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Old 09-09-2021, 01:59 PM   #1
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New update from Spartan on DEF issues

c/p from email [relay from Entegra for Spartan ]


At Spartan RV Chassis, we continue to make improvements to our DEF system supplied by Shaw Development, with primary focus on the DEF sensor. In January 2021, we launched a DEF sensor with greater reliability which has a shield around the DEF sensor to protect it in its environment. This new sensor was launched for both installation in production units and for field service replacement. We have seen significant improvements in sensor reliability based on this design with almost zero field failures.

In April of 2021, alongside many in the auto industry, we were impacted by the global chip shortage. This global shortage impacted the supply of components utilized in the Shaw DEF system, significantly impacting our supply of sensors and complete DEF systems for both new vehicle production and service. We were placed on supply constraint and have been managing the situation as best as possible since that time to minimize the impact to our customers, which has included long hours from our customer service and supply chain teams.

We pride ourselves in exemplary customer service, and it is a core value for our business. The last few months have been a real challenge for our team and our customers alike. We apologize for any inconvenience the DEF situation has caused our customers.

We are beginning to see major improvements in our component supply base and corresponding parts/product availability. Our goal is to eliminate our DEF parts availability issues by the end of September. To that end, we will continue to work with our service centers and coach OEM partners to address all outstanding customer issues as they arise. While this DEF system and supply issues have not been specific to Spartan, we are working with our industry partners to address the situation. We have worked closely with Cummins, the RVIA and directly with the EPA to provide options for relief to RV owners experiencing DEF system failures. We are hopeful that if agreed to and adopted, these measures could lessen the impact this system failure has had on the RV industry.

We will keep you appraised of developments as they occur in the near term as we look to put this issue behind us.

Moving forward If you experience any of the following fault codes, please contact Spartan RV Chassis at (800) 543-4277 and we will help you through the next steps you need to take with your coach.
  • SPN 3364 FMI 9 (Cummins fault code 3868) - Aftertreatment diesel exhaust fluid quality- Abnormal update rate.
  • SPN 1761 FMI 9 (Cummins fault code 4677) - Aftertreatment diesel exhaust tank level - Abnormal update rate.
  • SPN 3031 FMI 9 (Cummins fault code 4572) - Aftertreatment diesel exhaust fluid tank temperature- Abnormal update rate.

Also, please see the Cummins Engine Lamp Identification Guide pictured below or visit their website at www.cumminsengines.com. This is the process the engine will go through when the DEF sensor sends a fault code to the dash. Your motorhome is not equipped with a switch to perform a parked regeneration. If your engine aftertreatment needs a forced regeneration, please contact your local Cummins service provider, or contact Spartan RV Chassis @ (800) 543.4277 for assistance with locating.


Enjoy
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Old 09-09-2021, 02:10 PM   #2
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Here's a link to view the letter in a browser: https://mailchi.mp/f6c66c008a33/impo...6?e=47412d12ce

The letter contains an Engine Lamp Indication graphic that some might find to be helpful showing the various indications and their meanings.

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Old 09-09-2021, 02:26 PM   #3
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Thank you for that update. I wonder if Spartan has any plans to upgrade the 21 coaches that they installed outdated Gen 5 DEF heads in? Why do I think I know that answer.
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Old 09-09-2021, 02:29 PM   #4
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I have to say that is about the saddest attempt at excuse making I think I've ever seen. Basically Spartan is telling you its not their fault, its the supplier. And they want you to rest assured, confident in their plan after many months is to continue to rely on the supplier that provided the unreliable components to provide more maybe more-reliable parts as soon as THEIR unreliable vendors start shipping them more of the unreliable components that caused the problem to begin with-to fix the problem. What could possibly go wrong?!
And then, inexplicably, they insert information about "Parked Regeneration" which has absolutely nothing to do with the DEF sensor problem. So maybe the reason Spartan can't fix the DEF sensor problem is that they don't know how it works? That would explain a lot.
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Old 09-09-2021, 02:32 PM   #5
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I will give them credit the supply chain is getting better... my def head went out on Saturday afternoon while priming my fuel filters, called Spartan after hours to start the case and the replacement shipped on Tuesday arrived Wednesday and now awaiting the service center to install it and do the fuel rail recall, along with AC check and Spartan dash update. I will be inspecting both the old and the new heads. Need to call NHTS to report and get the vin thing fixed.
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Old 09-09-2021, 02:36 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Archer2 View Post
I have to say that is about the saddest attempt at excuse making I think I've ever seen. Basically Spartan is telling you its not their fault, its the supplier. And they want you to rest assured, confident in their plan after many months is to continue to rely on the supplier that provided the unreliable components to provide more maybe more-reliable parts as soon as THEIR unreliable vendors start shipping them more of the unreliable components that caused the problem to begin with-to fix the problem. What could possibly go wrong?!
And then, inexplicably, they insert information about "Parked Regeneration" which has absolutely nothing to do with the DEF sensor problem. So maybe the reason Spartan can't fix the DEF sensor problem is that they don't know how it works? That would explain a lot.
I thought the same thing, but decided to post a "joke" about it until proven otherwise. I still blame Spartan for installing outdated DEF heads in 21 model year coaches. Sorry, that is inexcusable!!! They delivered me a failure waiting to happen and it did in 1,554 miles. when a later Generation DEF was already being installed in 21 year coaches.
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Old 09-09-2021, 02:38 PM   #7
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So nothing about a recall for those of us that haven't experienced a failure, but are concerned about actually using our coaches. I will be leaving Illinois in a month to head back to Arizona for the season and am very concerned about being stuck on the road. I have to get the two recalls taken care of before I leave and would love to get an updated sensor head installed as well.
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Old 09-09-2021, 02:46 PM   #8
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So Spartan says that they "launched a DEF sensor ... which has a shield around the DEF sensor to protect it in its environment."

