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Old 05-23-2008, 06:54 AM   #1
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Hi Newmar Bunch! Got a mechanical question. We run an 08 4502 Essex (6,000 miles on it) with a 500 ISM Cummins on a Spartan K2. On Monday of this week 5/19 we pulled over Wolf Creek pass heading East on 160 and stopped for the night at Alamosa, CO. When registering, put air brake on, trans. into neutral, and switched engine off. After about 15 mins. registering, went to turn engine on, but NADA!!! All dash lights working, gen. started, etc. etc. but...it was as if starter had stopped in a "dead spot" and would do nothing...not even a sound!! Well after sweating around for about 30 mins. including switching off and on the master switch, all of a sudden it turned over and started. Pulled into camp spot feeling pretty smug thinking I finally did something right switching master switch which someone on this sight once mentioned, and we shut off the rig and spent the night. Next morning it started just fine and we drove on to our destination at Garden of the Gods cmpgrnd. in Colorado Springs, but pulled into a Love's fuel stop to fill up before going to cmpgrnd. Pulled into tight pump lane with toad sticking out and shut down engine to fuel up...and...you guessed it, went to start up after fueling and again...NADA. After an hour fiddling hoping it would start like the previous evening, it still wouldn't turn over. After another hr. blocking fueling lanes, disconnecting toad, and dealing over marginally connection cell phone in very noisy fuel area) with.. a.) NEWMAR, b.)CUMMINS, and c.)SPARTAN, (have now been blocking fuel lane for over 2hrs.) and getting ready to get a tow set up....wife tried start up again (after maybe the 20 previous attempts) and...YUP...it started. Drove to the relatively nearby Spartan shop I'd been advised to talk too and tech went through steps recommended by Spartan. Anyway, don't know wheather what tech did (basically tightening connections of solenoids, battery cables etc.)is going to work, since problem only shows up after running for long time, but we're heading N. through Denver up to Deadwood and will be very fearful of shutting engine off before parking for the night. Spartan says Cummings WILL NOT let Spartan replace starter even if needed. Guess all we can do is to see what happens!! SO.....anybody encountered this problem, and sure would like to hear ANY suggestions ya might have. (sorry for lengthy post.) Thanks for any help ya might offer. Steve & Lynette
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Old 05-23-2008, 06:54 AM   #2
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Hi Newmar Bunch! Got a mechanical question. We run an 08 4502 Essex (6,000 miles on it) with a 500 ISM Cummins on a Spartan K2. On Monday of this week 5/19 we pulled over Wolf Creek pass heading East on 160 and stopped for the night at Alamosa, CO. When registering, put air brake on, trans. into neutral, and switched engine off. After about 15 mins. registering, went to turn engine on, but NADA!!! All dash lights working, gen. started, etc. etc. but...it was as if starter had stopped in a "dead spot" and would do nothing...not even a sound!! Well after sweating around for about 30 mins. including switching off and on the master switch, all of a sudden it turned over and started. Pulled into camp spot feeling pretty smug thinking I finally did something right switching master switch which someone on this sight once mentioned, and we shut off the rig and spent the night. Next morning it started just fine and we drove on to our destination at Garden of the Gods cmpgrnd. in Colorado Springs, but pulled into a Love's fuel stop to fill up before going to cmpgrnd. Pulled into tight pump lane with toad sticking out and shut down engine to fuel up...and...you guessed it, went to start up after fueling and again...NADA. After an hour fiddling hoping it would start like the previous evening, it still wouldn't turn over. After another hr. blocking fueling lanes, disconnecting toad, and dealing over marginally connection cell phone in very noisy fuel area) with.. a.) NEWMAR, b.)CUMMINS, and c.)SPARTAN, (have now been blocking fuel lane for over 2hrs.) and getting ready to get a tow set up....wife tried start up again (after maybe the 20 previous attempts) and...YUP...it started. Drove to the relatively nearby Spartan shop I'd been advised to talk too and tech went through steps recommended by Spartan. Anyway, don't know wheather what tech did (basically tightening connections of solenoids, battery cables etc.)is going to work, since problem only shows up after running for long time, but we're heading N. through Denver up to Deadwood and will be very fearful of shutting engine off before parking for the night. Spartan says Cummings WILL NOT let Spartan replace starter even if needed. Guess all we can do is to see what happens!! SO.....anybody encountered this problem, and sure would like to hear ANY suggestions ya might have. (sorry for lengthy post.) Thanks for any help ya might offer. Steve & Lynette
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Old 05-23-2008, 07:10 AM   #3
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Just a guess, but could this be related to the bussman box recall? I thought I read where the engine would shut down and not start again?
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Old 05-23-2008, 12:21 PM   #4
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I'd be interested in hearing the solution, as the same thing happened to me (in the 80's), and the fix at that time was to bypass the neutral safety switch, with a starter button. It never failed to work properly, but no one could explain what was wrong.
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Old 05-23-2008, 02:27 PM   #5
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I have to make a number of assumptions here. Deadwood that you mention is Deadwood, SD. The reason Cummins won't allow THAT Spartan to work on engine is they are not certified. The closest certified spot to Deadwood would be NW Peterbilt in Blackhawk about 20 miles away. They show service open on Saturday morning. 605-787-9345. It seems like a bad starter but could be a problem with ECM lockout or a number of other issues.
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Old 05-24-2008, 03:41 AM   #6
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These intermittent things are real bears. Sorry you are going through it. It near impossible to find what's broke when it ain't, most of the time.

