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Generator Problems


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#1 rslavicek

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 12:29 PM

We were returning from Las Vegas to San Diego Monday and the temperature was around 100 degrees. When we stopped for lunch I decided to fire up the generator and turn on the AC. The generator started up and ran for a few seconds then died with a pop. It would not restart. The next day I was going to check it out, but it started without a problem, I tried a couple of more time over the next few days and it started each time. We don't do a lot of dry camping but I try to run the generator at least a half hour each month.

The generator is an ONAN 5k on a 2010 Fleetwood. Has anyone had a similar problem or any suggestions on what the problem could be. My original idea was that the spark plug had worked loose, but now I'm thinking that it could be a vapor lock.
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#2 Briarhopper

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 11:40 PM

Hard to say. The first thing that comes to mind is the low fuel shutoff. The generators I have had and I think most will shut off before the fuel tank gets too low. If your tank was low (1/4 tank +/-) then that may have been the issue. Vapor lock???? may be since you were in 100F, but the line from the tank to the gen would not get as hot as the line to the chassis engine, so may be not, unless there is a hot spot. Near the gen a few seconds of run time would not a vapor lock create (apologize for the Yoda speak).

Dies with a pop is interesting. Sounds like a timing or fuel contamination issue. However, since it starts and runs, timing seems not likely. I'd chalk it up to a momentary glitch, keep an eye on things and keep on rolling (or camping as the case may be) :)
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#3 rslavicek

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 01:02 PM

Thanks for the information. I don't think it was low fuel, I fill up in Vegas for the trip home (gas is cheaper in Nevada) and make it home with about half a tank. This was around the half way point and my gauge was still reading full. It could have been junk in the line, I don't know i the generator line is smaller than the main gas line or has it's own filter. I will keep an eye on it and try to run the generator more.
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#4 desertdeals69

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 02:08 PM

It should have its own fuel line and pickup in the tank which does not go to the bottom so you can't run the tank empty on the gen. It should have a fuel filter next to the pump.
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#5 Briarhopper

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Posted 21 May 2012 - 01:10 PM

rslavicek,

Was researching a genset gemlin of my own and had 2 more thoughts on your sudden shutdown. I know. Having two thoughts at one time could be hazardous. :)

If you were on a steep grade going up or down, it may have dropped the fuel in the tank below the pickup or could have caused the gensets low oil switch to kill the engine.
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2011 Jeep Patriot chasing

#6 macpersonal

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Posted 03 June 2012 - 02:13 PM

I had an over temp switch fail and gen would run for short time and then shut it down. I think the problem was the high ambient temp combined with the road temp and the temp safety switch working as designed.

MT
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#7 marthabarnes

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Posted 20 June 2012 - 06:35 PM

I have a 2007 Fleetwood Terra LX with a 5.5 Onan. I always prime before starting. It will start, runs great, but in 15 minutes it just stops. I can reprime and it will do the same. When I remove the cover, I can see a clear glass that holds the gas after I prime it. When it stops, the glass cover is empty. Any suggestions?

Martha Barnes, Merritt Island, FL yrosef3291@aol.com 321-501-0301, solo driver
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Martha Barnes, F0003291
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#8 DickandLois

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Posted 20 June 2012 - 08:34 PM

Think you may have a fuel filter plugged or the fuel pump has failed.

Rich.
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#9 mustang36

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Posted 13 May 2013 - 04:59 PM

Hi ,

 

I just read about the rubber fuel lines collapsing on gen-sets,in as little as five years, and with this" corn" gas, we use now. It could very well be a rubber fuel line, Good luck.......Jerry


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#10 4windsaz

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Posted 15 May 2013 - 11:31 PM

what color is the exhaust....


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#11 DickandLois

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 08:29 AM

Jerry, The possibility of a fuel line problem is a valid thought, however my thought is Martha would see some dirt or small pieces of a damaged fuel line in the fuel sight glass. She mentioned that it was clean / clear of any dirt or foreign material, if I'm reading her post properly.

 

Rich.


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#12 desertdeals69

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Posted 17 May 2013 - 06:37 AM

Having been an Onan dealer for many years we have found that fuel line failures have mostly been air leaking into the line through a crack or loose fitting. When a genset stops with a pop it usually indicates a lean condition.  The fuel line is usually 1/4 inch id.


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