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Old 09-09-2021, 12:34 PM   #1
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Dash Gauges flat line while driving

I have a 2006 Winnebago Adventurer 35A. Recently my gas and temperature gauges turn off while I am driving which also triggers the seatbelt light and busser. The speedometer still works (and I think maybe the RPM gauge works) and the engine continues to run as near as I can tell. This all happens within seconds and I see gauges coming back up when I look down at the dash. The only change to RV prior to this happening is that I replaced the engine battery with the same exact battery. I have checked connections as well as 2 mechanics and everything seems ok with the battery. This has happened at least a dozen times on multiple drives. Please help. JLB in WV
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Old 09-09-2021, 01:16 PM   #2
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This sounds like it may be a real bear to find the cause but I might throw in some thoughts to move beyond the battery.
If it was the battery connections failing, then there would be no power for the seatbelt light and buzzer, so I would move away from that and look for possible plugs or connections that feed certain parts of the dash. Hard to very hard to find, perhaps!

Does your Rv have a dash which can be removed with a bunch of screws, so that you can get good access to the back of the dash without trying to stand on your head draped over the seat?

I hate tanking all those screws out but in this case, I feel it may be totally necessary as I will suggest getting to the back of the dash and trying to spot which plug or cables feed the things which fail. Then I would try shaking and moving things to see if it can fail while you are there as it is really hard to fix things that are not broken at the time!

One of the bigger problems with this question is that it is in the "chassis" part of the RV and Winnebago does nothing to support that part but refer us to the chassis builders for info and those folks tend to protect the good wiring info with their life!

You "May " be able to find more and better info looking at the chassis info for whatever builder did that part, Ford, Chevy, etc? Do you know which chassis, Ford or Workhorse?
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Old 09-09-2021, 01:22 PM   #3
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It is a Chevy workhorse chassis. As far as access, there are only 4 screws to remove and the big shroud comes off exposing the entire back of dash.
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Old 09-09-2021, 04:54 PM   #4
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With only four screws---you are blessed!

But after that it may take a bit of luck to find as it sounds like one or more wires or a plug is loose and rattles around to lose contact. The big thing on things that come and go is finding when it is failing and that may be hard to get it to do it while you are looking!

My thought is that things like the temperature and oil pressure come from totally different sections of the engine, so if they fail at the same time, I look for a spot where the wiring for those which do fail are in or near the same space and that is often the dashboard where it is logical for one power or ground wire to make several things fail. The speedometer and tach make be totally different circuits or connections and not failing? So if you get behind there and having it running like going down the road, maybe you can shake a few wires and get it to do it so you can finally shake a few different wires and sort it down to one which may be just hanging together on some form of quick connecting thing. Before starting, it might be worth a try to give it a good thump on the dash to see if it is that sort of thing!

Sorry but the best shot I've got!
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Old 09-10-2021, 10:28 AM   #5
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Well, at least thanks for playing. Every little bit of information helps.

Based on your comments I played with the connecter on back of the gauge cluster. When I unplug the 16 pin connecter and then plug it back in, it exactly duplicates my issue. So I have narrowed it down to that connector for now.
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Old 09-10-2021, 12:11 PM   #6
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That sounds like super progress to find it on one specific connector, so maybe you are getting close???

At this point, some other ideas might help as well. One is that there is a reasonable shot that it is simple corrosion on one or more of the contacts, so just shotgun trying to clean all of them on that connector may be worthwhile.

This is a cleaner that is easy and I use lots of it for just trying to prevent future trouble and find it is safe for most things like plastic and connectors:
https://www.walmart.com/ip/CRC-5103-...E&gclsrc=aw.ds

But if it is the type connector that lets you see each wire, looking/ wiggling each one may let you see one that has slipped back just a little bit so that it is not fully plugged in and that may be really good to look really carefully before putting it all back together??/

A second thing to take a good look at is where things are laid on a circuit board of some type as you want to try to spot anything like a crack or a bad solder joint if you can.

Sounds like good progress---now to find what to do with it!! Good luck....
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Old 09-10-2021, 05:51 PM   #7
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I don't know where I saw them but wiring diagrams for Workhorse chassis are available online.
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Old 09-15-2021, 07:00 PM   #8
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Isn't there a known issue with certain years of the Workhorse chassis dash electronics?
I think that Brazel's has replacement Actia units.
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Old 09-16-2021, 06:44 AM   #9
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Weird electrical problems like this often turn out to be a bad or corroded ground somewhere.

Try running a temporary ground to the instrument panel, just to test out this idea.

Make sure you find a good, reliable, known ground, or run a wire all the way to the battery to make sure.

Best of luck!
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Old 09-16-2021, 07:21 AM   #10
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There's some interesting info here. Near the end at about 7:24 he talks about periodic "freak-outs" of the gauges that a software update might address.

Note: I have no particular knowledge, I just found this via Google.

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Old 09-16-2021, 12:22 PM   #11
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Dash/Workhorse chassis

I have 2006 Itasca Sunrise 38j. The dash gauges would do the same thing as you are asking about. I found my gauges would do this only when I tilted the steering wheel down to a certain point. So I tried a different position, (one click up from lowest setting). The problem went away. Any position in tilt had no gauge problem. Only when I pulled the wheel to lowest setting the gauges would randomly cycle off and then go back to where they were while driving (flat line). I hope this may help you.
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Old 09-16-2021, 12:47 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mjnpf View Post
I have 2006 Itasca Sunrise 38j. The dash gauges would do the same thing as you are asking about. I found my gauges would do this only when I tilted the steering wheel down to a certain point. So I tried a different position, (one click up from lowest setting). The problem went away. Any position in tilt had no gauge problem. Only when I pulled the wheel to lowest setting the gauges would randomly cycle off and then go back to where they were while driving (flat line). I hope this may help you.
That sounds like your stretching your cable/wires, maybe affecting the plug mentioned previously. If you can find where it's hanging up you can probably eliminate the problem.
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Old 09-16-2021, 01:22 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BobC View Post
That sounds like your stretching your cable/wires, maybe affecting the plug mentioned previously. If you can find where it's hanging up you can probably eliminate the problem.
Lowering your steering wheel dose not pull the wires and or cable tighter. I found that there was wires rubbing inside steering column. Had worn a bare spot on wires. Thank you for your input.
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Old 09-17-2021, 11:29 AM   #14
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I have a 2005 Winnebago Adventure 38J. When I purchased the motorhome the dash display did not work, which is a common problem with this model. I contacted Ultra RV Products. They have a lot of parts.

Their website is https://www.ultrarvproducts.com/inde...account/logout

They might be able to help with your problem.
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