Go Back   iRV2 Forums > MOTORHOME FORUMS > MH-General Discussions & Problems
Click Here to Login
Join iRV2 Today

Mission Statement: Supporting thoughtful exchange of knowledge, values and experience among RV enthusiasts.
Reply
  This discussion is proudly sponsored by:
Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about their products on iRV2
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 11-29-2011, 06:51 AM   #1
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 3
Alternator attention!!!

My first ever motorhome is a dream come true, but also a fixer-upper. my lady and I were driving through the mountains in california, and the headlights went out. I pulled over and stopped, leaving the engine on, and took a look under the driver side dash to see if it was a loose wire. After noticing that one of the wires was burnt that was coming from the headlight wire harnessing, I turned her off, and found out it was hotter than a firecracker! I wrapped it in electrical tape, and headed down the road, no more problems. Then about 100 miles down the road they started to dim, more and more, until I said "do we even HAVE headlights anymore!?!" I pulled over again at the next exit to solve the problem, and get petrol. She didint start, and we wound up sleeping at the gas station, right where we filled up at (very happy that the gas station attendants were understanding of our ordeal) we waited ALL NIGHT for roadside service to come, and 8 hours later a 3rd party progressive worker came out and used a generator to jump us (this is because OUR gen did not start, and even made the houselights dim while trying to start). At this point I figured the alternator was dead, and after a, successful jump, we made it to our destination in loomis, CA where we are now parked, and happy to be on shore power. We need to know what kind of atornator would be the best for an 87' cruisemaster georgie boy (ford 450) for fulltime Rvers, as we travel with our jobs, and need something cheap, and reliable. Please feel free to tell us your similar stories, and hit us up with any and ALL advice you guys may have. Also, there seems to be an arc somewhere in the lines, and we had sears install a 30amp in-line buss fuse. Our rv now eats them for breakfast, every time we start her up. Any suggestions on how to find the culprit? (we thought it might have been an aftermarket stereo, but I removed the fuse, to the radio to no avail). If ANYONE has advice it would be GREATLY appreciated!!! Thanks in advance!!!! -stuck in sacramento
__________________

__________________
Awearyman is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 RV Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

iRV2.com RV Community - Are you about to start a new improvement on your RV or need some help with some maintenance? Do you need advice on what products to buy? Or maybe you can give others some advice? No matter where you fit in you'll find that iRV2 is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with other RV owners, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create an RV blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 11-29-2011, 07:48 AM   #2
Senior Member
 
H. Miller's Avatar
 
Monaco Owners Club
Texas Boomers Club
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 2,523
Quote:
Originally Posted by Awearyman View Post
and need something cheap, and reliable.
In my experience, "cheap and reliable" do not exist in the same vehicle
__________________

__________________
Hal & Ginny Miller '04 Beaver Santiam PRT40
'04 Saturn Vue - US Gear Brake - Blue Ox tow
4"girls" (3 Irish Setters - 1 Retriever) - RIP Annie
H. Miller is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-29-2011, 08:04 AM   #3
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Bluff Dale, TX
Posts: 565
The stock alternator is probably all you will ever need. If you have problems in the wiring harness that needs to be fixed first.
If you put a 30 amp fuse in the alternator output line I would expect it to blow every time you started the vehicle.
__________________
Most RV batteries live a long and useful life, some are murdered.
2000 National Sea Breeze F53
1998 CRV Toad
garym114 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-29-2011, 08:25 AM   #4
Senior Member
 
Dave78Chief's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 1,513
First question: Is this a John Deere/Oskosh chassis? I am guessing it is if it has the Ford 460.
If yes, then check the wiring up under the front access cover in the area of the Alternator regulator. I had to replace some of it on a friend of mines when it had simular issues. A fusible link was failing.

John Deere/Oskosh chassis is now owned/supported by Freightliner.

Dave
__________________
Dave in Virginia
1978 Winnebago Chieftain
Dodge M400 - 440-3
Classic Winnebago Site: http://www.classicwinnebagos.com/forum/index.php
Dave78Chief is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-29-2011, 03:14 PM   #5
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 4,493
30 amp fuse where?

If the fuse was installed in the alternator line then yes it will blow.

There should be a fusable link inline with the alternator and the "load" or vehicle.

If the wire is warm then normal...

First off you need to see what is going on.

If the lights went out and everything else worked then it could be shorted wiring at the lights.

A "poor man's" alternator tester is the turn signals.

They work based on the current draw of the bulbs.

The higher the voltage the more the current, the more the current the faster they flash, so if they are flashing REAL FAST there could be a short in the wiring, real slow is either low voltage or burned out bulb.

You need to get a volt meter and start making measurements, a shorted cell in the battery could cause the alternator to work hard melting the fusable link and blowing your fuse.

Until you make some measurements you have no clue as to what is going on, harbor freight has a good voltmeter for less than 10 bucks, get one and let us know what you find.