Does anyone have any information on this "shield"? Did anyone who replaced (or purchased as spare) DEF head notice this new shield?

Any what aspect of the environment are they shielding the sensors from? The unit is submersed in DEF fluid, so how do you shield the sensor while still allowing them to evaluate the fluid properties? No information provided by Spartan.

Also, Spartan says they "have seen significant improvements in sensor reliability based on this design with almost zero field failures". Almost zero failures??? Many of the existing DEF Heads have failed after a few years so how valid is this statement?
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Old 09-09-2021, 02:56 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flyboy013 View Post
So Spartan says that they "launched a DEF sensor ... which has a shield around the DEF sensor to protect it in its environment."

Does anyone have any information on this "shield"? Did anyone who replaced (or purchased as spare) DEF head notice this new shield?

Any what aspect of the environment are they shielding the sensors from? The unit is submersed in DEF fluid, so how do you shield the sensor while still allowing them to evaluate the fluid properties? No information provided by Spartan.

Also, Spartan says they "have seen significant improvements in sensor reliability based on this design with almost zero field failures". Almost zero failures??? Many of the existing DEF Heads have failed after a few years so how valid is this statement?
I'll have information and photos on Monday when our service center replaces mine, both of the old and new.
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Old 09-09-2021, 03:03 PM   #10
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Hmm, missed the modification by a month or two, chassis manufacture date Oct-Nov 2020. Sounds like supply chain issues are being addressed. Better late than never.
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Old 09-09-2021, 03:07 PM   #11
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After being the victim of two failed DEF heads......if Spartan, in fact does have a "working" DEF head, then it's time they issue a TSB or a voluntary recall on all the units that have and will continue to fail. If not, then it is time for the NHTSA to administer that recall. Why should the coach owners be the ones put out and delayed with a known failure?

I have had two NHTSA recall notices on my 21 for possible de-laminating windows. I have yet to hear of anyone being stranded due to a window de-laminating.
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Old 09-09-2021, 03:23 PM   #12
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In this Newmar Owner's Forum thread (https://www.irv2.com/forums/f103/def...540696-37.html), iRV2 contributor tyoneonit made this post this morning:

Quote:
Originally Posted by tyoneonit View Post
After living through two DEF head failures and filing complaints with NHTSA and anyone I thought would listen , I received a Call from NHTSA for an interview. Received this letter from the EPA yesterday:

Thank you for your email to Mr. Regan regarding failed Diesel Emission Fluid sensors. The EPA has issued the following message through our compliance office addressing this issue.

Statement Regarding Failed Diesel Emission Fluid (DEF) Sensors

EPA and the California Air Resources Board (CARB) have been working with the manufacturers of diesel vehicles and engines to address this issue related to the ongoing shortage of computer chips and the impact that has had on the availability of certain replacement parts. One part in particular, a sensor that monitors the quality of diesel emissions fluid (DEF), has been of concern because the failure of the part can lead to the vehicle being unable to operate. The Engine Manufacturers Association (EMA) on behalf of its member companies has proposed an industry wide approach that would provide a software solution for vehicles with failed parts to enable them to operate temporarily while the industry works to produce more replacement parts and that, long term, would provide replacement parts through a recall program. EPA and CARB have reviewed the proposed approach and believe it is appropriate for the companies to implement the proposed solution going forward as quickly as possible.

The manufacturers must still develop new software code and test it to ensure the software can be installed on vehicles in the field. The companies expected that they would begin fixing some vehicles with failed sensors as soon as this week. The companies will also make available a similar software update for vehicles whose sensors have not failed but are among a group of vehicles where such a failure could be expected to occur to prevent a sensor failure from disabling the vehicle. This updated software is likewise expected to be available to service centers in the coming weeks.

For more information, please contact your dealer or service center. Thank you for contacting the Office of Transportation and Air Quality.


Sincerely,

Communications Team
Office of Transportation and Air Quality
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Bold and red and blue were added by me for emphasis.

One question: How many weeks?

Take care,
Stu
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Old 09-09-2021, 03:51 PM   #13
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Mine failed August 30. The new sensor was installed this morning and I picked up the coach this afternoon. Almost zero failed in the field. Well, thatís not much of a confidence builder. I donít trust my coach going down the road. I have said it before. The only true solution is getting the emergency vehicle software so the engine will not derate.
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Old 09-09-2021, 03:52 PM   #14
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Hmm, missed the modification by a month or two, chassis manufacture date Oct-Nov 2020. Sounds like supply chain issues are being addressed. Better late than never.
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