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Old 11-24-2020, 08:28 AM   #1
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C-13 Danfoss Fan Controller

So I noticed high temperatures on the transmission and coolant and called a tech that supports Country Couch and he had me unplug the 2 wire connection to the controller which disconnects the ground and forces the fan to run on high speed only.


So a few questions.


I live in Texas a warm climate, what is the downside on running at high speed?


If there is a downside, how long can I run as I am on 2,000 Mile Trip?


Now I do see the replacement to the Thermal Valve Conversion. Anyone have the Thermal Valve Conversion completed in Texas looking for possible service tech.
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Old 11-24-2020, 08:54 AM   #2
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You can run forever with the controller power lead disconnected which causes the fan to run at high speed. You will probably see a loss in fuel mileage as the engine will be running cooler and you will kick up a tremendous dust storm when you enter a campground with gravel roads.

If you kick up lots of dust at slow speed your engine air filter will begin to load up and you will need to change it more often.

If your OTR air conditioner is working you can turn it on recirculate and the fan should go to high speed. Test it by reconnecting the power to the controller and turning on the a/c to recirculate. There is a switch on the a/c receiver that triggers the fan when the a/c refrigerant pressure builds up.

Before doing any replacement, check the sensors. There are two that are resistance elements and you can disconnect the wires from the controller and check them with an ohm meter. On my coach, both of those sensors were open circuited resulting in slow fan speed. It is much cheaper to replace the two sensors.

Should you decide to go with the wax valve there is a fitting on the top of the radiator just below the hose delivering coolant from the engine to the radiator where the valve can be mounted. You won't need to weld another fitting in place. You can see the fitting with the engine access door raised and using a bright flashlight look near the top of the radiator.

If you want to replace the fan controller then only replace the electronic portion. The controller is in two parts. The electronics are attached with 4 screws.
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Old 11-24-2020, 08:59 AM   #3
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Do you have any direction on where I may locate the sensors? I assume they are directly wired from the larger wire harness off of the controller.
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Old 11-24-2020, 05:00 PM   #4
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The one for charge air cooler is in the pipe from the turbocharger. It is on top of the engine on the upper side of the pipe. Not sure of the coolant sensor but you should be able to follow the wires from the controller to the sensors.

I ordered the two sensors from Berendsen Fluid Power near Atlanta. I also ordered connectors for the sensors as I read someplace that it would be good to replace them when installing the sensors.

The air sensor is 1090174 and the water sensor is 1090173.
The connectors are K23436. A set for each sensor will be needed.
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Old 11-24-2020, 05:04 PM   #5
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Negative of fan always on high (when not needed for air flow to keep coolant and intake manifold temperature in normal operating range) is that it takes a lot of HP and will cost you MPG.


I would NOT recommend throwing away HP or MPG!
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Old 11-26-2020, 07:41 AM   #6
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But to directly answer the question, no it won’t hurt anything to continue driving it to finish out the trip. As stated above there are three things that the SD controller looks at. Charge air cooler air discharge temp, coolant temp and OTR AC system pressure. Any one of those being high can cause the controller to send more oil to the hydraulic fan motor and spin the fan faster. If those three sensors are all good then it’s the SD controller itself. I’ve heard that’s a $750.00 part but simple enough to change. If any of those sensors are bad the controller defaults to high fan speed.

My friend’s 06 C13 Intrique has that setup and its running on high all the time. We tested the sensors and determined the controller to be bad. Next step is to replace it which we have not done. Also considering converting to wax valve. My 2000 C10 Magna has the wax valve and has been trouble free the past four years we’ve owned it.

Continue your trip!
Fred
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Old 11-26-2020, 10:02 AM   #7
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Worth a shot!!! When our 04 Allure's FCU started behaving sporadically. I went to the unit and unplugged the harness, spray both male/female plug components with electronic cleaner, used air in a can for fast drying, dabbed a broken round tooth pick with dielectric grease into the female holes, and a Q-Tip of dielectric grease on the male plugs.

The FCU started behaving as it should. I did a yearly preventative maintenance repeat of this for the next 3-4 years - until I finally went with he Source Engineering Thermal Valve. Which for the ISC/ISL I feel is fine. (Never researched other engines, but know others who have installed it on some C9's, and I believe a C13 too.).

On our 04 Allure, this harness was mounted where road moisture was tossed up - a harsh environment... And the cleaning of the harness connections, worked for us...

Like a said, worth a shot!!!

Best to you, and all,
Smitty
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Old 11-26-2020, 11:03 AM   #8
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Just a note if you decide to go with the Thermal Valve conversion, which is essentially bullet-proof and simple.

The wax valve controller is set to close at a set temperature, ~187*F. That means, the fan will not rotate at all until the wax begins to melt and the valve begins to close. The fan is either OFF or ON. That leaves radiator/CAC/dash A/C cooling dependent on air flow generated solely by driving. Usually, that will be no issue. However, if you start your dash A/C while sitting at idle and the engine is not fully warmed, there will be inadequate air flow through the cooling coils which can lead to high pressures that blow out the seals in the A/C units. Also, using the turbo for a lengthy period, say climbing a long, low grade when the engine coolant is not fully warmed, can trip the high temperature sensor at the intake.

