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Old 07-10-2006, 07:36 AM   #1
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It happened again on Friday. We were doing about 50mph in 3 lanes of heavy traffic and I saw a sea of brakelights ahead. I flipped on the exhaust brake and suddenly, the engine wasn't running. The only indicator on the dash was the low oil and there was an audible alarm. This has happened roughly 5 times over 2.5 years and it has always been when the exhaust brake came on. I've used the exhaust brake hundreds of times in between with no problem. One difference may be that each time it has failed, the RV is pointed more downhill than normal and my speed is such that the exhaust brake and the corresponding transmission change signficantly change the level of the coach, front to back. The first time was on the downgrade into Lake Mead, for those of you who have been on that hill.

After the first time, I learned that I could quickly shift to neutral and the engine would restart immediately. On Friday, whatever condition caused the problem was inhibiting restart. I coasted to the shoulder and tried a couple of more times and the engine fired. We completed the trip without any other problems.

What I hoping for is someone with experince in how the low oil pressure sensor works in the ISB in our 1999-2000 vintage engine. I'm not positive that low oil pressure is why the engine is shutting down but since that is the only indication I'm getting, I guess I've got to start there. BTW, I had changed the oil last week so it was clean and right up to manufacturer's recommended level, based on quantity installed. The gauge always reads on the higher side of normal after an oil change. This was not the same situation as all of the other failures. For them, the oil had been in the engine much longer.

Thanks for any help that you can provide. I'm planning to call Cummins but would like to have a little more knowledge about the oil sensor and pressure than I do now.

Charlie
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Old 07-10-2006, 07:36 AM   #2
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It happened again on Friday. We were doing about 50mph in 3 lanes of heavy traffic and I saw a sea of brakelights ahead. I flipped on the exhaust brake and suddenly, the engine wasn't running. The only indicator on the dash was the low oil and there was an audible alarm. This has happened roughly 5 times over 2.5 years and it has always been when the exhaust brake came on. I've used the exhaust brake hundreds of times in between with no problem. One difference may be that each time it has failed, the RV is pointed more downhill than normal and my speed is such that the exhaust brake and the corresponding transmission change signficantly change the level of the coach, front to back. The first time was on the downgrade into Lake Mead, for those of you who have been on that hill.

After the first time, I learned that I could quickly shift to neutral and the engine would restart immediately. On Friday, whatever condition caused the problem was inhibiting restart. I coasted to the shoulder and tried a couple of more times and the engine fired. We completed the trip without any other problems.

What I hoping for is someone with experince in how the low oil pressure sensor works in the ISB in our 1999-2000 vintage engine. I'm not positive that low oil pressure is why the engine is shutting down but since that is the only indication I'm getting, I guess I've got to start there. BTW, I had changed the oil last week so it was clean and right up to manufacturer's recommended level, based on quantity installed. The gauge always reads on the higher side of normal after an oil change. This was not the same situation as all of the other failures. For them, the oil had been in the engine much longer.

Thanks for any help that you can provide. I'm planning to call Cummins but would like to have a little more knowledge about the oil sensor and pressure than I do now.

Charlie
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Old 07-10-2006, 07:39 AM   #3
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99 ISB engines are know for lift pump issues. Have you ever had your fuel pressure checked. I have one on my TV, and I now run a fuel pressure gauge so I can keep an eye on it.
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Old 07-10-2006, 07:59 AM   #4
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That's great feedback, Charliez - thanks. No, I haven't had my fuel pressure checked. Right now, I don't have a shop in my area that I'd trust to deal with anything that wasn't visibly broken. I wouldn't mind investing an a gauge to check the pressure but assume that if something were wrong, replacing the pump would be the solution, right? I'm also assuming that your TV's fuel distribution will be a little different than mine. I'm pretty sure that know how my fuel lines are run but I'll take the time to trace them out exactly, just to be sure.

I just had the fuel filter changed less than 500 miles ago so I'm assuming that isn't a contributing problem.
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Old 07-10-2006, 08:26 AM   #5
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A critical piece of information that I left out was that when the engine didn't start, the starter wouldn't even engage. It wasn't a matter of the engine cranking but not catching. That is what made me think it was somehow sensor related. I had dash lights that would go on and off with the ignition but I just couldn't crank.

I'd had a problem with my speedometer and a loose plug on the engine computer. There are some strain relief problems there that I really need to address. I hadn't seen this engine shutdown symptom since I fixed the speedometer issue and thought that somehow the two might be related. The speedo sets a "check engine" code which I can read with VMSpc that says "invalid speedometer data"> This results from the bus wires which carry that data loosing contact with the engine computer because of that connector.

