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Generator Fault Condition


Ted Carbonaro

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The Oman HDHAK 8000 watt, in my 06 Camelot shut down while dry camping. (3 blink fault code flashing.) Before shutting down it ran REALLY rough for about 20 seconds. I waited for flashing to clear and attempted to start it again. It fired running really rough for 5 seconds then died and flashed 3 blinks. 
Any suggestions on where to start diagnostics?
I just arrived at Cummins Salt Lake City for leaking exhaust manifold condition. They want $550. for starters just to look at the generator. And they are booked for about 4 weeks on generator service. 
Thanks Ted C

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1 hour ago, Ted Carbonaro said:

The Oman HDHAK 8000 watt, in my 06 Camelot shut down while dry camping. (3 blink fault code flashing.) Before shutting down it ran REALLY rough for about 20 seconds. I waited for flashing to clear and attempted to start it again. It fired running really rough for 5 seconds then died and flashed 3 blinks. 
Any suggestions on where to start diagnostics?
I just arrived at Cummins Salt Lake City for leaking exhaust manifold condition. They want $550. for starters just to look at the generator. And they are booked for about 4 weeks on generator service. 
Thanks Ted C

There is a procedure in your generator manual to follow to read fault codes.

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Had a friend who had the genny running rough.  His situation turned out to be a crimped fuel line. He found it be removing the fuel filter from its mounting and finding that the nylon stint that keeps the line from kinking was out of position and the line was kinked.

Running rough can easily be a clogged fuel filter (maybe algae in the tank), but this is maybe something to check as it requires no parts to fix. 

before digging in too far, get the full diagnostic code by the method mentioned above, then go from there,

Hope this helps,

John

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Okay if I had slowed down and read my troubleshooting section without speed reading, I would have discovered that by pressing my stop switch once, I'd get the second level code. Code No 36; (Engine stopped without command by controller). Corrective Action; Check fuel level. Check Air Filter. 

I have a full tank of fuel so that's out. There is about 330 hours on a new air filter and fuel filter. The generator fuel filter was changed after discovering an algae clogged primary engine fuel filter. Since I have a spare generator fuel filter and previously had the algae problem, i think i should there. I'll keep you posted.

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49 minutes ago, Ted Carbonaro said:

Okay if I had slowed down and read my troubleshooting section without speed reading, I would have discovered that by pressing my stop switch once, I'd get the second level code. Code No 36; (Engine stopped without command by controller). Corrective Action; Check fuel level. Check Air Filter. 

I have a full tank of fuel so that's out. There is about 330 hours on a new air filter and fuel filter. The generator fuel filter was changed after discovering an algae clogged primary engine fuel filter. Since I have a spare generator fuel filter and previously had the algae problem, i think i should there. I'll keep you posted.

If you had an algae problem, your Genny will snitch very quickly.  That filter is was more sensitive to clogging than your engine.  

BUT….I WOULD TREAT THE FUEL TANK.  You are flirting with disaster.  If you shock treated the tank with something like JF BIOBOR, that is great.  But, it is also recommended that you get rid of the dead algae critters.  The way to do that is a DOUBLE DOSE of StarBrite StarTron Diesel fuel additive.  Check the label online or on Amazon.  Whatever the dose, double it.  Run the engine until you are 1/4 full and refuel and do the MAINTENANCE treatment with ZJF BIOBOR.  Many of us always treat for algae at every fueling.  I would also carry a spare set of engine fuel filters as well as two spares for the Genny.  I would not run the GENNY until I had driven at least 100 miles to allow the StarTron to work.  THEN change it,  Folks that did that and had a severe algae issue had to dilute the fuel, or run it out and fill it back up to clean out the tank and the Genny was happy then.

JUST my thoughts and a lot of reading as well as experience and also testimonials from members over the last 13 years.

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I’d like to further clarify my situation and ask for more feedback in case these details change anything. 
I purchased the coach the beginning of January after it had been sitting indoors idle for two years. We left Boston in February to go on the road full time. On day one I was struggling on hills and made my first post on Bill D’s Monacoers. It was quickly pointed out that I should check the fuel filters. Day #2; Feb 14th had both fuel filters changed at Loves. One was clogged with heavy algae. Coach had 75595 miles at the time. I was advised to treat the fuel with Bio Kleen Diesel Fuel Biocide and keep plenty of fuel filters on hand. I probably treated the next 5-6 tank fulls and changed filters two more times. I now have 84k miles and just changed the engine filters two weeks ago. Last April after traveling from Boston to AZ, I cut open the two filters and found no algae. 
The Gen fuel filter has only been changed once at 76k miles back in February. I had the air, fuel and oil filters changed at Cummins in Indy on February 17. Since then I changed oil and air filter, but not fuel. Fuel filter has 330 hours since Feb 17. As of late I have been noticing that the genny has been starting and running rougher than usual. 

