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Old 10-21-2021, 04:19 PM   #1
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Transfer Switch Contactor Replacement

I've been doing work to get my old ONAN Marquis 7000 running. Found a loose starter connection and pulled the carb apart, cleaned, replaced. The generator is running good.

Then I discovered I had no power to the coach from the gen. I was able to locate a troubleshooting doc for my transfer switch (ES50M-65N) and the instructions were easy enough to follow. Step one was to read the coil resistance for the contactor. It appears the coil is bad.

I can see 120v coming from the generator. I removed the plastic cover from the generator contactor and manually engaged it and...voila, I have power.

The doc I found provides instructions for replacing the coil but I'm finding the entire contactor for less than coil prices so intend to buy the whole assembly.

I have the exact/oem part number and I see them on EBAY for ~$50. I was ready to pull the trigger when I noticed that the EBAY photos all show the contactor labeled with L1, L2, L3 and T1, T2, T3. On my existing switch that is how the Shore power is labled and the generator contactor starts with L4..T4.

The photos appear to be the right part and the part number is clearly visible on the contactors. I 'suspect' that this is purely a question of labeling and has no functional impact. I'm throwing it out here in case someone can either validate my plan...or warn me off. Help?
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Old 10-22-2021, 05:59 PM   #2
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The label is probably just for second relay as far as numbering is concerned. Ls are used for power Ts for power out. I and others have been able to replace contactors by getting them from actual manufacturer. Biggest thing is to make sure coil voltage is right as there may be several coil voltages for same physical contactor even in AC or DC. Then get all the wires back correctly. I have wire lable books you can use what ever you can to label yours .
Quote:
Originally Posted by OwensKa1a View Post
I've been doing work to get my old ONAN Marquis 7000 running. Found a loose starter connection and pulled the carb apart, cleaned, replaced. The generator is running good.

Then I discovered I had no power to the coach from the gen. I was able to locate a troubleshooting doc for my transfer switch (ES50M-65N) and the instructions were easy enough to follow. Step one was to read the coil resistance for the contactor. It appears the coil is bad.

I can see 120v coming from the generator. I removed the plastic cover from the generator contactor and manually engaged it and...voila, I have power.

The doc I found provides instructions for replacing the coil but I'm finding the entire contactor for less than coil prices so intend to buy the whole assembly.

I have the exact/oem part number and I see them on EBAY for ~$50. I was ready to pull the trigger when I noticed that the EBAY photos all show the contactor labeled with L1, L2, L3 and T1, T2, T3. On my existing switch that is how the Shore power is labled and the generator contactor starts with L4..T4.

The photos appear to be the right part and the part number is clearly visible on the contactors. I 'suspect' that this is purely a question of labeling and has no functional impact. I'm throwing it out here in case someone can either validate my plan...or warn me off. Help?
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Old 10-22-2021, 10:28 PM   #3
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Did you check for power to the coil of the contactor ?

After the generator has run about 30 to 45 seconds, a control board sends power to the coil.
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Old 10-24-2021, 06:16 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OwensKa1a View Post
I've been doing work to get my old ONAN Marquis 7000 running. Found a loose starter connection and pulled the carb apart, cleaned, replaced. The generator is running good.

Then I discovered I had no power to the coach from the gen. I was able to locate a troubleshooting doc for my transfer switch (ES50M-65N) and the instructions were easy enough to follow. Step one was to read the coil resistance for the contactor. It appears the coil is bad.

I can see 120v coming from the generator. I removed the plastic cover from the generator contactor and manually engaged it and...voila, I have power.

The doc I found provides instructions for replacing the coil but I'm finding the entire contactor for less than coil prices so intend to buy the whole assembly.

I have the exact/oem part number and I see them on EBAY for ~$50. I was ready to pull the trigger when I noticed that the EBAY photos all show the contactor labeled with L1, L2, L3 and T1, T2, T3. On my existing switch that is how the Shore power is labled and the generator contactor starts with L4..T4.