I wanted to make sure that I was correctly sharing all of the facts as I know them, even if some of those might not be related to the engine shutdown problem.
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Old 07-10-2006, 07:45 PM   #6
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Charles: Don't know if it's related but I had a problem (My ISB 260)in Sept 2002 where the engine quit when coming to a stop with the exhaust brake on. It seemed the brake did not release and stalled the engine at idle. Also the ignition had to be turned off and then back on to reset before it would restart...Anyway, MIKE COADY at Freightliner said that problem was a Field Service Change on the 275 ISB but not normally on the 260..The fix was a diode harness that went into the exhaust brake circuit. It did fix the problem.
Found it! Field Service Campaign SF240A Cummins ISB 275 engines and Allison 2000 transmissions manufactured btx 1/1/99 & 11/8/01. Interference or noise is being transmitted from exhaust brake solenoid to Cummins ECM causing logged fault codes (mine did not throw a code)and shutdown of lift pump until ignition is cycled... Modification is installing diode pigtail in the chassis harness.. When the modification has been completed a sticker will be applied to the passenger door jamb referencing SF240A and the date completed..
Hope this helps,
Bob
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Old 07-10-2006, 08:17 PM   #7
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Bob, thanks very much. Although ours is an Allison 1000 transmission, the description sure matches our condition.

I'll get on Access Freightliner tomorrow and perhaps contact FCC. I'll be interested to see if the diode pigtail is available. I'm also going to check my door jam. I doubt seriously if the previous owner every experienced the problem let alone had it fixed. We've used the RV a lot more in the time that we've had it.

Thanks again.

Charlie
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Old 07-12-2006, 07:50 AM   #8
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Update: Armed with the information on SF240A that Bob provided plus some feedback on another forum, I called the FCC tech support line. Here was the tech's feedback on my symptom.
1. While ISBs have had problems with fuel lift pumps, when those problems occur, the pump just quits - there is no intermittent nature to those failures and, thus, it is unlikely that my symptoms are caused by the lift pump.
2. My first thought about an oil pressure sensor causing the engine shutdown is also probably incorrect. While that is the only light on the dash at the time of the failure, it is a result, not a cause. An oil pressure sensor "should" derate the engine before shutting it down and the detrate would come with additional warnings. My failure is instantaneous - one second the engine is running and the next it is not.
3. SF240A is written to apply to 275hp ISBs as mine has but it also includes Allison 2000 transmissions. The other point of difference, as Bob pointed out, was that SF240A expects engine fault codes to be set and neither Bob's engine nor my engine set them. Other than that, the symptoms including the fact that the ignition must be completely shut off before the starter will engage are an exact match.

I have the kit part number and the actual part number for the diode harness. FCC was supposed to fax me the writeup on SF240A but it hasn't arrived yet. I tried to check availability on the kit with my local Freightliner dealer but their parts systems have been down since yesterday. That is consistent with my inability to get into Access Freightliner, too. I'm glad that I'm a patient guy and that this isn't a breakdown emergency.

Any additional thoughts are welcomed.

Charlie

P.S. I'm thinking about buying a lift pump for "just in case".
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Old 07-12-2006, 09:43 AM   #9
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HI Charles:: My Landau has the Cummins 260 and the Allison 1000 trans. The diode harness is a short (10-12 inch) 2 wire extension that fits between a normal plug in the harness.
Your symptoms sound very similiar to what I had, the diode seemed to do the trick. Good info in your discussion with FTL .
Bob
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Old 07-12-2006, 03:46 PM   #10
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I agree 100% that the diode harness is going to fix my exhaust brake/engine shutdown, Bob. I just need to get the thing on order.

I'm contemplating buying the lift pump just because of the all the the reports - including the FCC tech - that this vintage ISB has had problems with them. I'm just a belt and suspenders kind of a guy.
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Old 07-20-2006, 04:32 PM   #11
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UPDATE:
$37 lighter in the wallet, I own the exhaust brake service bulletin wiring harness and it is installed but not tested in my coach. Assuming the exhaust brake is going to come on and go off when I want it to during the testing this weekend, it might be months before I'm confident enough to say this problem is fixed. I've gone over 6 months in the past with no failures only to have a couple in succession.

BTW, I was looking at VMSpc and there were codes set at the time of the latest failure. The first simply said "controller #2" and the second said "fuel shutoff valve". To me, that pretty much confirms this harness as the fix to the problem. I'm still going to keep my fingers crossed, just in case.
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