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Old 01-25-2016, 09:41 PM   #1
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Hard to diagnose issue

We took our 2000 Damon Daybreak, v8, on its first trip out of our driveway. We drove roughly 45 miles when we ran over a rough patch of road. After that, the rig started acting very weird. She died once, I was able to restart and drive her, but I could not take her over 35 miles an hour or she seemed to struggle a lot. Also, during the drive, every few seconds, the dash lights and headlights dimmed, the speedometer gauges would go up, only for a few seconds, and then go back to "normal." This went on and on all the way home. Now she will not start. We have her connected to shore power and the house lights work just fine either connected to shore power or just house batteries.

We changed the battery isolation relay and blown fuses. We have the engine battery on a charger now. I am including video.

Any help or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks,
Melissa
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Old 01-26-2016, 12:21 AM   #2
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I ran a diesel shop for quite a while. THis happened often on diesels. The cable to the pcm or computer was loose, usually at the chassis battery. Don't know if this is the same on a gas chassis. Usually something simple. Sometimes on a gas chassis this connection is the large red wire on the alternator. For sure check battery cables. Hope this helps.
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Old 01-26-2016, 12:24 AM   #3
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Don't know if this is your problem but there was a guy who posted a similar problem. It turns out his battery was moving about and shorting the positive cable to ground.

He discovered electric burn marks near the cables of his un-secured battery.
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Old 01-26-2016, 05:35 AM   #4
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Lights dimming and gauges going up instead of down sounds like a bad ground.

In any case, start at the batteries and take some pictures. Then carefully remove wires from one post at a time and clean the until they shine.

After cleaning the posts, trace the wires from the negative and positive posts and clean those connections.

Once those are factory fresh, go to your dash area and any control boxes in the area and tighten any grounds or wire connections you can find.
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Old 01-26-2016, 02:24 PM   #5
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X4 sound and looks like a bad battery connection, pull the cables and clean them, then flow them till the stop and repeat. Also make sure the battery is strapped down.
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Old 01-26-2016, 07:07 PM   #6
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Agreed check for loose connections or a bad ground... I would even check alternator as it could be going south
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Old 02-01-2016, 05:50 PM   #7
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Ok, changed the battery as it turned out the other battery was around 8 years old Changed the battery isolation solenoid, the starter (ignition proof coach chassis) solenoid, two fuses, and two mini circuit breakers under the dash. We have power from the slide out back but no power in the "cockpit" area. No dash lights, no hazards, no lights, nothing. And also, now none of the outlets work. I'm thinking I'm missing a fuse somewhere but not sure. Really not sure what to do next.
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Old 02-01-2016, 05:56 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by zzfieldsm View Post
Ok, changed the battery as it turned out the other battery was around 8 years old Changed the battery isolation solenoid, the starter (ignition proof coach chassis) solenoid, two fuses, and two mini circuit breakers under the dash. We have power from the slide out back but no power in the "cockpit" area. No dash lights, no hazards, no lights, nothing. And also, now none of the outlets work. I'm thinking I'm missing a fuse somewhere but not sure. Really not sure what to do next.
Your confusing the Chassis electrical system with the house (coach) electrical system.

This kind of problem (when driving) indicates a chassis electrical problem.
The isolation relay would have nothing to do with it.

Since the engine has a problem, it is more than just a loose connection to the gauges.


Since it started after a patch of rough road, my first guess would be a connector became partially or fully unplugged.


Start from the Battery and check both pos & neg cables everywhere.
You say it won't start...does that mean the engine does not turn over? (this is important)


Find the ECM, and make sure all the plugs are firmly inserted.
Then check all the plugs in the engine compartment.
Check the flywheel sensor (assuming it turns over but wont start)


Regards,

Dan
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Old 02-01-2016, 06:12 PM   #9
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As previously mentioned, check the other ends of the batt cables too, not just where they connect to the battery.
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Old 02-01-2016, 06:26 PM   #10
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When I mentioned the rig won't start, I mean, when I turn the key nothing at all happens. The headlights don't come on, the horn won't work, nothing at all in the driver's area will come on.

"Find the ECM, and make sure all the plugs are firmly inserted."
What is the ECM? I apologize for my ignorance.

I do appreciate everyone's input. I am learning quite a bit.

I will check the connections tomorrow, trace the battery cables to the other end.
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Old 02-01-2016, 07:33 PM   #11
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UPDATE:
I went outside on a whim and sat behind the steering wheel. I put the key in, jiggled the gear shift by making sure it was in park, jiggled the key in the ignition, and turned the key. I got the "ding ding" sound and lights on the dash. I tried to turn her over but she did not turn over. I pulled the key out and tried again but nothing happened. Could this be the ignition switch?
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Old 02-01-2016, 07:49 PM   #12
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Ignore the ECM (ELECTRONIC CONTRO MODULE).

Since it would not turn over, AND no dash lights, that is good. It means you most likely have a simple electrical connection problem.

It would help if you knew how to use a volt meter, or at least get a test light.

Remember if this is a "poor" connection, it might let a few lightbulbs light (like your gauges), but wont let the motor turn over.

Your bad connection could be a bad ground OR a bad +12v connection.
start at the battery terminals.....are they clean (no corrosion) and tight?

It is possible it is the ignition switch. Try your headlights.
They dont need the ignition switch to operate. If they work, might be ignition switch. If they DONT work, it is something else.

Start following the big cables and makes sure each and every connection is good.

Keep us posted,

Regards,

Dan
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Old 02-01-2016, 08:09 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zzfieldsm View Post
When I mentioned the rig won't start, I mean, when I turn the key nothing at all happens. The headlights don't come on, the horn won't work, nothing at all in the driver's area will come on.

"Find the ECM, and make sure all the plugs are firmly inserted."
What is the ECM? I apologize for my ignorance.

I do appreciate everyone's input. I am learning quite a bit.

I will check the connections tomorrow, trace the battery cables to the other end.
If your headlights dont come on then you have no power from the chassis battery. Get a test light and see if any of the fuses under the dash have any power to any of them. If you dont then you need to follow your power off the chassis battery because your getting power under the dash
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Old 02-02-2016, 08:49 AM   #14
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Yes, time for a voltmeter and/or a test light. They are dirt cheap and without them you are only guessing. Changing components without having measurements is a recipe for disaster. If you did not take pictures it is incredibly easy to put wires on incorrectly or to even drop one.

Please post a picture of the area where you changed the solenoid. And why did you change it in the first place?

You could be on the right track if it is a major system solenoid. Not a great idea to build something like that but possible. The issue could be related to wires close by the solenoid. Again, pictures, a voltmeter, and this group should have you going shortly.
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