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Old 01-28-2014, 07:25 PM   #1
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Gen start while on shore power

I changed oil on Onan 5500 today and hit the start button. I was still on shore power. The was some clicking and then no starter rotation. no power to the start switch. I don't find any tripped circuit breakers. 2005 Itasca sun cruiser. 5500 w. Onan Marque. did I fry something?
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Old 01-28-2014, 07:42 PM   #2
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I bet the clicking is the fuel pump priming the fuel pressure.

Depending on how cold it is where you are determines how long you have to hold the start button before the generator will turn over.

I start my generator while on shore power a lot. I just make sure that all of the heavy loads are turned off before starting the generator as the genset has priority over the shore power. That way it will NOT damage your transfer switch by arcing the contact points which can cause a premature failure of the transfer switch if it is done a lot.

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Old 01-28-2014, 07:50 PM   #3
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I had just run the gen prior to the oil change. the start switch just went dead as soon as I tried to start it again. how do I find where the transfer switch is?
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Old 01-28-2014, 07:57 PM   #4
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On my On an you prime it by pushing down on the bottom part of the switch for 5 seconds. Then push the top part to start. Sounds like it did not have enough fuel in the system if it was clicking. I don't know where your transfer switch is but they are usually located close to the power cord in the electrical bay.
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Old 01-28-2014, 07:59 PM   #5
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Hi rhlvr1,
The transfer switch is usually located in the compartment where the electrical shore cord is located. However, this is brand and model specific.

The transfer switch is not the problem of the generator not starting. If there is no power to the generator start switch, this is a very specific brand/model/year question. Consider posting this problem in the Winnebago owners forum. The forum is at Winnebago Industries Owner's Forum - iRV2 Forums I make this suggestion because how power is supplied to the start switch is a Winnebago decision.
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Old 01-28-2014, 08:01 PM   #6
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I had just run the gen prior to the oil change. the start switch just went dead as soon as I tried to start it again. how do I find where the transfer switch is?
unlikely you damaged the transfer switch unless you had heavy load when switching. And unlikely even if damaged would the switch keep the genny from starting.
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Old 01-28-2014, 08:05 PM   #7
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Your transfer switch has nothing to do with a dead switch for the generator.

So let me completely understand the sequence of events. The generator was running prior to changing the oil. After the oil change, you pushed the genset switch and heard some clicking. After holding the genset switch longer the clicking stopped and everything was dead, nothing, nada, ziltch.

Do you have another genset switch at another location to try?

Have you checked to see if there is power at the switch with a DVOM?

Have you checked your wiring schematics to see if there are any fuses in the circuit?

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Old 01-28-2014, 08:08 PM   #8
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Has nothing to do with transfer switch. Do you have enough battery power? Obviously if bats are dead its not going to crank. Are you trying to start it with the switch on the gen or the remote switch inside the RV?
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Old 01-28-2014, 08:15 PM   #9
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I just tried the start switch inside . the starter just engages for a half second and the inverter beeps and the interior lights blink. Earlier there was no starter engaging. I thing the cable connection at the gen might be the cause. will check in the morning. I was just preping for a possible ice storm her in the panhandle of Florida. thanks for the help guys. let you know more later. just hearing the start of our President's version of how great life is in America.
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Old 01-28-2014, 09:10 PM   #10
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Onan generators have a low oil level engine cutout. If there's not enough oil in it, the generator won't run. When you changed the oil, did you fill the filter with oil or just install it dry? You may have pumped enough oil into the filter to drop the level in the engine. Have you checked the oil level?
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Old 01-28-2014, 09:57 PM   #11
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Now it's getting more convoluted as more information becomes available.

Make sure you have FULLY charged batteries both house and chassis as you probably have no idea which battery set starts the generator. Some use the house and some use the chassis.

Just make sure both are fully charged and then try your generator once again.

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Old 01-29-2014, 08:53 PM   #12
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This morning I checked the battery condition on the monitor panel. It said I had 13.6 volts house and 13.4 chassis. Reading the manual told me the chassis battery is used to start the gen. (I have been on shore power for 6 weeks.) I tested the bat terminal posts with my volt meter and it was 12v. When I tried the gen starter switch, I got a beep from the converter (under fridge) and the house lights blinked. I then hooked a battery charger to the house batteries. Its display read 13.6v. I left it hooked for only about 2 min. and then tried the gen. It popped right off. Hard to believe 2 min. did anything to the output but it did something. Thanks for the input.
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Old 01-29-2014, 10:45 PM   #13
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This morning I checked the battery condition on the monitor panel. It said I had 13.6 volts house and 13.4 chassis. Reading the manual told me the chassis battery is used to start the gen. (I have been on shore power for 6 weeks.) I tested the bat terminal posts with my volt meter and it was 12v. When I tried the gen starter switch, I got a beep from the converter (under fridge) and the house lights blinked. I then hooked a battery charger to the house batteries. Its display read 13.6v. I left it hooked for only about 2 min. and then tried the gen. It popped right off. Hard to believe 2 min. did anything to the output but it did something. Thanks for the input.
You have a loose/corroded battery connection somewhere.
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Old 01-29-2014, 11:14 PM   #14
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I would replace every battery on the rig. You may have a bad cell in a battery. And they are old and weak. Clean all cables and put in new batteries. You should be good to go. If not look deeper. But I think that may cure your woes.
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