Bussman issue is long a thing of the past and applied to relatively few coach's. At 6k miles it also would not apply as it is something that happens in the first 1-2k miles. All this from prev discussions w/ Chris F.

You have a superb Cummins shop in Denver on your way from GG up north. Rocky Mountain Cummins in Henderson, CO. Smitty will be your tech there. Top flight.

Loose connection would be my guess too. It doesn't sound like starter motor "heat soak" due to total dead-ness. Hence, they may have gotten it right. I hope they licked it, I too would be nervous for a long time forward at every shutdown...

Good luck and uneventful travels...
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Old 05-24-2008, 04:16 AM   #7
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I had the same problem on a Cummins ISC engine. It would always start when cold, but failed to start about 1 time in 10 when hot. Sometimes it would start after a few minutes of turning the key and once it did not start for three hours. I started letting the engine run when I got fuel because I didn't want to block a fuel lane.

It did this for over a year before I found the problem. One of the wires on the starter solenoid had a loose connection and the other wire was slightly loose. One of the connections had pitted and turned black from arcing. I removed both connections and cleaned and smoothed them with a file then tightened them good. It never failed again.
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Old 05-24-2008, 03:27 PM   #8
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THANKS for all the feedback. Still don't really know if all the "connection tightening" will solve the problem but we'll see the next time we shut er down. Norm, think I'll avoid shutting down during fuel-ups IF no one complains;....and jeff (RV Dude), we've used Rocky Mtn. Cummins in Denver before and you're right....they're GREAT....but I've debated about just pulling in, shutting down and seeing if this problem replicates right there in their lot!!! We'll let ya all know if we end up discovering the "real" source of this spook failure to start. Thanks again. Steve & Lynette
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Old 05-24-2008, 04:50 PM   #9
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I had this some twenty years ago. It turned out to be a broken wire in the windings in the starter. Everything was fine when cool. However when the starter/windings got hot and expanded the wire would lose its continuity, and wa-la the starter would not work. New starter and never had another problem.

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Old 05-25-2008, 04:49 AM   #10
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Welcome WBGrubbs to the Newmar forum and irv2.
No coach yet enjoy looking at the new NEWMARS.
Enjoy the forums and do post often.
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Old 05-28-2008, 03:26 AM   #11
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Hi iRV2'rs: As promised, here's update on hot starter not turning over engine. On 5/23 as described above, we did have Spartan tech in Colo. Springs go through and tighten all connections in accordance with directions from Spartan (ie., solenoid connections, battery and ground connections, etc.). We parked for a wk. in Garden of the Gods then yesterday (Tues. 5/27) drove N. to Lingle, WY. (abt. 300 mi.). Anyway, when we pulled into site at campground, shut engine off, proceded to lever her up, then...then....thought we'd see if she started up....and by golly it turned right over and started. Maybe tightening connections a wk. ago did the trick, but we'll see. Tech. did say the main battery cable grounds (apparently 2 ea.)located on driver side of generator compartment coming out of fuse bay were loose. Maybe that was the problem. Steve & Lynette
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Old 05-29-2008, 04:42 AM   #12
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Up-Update: FYI..Ran from Lingle, WY to Whistler's Gultch CG, Deadwood, SD and after shutting down, leveling rig, etc., thought we'd try starting and it still worked. May need to "knock on wood", but it's looking like the connection tightening MAY have solved the problem. Steve
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Old 06-17-2008, 02:03 PM   #13
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Ooooops!! (Update on "hot starter (on 08 4502/500ISM Essex) not starting engine). WELL....spoke too soon back in Wyoming. Since previouse post, engine had been starting fine..however, just stopped for lunch (Mon. 6/16)in Parkston, S.D. after 70 miles of travel, shut rig off, and the same problem occurred when we were ready to leave..starter would NOT engage and there we were. Back to Newmar, back to Spartan, Spartan sent tech who after checking batteries, etc., "arched (or jumped) across the in and out connections on the starter solenoid and...walla!...it started. We called Cummins Warranty and were directed to call Cummins in Sioux Falls and we're currently parked in lot at Cummins/Onan here in Sioux Falls and Cummins is going to replace the starter but shop is having trouble locating a starter as "it's so new..nobody has one." So it's apparently going to be sent from Cummins directly. Hope this does the trick. Gettin a little tired of being afraid to turn the engine off! Will let ya-all know what happens if anyone is interested. Steve & Lynette
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Old 06-18-2008, 05:23 AM   #14
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Gettin a little tired of being afraid to turn the engine off! </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Afraid to turn it OFF as it won't start, afraid to turn it ON for the cost of fuel. What's an RV'er to do!!!! Oh woah is us!!!!

Hope this does the trick!! Must be some quirkee defect in the motor...
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