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Old 05-08-2006, 12:24 PM   #1
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I just got back from a 1700 mile RT to Vegas and back.
The 8.1 ran fine for the first 200 miles over the biggest and longest mtn. passes. Then some where around the 200th mile , I thought I was going over a large invisible hill or into the strongest head wind I had ever been in. I was losing power, spped and RPM's and when I 'floored' it , It would'nt downshift and actually lost more power. When I manually downshifted, trying to get the revs up, it sloweedd down even more. The RPM's refused to come up but it was around 3000 rpm's but no power. My speed dropped to about 35 MPH and an exit was there so I took it. The engine made some odd sounds that I won't even try to describe. I stopped the bus and put it in neutral, engine sounded fine under no load and it sounded fine when I reved it up in neutral.
Earlier in the trip I had to LCD panel set on "Miles Til Empty". I noticed going thru, mostly up the mtns. it was reading about 450 miles til empty. Later mostly coming down , I was getting readings of app. 750 miles til empty.
Ok back to where I pulled of because I had no power, I was looking at the LCD panel to see if it said limp mode or reduced engine power or what ever it is that I've heard people on this forum talking about. It did'nt say any thing like that but when I put it on "Avg. miles per gal" it said I was getting 87 MPG. Weird! I did'nt get the 'check engine' light either
I turned the engine off for a few seconds, restarted, took off and the engine ran fine.
In the next 200 miles this happened 3more times. On the 3rd time the check engine light came on. Every time , we had to pull over and turn the engine off for a sec. and then we had power again. From the 400th mile thru the 1700th mile we had no trouble and good power. It did great over all the mtns of Ut. and Co coming back and we even passed a half dozen DP's up some of the bigger and longer climbs. That always brings a smug smile to my face.
The 'check engine' light, that I thought would eventually go off after 1300 trouble free miles , is still on.
Unless Workhorse has a "known fix" for this, and they should, I hate to put another 270 miles on my vehicles, taking the Mo HO to the WH svc. center, only to have their mechanics hot rod it around trying to make it go into limp mode , only to tell me ' they can't find any thing wrong with it' and that will be $110 for their driving it time.
I once had similar trouble with a new boat I bought and while I was trying to describe the symptoms to the svc. writer, he rudely interupted me and said, "I know exactly what's wrong with it". Apparently they did, (fuel cooler) and I never had trouble again. When I asked him why they did'nt put it on before they sold it, he just said that Mercruser won't pay them to do it til the boat is sold and the customer complains.
Workhorse also should know they they have some "reduced engine power" or " limp mode" problems and they should be the experts and have had time to know what needs to be done to fix this. They should be able to tell their svc centers what the upgrade or fix is .
Has this happened to any one else?
We're you able to get this affirmatively fixed once and for all?
Or do you guys think this was in fact , the infamous "limp mode" ?
Before this happened to me, after hearing about it on the forums, I actually thought that limp mode , had even less power than I had where you could barely get off the road. I could get off the road but I don't think I could have got over the big hills.
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Old 05-08-2006, 12:24 PM   #2
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I just got back from a 1700 mile RT to Vegas and back.
The 8.1 ran fine for the first 200 miles over the biggest and longest mtn. passes. Then some where around the 200th mile , I thought I was going over a large invisible hill or into the strongest head wind I had ever been in. I was losing power, spped and RPM's and when I 'floored' it , It would'nt downshift and actually lost more power. When I manually downshifted, trying to get the revs up, it sloweedd down even more. The RPM's refused to come up but it was around 3000 rpm's but no power. My speed dropped to about 35 MPH and an exit was there so I took it. The engine made some odd sounds that I won't even try to describe. I stopped the bus and put it in neutral, engine sounded fine under no load and it sounded fine when I reved it up in neutral.
Earlier in the trip I had to LCD panel set on "Miles Til Empty". I noticed going thru, mostly up the mtns. it was reading about 450 miles til empty. Later mostly coming down , I was getting readings of app. 750 miles til empty.
Ok back to where I pulled of because I had no power, I was looking at the LCD panel to see if it said limp mode or reduced engine power or what ever it is that I've heard people on this forum talking about. It did'nt say any thing like that but when I put it on "Avg. miles per gal" it said I was getting 87 MPG. Weird! I did'nt get the 'check engine' light either
I turned the engine off for a few seconds, restarted, took off and the engine ran fine.
In the next 200 miles this happened 3more times. On the 3rd time the check engine light came on. Every time , we had to pull over and turn the engine off for a sec. and then we had power again. From the 400th mile thru the 1700th mile we had no trouble and good power. It did great over all the mtns of Ut. and Co coming back and we even passed a half dozen DP's up some of the bigger and longer climbs. That always brings a smug smile to my face.
The 'check engine' light, that I thought would eventually go off after 1300 trouble free miles , is still on.
Unless Workhorse has a "known fix" for this, and they should, I hate to put another 270 miles on my vehicles, taking the Mo HO to the WH svc. center, only to have their mechanics hot rod it around trying to make it go into limp mode , only to tell me ' they can't find any thing wrong with it' and that will be $110 for their driving it time.
I once had similar trouble with a new boat I bought and while I was trying to describe the symptoms to the svc. writer, he rudely interupted me and said, "I know exactly what's wrong with it". Apparently they did, (fuel cooler) and I never had trouble again. When I asked him why they did'nt put it on before they sold it, he just said that Mercruser won't pay them to do it til the boat is sold and the customer complains.
Workhorse also should know they they have some "reduced engine power" or " limp mode" problems and they should be the experts and have had time to know what needs to be done to fix this. They should be able to tell their svc centers what the upgrade or fix is .
Has this happened to any one else?
We're you able to get this affirmatively fixed once and for all?
Or do you guys think this was in fact , the infamous "limp mode" ?
Before this happened to me, after hearing about it on the forums, I actually thought that limp mode , had even less power than I had where you could barely get off the road. I could get off the road but I don't think I could have got over the big hills.
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Old 05-08-2006, 01:11 PM   #3
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If your check engine light is on you have an error code stored. You could go to a local garage or auto parts store and have them read the code or you could buy a code reader thing and read it yourself.
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Old 05-08-2006, 01:24 PM   #4
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Have you checked the transmission fluid level? If it gets low enough the engine will go into limp mode.
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Old 05-08-2006, 01:45 PM   #5
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Knock Sensors retarded spark advance.

