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Old 06-09-2020, 08:34 PM   #1
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Low Air Dash Light Comes On

Hi,

My 2011 Holiday Rambler 36PFT has a new issue where the dashboard Low Air light comes on despite the front/rear air tank indicators both showing a solid 113 psi. The gauges sometimes creep up to 120, but then settle back to 113 psi. The brakes seem to work fine, and there is no warning buzzer (thankfully -- as I've read of others driving for hours with a low air alarm blaring).

When I park and turn everything off, including the chassis and house battery kill switches, the problem goes away. But then it comes on again after a few miles of driving. When the light comes on, it starts very faintly, then grows slowly to full intensity over a minute or two. Stranger yet, the Antenna UP light has done the same thing a couple of times.

Of course, we have a trip coming up soon -- weeks before we can get into the diesel repair shop. Could this low air light be fairly benign, or should I worry the emergency brake system will suddenly kick in, slam on the brakes, and I make the evening news for blocking the interstate for 2 hours?! (Ha-ha, does anyone else have such nightmares?)

My manual mentions a multi-step air brake test, and I plan to do that in the next day or so.

Anyone other ideas?

Thanks!

Paul
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Old 06-09-2020, 09:09 PM   #2
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my low air switch use to come on when running in wet weather. there was not an air problem just poor connections on the sensor especially in wet weather. removed connection cleaned and covered with silicone cured my issue. sensor was located on front air tank

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Old 06-09-2020, 09:20 PM   #3
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Thumbs up low air dash light

Sounds like a voltage leake. If the gauges are up, that eliminates that issue. Check the sensor in addition to the wiring as described above.
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Old 06-09-2020, 09:28 PM   #4
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I'll guess it's a bad ground to something feeding voltage back through the lights. You can test for that by replacing the offending bulbs with LEDs. LEDs only accept voltage in one direction. So they should ignore feedback due to a bad ground.

Once you're confident that it's a wiring problem and not an air problem, then it's a matter of finding and replacing the bad ground connection. If you're lucky it won't be in the data module. . . .
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Old 06-09-2020, 11:19 PM   #5
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I'll guess it's a bad ground to something feeding voltage back through the lights. You can test for that by replacing the offending bulbs with LEDs. LEDs only accept voltage in one direction. So they should ignore feedback due to a bad ground.

Once you're confident that it's a wiring problem and not an air problem, then it's a matter of finding and replacing the bad ground connection. If you're lucky it won't be in the data module. . . .
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Old 06-10-2020, 09:09 AM   #6
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I would recommend as stated above, check all connections starting at the sensor and the dash light. Remove wires, clean and reattach. It was recommended that you apply Silicon to the connection after. I hope they are recommending silicon grease not caulk as silicone caulk will cause oxidation in electrical connections. Rather than silicon grease I would recommend diaelectric grease as this is a much better product for this application. It is a possibility as mentioned you may have a bad or lose ground too but I suspect your problem is a sensor that is failing. I doubt this will shut you down or lock up your brakes but with modern systems I could not guarantee it. I would at least run through these checks and maybe replace the sensor before my trip. These are fairly easy but sometimes time consuming to do but at least you will ha e eliminated the less complicated components.
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Old 06-10-2020, 10:51 AM   #7
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Low Air Dash Light

Thanks for all the great ideas, everyone. I'll be sure to update with the solution.

-- Paul
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Old 06-10-2020, 07:41 PM   #8
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Not sure the details of your air system, but I believe most likely that the low air warning device has its own pressure sensor, separate from your air gauge sensors. So if you gauges are showing sufficient air in the system, could be a faulty low air pressure warning switch.
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Old 06-11-2020, 01:17 AM   #9
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Don't know why your 'low air' light is coming on, but your tank pressures dropping after your compressor unloads, is perfectly normal.
Your coach will have a Meritor Wabco System Saver 1200 air dryer. After cut off pressure (usually about 120psi), it uses about 10psi of tank pressure to dry out the desiccant filter. The regeneration valve does this .
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Old 06-11-2020, 01:41 AM   #10
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It was recommended that you apply Silicon to the connection after. I hope they are recommending silicon grease not caulk as silicone caulk will cause oxidation in electrical connections. Rather than silicon grease I would recommend diaelectric grease as this is a much better product for this application.
The oxidation is the result. The cause is that a large number of room temperature vulcanizing products (that's a generic term) use acetic acid as one of the active ingredients. On any product that you plan on using to seal an electrical or electronic connection SNIFF the product first (if it's an open tube). If it smells like vinegar DON'T USE IT. It will eat up your connections.

Before you buy look at the label carefully. If you see any type of "acid" put it back and keep looking.

I had to repair a sprinkler system once where someone used leftover wire nuts and stuffed bathtub caulk into the open end and then taped up... the exposed copper wires were half-eaten away or missing. I had to cut back the cabling and re-splice everything with proper watertight splices. Last time I looked Permatex UltraBlack is not acidic and is is OK.

Mike
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