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Old 08-06-2018, 12:25 AM   #1
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Default Generator won't crank

2001 Roadtrek 190 Popular with an Onan Microlite 2800 Series KV

Generator won't crank from either remote switch or switch on generator
Amber LED light on remote switch does not light up

Just completed a 6800 mile trip and the generator exhibited the same symptoms once. We went on some pretty rough roads. I unscrewed the remote switch and checked the terminal connections on the back of the switch and they seemed tight. The 4 crimped on butt connections between the switch and the generator wiring were tight. I put it back in and it started fine.

Came home and no cranking at all. Checked all connections-fine
Checked the circuit breaker and 5 amp fuse on generator-all fine
Checked the continuity of the wires that go between the remote switch and the plug that connects to the generator and all were fine.
House batteries and car battery are fine.

The RV went over some rough roads and I wonder is a wire came loose, but where?

Not sure why I don't even have the amber LED in the remote switch-bad switch?
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Old 08-06-2018, 07:38 PM   #2
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Check for a circuit breaker on the generator itself. My '2012 2800QG has one just inside the service door. Mine's never tripped, but I remember reading it's there. Check your Service Manual for exact location as you may have to feel around.

Good luck.
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Old 08-06-2018, 09:01 PM   #3
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Check for a circuit breaker on the generator itself. My '2012 2800QG has one just inside the service door. Mine's never tripped, but I remember reading it's there. Check your Service Manual for exact location as you may have to feel around.

Good luck.
I flipped the 25 amp circuit breaker on the unit several times.

I also can see that the 5 amp fuse is still intact. I did not take it out due to its very isolated position.

Does this unit get its power from the car battery or the house batteries?
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Old 08-06-2018, 09:10 PM   #4
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I flipped the 25 amp circuit breaker on the unit several times.

I also can see that the 5 amp fuse is still intact. I did not take it out due to its very isolated position.

Does this unit get its power from the car battery or the house batteries?
Gosh, so many possibilities, but a fuse can 'look' but.........

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Old 08-06-2018, 09:29 PM   #5
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I eventually will have to remove the fuse to fully evaluate it. I have had fuses that look good, but were not. I'll have to do some invasive surgery with the pliers to remove it.

The whole design and placement of this generator in the Roadtrek is poor. The bottom of the fuel filter is not accessible to change and to get at any engine component the unit has to be dropped. Very poor engineering.
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Old 08-07-2018, 01:03 AM   #6
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Have you tried starting the generator with the engine running?
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Old 08-07-2018, 01:06 AM   #7
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Have you tried starting the generator with the engine running?
Same result
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Old 08-07-2018, 02:08 AM   #8
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I flipped the 25 amp circuit breaker on the unit several times.

Sorry, I misunderstood. So you actually mean the generator's starter does not try to turn it over. The reason I thought yours cranking but just not starting is due to another earlier thread where someone used the word crank to mean their generator wouldn't start.

I also can see that the 5 amp fuse is still intact. I did not take it out due to its very isolated position.

Does this unit get its power from the car battery or the house batteries?
See my misunderstanding above. I'm not a mechanic, more a button pusher/switch flipper like you.

Don't know if this has any relevance at all, but do you have your coach battery disconnect switch in the "connected" mode. Maybe it needs coach power for the generator start switch/control panel to send juice to the generator starter.
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Old 08-07-2018, 02:18 AM   #9
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jmai

Can you check whether 12 volt power is reaching the 5 Amp fuse? Is power going through the fuse? If No! If you have a voltmeter or 12 volt light, Do a continuity check on the fuse or replace it (as suggested before). It can look good but be defective. Even the wiring into and out of the fuse-holder can be open (or corroded).


There is a small starter relay that switches the 12 volt power to starter motor. The wiring to the relays terminals could be open. There is a wiring ground bolt to the ONAN's Chassis that could be loose or corroded, which could prevent the relay from working. Unless I am wrong the LED on the remote switch gets its current through this relay coil.

I hope this gives you some more leads.

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Old 08-07-2018, 02:12 PM   #10
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jmai

Can you check whether 12 volt power is reaching the 5 Amp fuse? Is power going through the fuse? If No! If you have a voltmeter or 12 volt light, Do a continuity check on the fuse or replace it (as suggested before). It can look good but be defective. Even the wiring into and out of the fuse-holder can be open (or corroded).



There is a small starter relay that switches the 12 volt power to starter motor. The wiring to the relays terminals could be open. There is a wiring ground bolt to the ONAN'sChassis that could be loose or corroded, which could prevent the relay from working. Unless I am wrong the LED on the remote switch gets its current through this relay coil.
Once the heat subsides, I'm going to pull the fuse. I think I read it is a slow blow 5 amp fuse.

I assume the relay is within the green case and not external.
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Old 08-13-2018, 01:15 AM   #11
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Could be the oil level switch.. you have to drop the generator to get at it though. Google Cummins Onan for customer support to get an online manual from them.
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Old 10-06-2018, 12:08 AM   #12
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Problem solved!

One of the wires that connects to the side of the starter solenoid relay had broken off the connector lug. Basically, this stops all electricity to the starter system. I made a temporary set-up and it started right up.

However, to get to this point involved dropping the generator (4 out of 5) job and then removing the cover (3 out of 5 due to rusty bolts). I then proceeded to remove the generator from the bottom mounting pan (5 out of 5 due to rusty bolts, no exact disassembly instructions and Onan specific mounting parts and procedures). A call to Onan indicated that many parts are still available for this unit.

I am going to replace some of the components due to rust and age and install new vibration isolators and hardware. Getting to this point has been an extensive job and not for the faint of heart. Lots of rusty broken bolts, drilling and re-tapping holes, rust repair, repainting, fuel line replacement and several other tasks. In addition, the underside mounting plates are rusty (due to be repainted) but I'm debating on whether or not to just replace the whole underside mounting system (more rusty broken bolts and working under the rear of the RV on your back with rust falling from above).
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Starter solinoid.jpg (201.5 KB, 9 views)
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Old 10-06-2018, 02:30 AM   #13
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Problem solved!

One of the wires that connects to the side of the starter solenoid relay had broken off the connector lug. Basically, this stops all electricity to the starter system. I made a temporary set-up and it started right up.

However, to get to this point involved dropping the generator (4 out of 5) job and then removing the cover (3 out of 5 due to rusty bolts). I then proceeded to remove the generator from the bottom mounting pan (5 out of 5 due to rusty bolts, no exact disassembly instructions and Onan specific mounting parts and procedures). A call to Onan indicated that many parts are still available for this unit.

I am going to replace some of the components due to rust and age and install new vibration isolators and hardware. Getting to this point has been an extensive job and not for the faint of heart. Lots of rusty broken bolts, drilling and re-tapping holes, rust repair, repainting, fuel line replacement and several other tasks. In addition, the underside mounting plates are rusty (due to be repainted) but I'm debating on whether or not to just replace the whole underside mounting system (more rusty broken bolts and working under the rear of the RV on your back with rust falling from above).
As long as you are in there this would be a good time to re-engineer the fuel pump by moving it external to the case. A lot easier to replace that way.
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