Adding a restricting orifice to the line from the wax valve to the fan motor will cause the fan to rotate at a reduced speed from start-up, eliminating the OFF or ON status of the fan motor.
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Old 11-26-2020, 03:14 PM   #9
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X2 on wax been running great over a year running mountains in high deserts and cascades for over a year
The source engineering wax valve kit has a restrictor to keep fan running at slow and speeds up as temperatures increase.
Happy Thanksgiving
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Old 11-27-2020, 01:14 PM   #10
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Rather then install the restricter I added 2 one ft diameter fans in front of the a/c condenser that come on when the a/c clutch pulls in or when the thermo klixon located on the intake pipe from the turbo to the engine intake manifold I installed starts to get warm. No problems so far.
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Old 11-27-2020, 01:19 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roy1 View Post
Rather then install the restricter I added 2 one ft diameter fans in front of the a/c condenser that come on when the a/c clutch pulls in or when the thermo klixon located on the intake pipe from the turbo to the engine intake manifold I installed starts to get warm. No problems so far.
That is a good solution as well, IMO. As long as there is some air flow through the stack until the main fan begins to run, there should be no issues.
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Old 11-27-2020, 08:19 PM   #12
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Question

Not meaning to hijack this, but on a related issue, I know unplugging or pulling the fuse from the Danfoss fan controller will cause it to revert too high speed. Is there a way to shut it down or force it to low speed? I think my controller is working since my temps on the road are perfect, ranging between 188 and 194 unless I go up a mountain pass in which case it might get up to 208, but then I can watch it drop very quickly as the fan cuts in. My problem is driving down dirt roads it's sucking up dust and gravel including into the air cleaner as someone has pointed out. I don't think it's on high under those circumstances, more likely on medium, and with mine engine speed affects it, not just air and coolant temperature which I believe is normal (please correct me if I'm wrong on that point). Even medium speed is enough to create the dust storm so I wish there were a way I could install a switch near the driver's seat to force it to low or shut it down completely temporarily. Does anyone know if this is possible?
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Old 11-29-2020, 01:37 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by birdhunter View Post
Not meaning to hijack this, but on a related issue, I know unplugging or pulling the fuse from the Danfoss fan controller will cause it to revert too high speed. Is there a way to shut it down or force it to low speed? I think my controller is working since my temps on the road are perfect, ranging between 188 and 194 unless I go up a mountain pass in which case it might get up to 208, but then I can watch it drop very quickly as the fan cuts in. My problem is driving down dirt roads it's sucking up dust and gravel including into the air cleaner as someone has pointed out. I don't think it's on high under those circumstances, more likely on medium, and with mine engine speed affects it, not just air and coolant temperature which I believe is normal (please correct me if I'm wrong on that point). Even medium speed is enough to create the dust storm so I wish there were a way I could install a switch near the driver's seat to force it to low or shut it down completely temporarily. Does anyone know if this is possible?
Possible, but not too simple.

The fan speed is actually controlled by a switch valve (spool valve) at the motor. That spool valve is, in turn, controlled by a pilot hydraulic circuit governed by your Fan Drive Control Assembly (FDCA) which is controlled by the Fan Drive Controller (the electronic part that often fails.)

The spool valve is normally closed and no fluid is sent to the motor and the fan remains still. It takes an increase in the pilot circuit pressure, which is really a by-pass, to cause the spool valve to open and allow the fan motor to spin. The FDCA controls the amount of pressure in the pilot circuit.

When the electronic control fails, the FDCA defaults to a "no power" condition which closes off all by-pass and pressure is increased to max in the pilot circuit. This increased pilot pressure, forces the spool valve to open completely and the fan rotates at max rpm.

In short, to have a simple way to slow or shut down the fan, you would have to install a remotely controlled by-pass valve between the inlet and outlet lines of the fan drive controller , much like a water heater by-pass. Then, flipping the switch, would open a passage for all fluid to "go around" the failed controller, lower the pressure in the pilot circuit, cause the spool valve to close, and the fan slows or stops.
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Old 11-29-2020, 07:44 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by birdhunter View Post
Not meaning to hijack this, but on a related issue, I know unplugging or pulling the fuse from the Danfoss fan controller will cause it to revert too high speed. Is there a way to shut it down or force it to low speed? I think my controller is working since my temps on the road are perfect, ranging between 188 and 194 unless I go up a mountain pass in which case it might get up to 208, but then I can watch it drop very quickly as the fan cuts in. My problem is driving down dirt roads it's sucking up dust and gravel including into the air cleaner as someone has pointed out. I don't think it's on high under those circumstances, more likely on medium, and with mine engine speed affects it, not just air and coolant temperature which I believe is normal (please correct me if I'm wrong on that point). Even medium speed is enough to create the dust storm so I wish there were a way I could install a switch near the driver's seat to force it to low or shut it down completely temporarily. Does anyone know if this is possible?
I had a lot of problems with dust as well. Reading on the forums here, some members installed a piece of sheet metal under the fan shroud. I used 1/8” sheet aluminum. I found this really helped.

Bill
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