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Old 11-06-2018, 02:36 PM   #1
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Transmission, loss of power, transmission indicator light

My 2018 Legacy Model 34A is 9 months old with 8,000 miles on it. My last two trips my transmission indicator popped on and I experienced loss of power. It seems to happen after being on the road after 100+ miles of travel. When I restart the vehicle, the transmission light indicator does not come back on until I hit that 100+ mile mark. My last trip I decided to turn off my cruise control and everything seemed to be good until the last mile of a 360 mile trip. I would use the cruise control and just leave it on even when I was not using it. I am not sure if this had anything to do with causing this transmission problem. My trips have been in the Texas hill country and Colorado, so there has been a lot of up and down hill travel and I flat tow a 4,400 pound crossover car. Since the transmission should be under warranty, would freight liner be the company to service the transmission (it is an Allison transmission)? Looking for suggestions, recommendations or your past experiences on this topic. thanks
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Old 11-09-2018, 07:12 PM   #2
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Both Allison, Cummins, and Freightliner have great customer support for the transmission, but getting with Allison directly will probably warrant the quickest solution - it could be just a sensor that is out of 'alignment', or something that really is not an emergency, though the loss of power does give me pause. I can imagine, though, that is a safety feature, prompted by the physical onscreen 'alert', since the sensor may be telling it so.

To give you an example, our 'light' came on once several years ago, out of warranty for the coach. I didn't experience any loss of power, or anything noticeable, but the 'engine outline alert light', when it suddenly comes on during a 1,000 mile trip, give you pause!
I stopped when I could, called freightliner, and found out that this 'alert' symbol is really NOT the engine, but the EMISSIONS indicator. They leaned toward this probably being a sensor out of adjustment, or reading incorrectly, or not at all... out near the exit of the exhaust. And, since the 'Emissions' related items on these DEF power platforms are warrantied by Cummins for 5 YEARS, I made a stop, several weeks later, at the Cummins shop, who changed out the NoX Sensor, at no charge. Everything's been good for 40,000 miles since.
I've also seen this same 'Engine Outline' symbol come on since then, but it was related to LOW DEF only. When the DEF tank is once again above a 'low' fill line, the symbol will go off automatically within a few on/offs of the engine cycle during the next several miles or days, depending on how far or often you are driving.
Another time it came on, I didn't realize it, but the service shop had overfilled my engine oil, putting it over 35 qts when it only requires 23 or so. The toad was later found to be covered in spattered oil over the front and all over the tow bar and dripped all over the hitch area. I was puzzled when I found this, thought I had a major oil filter issue, and laid on the ground below the engine trying to 'see' where the oil was flowing from. To my chagrin, I finally saw that it looked as tho it was only 'dripping' from a low hanging 'drip tube' right next to the oil pan. Relieved, but upset with the oil change shop, I continued on home, about 100 miles, successfully, and the alert eventually went off on it's own.
Ultimately, I released more than 10 quarts of oil from my oil pan, from it's side mount outlet, which is much more convenient in this situation than having to use the bottom outlet. I also complained to the corporate offices of the shop, a national chain for semi-truck oil changes, and filed a dispute on my credit card(thankfully I didn't pay cash!). I received a credit for the full $349.00 charge for both my engine oil/fuel filters and even the generator oil/fuel filters, though the shop itself never gave me credit or offered a future discount in order to continue using their service - they apparently either didn't dispute the 'disputed charge', or was not successful in giving the credit card company a substantial argument to my grievances, especially with all of my photos and videos of the 'oil' and all it's damages to my toad, tow bar, hitch, and even all up and over the back of the coach itself. What a mess.
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Old 11-09-2018, 07:16 PM   #3
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what i would do is have it scanned to see what the codes are that is being set.
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Old 11-09-2018, 07:21 PM   #4
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I believe I remember that my first call the Freightliner's 24/7 service number got me to the tech who walked me thru finding the 'code' thru the dash's electronic readout, which is how they knew what the probably 'likely' was. : ) good luck.
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Old 11-09-2018, 07:38 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by formerFR View Post
I believe I remember that my first call the Freightliner's 24/7 service number got me to the tech who walked me thru finding the 'code' thru the dash's electronic readout, which is how they knew what the probably 'likely' was. : ) good luck.
Thanks everyone!....I have it at a freightliner service shop. Waiting for the diagnosis....
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Old 11-12-2018, 02:44 PM   #6
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ok, so now Freightliner indicated they need to install a test control module, drive the motorhome for 100 miles and check it again. Said this is going to be a lengthy process. It seems replacing the transmission would be quicker. They can not provide me an ETA yet.
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Old 11-12-2018, 07:04 PM   #7
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sounds like they are trying to buy some time, iv'e never heard of that before needing to drive it for 100miles, it must have set memory codes when it went into limp mode
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Old 11-13-2018, 09:37 AM   #8
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ok, so now Freightliner indicated they need to install a test control module, drive the motorhome for 100 miles and check it again. Said this is going to be a lengthy process. It seems replacing the transmission would be quicker. They can not provide me an ETA yet.


Is this Freightliner dealer also an Allison Transmission service center?
Unless they are, there is not a lot they can do with the transmission. Most donít even have the transmission diagnostic software. Been through this with my Freightliner dealer, turned out they could fix mine after Freightliner tech support told them what they had to replace and shipped them the part.
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Old 11-13-2018, 10:18 AM   #9
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Before I brought my motorhome to Freightliner, I went to the Allison website. They had this service center listed as an approved center for their transmissions. I also asked to confirm they perform warranty work as I suspect anything wrong with this transmission would be covered. I will let them have a few more days, then I will ask Forrest River to get involved if I feel the situation warrants it.
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Old 11-16-2018, 11:13 AM   #10
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Freightliner has indicated the transmission is ok. They are working a wiring issue between the engine control module (ecm) and the transmission control module (tcm). They informed me to contact Forest River as they do not think they can fix the issue (unless they get lucky with finding the wiring issue). They have repeated the failure two times (requiring them to drive the motorhome some 100 miles). When the power cuts out after 100 miles or so, they told me that was a safety feature to protect the transmission. So.….I am contacting the Forest River customer service group via their website.
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