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andyshane

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About andyshane

  • Birthday 11/18/1956

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    ndandyshane

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  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    Pecan Plantation, Texas
  • Interests
    Vintage aircraft, seaplane flying, cycling, tennis, scuba, gardening, language study, attending AKC Agility competitions with KayCee and "The Girls."
  • I travel
    Part-time

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  1. I had some leakage in this area last trip, turns out someone at Newmar got a little hamfisted and installed the ABS pipe elbow that feeds aft sink and shower drainage into the gray tank. Since the black and gray tanks are above the fresh and hidden behind the pegboard in Dutch Stars, I installed a two-sensor water alarm and put a second cutoff switch next to the one featured in this entry. Owners might consider checking the carpet and adjacent pegboard in this compartment as part of their pre-trip inspections.
  2. Thanks! The mysterious 101% quantity guage reversion whenever the DEF is conjuring up false alarms might be helpful to those who haven't yet experienced trouble. One gem gleaned from an attendee of Camp Freightliner is, use the gauge to deplete DEF before replenishing. Apparently, the fluid gets old and can degrade system performance. By using it up prior to refilling, it stays fresh(er). [We had an uneventful leg from Mississippi back to Texas. Gassed up alongside a beautiful Tiffin at Buc-ee's east of Dallas and asked if he was rocking a Freightliner, just to share what'd I'd learned. 'Turns out, he had a Powerglide chassis, two minutes into our conversation it came out that he was a fellow KC-135A pilot in my squadron at Carswell, 30 years ago... Small world.]
  3. I enjoyed the tour of the property! Lots of fun, all around. Thanks for sharing.
  4. So, here we are 10 months later, I had the same thing present en route, spontaneously. At first, the display showed these same warnings except the DEF quantity was 56%, visually verified. Then, it showed the 101% which commonly means the DEF has been topped off and all warnings will disappear once the quantity goes down to 87%. Of course, after the February experience, I always verify radiator coolant level, too. Ignoring it like the last haf-dozen times, we pressed on. Eventually, we got the dreaded red STOP ENGINE and VERY LOW DEF lights. At that point, I pulled over 8 miles short of my destination, shut down and went to investigate. Sure enough, both radiator and DEF tanks were fine. Here is the sticker: I shut down. Upon restart, my engine latched into a deep derate, and I was now capable of 5 mph. The good news: McElroy Trucking's main campus and driver school spread out in front of me, like a luxurious Kentucky equine estate with immaculate red trucks instead of horses. I called Freightliner and all of the local truckstops. No one could come do a computer reset. One suggested disconnecting the battery for 20 minutes. The Freightliner help desk said there is a bootleg method: turn the ignition key to ON for two hours. I tried both to no avail. Thinking it'd be a nice courtesy to alert folks at the trucking company I was there, I tried to gain entry. All doors were locked. I called, the phone picked up immediately. A foreman greeted me, said they saw me enter and that I was free to park as long as I needed. Later, he came out to check on us. When I told him about the DEF, he rolled his eyes and said that was his Freightliner superpower. Indeed, at one time, the company owned 400 Freightliners but had since weaned themselves from the brand, with 700 trucks presently, most International. He gave me a number to call, Empire Truck Services of Meridian. He even looked into rummaging around in his parts room for a head that would fit. They were all the wrong part number. Checking back in with Freightliner -- I'm becoming a big fan of these folks -- the operator said not to bother mobile service folks any longer. "You've done what you can, and them coming out will just be a waste of money." He suggested calling the nearest dealer, Empire Truck Services. I did, and they immediately ordered a new DEF head, having found one in Atlanta, another in Amarillo. With all of the failures I'm hearing about, the notion that only two could be located in stock is alarming. They offered to overnight it with a Tuesday morning arrival, I agreed. When I called to report this to Freightliner, I asked if they'd like to set up the wrecker. They did; and, a few minutes ago, after a flawless 20-mile tow, the driver was instructed to visit with the Empire office to take care of the bill. This Freightliner dealer in Meridian, Mississippi is a huge, new facility. Very impressive. I arrived by wrecker at noon, at 2PM the DEF tank is being lowered from the chassis. I'll post updates as they develop. [8PM Update: We did a good leak check, the computer triggered a regeneration cycle, said by techs to span as long as 1 1/2 hours. Sure enough, at five minutes short of that time, the 1,100 rpm regeneration suddenly dropped 300 rpm, signaling completion. But, an attempt to clear the codes was unsuccessful. The laptop demanded a software update, and by then Cummins was closed. For the first time in our 10-year RV career, we found a hotel room. Let's see what the morning brings.]
  5. I had mine gouged by the dried stems of a bush growing alongside my driveway. One of 14 different pieces. Replacement cost: $528 for that small section. That's just the pre-cut section, uninstalled.
