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Old 06-30-2012, 07:02 PM   #1
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Location: Minneapolis, MN
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Why is my Genset Coolant really, **REALLY** low??

Here is the scenario: brand new unit (Fleetwood Expedition 36M), ~ 2 months since delivery. Genset is a Cummins Onan Diesel HDKAK. 30 hours on the genset (two trips, one to the northwoods - cool, needed to recharge the batteries, the other to the south - hot, needed to run it to power the AC during the evening and while driving). since the unit is brand new, I assumed that everything was ready to go, and did not check (actually, did not know that I should check - sorry, newbee..) the fluid levels in the genset. After reading the recent thread on "how long can one run the genset", and many posters recommended checking the **oil** levels, I decided today to check the levels in the genset.

When I checked those levels, the oil was fine, but the coolant in the overflow tank was **dead low** ... as in, BELOW the "lowest when cool" line, and when looking in to the tank, just above one of the ports (not sure whether the intake or oulet, but it is on the side of the tank).

Here is the question: do you find that when you run your gensets over a timeframe of ~30 hrs (esp. during hot highway driving), do you get significant coolant loss on this order of magnitude??? The other options that I figure are that the genset sat for quite a while at Fleetwood pre-manufacture and lost significant coolant volume, OR I have a leak that I need to keep an eye out for. What does the Wisdom of the Website have to say????

(BTW, I mean that literally - I have always been very impressed with the breadth and depth of the knowledge that you all bring to bear here: I do hope that at some time I have the chance to meet some of you!)
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Old 06-30-2012, 07:07 PM   #2
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Location: Northwest Indiana
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I've never had a coolant level drop on my generator.
That being said, your best plan of action would be to fill it up. Then check after hours of use and see where you stand. I'd also check cold everytime as well. It could have been low from the get-go. And it might not be low enough to cause problems, but low enough that you noticed.
Good luck!
2004 Fleetwood Discovery 3126 CAT engine
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Old 06-30-2012, 07:41 PM   #3
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Location: Pearl Mississippi
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I had the coolant tank crack replaced under warranty once the second time cost me $477.00 to replace. that is one reason you might have low coolant level.

Are you checking the level at the front on the generator where there is a window to observe the coolant level. Just wondering as I did not know until my second replacement.

Jerry & Anna
Retired Navy - 55 yrs Aircraft Mechanic/Pilot
2007 40 Ft Tiffin Phaeton, 2016 Ford Explorer
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Old 06-30-2012, 08:02 PM   #4
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I checked by both looking at the coolant level visible on the outside of the tank (plastic) at the front of the unit, and by taking the cap off and looking inside (which just reinforced the outside-of-the-tank observation that the was **absolutely** no fluid visible.
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Old 07-01-2012, 06:02 AM   #5
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Add enough to bring it where it needs to be, then keep an eye on it (and under it!). The dealer could easily have missed the low coolant during prep. It's probably nothing.
1997 37' HR Endeavor, 275hp Cat, Freightliner
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