You got a bad load of gasoline, ran it out,

got a good load on the next tankful, no knocking

or pinging, and it ran good.

I can't live without my OBDII code-reader, if

the MIL lamp lit, it has stored a code.
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Old 05-08-2006, 02:53 PM   #6
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This sounds interesting, and possibly , partly explain the eratic 87 MPG reading I got. But it leads me to more questions.
Interesting, and if it was just some bad gas, I should'nt have to take it to WH
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Steady Eddie:


Knock Sensors retarded spark advance.

You got a bad load of gasoline, ran it out,

got a good load on the next tankful, no knocking

or pinging, and it ran good.

I can't live without my OBDll code-reader, if

the MIL lamp lit, it has stored a code. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
What is a OBD11 code-reader and where do I get one? Does it come with instructions. Is it generic for all vehicles or a WH specialty reader? And where do you plug it in? What kind of reading would it give me if it was just some bad gas for awhile?
I know on Ford the check engine light would go back off if I ran it thru 3 heat cycles without any detected problems. On WH, will this light stay on til I disconnect the battery, or til someone turns it off?
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Old 05-08-2006, 03:49 PM   #7
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Max,

You are not in a "Limp Mode" more than likely you were in a "Reduced Engine Power" mode and that can be related to the TAC or the throttle activation control. There may other systems on your chassis that could be compromised, you could have a faulty PCM.

Now ultimately these things cost a bit of money so I would recommend that you have the service center fix these things under warranty for you.

Limp mode allows you to proceed in 1st or maybe 2nd gear so that you can get yourself off of the highway.

The best policy there is to have a WCC Center use a Tech-II and diagnose your problem. If a SES lamp is lit or if you have had a power problem the code will be retained in the PCM.

I was advised that buying an OBDII reader is OK and it might give you somewhat of an idea of what's going on but it will not be able to scan or interpret all the systems in your chassis with any degree of "certainty".

Ultimately I was convinced that buying an OTC OBDII code reader from a jobber wasn't that great of an idea so I passed on the opportunity.
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Old 05-08-2006, 04:05 PM   #8
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by DriVer:
Max,

You are not in a "Limp Mode" more than likely you were in a "Reduced Engine Power" mode and that can be related to the TAC or the throttle activation control. There may other systems on your chassis that could be compromised, you could have a faulty PCM.

Now ultimately these things cost a bit of money so I would recommend that you have the service center fix these things under warranty for you.

Limp mode allows you to proceed in 1st or maybe 2nd gear so that you can get yourself off of the highway.

The best policy there is to have a WCC Center use a Tech-II and diagnose your problem. If a SES lamp is lit or if you have had a power problem the code will be retained in the PCM.

I was advised that buying an OBDII reader is OK and it might give you somewhat of an idea of what's going on but it will not be able to scan or interpret all the systems in your chassis with any degree of "certainty".

Ultimately I was convinced that buying an OTC OBDII code reader from a jobber wasn't that great of an idea so I passed on the opportunity. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
Thanks for chiming in Driver.
How long will will the eroor code stay in the computer? Will the check engine light eventually go off if it does'nt detect any more problems, or will it need some help to turn it off?
What do you think about possibly of just running some bad fuel for those couple hundred miles?, especially since it went 1300 more high speed, lots of mountain climbing miles with no more trouble?
I have to brag about this. I passed a nice DP on the level a few miles before the Eisenhour Tunnel mtn. I just started up the grade without a real stong drive going into it. I was still chugging down in 3rd gear about 45 mph when the DP blew by me. I floored it and it downshifted into 2nd gear , and I walked right past him before we got half way up the mtn, "check engine" light and all.
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Old 05-08-2006, 04:19 PM   #9
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The chain autoparts stores will read the code for you at no charge. You do not have to erase it. You could then call Workhorse.
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Old 05-08-2006, 05:06 PM   #10
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Here's a pic of my OBDII Code Reader.

