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Old 07-28-2015, 08:28 PM   #1
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Generator quits while driving

7500 Onan runs fine while parked but when driving it keeps cutting off.
Tank is full. Oil and water levels are full also.
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Old 07-28-2015, 08:59 PM   #2
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Same situation in a 24' Safari Trek

Hi -

That is a common problem/issue with Safari Trek motor homes. The issue is that the fuel tank is at the rear of the coach, and the generator is near the front (on these models). That makes a long distance for the generator to "suck" the fuel from the gas tank.

I'm not sure if your setup is the same/similar.

First I replaced the fuel line (thinking it could be letting in air), then replaced the pump (thinking that it was weak), but the generator still quit routinely while driving; all ok while sitting still.

In the end, the fix was installing a small 12v electric fuel pump just over the tank itself. Very easy to do, actually. Just cut the fuel line, and the pump fits directly in-line. Then run the wiring to the 12v supply to the generator itself, so that the pump ran only while the generator was in use. The hardest part was crawling around under the RV to zip-tie the power wiring; connections at the generator were straightforward and simple. The pump was low-pressure, and "pushed" the fuel from the tank towards the generator.

Fixed the problem and never looked back / no problems since.

Here is a link to a similar pump on eBay:
12v fuel pump | eBay

Not sure if this is the problem that you are experiencing, but this is what worked for me.

John
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Old 07-28-2015, 08:59 PM   #3
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Does it cut off as soon as you put it into Drive on the trans pad? If not, how long does it stay on after moving before it cuts off. Could the movement be highlighting a loose connection that doesn't like the bumps in the road?
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Old 07-28-2015, 09:04 PM   #4
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Is it diesel or gas? Gas could be getting hot and vapor locking. Does the generator give any codes as to what caused the shut down? Does it happen when driving at steady speed on the highway or when turning?

https://www.cumminsonan.com/www/pdf/...s/981-0161.pdf
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Old 07-28-2015, 09:19 PM   #5
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It's diesel. The coach is a diplomat so the tank is just behind the front wheels. The generator cuts off usually after a 1/4 to 1mile. The light on the start switch blinks 3 times when I try to restart it. Once I stop and prime it 3 or4 times it starts and runs fine
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Old 07-28-2015, 09:19 PM   #6
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I had the same problem with my 8k Onan in my 06 Intrigue. I spent $800 having it diagnosed at a Cummins dealer and they couldn't figure out the problem. I decided not to pursue it any further. FYI, my alternator went out on me and I drove 800 miles with my generator on to keep the batteries charged. As soon as I replaced my alternator, the generator would no longer run when the motor was running.
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Old 07-28-2015, 10:50 PM   #7
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The 3 blinks fault code indicates a shutdown due to some abnormal condition. You need to check the secondary fault codes. The code stops blinking after 5 minutes, so you can press the "stop" 3 times in 5 seconds to restore the last fault code. My onan operators manual shows trouble shooting and fault codes on pages 22-30.
I had a code 33, high coolant temp, the temp sensor was bad and was sending a 70 ohm ground to the ecu, soo the ecu thought the temp was over 240 degrees and shut it down. In this case less ohms is more temp!
Good luck, let us know your results.
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Old 07-28-2015, 11:01 PM   #8
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I have no idea if this would even apply to your generator, but I had a similar issue with a 4K gas Onan generator a number of years ago. It would run forever sitting still. It would always die shortly after hitting the road. It turned out that the motion of driving down the road would cause the low oil shut off to turn the generator off, even though it wasn't actually low on oil. The repair shop's solution was to disconnect the wire for the shut off.
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Old 07-29-2015, 06:27 AM   #9
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After it stops check the red light on the start switch on the generator (not the remote one). If it is flashing then there is a fault code to tell you what is wrong. Press the bottom half of the rocker switch (not the upper start part) and it will start flashing a two number fault code over and over again. Count the flashes for each number and let me know what the number is.
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Old 07-29-2015, 08:22 AM   #10
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Mine does this too. It's been "buggy" ever since we got it. Since we don't use the generator often I've not gotten into it to fix it. The code mine gives me is the 3-11 which is an over current fault. It even did it when the breaker on the unit is off so it is an internal issue. Onan changed the controller while it was still under warranty but it didn't last more than 3 yrs before it did it again. Most of the time it'll run but every now and then it won't.
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Old 07-29-2015, 08:39 AM   #11
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Mine 7500 is acting up also. It will run for 1 - 4 hours, then shut down, especially under heavy load. The fault code is 36, engine stopped without command from controller. My fuel tank is close to the generator, so fuel should not be and issue. The fault command also suggests changing the air filter, but it was just changed in March, and should not need to be changed for 500 hours. The generator only has a total of 325 hours on it now. It also stopped during a hard stop made to avoid traffic, so it could be that fuel was lost on that one. However it has stopped on me 7 or 8 times now. Runs great while parked, but I have not run it over a couple of hours parked to see if it would stop.
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Old 07-29-2015, 09:03 AM   #12
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One other thing to check is oil level, make sure it is at the top of the mark on the dipstick. I was traveling and had stopped in a casino parking lot for the night and could not get coach as level as I like, right front was alittle high. Gen would run and stop in a few minutes, checked oil and it was in middle of dipstick, I added 1/2 quart and all was good to go. I checked again when I was level and oil was right at the top of the marks, so I make sure when I change it to bring it to the top!
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Old 07-29-2015, 10:11 PM   #13
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Will do Mike. I crew on a top fuel team so the generator runs fine when parked for days.
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Old 07-29-2015, 10:57 PM   #14
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Our generator used to shutdown while driving and sometimes when parked. The fuel pump was turning off. I hotwired the pump and it runs just fine. I need to install a separate fuel pump switch, just haven't got to it yet.
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