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Onan 4000 starts on its own and remote not working


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Old 06-08-2009, 09:56:11 AM
Dave Sebastien Dave Sebastien is offline
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Default Onan 4000 starts on its own and remote not working

Hi guys I have to bragg about this, I am an automotive mechanic, I own a 1990 Ford 7.3 motorhome, the generator is an Onan Emerald 4000, model # 4bgefa26100k , serial #e933033458, 4KW, I have never been able to get the Gen started with the remote inside I always have to go outside to start it plus I could never shutt it down with the remote, I held it to the stop position, the motor quits and the starter kicks in then it starts back up, last fall the generator ran out of gas while we were driving and the starter just kept cranking and ruined it so now I have to get it fixed, I read as much as I could find on this site and found some very good information plus I see some others have had similar problems.
I removed the circuit board and started testing, my plan was to eliminate the board and put some simple toggle switches in like one guy recommends on here , he is right , why risk burning the motorhome down because of a complex starting system, anyway while testing that cheap little micro switch on the board (which by the way works on a ground pricipal for starter and mag) I found that it "sticks" in the start position but the alternator cuts it off, I simply took the switch off the board and now the remote works perfect, the only time I will miss the board switch is when I want to work on the motor. I hope this info helps someone. Dave Sebastien, Daves Automotive Saskatchewan Canada
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Old 06-08-2009, 12:31:33 PM
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Billy J Shafer Billy J Shafer is online now
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Default Re: Onan 4000 starts on its own and remote not working

First of all that board does more than start the generator. The relay kit the guy was talking about was an update from a board to relay system. Does not fit your unit. You should go to flight systems and get a new board. They build them better than the OEM does. Also I have been with Onan since 1980 and have never seen a motor home burn down because of the board. I have seen the board smoke but no burning down of an RV.
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Old 06-08-2009, 01:27:30 PM
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Talking Re: Onan 4000 starts on its own and remote not working

Also you can just replace the BAD Switch with a different one mounted external to the Control Box by just extending the Board contacts with wires, to the New Switch.... Not a Big deal and then you'll still have "at the genset functionality....
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Old 06-08-2009, 02:34:06 PM
Dave Sebastien Dave Sebastien is offline
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Default Onan 4000 starts on its own and remote not working

Yes it would not be hard to , all I really need is a button to crank the engine, I can reach in the door to stop the motor at the remote switch.

You are correct Billy, for under $200.00 its actually a cheap repair and at least I have the right diagnosis, we know it was definatly the switch/board and I hate to butcher the thing, the whole motorhome is really nice. I could see the generator going up in flames if there was a fuel leak or if it was leaking oil near the starter but this one is clean, the starter drive is plastic so it chewed right off and the inside of the starter just melted untill there was no draw.
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Old 07-04-2009, 10:39:31 AM
George Clark George Clark is offline
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Default Re: Onan 4000 starts on its own and remote not working

It appears that you have a short in your remote wiring, your generator starts by applying a ground on wire number 3 in your remote harness,this is a parallel circuit so your unit can be started from any number of stations, do not wory about the circuit board until you have eliminated the remote wires.the set up for your remote is as follows, wire number, 1-ground, 2-stop, 3-start, 5,6,ignition,and battery condition.this should help.
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