Onan 5500 Generator Dies - Dutchmen Owners

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Old 03-09-2015, 04:23 PM   #1
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Onan 5500 Generator Dies

I have a strange problem with my generator. The Onan 5500 will run for a random amount of time usually over an hour. Somewhere around the hour to hour 30 mark it will start to spudder and die with code 36. That code translates to the engine stopped for some unknown reason. It sounds fuel starved. It will restart after priming and cranking for a while and run for a random period of time again (usually much less time, like less than 30 minutes before the cycle repeats.)


I check the fuel filter and it was ok and blew back through the line and could hear gas gurgling in the gas tank. I have read other forums and thought it could be the fuel pump. I saw where onan has a new part number for my fuel pump and ordered one of those. I just got to test it again yesterday with the new fuel pump and had the same thing happen. Oil level is fine the genny only has 10 hours on it. I hate to leave the 3605 at the dealer for who knows how long. Any other suggestions for trouble shooting.
-Jeff
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Old 03-09-2015, 05:37 PM   #2
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While I can't be of any help, it's nice to know in the age of advanced electronics, there's a code to tell you your engine stopped running.


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Old 03-09-2015, 06:10 PM   #3
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I'm wondering if the vent hose for the generator gas tank is crimped? If it is the generator, while running, is pulling a vacuum on the tank and basically running out of gas.

You could run the generator until it stops, run back to the gas tank and remove the gas cap. If you hear the whoosh you know the tank had a vaccum on it. Or you could run the generator with the cap off the gas tank and see what happens.
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Old 03-09-2015, 07:41 PM   #4
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Thanks, I will try that. It still could be the fuel pump. I did get a different code this time. I ran it with the cover off and I remember the guy doing the PDI said not to do that since the generator could over heat. I'm working from home today and fired it up earlier. We are at 1:40 minutes and so far so good!
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Old 03-09-2015, 08:07 PM   #5
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Good luck with the fuel pump. Mine was acting similar to what you are describing. A new fuel pump fixed mine.
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Old 03-10-2015, 12:55 PM   #6
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Has happened to me a couple of times, but always fires right back up. I wrote it off to just being mechanical and sometimes things don't go perfectly, but admittedly I haven't boondocked that much so I don't have much to go on. I did do the first service myself, changed the oil/filter and such and ensured everything was tip top.
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Old 03-10-2015, 02:19 PM   #7
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Update:
I put the cover on the genny and ran it yesterday. It ran for over 3 hours without any problems. Thats the longest its ever run without quitting. I think the fuel pump may have been the issue. For future reference my old fuel pump was part number A029F887. I found where A047N929 replaced that part. They looked identical on the outside.


I saw on another forum where ONAN did have problems with Chinese made pumps where they would get hot and a seal would expand and lose vacuum. That could be why the part number changed or their could have been an engineering change.


If I have problems in the future the next step is to check for a vacuum in the tank as sundancer suggested and if that looks good its back to Holman and let them fight it.
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Old 03-10-2015, 05:09 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffwelsh View Post
Update:

I saw on another forum where ONAN did have problems with Chinese made pumps where they would get hot and a seal would expand and lose vacuum.
Oh No, say it isn't so! I have to fight with the Chinese made carb on my weed eater every time I pull the starter rope....
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Old 04-16-2015, 02:33 PM   #9
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We have a brand new unit and the generator is doing the exact same thing. Unfortunately I have the fuel pump with the newer part number you mentioned.
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Old 04-21-2015, 05:33 PM   #10
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Still could be bad.

I work only about 10 minutes from the Onan Service center in Cincinnati and talked to them about the problem. They said not to be surprised if the new pump is bad too. They said they have had a ton of problems with those pumps.

Code 36 is a catch all an pretty much indicates a fuel issue somewhere. I have not had a chance to get back into mine. The next trouble shooting step is to take the pressure side loose when it is acting up and check fuel. I will post more when I think I get this totally resolved.
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