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Old 06-07-2014, 10:56 AM   #1
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2002 Allure - seems down on power and brake lights

Last year I traded my providence in for a 2002 Allure 36SLD 330hp, love the coach and it does everything I need it to for the 6 or 7 times a year I use it.

Couple interesting problems:

1) Brake Lights - The center brake light functions all the time never waivers never fails, the two outer brake lights are intermittent and don't seem to function when at speed, but after several brake applications and slowing to under 25 they work again flawlessly. tough to troubleshoot as I can't get a multimeter in the outer compartment when I'm going 50! This also affects the trailer brake lights. Turn signals function perfectly, just the brake lights. I am running a brake controller, it is wired from the output of one of the brake light switches back to the trailer connector...but it does function perfectly and doesn't seem like it would be the issue, trailer brakes work, but the lights don't.

2) the coach has about 120k on it now and has it's various little chassis issues, but it seems really down on power. I know that the 360hp of the providence was more but it seems like it's WAY down on power not able to keep speed going up slight hills etc...any suggestions on what to look at. it was fully serviced in the spring and no mechanical issues noted, air filter new, etc...etc...


I love the coach and it's a great driver, love driving it over the providence the road manners are so much better even with the 28' trailer behind.

Aaron
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Old 06-07-2014, 11:45 AM   #2
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The brake light issue could be the result of trailer hook up or brake controller. If you have a mix of LED lights and incandescent, that could add to the issue. I really don't understand why speed would effect brake light function, unless your brake controller has a speed sensor that changes its function.

You say it was fully serviced, but was it hooked up to see if there were any engine codes? I'd check boost and injectors for power issues.
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Old 06-07-2014, 11:49 AM   #3
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Couple of questions.
What chassis is your coach built on? Freightliner?
Do you know your total rolling weight?
Has the coaches power always seemed low ? Or; Is this a new problem ?

Only takes one bad tank of fuel to plug fuel filters.
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Old 06-07-2014, 12:04 PM   #4
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Aaron's rig is on the Country Coach custom chassis, built by CC in their factory.
Engine issue could be failing charge air cooler (aka CAC or intercooler), or some soft elbow or connector in the air path that has holed or come a bit loose, & making a boost leak so you don't have proper boost. A ride-along w/a mechanic that has software to report engine parameters will tell if you are not making proper boost (assumes you have a diagnostic port up front which I believe you do. Prior to ride-along, IIWMI'd do a thorough piping check to see if a problem is visually detectable.
Another lost power possibility (I hope not, and less likely than above) is a dusted engine which would ordinarily also show excessive blow by. This can come from inadequate engine air filtration. If so, its a rebuild.
A third is defective turbo action, less likely than the other two IMO.
A fourth is a defective sensor, tho which I'm not qualified to state. Likeliness falls somewhere in between, probably after #1. Need somebody who is conversant in your engine. Caterpillar?

IIWMI'd post the power loss question in the Cat or Cummins forum here on iRV2 for more targeted advice.
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Old 06-07-2014, 01:32 PM   #5
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engine is the cummins ISC 8.3 liter on the IFS Dynomax Chassis. Total weight is about 40,000lbs. coach has seemed low on power since I bought it, but always tough to tell. There is no real smoke out the exhaust other black when you floor it...and that's not even a lot.

As for the brake lights.
1) trailer does have LED
2) issue is there whether trailer is hooked up or not
3) haven't removed brake controller its a tekonsha P2
4) wonder if it's a connection that is loose somewhere?
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Old 06-07-2014, 01:33 PM   #6
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is there a code reader or computer program you can buy somewhere to monitor?
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Old 06-07-2014, 05:01 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by a johnson View Post
is there a code reader or computer program you can buy somewhere to monitor?
Scangauge D, and Silver Leaf are the 2 dash mounted monitoring displays I hear the most about.

ScanGaugeD - Advanced J1939 & J1708 compatible Vehicle Monitor for Diesel Pusher Vehicles : Linear Logic

Sorry don't have a link for Silver Leaf.
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Old 06-07-2014, 05:12 PM   #8
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Ok, on your power to weight ratio, 330 HP to 40,000 combined = 1 hp to 120 lbs
Most times you would want 1 hp to 100 lbs or lower.
I'm rolling at 1 to 103 and find power adequate , could I use more power on the hills , yes, am I willing to trade up ( $$$$$ ) to get it. Not likely.
You may want to read this , Cat info package, good info for any coach owner.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf Cat_RV_Performance.pdf (246.3 KB, 43 views)
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Old 06-07-2014, 06:47 PM   #9
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I think i'll pick up the scan gauge d. that looks like what I had in the providence and was awesome to determine where coach performance was at.

tomorrow I'm going to give some tries on the brake lights....

thanks for the tips everyone
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Old 06-07-2014, 07:28 PM   #10
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I had the vmspc installed on my laptop I used for my inspire. I liked being able to look at several items as in boost pressure,horsepower ect and I could use it on any rig for diagnostics. I suspect if you had it you could confirm if your engine was performing correctly. I had a little 8 inch asus laptop I left on the dash and set the gages for my travel file. You can build different dashboards depending on what your doing. You can try the software out for free just download from silverleaf.
Rod
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Old 06-17-2014, 02:40 PM   #11
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All the information is good here for power loss, this was my low power problem and bad fuel mileage, I would check the radiator fan to see if has defaulted to high speed, this will rob up to 65 Hp from your engine, when you start your engine the fan should be at about 500 to 700 rpm depending on what controller you have.
if the fan controller is electronic and is in the default mode (high fan speed) it has failed. I would advise you to go to the wax valve controller way more reliable and less to do the repair, talk to Jim at Source Engineering in Oregon,941 343-0293
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Old 06-17-2014, 10:09 PM   #12
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First thing I would do is disconnect the brake controller and see if the brake lights work. There is a circuit board for the rear lights and I am not sure if it is part of a trailer package or not. There are fuses on it and I think there could be some jumpers that might need to be changed. I'll look at the electrical diagram tomorrow and report back. Watch your PM.

As far as low on power, this is subjective. It could be a number of things such as clogged air filter, clogged fuel filters. The fan controller won't be that noticeable in power loss contrary to what has been said. If it is bad, you will have a lot of fan noise and create a huge dust storm if you are in dirt.

Did your other coach have a Cat motor? If so, the torque curve on the Cummins and Cat are different and that requires a different driving style. I noticed a huge difference when I went from Cat to Cummins
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Old 06-18-2014, 12:25 AM   #13
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Thanks don. Old coach was a cummins as well but newer with a bigger turbo I believe. Air filter, fuel filter etc are all new. The scand showed up today so I will get it installed o help diagnosing.


I disconnected the trailer brake controller and it did seem ok, I had the wife follow me on a short drive and she said they looked "fine." I re-hooked up te controller and will go again this weekend with no trailer. I also looked over all the wiring in the rear and no loose connectors. I did zip tie one loom that could've around. Weird thing is that center light works with no issues. Just the outboard with the trailer lights looking the same. I have some wiring diagrams and that is supported as the trailer brake light come off tented wire for the brake light not the yellow wire for the center brake light.
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Old 06-20-2014, 07:48 PM   #14
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got the scand hooked up today and took for a quick drive.

All seems normal. builds 18-20psi of boost consistently. Throttle position sensor operates from 0-100% and intake temperatures are normal (right around ambient).
I did notice that the horsepower calculation was reading a max of 238 though...not sure how this calculation is performed but I would have expected to see highter?


brake lights are having to wait until I can get someone to follow me...
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