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Old 06-17-2018, 12:17 AM   #1
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Unhappy Generator Problem, I think

Hi

I have a 2014 ACE 30.1 with the onboard generator. We are long term camping at a KOA in Monterrey Bay, CA and happy we are here. We use the 30AMP shore line with an inline surge suppressor and everything was working well. A few days ago the area had a power black out. Naturally everything went dark in the RV, although it was morning and sun was up. We wanted to use the microwave and I tried to start-up the generator. (I usually exercise the generator once a month routinely.) After a few cranks, the generator started, loped for a few seconds and then ran steady. When it switched to provide electricity (heard by the microwave beeping and refrigerator light go on), the generator shut off completely. I restarted the generator several times with the same result; shuts off completely. I checked the generator, had sufficient oil and the air filter was clean and there was no error indicator lights.

Luckily the power did come back on later in the morning. I was speaking with the head of maintenance about the issue. He said that actually they didn't have a black out, only a brown out. There was apparently about 60 VAC at the outlets. He suggested that if the generator has a line voltage sensor, this might cause the generator to shut down.

Is this true or should I be looking a different problem????

Robert
(owner of serenity, the RV)
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Old 06-17-2018, 12:32 AM   #2
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Have you tried disconnecting from shore power, turning off all appliances and then starting the generator to see if it is now working correctly? You may not
be able to run the A/C and the microwave at the same time, if the generator is also charging the batteries. If the generator shuts down when you turn the A/C on, there will be a flashing code on the generator that may give you a clue to what is going wrong. If it just shuts down with nothing on, you still will get the code.
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Old 06-17-2018, 02:05 AM   #3
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The 60 VAC should have no effect on the generator. The Automatic Transfer Switch always gives preference to the generator so as soon as it sees proper voltage coming from the generator, it will switch to generator power even if you have full voltage from shore power.

You may have a fuel issue, maybe a fuel pump.
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Old 06-20-2018, 04:38 PM   #4
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Thanks, but the generator is fueled by propane. Thus no fuel pump.
Also, remember the generator started and ran until it started producing electricity (evidenced by the microwave beeping), but then shut off.
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Old 06-20-2018, 05:02 PM   #5
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I've never trusted anything to always function as designed...even the auto-transfer switch. I always disconnect from shore power before using generator.
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Old 06-20-2018, 05:04 PM   #6
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You might wanna check the spark plugs. How long since they were replaced? They will sometimes fire but under load they fail.
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Old 06-23-2018, 12:17 PM   #7
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Propane? That's a new one on me. Anyway my genny stoped suddenly. It would start and run but die as soon as you took your finger off the start button. I wound up taking it to an Cummins-Onan service center. Turns out the genny has a 2 year or 2000 hour warranty, which saved me $1400 to repair it. They said the brushes arced and ruined the stator.
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Old 06-24-2018, 09:12 PM   #8
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What's your propane level reading at the tank gage? Too low of a liquid volume creates a much lower vapor pressure resulting in fuel starvation for the generator. The stove, fridge, and heater may still function normal.
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