indicated that they will be addressing the problem. We received the balance for the windshield replacement. The squeaky wheel gets the grease.

The point here is that we are both justified in pursuing the matter to reclaim money we should not have to pay out. Neither your coach nor insurance is a bargain basement item.
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