2017 Seneca 36FK Charging System Issue
I discovered that our 2017 Seneca had a chassis charging system problem purely by happen stance.
Just prior to a Christmas trip the MIL (Malfunction Indicator Light) illuminated. Researching this problem, it was determined that it was a DEF heater/temperature issue. We were advised that we could still use the coach with this issue, and have it repaired afterwards.
After New Years we took the coach into our local Freightliner dealer (TAG) for service. The DEF module was replaced under warranty.
While driving the Seneca about 20 miles back to our storage facility the MIL, Check Engine, and Stop lights illuminated. I immediately pulled over to the curb as the engine went into self preservation mode and shut down. Checking the codes, I discovered that it was a coolant issue. Opening the hood I discovered that the coolant tank was empty.
Speaking with the motor coach service advisor, we decided that the best solution because of the late hour was to purchase coolant from the parts store and limp into our storage facility about 1.5 miles from where we broke down. I barely made it back before draining 3+ gals of coolant. The service advisor scheduled a tow service for the next day.
When I attempted to start after replenishing the coolant, the chassis batteries did not have enough power to start the engine. I had the parking lights and flashers on for about 25 minutes. It was necessary to use alternative starting procedure to get the engine started.
On arriving back at TAG, the charging system was added to the squaks. The advisor explained that Freightliner had implemented a very thorough testing protocol for charging system issues.
After the tech ran the test, I was advised that the coach had one bad battery. After the Freightliner specified warranty replacement battery arrived and was installed, the testing was completed again. The results of this revealed that the voltage regulator in the alternator was defective. The alternator was replaced, and the system passed all testing this time.
The long and short of all of this, if I had not had the breakdown I would not have discovered that I had a charging system issues. If you have a coach that is under warranty I suggest running a load test on the chassis system.
Oh, BTW. The tech failed to properly secure a clamp on the DEF header coolant line. The tow and coolant cost the dealer about $500.
Chuck and Anita
Bella (RIP) and Pip (Our pups)
2017 Seneca 36FK