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Old 09-08-2015, 04:47 PM   #1
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won't charge, 11.9-12.1v stuck

Hey guys,

In dire need of advice, assistance, help or what have you.

I have a check engine light and that little tiny volt indicator in my speedo has been bouncing between 11.9 and 12.1 volts. I noticed that for a few times I could increase the revs via jake brake and it would jump to normal(?) volts, 12.4-13.8 or so and stay for a little while and light would go off. It would slowly creep back down. Is this an indication of a bad alternator, I'm assuming internal regulator, or is there something in the vansco that can cause this? I am in a KOA in Lodi, yep, just like the song, and I don't want to get somebody out here to replace the alt unless I have an idea of whats going on.

As a side note, my steering is also suddenly heavy. New hyd fluid up to the full mark and also 3 new filters.

Also need a shop up here if anybody knows of one.

Thanks, Terry
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Old 09-08-2015, 04:58 PM   #2
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Check your serpentine belt and pulleys. That belt will affect cooling also.
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Old 09-08-2015, 04:59 PM   #3
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Terry,

A short term option for a bad alternator/regulator is to wire the positive terminal of the chassis battery to positive terminal of the house battery (if 6 VDC batteries be sure to go to the 12 VDC positive terminal).

You should be able to get that short battery cable at any Walmart, auto parts house, etc.

Then, run the generator and let the inverter/ charger charge both battery banks.

I would NOT run a newer/electronic engine and transmission coach on less than 12.5 VDC.

Brett
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Old 09-08-2015, 05:15 PM   #4
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Jim,

The belts are new and everything seems to be turning like it should. Forgot to mention no heating issues, 175*-200*, new radiator and full coolant.

Brett,

Based on your answer I am assuming the alt has internal reg. I can get a cable and tie the chassis batts to the house batts, that won't be a problem. I was concerned about the Vansco magic box. Would it be wise to open the the battery disconnects and reboot things?

Also any thoughts on the steering. I will check again for a slipping or loose belt.
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Old 09-08-2015, 06:16 PM   #5
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Believe most Alpines [05s atleast] have DuVac exciter circuit but no direct alternator interface with Vansco. Vansco does control charging between house and chassis bats based on differences in charge level -- but would think alternator is hooked directly to chassis bats. If volts are changing with RPM, it might be the alternator [05 original?] but also could be bad chassis bats, or bad/corroded bat cable connections. Think I would start with cables and bats first, then go to the alternator last......belt tightener could affect alternator but hydraulic steering is supplied by a direct-drive mechanical pump on the engine...
Curious what "fluid" was used in the hydraulic reservoir?
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Old 09-08-2015, 06:52 PM   #6
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Old Scout,

All batts are new, 5 months, all cables and ends are clean, tight and protected. the fluid is correct hyd fluid, I was very careful about that. The alt is I believe the original so it would appear to be the culprit. I just wanted to make sure I wasn't barking up the wrong tree. Looks like a new alt is the answer.

I am thinking the alt is a stock Cummins item and should be readily available?!?!
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Old 09-08-2015, 08:53 PM   #7
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Perhaps it would be on the shelf at Cummins but it might be at a premium price. Dont know if this alternator was a option on motors supplied to WRV vs a std model for the ISL engine. Not familiar with your location but almost any large city would/should have a generator/alternator repair shop [new and rebuilt]. OEM alternators on the ISL are very common. Ref recent posts on this forum---other Alpine owners have found both 160 and 200 amp Delco/Remy units at NAPA.....good luck.
PS -- think it would be std practice but have the repair shop test yours before committing to a new unit.
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Old 09-24-2015, 10:04 PM   #8
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Alternator replaced and back on the road, in fact the trip is over and I'm back home. Finally decent wifi!!

I had the work done at All Wheel, Auto, Truck and RV in Redding CA.

Very good service and workmanship, they were also very thorough and found and fixed a couple of potential issues. They worked me in and got me out. Unfortunately it ran into a week end and that extended repair time.

We spent a couple nights in their lot with 50A service and great wifi. They had the a/c going for us when we came back in the evening. They made the breakdown as pleasant as possible.

Thanks again to everyone here who pitched in with thoughts and suggestions.

Terry
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Old 09-24-2015, 10:18 PM   #9
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Thanks for updating us, it's always good to hear what cured the problem.
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