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Old 04-11-2011, 03:56 PM   #15
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Another thing to check before you start replacing parts- this happened to me as well. A pack rat ate just one wire and it caused the same condition. You have to remove the front cover and top cover, air filter box as well. Fairly simple to do. Then use a very bright light and mirror, all the way towards the right rear of the gen there are three wires that go from control box in front to the very back toward the middle, two are part of the charging circuit and the other one has something to do with it staying running. Look to see that all wires are intact, feel them with your fingers back to the connection point, I believe my broken one was to a coil? The rat ate just one wire and it caused the same symptoms you have.

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Old 04-11-2011, 08:51 PM   #16
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I believe John&Terry are (is?) right. If the fuel filter was clogged, it would never start (unless you used starting fluid.)

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Old 04-11-2011, 09:20 PM   #17
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I too had this problem....Pulled the plugs and regapped them as per Onan specs...changed the oil..... and all is well now. Check the oil first and make sure the level is OK.
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Old 04-11-2011, 09:50 PM   #18
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You either have a bad voltage regulator or a bad control board.
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Old 04-11-2011, 10:31 PM   #19
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The fuel suction hose is seperate from the chassis engine hose. These can go bad, and the generator sucks air. With this, until it fails completely, you get some fuel, so that the engines seems to be running as long as you crank it over. They generally fail in the fuel tank, means dropping the fuel tank to change out. Been there, and done it. Not easy. First on a 83 Pace Arrow, then a 98 Bounder, but Fleetwood picked up the fix on that one. But was exactly the same problem.
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Old 04-11-2011, 11:28 PM   #20
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this is a '91 onan 4000 emerald plus
I have the service manual if you want it..

I am willing to bet you a donut that its the control board.. they are notorious. There is a replacement board that is suppose to be 100x more reliable: Generator & RV Controls | Engine Monitors | Idle Limiter | Repair & Rebuilding Services or Onan replacement board Index

Or, if you know troubleshooting, you can use the service manual..

Go to that smokstak.com link I gave.. those guys know everything about these.
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Old 04-12-2011, 06:22 PM   #21
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I had a 1994 suncruiser with a 4000 it did that, the float was stuck. Turned bottom screw a couple of turns and turned back ran good as new.
2007 Fleetwood Revolution LE 40V
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Old 04-13-2011, 08:34 PM   #22
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Had an '03 Onan 4000. Coachman Leprechaun. All different kinds of codes. Changed oil, fuel filter, air filter, with no fix. Turned out to have a hole worn in the fuel line, sucking air, losing prime. Early on would run when coach was parked, then not at all as the leak got worse. Diagnosed by putting short fuel line in a pail of gas. Another time the carburator needed overhauling. Had gooped all up from obstruction in exhaust, clogged up spark arrestor. Hope this helps.

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