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Old 02-03-2011, 10:39 AM   #1
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New Owner. Need help with coolant issue.

I just bought a very well preserved 1994 American Eagle on the Spartan MM2242 chassis. After having done a huge amount of checking and rechecking, researching the forum, and scratching my head; I come to you for advice.

I have a constant low coolant warning buzzer and light. I took out the coolant sensor and the probe had completely dissolved...nothing there but a plastic sleeve that once covered part of the probe. Called Spartan and ordered a new sensor and installed it. Same problem. The new probe is, beyond any doubt, completely immersed in coolant.

The wiring is the next branch in the diagnostic tree. Does anyone know of any spot along the wiring that is more prone to failure? I could certainly trace the entire 55 foot length but it sure would be nice to zero in on it.

Sam
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Old 02-03-2011, 11:22 AM   #2
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What type of coolant do you have? The old style sensors will not work with OAT type coolants.
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Old 02-03-2011, 11:53 AM   #3
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Hi Samdon,
This is a bit more information on Norm4015's post. If you have 3 wires coming from the low coolant sensor, it should work with any coolant. If there are 2 wires from the sensor, it may not work with the newer (Red) long life coolants. It will work with the Green color coolants.
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Old 02-03-2011, 01:52 PM   #4
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I do know the specs on these two variables. I have a two wire sensor and green coolant so I guess they are compatible. I had the coolant system serviced at a nearby OTRT center and it has SCA additives and the time release pellets in the coolant filter per the tech there.

I would really like for that to be my problem, though. Spartan tech support is thinking wiring like myself. Not fun!

Sam
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Old 02-03-2011, 06:25 PM   #5
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Hi Samdon,
As a temporary bypass, find the fuse and remove it.

Determine if the sensor uses the coolant to make a circuit and the alarm turns off. Call Spartan to determine how the circuit works.

Fuse protected power from one wire should be routed through the sensor and back to a relay that is normally closed. If the sensor can not make a circuit (low coolant) power is dropped to the relay and the warning light and sound comes on. Ground would come after the relay. These statements are to simple to be how it actually works but I think the general idea is good.

Check with Spartan on how the circuit actually works.
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Old 02-03-2011, 06:38 PM   #6
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Think you have already been given good suggestions.
I would add that if you are calling Spartan you could ask for the wiring diagrams for your chassis. They did that for me and I found the diagrams helpful several times since.
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Old 02-04-2011, 08:32 AM   #7
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Gary, I like that logic. I did not even think about one of the sensor legs being fused. My MH does not have the automatic shutdown feature so I figured it was just a straight shot to the dash....mostly acting as a supremely annoying idiot light/buzzer. It certainly is that!

Spartan is sending a wiring diagram but I have not received it as of yet. Hopefully, I'll be able to find the location of all involved components without an exhaustive search. Colors are a weak point for me...can't see them. Maybe my three year old can parse them out for me

Sam
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Old 02-04-2011, 08:53 AM   #8
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If the circuit does have a relay in it you will need to test that. Relays wear out or corrode and fail. I've had bad relays several times in otr trucks, caused me a lot of wire tracing for nothing.
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Old 02-04-2011, 07:53 PM   #9
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If it's a Cummins engine, the coolant level sensor is wired directly into the ECM>

What engine and what code are you having?
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Old 02-07-2011, 11:03 AM   #10
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Found the problem...sort of.

There is a fault in the "14 Ground" wire between the sensor and the dash. The only other wire leaving the sensor is "211 Mod Probe." It is OK. You all should have seen the testing procedure. A 50ft wire rigged onto my Fluke meter running from the dash all the way back to the sensor plug at the surge tank. The funny part, you ask?....Me running back and fourth like a madman making sure everything was propery connected...I guess I needed the wind sprints.

So, I know there is a fault in that wire. It could be a fuse somewhere, or a relay, or both.....or, the 14 ground wire could be cut somewhere along its length. I don't yet have the wiring diagram from Spartan. For now, I identified where the two sensor wires go....into a plug leading to the buzzer with one blue wire attached to 211 Mod Probe and a black one connecting to 14 Ground. Unplugged the connector and no light or buzzer.

Once I get the wiring diagram; I can hopefully have success in locating a fuse and/or relay along the path......which looks to travel down an area with no/limited access.

a k, It is a Cummins engine.....CTA8.3 I have not taken it to a Cummins shop for codes. Apparently, I like a challenge for better or worse. Can't explain it..just my personality or lack thereof.

Thanks for all of your help. I will continue the quest once Spartan hands over the wiring diagram.

Best Regards,

Sam Donaldson
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Old 02-08-2011, 06:40 AM   #11
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Quote: "a k, It is a Cummins engine.....CTA8.3 I have not taken it to a Cummins shop for codes. Apparently, I like a challenge for better or worse. Can't explain it..just my personality or lack thereof."

Your Eagle has the trusty mechanical C engine. No codes.

Dave
98 American Eagle
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Old 02-09-2011, 09:19 AM   #12
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Dave, you are certainly correct. I was under that impression and it is one of the primary reasons I purchased this particular coach rather than a newer one. There are a number of "black box" deals spotted around and once I got into things; I thought that maybe, just maybe, one of these mysteries may hold fault codes even with that being the case.

I was able to trace the wires and discovered that they leave the sensor and make a straight shot to the dash. No fuse or relay to gum up the works. As the bundle runs along the fresh water tank, the 14 Ground wire was marginally unsecured. It had chaffed to the point of failure. A few minutes with a soldering iron, three zip ties, and about two feet of corrugated wiring loom and I'm back in business.

The way these wires make their way to the dash is a bit precarious at best. The installer could have chosen to go over, around, or under the tank. There is no solid provision for their security. Given the hand built nature of these machines; I'd bet there are examples out there with the wires routed each of the above three ways and probably more. The Spartan tech told me that they supplied the sensor and wire with Fleetwood being responsible for the fitting of the system. Sounds like their wiring diagram may not have helped even if it had been sent.

Either way; it's working as designed now....and I know a whole lot more about the innards of a 1994 American Eagle

Thanks for all of your help and suggestions.

Best Regards,

Sam
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