So my question is; does this knowledge change the recommendation to treat my fuel and run it before changing my genny fuel filter? 

I still have some Bio Kleen on hand although I note you recommend JF BIOBOR and/or StarBrite StarTron Diesel fuel additive. 

Thanks for sharing your experience! 

Ted C
 


 

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I use a combination of both Biobor (kills the algae) and Startron (enzyme that breaks the algae down).   I started using this after having a bout of algae.  While traveling I don't use it every tank but if parked for a while I add it.   Never had another problem. 

I'd recommend changing the generator fuel filter and see if that clears it up.  +300 hours is quite a bit of hours.  The generator pick up tube is lower then the engine's so it would pick up a lot of crude.   Check the old filter for stuff, you can use pressure to push the fuel out from the pickup side.

Even with using treatment and changing filters you can get a problem with one tank of fuel.  I installed a FASS system last year, I changed filters this month after ~11K miles and found this in the primary FASS filter.  This is a gallon jug, particle size is pretty large which would clog a smaller filter pretty quick.

 

Filter change fuel.jpg

Edited by jacwjames
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9 hours ago, Ted Carbonaro said:

I’d like to further clarify my situation and ask for more feedback in case these details change anything. 
I purchased the coach the beginning of January after it had been sitting indoors idle for two years. We left Boston in February to go on the road full time. On day one I was struggling on hills and made my first post on Bill D’s Monacoers. It was quickly pointed out that I should check the fuel filters. Day #2; Feb 14th had both fuel filters changed at Loves. One was clogged with heavy algae. Coach had 75595 miles at the time. I was advised to treat the fuel with Bio Kleen Diesel Fuel Biocide and keep plenty of fuel filters on hand. I probably treated the next 5-6 tank fulls and changed filters two more times. I now have 84k miles and just changed the engine filters two weeks ago. Last April after traveling from Boston to AZ, I cut open the two filters and found no algae. 
The Gen fuel filter has only been changed once at 76k miles back in February. I had the air, fuel and oil filters changed at Cummins in Indy on February 17. Since then I changed oil and air filter, but not fuel. Fuel filter has 330 hours since Feb 17. As of late I have been noticing that the genny has been starting and running rougher than usual. 

So my question is; does this knowledge change the recommendation to treat my fuel and run it before changing my genny fuel filter? 

I still have some Bio Kleen on hand although I note you recommend JF BIOBOR and/or StarBrite StarTron Diesel fuel additive. 

Thanks for sharing your experience! 

Ted C
 


 

There is a ole saying floating around that says, "if you do not use it, you loose it".  That goes for about anything including things in your sticks and bricks house.  

IMHO, if you let a coach sit around for over a month not using it, you cannot to take it out and expect All systems on it to work properly.  I have recommended on this site to take a couch out a couple of weeks before using it to exercise all systems.  I also recommend taking the coach out a couple times a month for a 50 mile run.  That way you are not surprised by failures.

A year or so back I posted a picture of a external fuel filter I installed on the side my genset between the fuel tank and the fuel input to the genset.  That filter has a clear bottom on the fuel bowl so I can see the condition of the fuel coming from the fuel tank.  That makes it a lot easier to service that filter when needed.  

As far as the aquahot is concerned, aquahot recommends a annual service procedure to keep it running without shutdowns.  

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10 hours ago, Ted Carbonaro said:

I’d like to further clarify my situation and ask for more feedback in case these details change anything. 
I purchased the coach the beginning of January after it had been sitting indoors idle for two years. We left Boston in February to go on the road full time. On day one I was struggling on hills and made my first post on Bill D’s Monacoers. It was quickly pointed out that I should check the fuel filters. Day #2; Feb 14th had both fuel filters changed at Loves. One was clogged with heavy algae. Coach had 75595 miles at the time. I was advised to treat the fuel with Bio Kleen Diesel Fuel Biocide and keep plenty of fuel filters on hand. I probably treated the next 5-6 tank fulls and changed filters two more times. I now have 84k miles and just changed the engine filters two weeks ago. Last April after traveling from Boston to AZ, I cut open the two filters and found no algae. 
The Gen fuel filter has only been changed once at 76k miles back in February. I had the air, fuel and oil filters changed at Cummins in Indy on February 17. Since then I changed oil and air filter, but not fuel. Fuel filter has 330 hours since Feb 17. As of late I have been noticing that the genny has been starting and running rougher than usual. 

So my question is; does this knowledge change the recommendation to treat my fuel and run it before changing my genny fuel filter? 

I still have some Bio Kleen on hand although I note you recommend JF BIOBOR and/or StarBrite StarTron Diesel fuel additive. 

Thanks for sharing your experience! 

