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Old 09-25-2016, 05:28 PM   #1
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HELP! Electrical Issue!!

Have a 1991 Winnebago Itasco. This weekend when we went out to start it, engine wouldn't turn over. Switched to MOM power and it started up. Checked voltage on main and was right at 12.6 volts. Now she won't start at all without help from auxiliary batteries. If we turn off the auxiliaries, the engine quits if we turn lights on. Like its just running off the alternator output. There is a box next to the fuse box up front (engine compartment) that has what looks like two solenoids where the main lines come in. No diagrams of it so I don't know what they are, but I have suspicions the problem may be within. Any guidance???
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Old 09-25-2016, 05:44 PM   #2
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Have a 1991 Winnebago Itasco. This weekend when we went out to start it, engine wouldn't turn over. Switched to MOM power and it started up. Checked voltage on main and was right at 12.6 volts. Now she won't start at all without help from auxiliary batteries. If we turn off the auxiliaries, the engine quits if we turn lights on. Like its just running off the alternator output. There is a box next to the fuse box up front (engine compartment) that has what looks like two solenoids where the main lines come in. No diagrams of it so I don't know what they are, but I have suspicions the problem may be within. Any guidance???
dthayerppr
What is "MOM power" and what is your definition of "main"?
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Old 09-25-2016, 05:49 PM   #3
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And what is the voltage on your engine battery while shut down.
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Old 09-25-2016, 06:02 PM   #4
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Most likely your Start Batteries are gone !
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Old 09-25-2016, 06:11 PM   #5
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Check your main battery cables. Clean? Tight?
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Old 09-25-2016, 06:29 PM   #6
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Others have asked questions you need to answer.

How old are your chassis batteries? And, are they bad and need replacing? As suggested, make sure the battery cables are securely connected and no corrosion on the terminals.

Is there a chassis battery disconnect switch that may have been turned off? Is there a circuit breaker for the chassis batteries that has tripped?

I doubt your chassis batteries are being charged when you are plugged into shore power. Winnebago and a lot of others didn't provide the hardware to charge the chassis batteries while plugged into shore power. Don't think Winnebago started doing this until after 2000 or so.

You should have your chassis batteries load tested.

One of your solenoids up front is probably your boost solenoid, or what I think you mean by MOM. If you are starting by using the switch for that circuit then that solenoid is OK. Have no idea what the other could be. It could be for the starter or to turn on all the things that need to operate when the engine is operating. May even be for other auxiliary things.

I would drop down to the Winnebago owners forum and ask your questions.
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Old 09-25-2016, 06:40 PM   #7
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MOM on a Winne is bonding the house batteries to the engine battery. Your engine battery is bad (probably dropped a cell) and it sounds like your house batteries are none the better. Take them all out and have them checked at your local auto parts store. I am sure some or all of them will need to be replaced.
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Old 09-25-2016, 06:53 PM   #8
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MOM on a Winne is bonding the house batteries to the engine battery. Your engine battery is bad (probably dropped a cell) and it sounds like your house batteries are none the better. Take them all out and have them checked at your local auto parts store. I am sure some or all of them will need to be replaced.
Wouldn't "bonding the house batteries to the engine battery" be BTHBTTEB?
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Old 09-25-2016, 07:07 PM   #9
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Wouldn't "bonding the house batteries to the engine battery" be BTHBTTEB?
Just know I have the same switch and I had the same WTH is this question. Till I looked it up in the manual.
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Old 09-26-2016, 09:30 PM   #10
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Just a follow up. Main engine battery is 12.7 volts. Both auxiliaries are 12.5. No cut off switch that I know of. I still think that box with the solenoids has something to do with it. All batteries are charging fine from house current when plugged in to A/C. Just doesn't make it to ignition or any accessories hooked to it.
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Old 09-27-2016, 05:05 AM   #11
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The box you are worrying about is probably the relays that connect the two battery systems together and maybe a house disconnect. Your problem sounds more like a bad connection or a blown heavy duty fuse. That won't be in a normal fuse block. It's time to start following the power path with a meter or test light to see where it stops.

FWIW I'd probably start by using a test lead to clip a meter probe to the engine battery + terminal. Try to start and see if the voltage sags as the starter is engaged. Keep following the big wire from the battery terminal and see where the power stops when you turn the key to start. A clip lead lets you make the connection then get your hands away from the rotating parts before they start rotating.
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Old 09-27-2016, 05:12 AM   #12
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Switched to MOM power and it started up.

Any guidance???
My MOM always had LOTS of power especially when holding a belt in her hand.

Replace your engine batteries and be on your way!

Dr4Film ----- Richard
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Old 09-27-2016, 07:26 PM   #13
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I encountered the same issue-it was a faulty ground cable connection from the starting battery to the frame.
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Old 09-27-2016, 07:35 PM   #14
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I encountered the same issue-it was a faulty ground cable connection from the starting battery to the frame.
Good point!

On an older rig make sure your terminals are clean. Both supply and ground. I have had people suggest using soda, but I have found a small rotary wire brush on a drill to be much better.
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