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Old 10-02-2022, 01:03 PM   #1
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Onan 5kw Generator Issues

1998 Winnebago Brave with a 5 kw Onan Generator.
Been having some ongoing issues with the 5kw Onan generator.
The generator starts up and runs good for a while.
However, when traveling during hot summer days in AZ, the generator will run good for about 30 - 45 minutes; then it will suddenly quit and will not start again for quite a while.
Was wondering if the generator was getting too hot?
Does anyone know if there is a high temperature cutoff switch on the generator?
Comments and suggestions are welcome.
Thank you
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Old 10-02-2022, 02:48 PM   #2
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Probably not the problem but try running with the gas cap loose.

If the tank develops a vacuum, the generator fuel pump may not be able to pull fuel.
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Old 10-02-2022, 03:41 PM   #3
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Remove the front cover on the generator and check for debris inside the case, restricting air flow. Check oil level, the "low oil cutoffs" can be very sensitive and shut down the generator when sloshing going down the road. I don't think mine has a high temp cutout, but it may. Fuel starvation is a common problem on RV generators as twinboat posted. some have added auxiliary pumps in the generator fuel line to overcome the issue. I added an intake grill with a boot to duct fresh outside air directly into the intake on my 2015 ACE 29.3. I assume you have changed the oil and checked/replaced the air filter.
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Old 10-02-2022, 04:30 PM   #4
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I've had the same issue with my marquis gold for the last 6 years I've owned it. I've noticed that if I only run 1 roof air it will run for hours but if I turn on that 2nd roof air it'll run for upwards of an hour or so surge a lil and die or just die and won't start back until its had a lengthy rest period. I've thrown parts at it and nothing so I just bought a external to use.
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Old 10-02-2022, 07:54 PM   #5
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1998 model 5kw is an older version of generator, but no, there is not a temperature cutoff switch. Still your over temp diagnosis is likely correct. The usual failure is either the boiling of the fuel or overheating of the fuel pump. You can try a new fuel pump, but should also really check the air in and air out. The hot air / not exhaust must not recirculate to the cool intake side.

The reason it wonít restart is once it shuts down the cooling fan goes away and everything hot soaks even further. Fuel pumps do age and get worse over time.
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Old 10-02-2022, 08:53 PM   #6
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Some years ago there was a guy on the Class C forum who was having a similar problem (only with a 4K Onan) and he suspected vapor lock. He cured the problem by mounting the fuel pump outside the Onan enclosure; he mounted it to the Ford chassis there in the channel/frame. He used rubber fuel line and a grommet from the fuel pump to the carb connection on the Onan IIRC. I always thought if I were to do that, I'd put a metal shield around the fuel pump for add'l rock protection. Fortunately I never had a problem....even in 115 degree AZ heat, but then I only have one A/C.

Good luck on the fix and good times and safe travels to ya.
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Old 10-02-2022, 09:06 PM   #7
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Optical oil level monitor?

My buddy had a lot of trouble with his till he figured out if the oil was too dirty, it would shut the motor off, He started changing the oil more often and the problem went away.
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Old 10-02-2022, 09:27 PM   #8
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Mine was doing that, but it would always start right back up.

I cured that problem by venting the compartment.
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Old 10-02-2022, 10:53 PM   #9
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Great lookin' mod, Dodge Guy. Nice workmanship. Nice to know that made your problem go away.

Best,
Ed S.
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Old 10-03-2022, 12:19 PM   #10
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Sounds like critters to me.. read my old posts on onan generator.. do not skip any steps.. these generator do not shut off when they get hot.. you need to blow out all the cooling fins.. and read my old post.. you may be.. jumping to conclusions that generator is shutting off hot.. and have something else wrong
Good luck and keep us posted
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Old 10-03-2022, 04:39 PM   #11
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5kw Onan Generator

Thanks for the words of wisdom gentleman.
I will look at the possible oil, air & fuel pump issues.
The fuel pump is the original one, so maybe?
The coach has two AC units, however, I only operate one at a time.
Thanks again.
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Old 10-03-2022, 10:51 PM   #12
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Change fuel pump and all the fuel line that you can.. and filter too.. while at it.. just move fuel pump outside the generator box.. I mounted mine on the rear.. had to drill 2 small holes and used #12 self tapping sheet metal screws and extra wire.. I also put in and extra inline fuel filter before the fuel pump.. I also added fuel shut off valve to turn fuel off while in storage.. and to run carb as dry as can.. to help with crud in carb.. it kinda works..
Good luck and keep us posted
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Old 10-04-2022, 04:16 AM   #13
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The OP's symptom of stalling when the second air conditioner is added sounds like possible fuel starvation from the additional load.
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Old 10-06-2022, 09:39 PM   #14
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Check your hertz should be 60 and if it goes to hi or low it does that especially when it was hot out. Cummings fixed mine and the tech showed me how. So I added volts and hertz meters.
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