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Old 04-24-2012, 02:30 PM   #1
kfalls's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 44
SIMBA won't run except with battery boost

I have a 2004 Safari Simba (36DBD) with the Workhorse Chassis and the 8.1L Engine. It was in storage while I had a knee replacement and connected to 110V shore power to keep the batteries charged. The coach batteries stayed charged fine, but the chassis battery did not. (It has always worked fine up until this point). Anyway, I can get the motorhome started by using the battery boost, but as soon as I let off the battery boost button the engine dies. I have charged the chassis battery and checked what fuses I could find in the manual that looked like they could possibly be relevant. (primarily the ALT/START fuse and the INST/IGN fuses.) They are all fine. One other piece to the puzzle that may be totally irrelevant, but prior to this issue, the generator would not start and I was planning on taking it in to have it checked. Now all of the sudden it starts fine but now I have this issue of not being able to start or keep the motorhome running with engaging the battery boost switch. Anyone have any ideas? THANKS in advance!


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Old 04-24-2012, 02:34 PM   #2
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Location: Bremerton, WA
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It sounds like you have a battery disconnect switch that has tripped or is off. Check that. Your MH is much newer than mine, but when my knife switch is off I can start my coach, but it won't run unless my emergency button is pushed. Even when my battery is dead the coach won't run long without a charge in my battery. If your battery is dead after sitting you have a draw. I always disconnect my coach battery when not in use for more than 2 weeks.

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Old 04-24-2012, 05:03 PM   #3
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Damon Owners Club
Workhorse Chassis Owner
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 21,176
My personal expierence, Workhorse with 8.1.

About 18 months into my wife's ownership the dang thing would not start, I used the emergency start and away we went,, Well, before I went to the dealer I crawled under it (The battery is behind the passanger side front tire, On mine I can just crawl under (no jacks needed) and sit there and work on it) with a load tester and guess what.. Battery passed, flying color (Green).

Re-connected the cable and it worked.

Turns out they used the wrong metal in the lug, and it gets a bit corrorded/dirty and routine cleaning is needed.
Home is where I park it!
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Old 04-25-2012, 03:07 PM   #4
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I suspect a bad/dirty ground as well. On our coach, the battery, starter and other grounds are ganged to a post on the frame fairly close to the starter area...can't miss it. We were having the same problem in your description and giving the wiring a good shake saved the day. I later cleaned and re-torqued the wiring post nut...so far so good. Bob
Jan and Bob

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Old 04-25-2012, 05:41 PM   #5
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Posts: 44
Thanks for the replys

Thanks for the replys. I ended up having a recommended repair man come check it out. He knew right where to look. Said he had run into it before. There is a VIM module which can be located in different locations depending on which shift built the motorhome. He found mine under the dash at the steering wheel. Said it often was the source of the problem and in my case he found a loose wire connected to it. After tightening it, the motorhome started right up and everything works fine!
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