The photos appear to be the right part and the part number is clearly visible on the contactors. I 'suspect' that this is purely a question of labeling and has no functional impact. I'm throwing it out here in case someone can either validate my plan...or warn me off. Help?

The shore and generator contactors are different. I got a new shore contactor from Esco USA last fall for about $80.00: https://www.escousa.net/ (574) 264-4156
I had to cut the redundant contact ears off so that the circuit board (on the right side of the contactors in the pic) would mount back on on the new contactor.


Edit: It could also be the circuit board, that would have been about $70-80.00. In my case I knew it was the contactor.
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Old 10-29-2021, 05:37 AM   #5
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I received the new contactor from an Ebay supplier and installed it. As Lowflyer1 pointed out I had to cut off the extra 'ears' in order to get the circuit board reinstalled. Unfortunately the behavior is the same. Specifically:
- shore power works fine
- when the generator is running I can see ~120 volts coming in but the gen contactor does not engage
- if I manually engage the gen contactor (by pressing in the contactor switch) I get power to the coach

So...something is causing the gen contactor not to engage. I followed the troubleshooting doc for the ATS and it pointed to the contactor coil. I guess it's 'possible' the coil is also bad in the new contactor I received. But I'm now thinking it's the time delay board that is bad. But I don't know for sure... At this point I'm leaning toward just getting a new ATS. I see new 50 amp switches on Amazon for ~$150 (Surge Guard, Progressive Dynamics, Tech Research...). Are these reasonable options or are there reasons I need to spend more?

Lastly, I read things about unstable generator power causing problems with the ATS. I don't THINK that is my problem but would appreciate any thoughts/insights as to whether it is likely or possible...and suggestions for how to rule that out before investing in a new switch.
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Old 10-29-2021, 05:51 AM   #6
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Was the unit from eBay the same exact model/part #?

I would call Esco and see what they say.


I assume you had all the loads off during transfer and wait for the transfer to occur, that's maybe 30 sec to a minute?
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Old 10-30-2021, 09:09 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lowflyer1 View Post
Was the unit from eBay the same exact model/part #?

I would call Esco and see what they say.


I assume you had all the loads off during transfer and wait for the transfer to occur, that's maybe 30 sec to a minute?
The troubleshooting doc I found included the part numbers for all components. The unit I found on eBay had the part number printed on the front of the contactor casing. Interestingly...the contactor I was replacing did NOT have the part number printed on it (but the shore power one does). And, as I mentioned, the new one was labeled L1..T1...vs. the L4...T4... on the original. I had a bit of a scare when I realized the replacement unit had those two 'extra ears' that would prevent the time delay board from connecting. But then I examined the original part closely and realize it USED to have the ears buy they had been cut off...so I did the same.

I did have all the loads off and I did give adequate time for the delay. I will give ESCO a call and see what they say.

Still looking for any advice on a new transfer switch and whether those ~$150 are a good option, should I decide to go that way.
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Old 10-30-2021, 06:00 PM   #8
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If you know the voltage to the coil hook a jumper from independent power source to see if that will actuate it. If it does not respond you have a bad coil.
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Old 10-30-2021, 06:31 PM   #9
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Thinking out of the box... you said old onan ... when was last time you cleaned armature slip rings ? They need to be.. nice and shiny..
Good luck and let us know what you did and maybe better members then me will help you
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Old 11-25-2021, 05:56 AM   #10
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An update to my transfer switch issue. I decided I didn't want to continue to chase repairs on my old transfer switch and ordered a new one from Amazon.

I got this one for $166 all in/delivered:
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00PVG2I3A...roduct_details

It was my second choice of the available options but I chose it because one of the reviewers used it to replace my exact switch and it worked for him...

It's working fine post install.
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Old 11-25-2021, 06:33 AM   #11
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Great, thanks for the update.
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