Ted C
 


 

As long as the BioKleen kills algae, it is probably OK.  Without a lot of research, if it is a Biocide ONLY, it is just like JF BioBor….as far as the advertised effect.  The issue with ANY biocide….you are supposed to SHOCK treat and then do normal maintenance or adds at each fill up.

BUT.  If the algae was significant, then the dead algae is just in suspension and floating around (settling sometimes) in the tank.  The lower the fuel level or the less fuel, the higher the concentration of the dead algae or “particulate matter”.  The StarTron SatrBrite is an enzyme treatment that will digest or break down the dead algae so they can be consumed and you clean out your tank.  As an example, water in gasoline will collect (heavier density) and form droplets or globs in the bottom of a tank.  If that water is sucked up, you get a misfire….and today’s electronic engines don’t like that and will throw (sometimes) a code.  The way you get rid of normal condensation is to add a “fuel treatment”.  Typically an alcohol based product which disassociates the water and put it into suspension (small particles) or sometimes (Frank may chime in) actually into solution.  Bottom line, you run out the contaminated fuel….put in fresh….and as time goes on, you have clean fuel.  Sometimes you treat a second time if the water level was high.

OK…same principle in your diesel.  You can have algae contaminated fuel that is at a low concentration and maybe not even notice it.  BUT if you shock treat and kill a large mass, it is solid material.  The StarTron breaks that down.  It does other things as well….and the diesel boaters swear by it for their engines and generators.  If you get some contaminated fuel, then it has worked there….assuming that whatever was in there was organic in nature.

My treatise was based on the accepted or best practice.  Kill the algae.  Since you don’t know the mass or concentration, then use 2X the StarTron and drive it and be prepared to change fuel filters.  Keep driving and then refill and you have greatly diluted the dead algae and use a biocide to prevent a regrowth.  Without sampling and testing, it is impossible to say how much StarTron is needed….so, do the 2X….if problems, use the 1X level as a second treatment.   Past that, you need to find a fuel distributor that does polishing and they will put in a suction line and filter (many turnovers) your fuel.  Not cheap.  The alternative is worse,  remove the tank.  Have it steam cleaned and then “dried” with an alcohol based chemical….reinstall.  Some will also polish the fuel and put it back in or dispose of it and suggest a fresh start.

My advice was to NOT, if possible, run the Genny until you had run out a lot of the StarTron and BioBor (Kleen?) treated fuel as you don’t know the condition.  Ideally, you run out the whole tank and refill and then the concentration is minimal and the Genny filter is OK.  The Genny filter will plug up way more rapidly than your engine filters.  

Hope this clears it up and explains the chemistry and the process and the recommendations…

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2 hours ago, jacwjames said:

 

I'd recommend changing the generator fuel filter and see if that clears it up.  +300 hours is quite a bit of hours.  The generator pick up tube is lower then the engine's so it would pick up a lot of crude.    

 

Filter change fuel.jpg

Gen pickup should be higher up the tank than the engine pickup, and less prone to sucking in nasties!

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2 hours ago, 96 EVO said:

Gen pickup should be higher up the tank than the engine pickup, and less prone to sucking in nasties!

Yup, you are right, got them backwards. 

I ran my generator out of fuel one time.  I have a 128 gallon tank, it took 100 gallons to fill it back up.   I did some measuring and I think the 128 gallons is usable fuel, my tanks volume actually was more then that. 

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19 hours ago, tmw188 said:

That filter is hard to open, you’ll need to saw it in half. Don’t ask me how I know.

Yes, that generator fuel filter is hard to open.  Well, after 10 years and 1100 hours, I thought it was past time to change the filter on my 10KW generator.  The generator was running fine when I changed the filter.  I cut it open to see what was inside.  This is actually a two stage filter in the same metal housing.  All the crud was on the initial first stage.  The secondary stage basically was clean.  The picture below is a sample of the internal filter media that I cut out positioned in such a way so you can see the front and back side of the primary and secondary filter media.

Some may be wondering why I chose not to follow the Cummins recommended annual or 500 hour fuel filter change.  In my opinion, there are times when the OEM recommendations can be overkill depending on how the equipment is used and stored.  In my case, the coach is stored in a humidity controlled barn where the relative humidity is never above 50% and the fuel is treated with biobore.  On my ISL, my practice is to change fuel filters every 20,000 miles.  I do cut them open for inspection.  Here is a set of primary and secondary fuel filters at the 20,000 mile mark (4 years old).

This has been my practice and it has worked for how I use and store my coach.

IMG_20170620_143255581.jpg

IMG_20150719_141019238.jpg

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10 hours ago, vanwill52 said:

If Frank says it, I listen.

Can I get ANOTHER AMEN?  LOL.  Yes, Frank is like the old E. F. Hutton investment commercial….when “Frank” speaks, people listen.  In order not to be censured and called out, I chose not to upload the Youtibe videos on the EFH commercial….

 

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