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Old 06-10-2019, 07:23 PM   #1
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Angry Won't start

We just picked up our 2004 Itasca Suncruiser 35U with a Vortec workhouse chassie last weekend. We brought it home to prepare for a trip over the weekend. The hydraulic jacks began to not come down on Saturday and today, Monday, it won't start. Per the monitor, while running the generator, the batteries and emitting sufficient power, but when we try to start it, nothing! We are new to rving and need any thoughts. Please help!
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Old 06-10-2019, 07:33 PM   #2
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Most RVS have two battery systems, a house battery for living conveniences and a chassis battery for engine, slides and leveling system. The vehicle engine should ALWAYS be running, when operating slides and leveling, to prevent draining the starting battery. Some RVS have a BOOST switch, which couples the house and chassis batteries for momentary starting power. Your chassis battery is obviously drained or bad.
EDIT: Some RVS also have a chassis battery disconnect switch, to prevent draining the chassis battery while parked for extended periods.
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Old 06-10-2019, 07:39 PM   #3
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Thanks so much. We have a volt meter and will check the battery tomorrow. Per the owners manual, it says to use assessor and doesn't state it has to be running. We learned a big lesson here. Thanks so much!!!
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Old 06-10-2019, 08:11 PM   #4
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disconnect the battery cables and let the battery rest fir 15-20 minutes. then either use your volt meter to read the resting charge or a hydrometer to test each cell. you might also check the battery terminals and cable ends for corrosion. that might be preventing the battery from being charged.
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Old 06-11-2019, 04:48 PM   #5
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We have checked the batteries and had the chassis battery recharged. We used the AUX after reconnecting it. Still won't start or crank. We also checked the relays and what we could with the volt meter. Any other thoughts?
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Old 06-11-2019, 04:49 PM   #6
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Also, instrument cluster was working some yesterday and now show nothing. Any ideas?
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Old 06-11-2019, 04:50 PM   #7
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We have a 2004 Itasca Suncruiser 35U on a w22 workhorse chassis with 8.1 Vortec
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Old 06-11-2019, 05:23 PM   #8
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specifically, how was the chassis battery checked?
disconnect the battery cables and let the battery rest fir 15-20 minutes. then either use your volt meter to read the resting charge or a hydrometer to test each cell. you might also check the battery terminals and cable ends for corrosion. that might be preventing the battery from being charged.

if the starter is not turning you either have a bad starter or less voltage than required. the fact that the dashboard is not “on” is another indication to me of low voltage.

assuming the chassis battery IS ok then i would start measuring voltage downstream from the battery. with the key turned what voltage is measured at the starter?
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Old 06-11-2019, 06:21 PM   #9
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I don't really have any more suggestions for you other than to hang in there and a solution will be found. rk911 has pretty much covered all the bases. I had to have the starter replaced in my 2002 35U but the problem was intermittent so I was able to get it to a repair shop.

You chose a great model with a great floor plan. Don't get too frustrated with the things you're going to have to fix and, if you do, just read what some owners are posting about their new motorhomes.

Find yourself a good, independent commercial truck repair shop that repairs Workhorse chassis. They're used to getting their commercial customers back on the road quickly and, if my experience with "my guy" here in Sacramento is any indication, will go the extra mile for you. If it is your starter, they can come to you. This will cost extra but, in the overall scheme of things isn't outrageous.

I'm sending you a PM with some off-topic comments about things to look out for with your 35U based on my experience.
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Old 06-12-2019, 11:10 AM   #10
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Thumbs down Won't start

We have been talking to an RV tech who believes we have a low voltage problem somewhere between the battery and the starter. Any ideas? We have called a mobile rv tech and are waiting for a response.
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Old 06-12-2019, 03:04 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dvoelkel View Post
We have been talking to an RV tech who believes we have a low voltage problem somewhere between the battery and the starter. Any ideas? We have called a mobile rv tech and are waiting for a response.
as I've said a couple of times now...start at the battery and work downstream.

- disconnect the battery cables and let the battery rest fir 15-20 minutes. then either use your volt meter to read the resting charge or a hydrometer to test each cell. the hydrometer test will indicate the state of charge in each cell.

- you might also check the battery terminals and cable ends for corrosion. that might be preventing the battery from being charged.

- ASSUMING the battery, cables and terminals are good then be sure you have a solid ground. follow the black cable to where it is grounded and check for a tight connection and no corrosion.

- with the key on follow the red cable to the next connection point and using a volt meter check the voltage. follow that cable to the next connection, and then the next connection all the way to the starter. check each point with a volt meter.

the key has to be on and in the STARTING position even if the engine isn't cranking..which it isn't. somewhere between the battery and starter you should find the trouble spot. you tech likely has more sophisticated equipment but he'll likely do much the same...especially if he is old school.

good luck.



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Old 06-13-2019, 05:45 PM   #12
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Yes we have read the posts and followed your advice. It appears we have a low voltage issue after the chassis battery and between it and the fuse box. The mobile rv tech is coming next Thursday. We have tested as much as we can and are very perplexed.
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Old 06-13-2019, 05:52 PM   #13
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great. please post the results. good luck.
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Old 06-16-2019, 04:36 PM   #14
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After 30 years sailboating with extensive use of 12 volt systems it sounds like a ground wire loose or corroded. Since this RV is new to you, before paying the mobile repair guy, I would remove and clean every post and large cable terminal end with a wire brush attachment for a drill. There are 2 posts on every battery and the battery shut off switch and wherever the battery cables attach to the engine and starter. If the engine is grounded to the chassis, there too. You may have proper voltage, but not a clean enough connection to handle the amps needed to start the engine or use slides and leveling. An auto parts store or West Marine will probably have a grease or spray made to reduce future corrosion. I also use the red and green/black felt "washers" as the first thing on the battery terminals. They do seem to keep down the corrosion and cost single digits. In RVing single digits are good.



If this does not solve your problem, at least the Mobile Repair guy won't have to charge you his 3 figure hourly rate to do that cleaning and can concentrate on other solutions. Good luck.
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Old 06-17-2019, 04:30 AM   #15
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Been there a couple of times! Every time it turned out to be the shut-down switch by the door that was accidentally hit while cleaning the stairs or something else.
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Old 06-17-2019, 06:28 AM   #16
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Won't Start

Believe me we have tried that and any and everything we have gleaned from this post and others on the site. We currently believe it's the ignition switch,
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