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Old 03-05-2011, 12:27 PM   #1
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Genset switch gremlin

A 2004 39W Journey ... Onan Quiet Diesel 7500 Genset

Problem: The genset will only start from the switch on the genset itself (the switch on the dash or the one in the all-in-one place do mothing).

Other observations:
  • I can stop the genset from the switches inside.
  • The green *pilot* light is illuminated in the middle of the dash switch.
  • The genset runs fine ...
  • it started from inside about two months ago.
  1. Has anyone else had this behavior?
  2. Where do I start looking first? (solenoid, fuse, circuit breaker, wires, bad switch)
The inside switches do not start it ... and I am physically able to start it by going outside so I have a workaround until I can remedy the situation.

I am hoping that someone can shed some light on the solution to this problem to decrease my resolution effort ... thanks guys (and gals)
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Old 03-05-2011, 02:10 PM   #2
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Here is the Winnebago wiring diagrams pick your year coach and model. Select the chassis wiring diagram has GEN wiring in it.
Also check any wiring plugs near Gen that may need some cleaning because of corrosion, and ground wiring to frame of coach because of age of coach.
98KSCA, 99MACA, 03 KSCA-3740- 8.1 Chev-- ALLISON Trans, now in good hands
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Old 03-06-2011, 10:54 AM   #3
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An Onan rep once told me that the units use ground to start/start vice positve, if this helps.
Dan & Sharon & Kasey (Our Yorkie Puppy (12 Yrs Old) On the Road (2012 Journey 36M, 2006 Jeep Liberty)
USN-Ret ('65-'93) Fulltimers, Class of 2012
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Old 03-06-2011, 02:26 PM   #4
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Given that it won't start in both locations, the common element is the wiring harness to the generator. You might try insuring that the wiring harness is properly seated at the generator connector and all conductors look OK. You should be able to download the EC-30 remote start manual which has at the back -the wiring layout of the connector at the generator which is presumably where it would be connected.
If you have an EC-30 remote start module installed in your coach, the conections for the switch could be bridged - at that point - to the harness running to the generator. The Winnebago wiring diagrams should point you closer if a quick look doesn't yield success.
09 Journey 39Z
Southern Ontario
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Old 03-06-2011, 03:10 PM   #5
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Yep.. it uses ground to start/stop. the switches pass the ground. Places to look would be the harness connector at the generator and the ground connection feeding the switches.

If the ground is good at the genset, suspect a bad control board.

Head over to and see if they have a service manual for your genset. Be specific about the model and revision. Its where I got mine. Nice people.
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Old 03-06-2011, 05:49 PM   #6
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Skigramp: I had the exact same thing happen on my 06 Meridian last year. Went through all the suggestions everyone on this thread mentioned with the exception of changing out the board but none corrected the problem. If you do a search that thread is still accessible by the way. The solution? You won't believe me. I don't know the solution but 6 months ago the thing began working perfectly and all the way down and back from Fl. (just got home 2 days ago) it worked perfect. It is the darnest thing I have ever seen. Go figure. Maybe these Winnies fix themselves? Wouldn't that be great and what a selling point.
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Old 03-06-2011, 07:47 PM   #7
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hi ski, i like the last guys explanation. my 06 meridian has never done that, but it has come on without me turning it on a few times. kinda spooky.
boyce & lisa , 06 meridian 39k, 06 jeep unltd
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Old 03-06-2011, 08:11 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by pawpawboyce View Post
hi ski, i like the last guys explanation. my 06 meridian has never done that, but it has come on without me turning it on a few times. kinda spooky.
Our Onan 7.5 diesel tried to self-start also. There are several threads on this forum that can help solve the problem, but they generally attribute the cause to wet wiring. When you look at the front of the generator, there is a multi-wire connector on the left side. I took that connector apart, cleaned the contacts, applied di-electric grease and put it back together. No problem since.

I think that main connector also feeds the remote switches inside the M/H, so a good cleaning might cure the remote no-start problem, as others have recommended.
Denny, Connie & Shadow (former barn cat made good)
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Old 03-08-2011, 08:47 AM   #9
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My generator started up on its own one night, it scared the heck out of me. I did not at the time have an automatic starter on the generator. I went out with a flashlight in one hand and a gun in the other.

I found the footprint of a Raccoon in the dust on the starting switch on top of the generator.

If you don't have one get the EC30W automatic starter, I love mine and it beats the heck out of training a raccoon.
An RV'r is someone driving a $300,000.00 Motorhome towing a $40,000.00 car and looking for a free place to park.
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Old 05-15-2011, 02:20 PM   #10
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Gremlin GONE

I looked for a long time ... checked connections, voltages,

I finally took it to an Onan shop in CA who figured out that there was a problem with the LL wire ... he suggested that I take it to a Winnebago technician ... so we stopped by Forest City ... they ran a replacement wire from the dash switch ...

I am happy to report that the gremlin is gone ...
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