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Old 11-10-2017, 08:29 PM   #1
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: Axis
State: Georgia
Posts: 13
THOR #3358
Question 2015 Axis Starting Problem

We have a 2016 Thor Axis 24.1 on Ford Chassis. Since we have had it, if it sits for more than a week it will not start. It totally gets no ignition power. The battery boost button does nothing. When it first occurred, we called a retired maintenance guy who said it sounded like a solenoid was not energized. We hooked a battery charger to the chassis battery, turned it on and the engine cranked immediately. This has always been the fix for a year and a half. Tired of carrying a battery charger everywhere we go.

Here is what we know:
1-It is NOT a dead battery
2-It does not matter if the unit is or is not plugged into shore power.
3-It does not matter what position the coach battery disconnect switch is in.
4-Battery assist switch has no effect.
5-Charger only has to be connected for 1-2 seconds.

We have tried variables of all the above.

We are sure it is some type of solenoid but are trying to identify anyone else who has had a successful diagnosis of the problem and gotten it repaired. If we take it to the shop we will have to leave it and then I do not think our local CW maintenance would every find the problem.

Any assistance would be greatly appreciated!
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Old 11-11-2017, 01:11 AM   #2
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Model: Vegas 25.2
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THOR #6934
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bugs mom View Post
We have a 2016 Thor Axis 24.1 on Ford Chassis. Since we have had it, if it sits for more than a week it will not start. It totally gets no ignition power. The battery boost button does nothing. When it first occurred, we called a retired maintenance guy who said it sounded like a solenoid was not energized. We hooked a battery charger to the chassis battery, turned it on and the engine cranked immediately. This has always been the fix for a year and a half. Tired of carrying a battery charger everywhere we go.

Here is what we know:
1-It is NOT a dead battery
2-It does not matter if the unit is or is not plugged into shore power.
3-It does not matter what position the coach battery disconnect switch is in.
4-Battery assist switch has no effect.
5-Charger only has to be connected for 1-2 seconds.

We have tried variables of all the above.

We are sure it is some type of solenoid but are trying to identify anyone else who has had a successful diagnosis of the problem and gotten it repaired. If we take it to the shop we will have to leave it and then I do not think our local CW maintenance would every find the problem.

Any assistance would be greatly appreciated!
If you know it is not a dead battery, it could be the battery terminal connection. it sounds as if putting the charger on moves it just enough to contact. start there, clean the terminals
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Old 11-11-2017, 01:45 AM   #3
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THOR #7035
Why would you take it to CW for a FORD problem?
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Old 11-11-2017, 05:28 AM   #4
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Model: Axis 24.1 KC's Big Box
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THOR #3510
At one time, there was a lengthy discussion regarding the
'phantom' battery bleed .
Here are 2 things which we all have found will run down your battery.
The Axxera radio...be sure to turn it OFF by pushing in the on/off button ..when you park your Axis. Do not think it is off, because your turned off the ignition...
The Jensen radio in the bedroom...has a backlight...go into the menu..scroll through until you find the backlight setting...turn off the backlight.

This may help you a bit. It helped us !

good luck !
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Old 11-11-2017, 08:21 AM   #5
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Bugs Mom,
Give an educated look at the circuit breakers in the main power system. On my Ford F53 chassis, I had a situation similar, but not the same. I had done something to run down the chassis batteries and so I thought I would connect a charger to them. Not sure how, but I tripped one of the "Marine" type breakers and had never seen how they work, just knew they were a breaker. These are the Funny looking ones under the hood and in the battery compartment. When they trip, a "Flag" comes out of it and you have to reset it by pushing the "flag" back in. Can be hard to tell if it is tripped.
Anyway, check as many as you can find. Might not be the problem, because I really don't think you could connect the charger and get it to crank if a breaker was thrown, but probably worth checking.

Another thought is to investigate the starter relay. At least I'm pretty sure there is a relay between the Key and the starter solenoid. Check your Ford manual in the section about fuses and relays and their panels, cause there are at least three or four. That starter relay may be faulty and need replaced.

Best I can come up with right now.
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Old 11-11-2017, 02:26 PM   #6
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THOR #3483
Battery Problem

If CW told you that it is NOT the battery and it is the original battery, I would be suspicious of that statement. I would start by getting that battery checked by a reputable mechanic. Our 2016 Axis needed both chassis and coach batteries replaced.
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Old 11-11-2017, 03:16 PM   #7
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THOR #3510
What Wrpt58 said about the Breaker ... on your Axis..Where the Chassis Battery is located...there is a little black box in front/up a bit from the battery. If that breaker is tripped, there will be a small yellow flag showing...gently push it back in place.
The House batteries, under the steps..has a breaker box...located to the left of the batteries. If that breaker is tripped, a small red flag will be showing..again..push it back in place.