Many folks here have same type of chassis so you can ask for expected readings as various places.
__________________
Tony & Lori
1989 Country Coach Savannah SE
TQ60 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-29-2011, 03:50 PM   #6
Member
 
hippy's Avatar
 
Gulf Streamers Club
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Ontario Canada
Posts: 90
dont know if this is any help, but i worked at a ford dealership for 14 yrs, and if your motorhome has ford wiring harness, then they had a problem with the wiring melting at the headlamp switch, buy a replacement connector assy, and new switch. the park lamp circuit is overloaded with all the additional marker lts on rv's , tow trucks etc. this may have damaged your alternator. hope this is some help. good luck
__________________
2012 Kingsport 301tbs/outside kitchen
2004 Expedition E.B. 5.4 tow pkg 3.73
hippy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-29-2011, 03:55 PM   #7
Senior Member
 
She and I's Avatar
 
Damon Owners Club
Ford Super Duty Owner
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 255
Hi awearyman,....Was the wire that burn't a ground wire? a poor or bad ground will cause wires to burn.. looking for ground.......Test your alt by running the engine and dissconnect the neg battery cable and see if if continues to run ..if so alt is charging... Just a thought.. Hope you find your problem.
Richard
__________________
May the wind be at your back,The sun in your face
And your love by your side!!
USMC 68/74 RVN 69/70. Semper-Fi!
She and I is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-29-2011, 03:58 PM   #8
Senior Member
 
wa8yxm's Avatar
 
Damon Owners Club
Workhorse Chassis Owner
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 22,811
Well the lights dimming and then not starting could be the alternator but I'm more concerned about that hot wire you had to tape up under the dash when the lights were working.

One of the things many vehicles have, this is NOT under the dash but near the alternator, is somethign called a "Fuesable link" this is a wire, that is, in fact, a fuse, Normally it comes off the alternator, or, else a wire comes off the alternator and runs to it.. IT's job is to protect the alternator.

I'm guessing that whatever took out your headlighs, overloading the wire you mentioned in the first part. also burned out the fuse-link on the alternator.

That's the bad news

The good news is that this link is designed to be easy to replace and low cost. Like a fuse.
__________________
Home is where I park it!
wa8yxm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-29-2011, 04:02 PM   #9
Senior Member
 
Dave78Chief's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 1,513
Like I said before, if this is a John Deere/Oshkosh chassis, all of the fusible links are up around the regulator and Ignition module.

Dave
__________________
Dave in Virginia
1978 Winnebago Chieftain
Dodge M400 - 440-3
Classic Winnebago Site: http://www.classicwinnebagos.com/forum/index.php
Dave78Chief is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-29-2011, 08:46 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
Winnebago Owners Club
Join Date: May 2009
Location: AZ Mountains
Posts: 394
.....'we travel with our jobs, and need something cheap, and reliable" Hey - hold on a minute . . . .if you both depend on a reliable RV for your income, by no means should you be looking for a CHEAP solution. You need a RELIABLE solution, pal.
__________________
nbounder is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-29-2011, 09:13 PM   #11
Senior Member
 
wa8yxm's Avatar
 
Damon Owners Club
Workhorse Chassis Owner
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 22,811
Cheap and Reliable.... Well... I did a bit of research and they are not all that cheap anymore. but here is my only suggestion: Novara Divano Bike - 2011 at REI.com Vehicles in this class can easily exceed 5 times of the cost of the one linked to.. I was shocked.
__________________
Home is where I park it!
wa8yxm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2011, 05:00 AM   #12
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Debary Fl
Posts: 464
On a 1987 motorhome, you could have any number of issues, wireing ,batt, switches, alt just name a few. First thing is a good visual inspection and cleaning on all ground and positive 12V connections at the batt starter and Alt, next you will need a meter and learn how to use it. Do you have the wireing diag that came with the coach? The fact that you are burning fuseable links, and wires says there is a problem on those systems. If you are not faimilliar with 12V auto electric you may save yourself a lot of trouble by enlisting the aid of a mobile RV tech that is. On the other hand if you have the time you can eventually chase the problem down and you will learn a lot about your coach. But as others have said in the RV game "Cheap and reliable" rarely exist togeather.
__________________
Bruce Linda and Zoey
1999 ForeTravel U295
012 orange Jeep Wrangler
bbeane is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2011, 09:19 AM   #13
Member
 
hippy's Avatar
 
Gulf Streamers Club
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Ontario Canada
Posts: 90
and its on sale!!
__________________
2012 Kingsport 301tbs/outside kitchen
2004 Expedition E.B. 5.4 tow pkg 3.73
hippy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-07-2011, 06:16 AM   #14
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 3
Quote:
Originally Posted by garym114
If you put a 30 amp fuse in the alternator output line I would expect it to blow every time you started the vehicle.
you were right! I can't believe that SEARS would put a 30 amp in-line fuse directly to the atornator, but they did!!! I fixed the problem, and now she charges like a champ!!! Thanks do much!!!
__________________

__________________
Awearyman is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
alternator



Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


» Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:55 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.