  6. Thanks, Doc. I span the distance between here and Japan, have had a ringside seat to both nations' responses. The wife sliced her thumb the other day, went to ER while I sat in Tokyo; here, in rural TX, she was treated in the hallway because no rooms were open. But, she saw no one. Of course. Doc revealed to her we have fifty being isolated with COVID, just in our little hospital. BTW, I had the dubious honor of being the first to report exposure, in February. Positive for antibodies, which along with a dollar could worth a cup of coffee; but, I'm preaching to the choir. 'Will stick to aviation, trust your expertise. So, the wife is desperate to escape the TX heat, swung her sights to Ruidoso. The governor's letter exempts aircrew, but I don't want to play that card. In practical terms, do you all think isolated camping, sitting by the rig after sunset, hiking and biking qualifies as "Quarantine?" We can upload all provisions before departure, encounter no one face to face both enroute and during our stay. I won't enter a restaurant or bar, no matter where I rest my head. Johns Hopkins hasn't identified black water as an epidemiological threat. lol Thoughts?
  7. It seems that this warning can also be a harbinger of an impending LOW COOLANT annunciation. We got the LOW DEF warning as the first indication of a leaking heater hose union, in a new 2019 Freightliner XC Class A. 'Turns out, Freightliner ships to the coach builders with heater hoses capped. Newmar, Tiffin, et al then remove the caps and link their dashboard heater cores via more hose. In the case of my Newmar, a brass union was shoved into the hose-ends and a small worm-drive hose clamp was installed on each side of the union. In tightening the forward clamp, the wall of the hose was cut, a leak developed. It took nearly 8,000 miles to work its way up to a noticeable rate, the enclosure into which the hose was laid caused fluid to drip at the engine compartment and at the front of the coach. Owners are cautioned to find where this union is, monitor the location for leakage. I've now owned three RVs, and two have developed leaks at this location.
  8. This is a new rig, and I've had this problem, twice. Others have reported the same thing happening, with their Dometic 8700 mascerating toilets. Once the Black tank reaches 75%, the common recommended minimum prior to dumping, one or both toilets can quickly "go Red," meaning the Red full tank icon illuminates and electrical power is inhibited. Putting a finer point on it, if one toilet has a red icon and the other is still yellow, the latter is still for the moment functional. 'Problem that owners are having is, the red light remains on after a Black tank dump and it often will remain on, following dump and rinse. Same deal, however: if one toilet was yellow prior to this condition, it will revert to a blank display and work normally. But, there is some glitch in this design and/or programming that can leave one or both toilets "stuck" on Red despite an empty/clean tank. In our case, we are a new rig, a 2019 Newmar DSDP 4018 purchased at the end of summer. We have no children or teenage girls, and eat lots of fiber. No, seriously, we use the toilets delicately, ie a two-flush system, modest paper usage, no wet wipes, etc. The fix for this condition is relatively simple: find the control module for the affected toilet -- it looks like a black deck of cards -- and clip the yellow wire. That defeats the Full level sensor, restores normal operation. The caveat of course is, you've now defeated the Full inhibit function and can overflow. In the aft-bath DSDPs with their novel escape door (a handy way to converse with neighbors while attending to business), the process is painfully easy: open the escape/socializing door, reach into the now exposed toilet cavity from outside and unclip the yellow wire. For the powder room and many other applications, the module could be anywhere on its 6-foot harness, like under the sink or inside the wall. For DSDP owners, some have found the powder room module located behind the "Newmar pegboard." In our case, it is mounted above the pegboard and behind the adjoining plastic fairing. I took a photo, for reference. Having endured this condition twice in our first six months of usage, I'm creating a simple fix: each toilet will have a nearby guarded emergency-use-only switch labeled SENSOR OVERRIDE to restore operation when flushing is inhibited by a false Full indication. I'll save this with lots of tags, to shorten the learning process for those who'll encounter this problem, on the road.
  9. Ray, I just got back from the autoparts store. Both batteries checked out fine. I'm guessing it is a sticky BIM, since connections and battery cells have been eliminated as culprits. It should be noted that Newmar is putting a Battery Isolation Manager in its late model DSDPs that has been discontinued by the manufacturer. (Herman, thanks for your input. Kenneth Marczak is a longtime RV'er and fellow heavy equipment operator with the airline, a degreed engineer. I trust his judgement. He agrees with you. Of course, Huffy is also 100% right, when it comes to cold storage and future readers should appreciate that distinction: there are times when we'd de-power the inverter. But, for those of us who garage these rigs, Inverter and Charger are left running. Tiffin, Newmar and Forest River now all concur. Super thread, of value to people researching this topic, later.)
  10. I haven't talked to Newmar, but an engineer who owns a new Freightliner Tiffin confirmed that the Inverter and Charger are to be left On for 50A garaging, neighbors with a new Forest River got the same verdict from their dealer.
  11. I don't like what I have this AM: 11.65 on the Chassis, 12.4 for the House. I'll pull the batteries, load test after an overnight of resting.
