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Old 07-11-2011, 11:50 PM   #1
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Unhappy 1990 Gulfstream won't start

My wife and I just purchased a 1990 Gulfstream Sun-Clipper. It is a P30 GMC chassis with the 8.1 liter 454 engine in it. We bought it from a friend of my wifes. When we turn the key to start it nothing happens not even a click. The previous owner went out and purchased 2 new Interstate batteries and put them in and still nothing happened. There are no headlights, clicking nothing.... the previous owner mentioned the Isolator relay??? I need help...I was also told that they is a loss of power between the starter and the batteries. We are not even getting a "click" from the starter....
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Old 07-11-2011, 11:52 PM   #2
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First, look for the battery disconnect switch. There should be one for the chassis (drivetrain) batteries and one for the house batteries.
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Old 07-12-2011, 12:07 AM   #3
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thanks I will
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Old 07-12-2011, 06:37 AM   #4
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There is no isolater relay in the chassis circuit that involve the ignition, headlights, and starter. Check that all the battery cable connections on the starter and the negative ground battery cable are clean and tight.
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Old 07-13-2011, 03:32 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sun_Clipper View Post
My wife and I just purchased a 1990 Gulfstream Sun-Clipper. It is a P30 GMC chassis with the 8.1 liter 454 engine in it. We bought it from a friend of my wifes. When we turn the key to start it nothing happens not even a click. The previous owner went out and purchased 2 new Interstate batteries and put them in and still nothing happened. There are no headlights, clicking nothing.... the previous owner mentioned the Isolator relay??? I need help...I was also told that they is a loss of power between the starter and the batteries. We are not even getting a "click" from the starter....
you state that you have 2 new batteries.
my question is how many house batteries does your moho have? mine has 2 house and 1 starting (chassis) battery. so, is it possible that you have an old, dead starting battery and 2 new house batteries?
the 8.1L engine is 496 cu in, the 7.4L engine is 454 cu in.
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Old 07-13-2011, 07:19 AM   #6
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If nothing has changed from the time you brought it home, my guess is the starting battery is dead. Why it's dead is another question. Could be a junk battery, could be something is draining it. Whatever, try charging it and see where that leaves you.
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Old 07-13-2011, 07:42 AM   #7
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Sun Clipper: look for that switch that says Battery Disconnect (main & aux) or something similar(ours is in a cupboard over the front door) . If Main is off, the engine will not start, even with a new battery.

Check, clean and tighten the terminals on your chassis (starting) battery.

Try jump starting the coach; if it even TRIES to turn over, a weak battery is the problem.

If none of the above makes any difference, you'll need to do a little more investigating...
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Old 07-13-2011, 03:43 PM   #8
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I have 2 new Interstates under the hood right behind the front grill on a
battery tray. If there are any other batteries I am unaware..
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Old 07-24-2011, 07:25 PM   #9
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Did you ever find the problem?
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Old 08-01-2011, 11:04 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sun_Clipper View Post
I have 2 new Interstates under the hood right behind the front grill on a
battery tray. If there are any other batteries I am unaware..
Sunclipper, you posted on another thread yesterday stating you needed a wiring schematic for your coach to trace the battery solenoid switch, but really you should be able to trace down the problem with a volt meter.
You mention in this thread you have 2 batteries, but most coaches of that vintage used 3 batteries, 2 for the house and 1 for the chassis. You mentioned the PO installed 2 new batteries, but still would not start. Sounds like either the chassis battery is missing, wired improperly, or located somewhere else and is completely dead.
First thing I would do is charge the new batteries to make sure they are full and at 12.7 volts when rested, then look on the dash for a momentary switch. The momentary switch will connect the chassis battery with the house batteries for emergency starting. Hold that switch on and crank the engine over. If it starts or cranks you will have a beginning point to diagnose the problem.
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Old 08-01-2011, 11:46 PM   #11
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Wannabee, I was told by the PO that I only have 2 batteries and they are both new. I bypassed the battery switch by taking all the hot leads and clamping them all together and the MH starts up like it was brand new. I have a good friend of the PO coming over within the next couple of days to go through some things and test them. We'll see what happens..
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Old 08-01-2011, 11:49 PM   #12
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1-Check battery for a good ground.
2-If cable connections are good, then check batteries for adequate voltage; if this is lacking, charge or replace as necessary
3-If batteries are good and proper voltage, touch a test light to the small wire connections on the starter, and have someone attempt to start the engine. REMEMBER SAFETY HERE.
4-If the test light lights up when trying to start the engine, this will show that voltage is coming from the ignition switch down to the starter. If you have voltage and it will not turn the starter, the starter is bad.
5-If you have no voltage, then the problem will either be the ignition switch (electrical side) or the neutral safety switch for the transmission. ( this switch prevents a vehicle from being started while it is in gear).
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Old 08-02-2011, 12:22 AM   #13
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Quote:
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Wannabee, I was told by the PO that I only have 2 batteries and they are both new. I bypassed the battery switch by taking all the hot leads and clamping them all together and the MH starts up like it was brand new. I have a good friend of the PO coming over within the next couple of days to go through some things and test them. We'll see what happens..
OK, now we're getting somewhere. We are talking about an electrical solenoid and not a manual switch correct?
You say when you bypass the battery solenoid switch it starts fine.
The solenoid needs a secondary source of 12 volts to allow it to be engaged. (turned on) Use a volt meter to check for 12 volts at the smaller gauge wire going to it. If no voltage is present, check all fuses and trace the electrical back until you find the source of the problem. If 12 volts is there, the solenoid is faulty.
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