We had electrical issues with our 2016, from day one...turned out...and this is well documented on this forum...a dealer had robbed an electrical component from under the refrigerator...anyhow, once that was corrected, we have had no problems...with our batteries or electrical system.

WE LOVE OUR AXIS !!
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Old 11-11-2017, 04:38 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bugs mom View Post

.....cut.....

5-Charger only has to be connected for 1-2 seconds.

.....cut.....

Any assistance would be greatly appreciated!

Item #5 is key in my opinion. I'd ask myself what can possibly change just because you connect a battery charger if your battery is indeed good (and I'm not necessarily as certain as you).

Where exactly are you connecting the charger? Because if it's right at the chassis battery terminals, then you can eliminate a lot of things that are NOT likely causing the problem.

It's possible that the higher voltage from a battery charger could be causing things to work differently, but that's highly unlikely.

On the other hand if you are connecting at house batteries, and then starting engine, that's a completely different set of conditions.

A little more information on exactly how you start with help from battery charger, and under what conditions, would help a lot. For example, are house batteries also fully charged when you start engine?
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Old 11-11-2017, 05:59 PM   #9
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THOR #3358
Replying to questions

1-Yes we are connecting charger directly to terminal posts on the chassis battery.
2-The coach batteries are fully charged
3-The chassis battery is fully charged
The ignition will not even click (no lights, no attempt of motor to turn over, no beep that key is in ignition). Immediately after battery charger is connected, lights come on and ignition key indicator starts to beep.

After whatever is reset, the engine will crank perfectly until it is left to sit again for a couple of weeks.
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Old 11-11-2017, 06:06 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bugs mom View Post
1-Yes we are connecting charger directly to terminal posts on the chassis battery.
2-The coach batteries are fully charged
3-The chassis battery is fully charged
The ignition will not even click (no lights, no attempt of motor to turn over, no beep that key is in ignition). Immediately after battery charger is connected, lights come on and ignition key indicator starts to beep.

After whatever is reset, the engine will crank perfectly until it is left to sit again for a couple of weeks.

Are you making sure the Axxera Radio is turned off on the radio? Is the backlinght on the Jensen Radio in the bedroom on ? These will bleed your batteries ... if you have anything else on in the background, when not running the motorhome, it will bleed your batteries .

K
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Old 11-11-2017, 07:20 PM   #11
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THOR #2121
My first step would be to place a voltage meter across your chassis battery next time it doesn't start.
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Old 11-11-2017, 07:46 PM   #12
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So if I'm understanding the symptoms correctly:
Key in ignition, turn to run, no normal dash/ignition lights.
Turn to start, no lights and no click, no engine turning over.

Connect the battery charger and magically things operate normally.

There have been cases with Ford where the connector for the ignition switch/dash bundle in/below the steering column develops a intermittent connectivity problem which displays the symptoms you describe. The higher charging voltage is just enough to bridge the poor connection.

Find this connector and next time it happens try wiggling it, pulling it apart and back together and see if that makes a difference before you connect the charger.
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Old 11-11-2017, 09:09 PM   #13
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THOR #3358
Quote:
Originally Posted by vkb View Post
Are you making sure the Axxera Radio is turned off on the radio? Is the backlinght on the Jensen Radio in the bedroom on ? These will bleed your batteries ... if you have anything else on in the background, when not running the motorhome, it will bleed your batteries .

K
Yes. We learned to turn these off when we first bought it. Thanks for your reply.
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Old 11-11-2017, 09:11 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tfryman View Post
So if I'm understanding the symptoms correctly:
Key in ignition, turn to run, no normal dash/ignition lights.
Turn to start, no lights and no click, no engine turning over.

Connect the battery charger and magically things operate normally.

There have been cases with Ford where the connector for the ignition switch/dash bundle in/below the steering column develops a intermittent connectivity problem which displays the symptoms you describe. The higher charging voltage is just enough to bridge the poor connection.

Find this connector and next time it happens try wiggling it, pulling it apart and back together and see if that makes a difference before you connect the charger.
We will try this week. Something like this is what we are looking for. Thanks for you reply.
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