Monday, February 25, 2013

The Onan Saga Continues

As you recall we paid up front for and ordered a new solenoid for the Onan generator. Conducting tests with the Onan technician on the phone determined it was the solenoid of "Starting Relay" as Onan calls it that was at fault. They would not order the part unless we paid 100% in advance for the part and the service call..

Today the technician come out and installed the new solenoid. It is in a very cramped area and it took him quite a while to get it swapped. When he was done we pushed the start button and ......... silence..nothing, nada, zip. We tried the two remote start buttons and nothing there either. Well, that lead to a bunch of head scratching and a couple of phone calls.

Bottom line, the generator must be removed from the motorhome and taken to their shop where they can do a full diagnosis and get at a few parts accessible only with the cover off. The tech will be back this afternoon with a helper and will remove the generator. They made a point of giving me the old but obviously still good solenoid so that I did not get the idea that since they mis-diagnosed the problem they might take the part back and give me a refund.

Stay tuned!


  1. Replies
    1. Want to buy it? Special deal, just for you.

  2. A bad fuse holder caused that exact same problem for me. Not saying that is the problem in your case, but it could be.

  3. Yikes.....anyway you can just mange without the generator till you are in the USA?

  4. Good luck with the follow up repairs. We spent $500.00 and many hours on 13 year old Onan last winter in Quartzsite diagnosing and repairing a major oil leak in ours. Working great now!

  5. Well, it is working! The guys came back and before they removed the genset they pushed the button and it started! I have no explanation, I changed nothing and touched nothing! I told them they were Magia mexicanos (magic Mexicans).

  6. A bad ground is my guess, intermittent short is another likely cause. Take every ground wire you can see off,buff up the metal on both sides and grease the connections. The intermittent short is hard and requires testing equipment-hope for the ground. Rust never sleeps.

  7. Thanks Norm. This is the same advice I got from the tech, but it is nice to hear it in English ;), take off all electrical connections and clean them. I will also apply some dielectric grease.