  12. Thanks! Also, thanks for all of the suggestions. Oddly, I'm temporarily outdoors (lav servicing) and plugged into 30A and it suddenly seems happy. The plane is a 2001 Progressive Aerodyne Searey. 'Bout as basic as you can get, for romping around nearby lakes and rivers. All of the "going places" planes are gone. She burns about 3 gallons per hour, fun flying. Hey, let's talk about storage. I've perused Newgle and the DSDP manual to no avail. As Huffypuff helpfully pointed out, Sensata tells us in paragraph 4.2 to turn off the inverter when placing mobile installations into storage. So, what does that mean to us? I'm putting mine back into the garage bay today. It'll be plugged into 50A with the block and water heaters off, heat pumps set to 62F, fridge running. A couple who bought another brand DP down the street just encountered this, had similar chassis battery problems, were told to store with shore power running the inverter. But, there is that passage, along with another suggesting physical removal of the batteries. I'll guess that the latter isn't right, since my garage temp never strays below freezing. But, is the best shore storage -- we "store" for several weeks at a time, rarely longer -- protocol physically disconnecting the chassis batteries, and turning off the inverter? If that is what Newmar recommends, I'll be happy to comply. But, I cannot find a procedure published by our Napannee friends. As always, your input is appreciated.
  13. Resolution: Let's hope this is it. At your urging, I laid hands on the entire system, from batteries to Isolator and back. Connections tightened (none were really loose, only one moved at all), searched chafe points, reviewed flex, intervened for strain relief on several data cables that were drawn tight at the inverter. Then, I removed the smallest electrons from the coach with disconnects, unplugging from shore power, and finally crawling into the mid-cabin basement to reach between the frame rails and manually kill the inverter. At this point, let me add that the only charging modes I've seen for weeks have been a default to Float at around 10A, and the Equalizing that I forced to "jumpstart" the chassis charging process after rundown. So, I reconnected the house batteries first. Then, turned on the Inverter. Next, I plugged in 50A Shore. Then, I reconnected the Chassis bank. The panel said Bulk charging, 95A. That was different. Later, when it finally went back to Absorb mode, the amps were 15-19A, higher than before. Plus, that elusive Chassis bank lightning bolt icon was visible, indicating that the chassis bank was charging. I'm assuming I've solved the problem, since operations a day later appear 100% normal after several charging cycles. Lessons learned: Magnum, say their reps, isn't responsible for discerning charging voltage. That's where the isolation relay comes into play. These come in a variety of forms; in our case, it is a discontinued one from Precision Circuits, Inc. That company sent us full diagnostics, which showed the relay to be okay. Newmar is the third entity in the battery-charging provider array. They publish settings for the Magnum control panel specific to the Newmar DSDP fleet. Owners are then responsible for dancing with three partners simultaneously, in dealing with charging woes. If I were to guess, the money shot for solving my problem was resetting the inverter. That is only an educated guess, largely based on the evidence that every other component in the charging pipeline seemed to check out okay. I hope future readers can be aided by this forums entry. Thanks again to all who contributed. 12-23-2019 Photos: View from inside and out 😋
  14. Thanks, all. We have a bunch of guests today, so I don't have much time to do diagnostics. I've already been playing with the "device," which on this Newmar is a Battery Isolation Manager. I really like the dirty terminal notion, or even that of a dead battery. Will look into those. Thanks for branching me out to look in different directions. Disappointing, that an RV right off the dealer lot would present a challenge like this. Taking it to a dealer 80 miles away presents a twofold problem: counting a chase car's miles, that is 480 miles of driving for each dropoff; with something like this, I'd expect a dealer to either fail to duplicate the problem or go through several repair cycles. UPDATE: Even in failure, our rigs teach us about themselves. The wife and I spent the night in our rig, giving houseguests the run of our house (and avoid the drama of leaving some in the bus overnight). In the morning, the MCD Night shades at the DS window, PS window and entry wouldn't budge. Voila! Those are the ones powered by the chassis batteries, which of course discharged overnight. Ten seconds in forced Equalization charging mode restored the illusory normal condition, the shades obediently rose. Today, I'll start removing and cleaning, retightening, etc.
  15. Newmar and even Magnum seem unable to resolve this problem, so I turn to the real experts who populate this forum. Normal operation continues for days, weeks, at a time Arbitrarily, the Chassis batteries run down in the course of less than 8 hours to 3 VDC, according to the Water & Battery display panel When rundown occurs, Float Charging is indicated with no charging symbol on the Chassis Battery icon, 0 Amps output Holding down the Charger ON/OFF control forces the charger into Equalizing mode After a few seconds of Equalizing mode (not appropriate for our AGM batteries) a second prolonged push puts the charger back into Float Charging mode, 20 or so Amps output Both house and chassis batteries show normally charged mere seconds after this action If Magnum tech reps are mystified, taking the rig to a local dealer or even Nappanee seems foolish. Any ideas?
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