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Old 06-20-2011, 11:34 AM   #1
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Cool 2003 Journey Serpentine Belt Broke

2003 Winnebago Journey DL 36GD, 330 Cat. 73,000 miles

After 2 months in storage I was heading to top off the fuel tank and add some preservative. About 3 miles from home the temp alrm sounded, and the guage was on HOT. Found a safe parking spot, tried fast idle to no avail, and shut down. Let it cool for 15 minutes, started up with the guage now at NORMAL, and drove home.

Arranged an appointment with my truck shop 4 miles from home, and removed the bed and engine cover. The serpentine belt is gone, the tips of some of the fiberglass fan blades are damaged, and I can't turn what I think is the alternator (14 volt, 160 amp). Sounds like the alternator siezed, broke the belt, which damaged the fan.

Why then does my engine battery panel meter read 12.8 volts after I start the engine, and only 12.2 volts after shutting down, with no alternator turning? Is there another charging source in there somewhere?

Thanks in adance, ........Doug
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Old 06-20-2011, 11:41 AM   #2
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Your gauge is most likely not accurate. Use hand held volt meter, perfer digital, to make the measurements.
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Old 06-21-2011, 08:35 PM   #3
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We had the same problem a couple of years ago on our 2003 Journey DL. My alternator froze up and broke the belt. Unfortunately after I had a new alternator installed I broke two more belts on the road. I finally found that the new alternator had a spacer washer on its shaft to allow adjustment for lining up with the other pulleys. The installer had left this spacer in and the belt was torn up by rubbing on the fan bracket. Once the spacer was removed the pulleys were aligned and everything was ok. Expensive lesson. Belts were 60-90 bucks apiece, had to be towed near Birmingham to a Walmart (paid by Good Sam) and sat for nearly a week in Walmart waiting for parts. Total out-of-pocket was about $1300.
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Old 06-21-2011, 09:57 PM   #4
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About how many miles were on both of your coaches when the alternator froze up? I have approx 52,000 on my 2004 Meridian and was wondering if I'm traveling on borrowed time.

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Old 06-22-2011, 07:09 AM   #5
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As a thought while replacing the serpentine belt you might want to replace the water pump belt. It's below and behind the serpentine belt.
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Old 06-22-2011, 09:09 AM   #6
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My coach had about 70,000 miles when the alternator seized. In fairness, I had driven through lots of salted slush on the way to Texas and had sat in a campsite for three months before starting it.
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Old 06-22-2011, 12:12 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by p00ches View Post
Why then does my engine battery panel meter read 12.8 volts after I start the engine, and only 12.2 volts after shutting down, with no alternator turning? Is there another charging source in there somewhere?

Thanks in adance, ........Doug
No there's no other charging source. What I think is happening is that with the ignition in the "RUN" position the battery isolator is energized and ties the house and chassis battery banks together. Your house batteries are apparently charged and at about 12.8 volts. When tied together they try to equalize voltage and that's why you read 12.8 volts with the ignition in RUN. With the ignition OFF you read 12.2 because that's the voltage in your chassis batteries which are discharging due to no alternator.
To verify this explanation you could start your engine AND your genset. With the genset running and the battery charger turned on the chassis battery should show that it's being charged even though there is no belt turning the alternator.
Hope this helps.
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Old 06-25-2011, 02:00 PM   #8
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Thanks KIX and everyone else who replied. Got the coach back from the shop yesterday. Replacing the alternator (160 amp) the belt, and the fan was 1,158.00. $462 for the alternator, 167.50 for the fan blade, 78.50 for the belt, and 450.0 for 6 hours labor.

After driving it about 25 miles for fuel, my engine voltmeter still reads 13.9 volts, the same as when first starting the engine. Seems it should have dropped off a volt by now. Maybe the battery's were really low, and still not fully charged. They read 12.2 before I started it. Just don't want to overcharge the battery's on our next trip in August.

Thanks, ...Doug
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Old 06-25-2011, 06:08 PM   #9
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[QUOTE=p00ches;888096]After driving it about 25 miles for fuel, my engine voltmeter still reads 13.9 volts, the same as when first starting the engine. That's normal voltage when the alternator is turning
Maybe the battery's were really low, and still not fully charged. They read 12.2 before I started it. About 12.6 volts is fully charged.Just don't want to overcharge the battery's on our next trip in August.

12.2 volts is less than a fully charged battery.
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