Our local Chevy Stealership wants $89.00

to hook up to their fancy Tech II and an additional $15.00 for each

DTC set..this is the cost for one trip, not

fixing anything. The OBDII Code reader shown

will pull the set codes out of your rig in 15

seconds....



You have (probably) 4 Ox Sensors on your rig,

it'll tell you WHICH one is messed up. Along

with about a million other things..Pays For

Itself....

$69.99 at Kragens, Pep Boys, Schucks......
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Old 05-08-2006, 05:43 PM   #11
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by max49: </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
How long will will the error code stay in the computer?

A: Until the cows come home.

Will the check engine light eventually go off if it doesn't detect any more problems, or will it need some help to turn it off?

A: I have seen where the SES has reset itself. A SES is most often if not always related to an emission control device. A wet air filter will cause the MAF to send out an SES. After the filter dries out the SES condition doesn't present itself any further to the computer and the light goes out after you start your engine start up.

What do you think about possibly of just running some bad fuel for those couple hundred miles, especially since it went 1300 more high speed, lots of mountain climbing miles with no more trouble?

A: It can happen! What kind of gas were you using? I've seen engines run in rev limit that most likely were running questionable quality gas. (water) Adding a quantity of dry gas seems to control the water problem.

I have to brag about this. I passed a nice DP on the level a few miles before the Eisenhower Tunnel mtn. I just started up the grade without a real strong drive going into it. I was still chugging down in 3rd gear about 45 mph when the DP blew by me. I floored it and it downshifted into 2nd gear , and I walked right past him before we got half way up the mtn, "check engine" light and all.

A: I'm jealous! My wife wouldn't let me go over Eisenhower although I wanted to. We wound up going East on the I80 out of SLC across southern Wyoming. A really woos ride if you're driving a Workhorse. I don't know what she she was thinking perhaps she though that she would have to flap her arms to get up that high in the mountains.
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Old 05-08-2006, 06:02 PM   #12
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Steady Eddie:
Along with about a million other things..Pays For Itself.... </div></BLOCKQUOTE>That would be a difficult case to prove if you are "still" under warranty.

About the Tech-II, well it and the software that supports it cost into the low thousand dollar range but the T2 is a wonderful instrument. A few things that the OBDII reader can't do is bring up the VIN# of the chassis, have the entire electronic profile on hand in the computer about that particular VIN and if needed bleed your brakes on the chassis. You see the T2 is such a specialized piece of equipment that nothing else out there can compete with it. That's why not everyone can have one.

OBDII readers are like toys compared to the instrument that is actually needed to resolve the events that are presented to the T2.

You can call TAC if you want to but they will tell you the same thing, the instrument of choice for accomplishing DX work on a Workhorse is a Tech-2.

GM dealers, quality repair shops and all Workhorse service centers will have them available for diagnostic work on your Workhorse.

If your servicing technician comes out to your rig with an OBDII reader, run!

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Old 05-08-2006, 06:34 PM   #13
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Yes--for the thousands of dollars the

Tech II costs it SHOULD do everything but

sing and dance.

My son had a '96 GMC 1/2 ton Pick-up that

was blowing black smoke out one bank. It

was a 350 Vortec with SPI. I hooked up my

window-to-the-brain-box OBDII Code Reader

and it showed me an Ox Sensor that had gone

full lean on the black-billowing cylinder bank.

One scan and it paid for itself.
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Old 05-08-2006, 06:36 PM   #14
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Oh Driver , the Eisenhour tunnel is very easy on the driver but hard on the engine and drivetrain. It is a very staight, wide, but steep and long pull. A good place to test your engines power with out even coming close to speeding.
It was a Conoco station that I gassed up at before I had problems. Whether coincidently or not my next stop was a TA and I never had any more problems. However when I came home without even thinking about it I gassed up again at the same Conoco and
had no problems.
Another factor to throw into the equation is the altitude changes we go thru out here in the west. The computer has to change the fuel/air mixture ratio a lot more often than for flatlanders.
The 87 Avg. MPG reading is pretty strange too, happening at the same time as the power reduction. It almost always reads between 7 and 12 MPG and has never given me totaly eratic readings before. Theoreticaly if it was getting such a small amount of good gas, resulting in a very , lean condition, resulting in a power reduction maybe it thought I was getting 87 MPG. I guess that's a bit of a stretch.
I still have 2 more years of warranty so I'll probably take it in but I don't know when I'll get the chance.
The OBD II sounds like it would be a good tool for a toolaholic like me. Even tho I may or may not learn much from it. If it told me , I had a lean condition, I guess I still won;t know what caused it. Bad gas, fuel filter or something electronic.
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