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HVAC, Air Conditioners, Aqua Hot, Primus, Webasto, Chassis Heaters, Furnaces and Water Heaters Questions and information about the wide variety of Heating and Air Conditioning as well as Water Heater systems available are discussed here.

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  #1  
Old 04-13-2008
Jim Magowan Jim Magowan is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Anchorage
Posts: 114
Default Coolant circulation path in the 3208

I believe we have three things happening from one problem in our 90 SP.

1. The engine runs too hot (200 t0 210 or more)

2. We don't get much heat from hte hydronic heat when the engine is running.

3. We can't keep the coolant up to level, it gets hot and blows out when it is bled and filled to hte glass bowl indicator.

Interestingly, I installed a Webasto heater and it puts out a lot of heat as long as the coolant level is up. In short, after the radiator is topped off the Webasto is great until we drive the coach and lose the antifreeze.

Our conclusion is that the water in the cooling system is not flowing properly. At this point we suspect that when the engine was replaced the lines going from the engine to the heaters and the return to the engine from the heaters were reversed. This would have the heating circulation going against the engine cooling circulation thereby keeping the engine hot and the cabin cold.

We need to know the coolant pat in the engine.

There are two plugs shown on p.15 of hte 3208 Operation and Maintenance Manual on the left (driver) side of the engine as mounted in the coach, one higher than the top pully and one about level with the space between the pulleys. On the coach gated coolant lines to and from the heaters replace these plugs. Does anyone know which of these is the inlet and which the outlet. We suspect the 'factory trained experts' reversed them but, don't want to try swapping them until we know how the water is supposed to flow and also, if reversing them is incorrect, is there anything that could be damaged by reversing the water flow.

If anyone has a diagram of the internal coolant system it would be most helpful and appreciated.

A second item: we went out two weeks ago and twice, couldn't start the Bird from the front. There was no response at all when the ignition key was turned. Fortunately, it started fine from the rear and could then be switched to the front. The problem is intermittant. This weekend I have started it several times from the front with no problem. We are going to replace the double throw switch in the rear to see if that could be the problem. If that does not resolve the issue, has anyone dealt with this issue?

One mercury switch on the step has been problematic for quite a while and finally gave up completely, fortunately at the gas station a few blocks from home. One each 1.5a mercury switch from McMaster Carr (7689K51) $16.60 and the step is working fine. A spare switch is a good thing to carry; they can be hard to find.
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90 36 SP
Anchorage AK
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  #2  
Old 04-14-2008
Donn Donn is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: South Kingstown
Posts: 18
Default Coolant circulation path in the 3208

Jim,

As far as I know, the upper 1" ports are hot coolant send and the lower 1" ports are return. I believe they are in pairs with the respective in/out ports in-line vertically. I'd like someone else to confirm this.

If you can't find any leaking hose connections or heater core leaks, there is the possibility of an engine coolant leak, perhaps a faulty head gasket allowing the coolant to enter the cylinders. Check your dipstick and see what your oil looks like. Is there any foam or lighter colored substance where you would expect only lube oil? If so, repair immediately. You don't want a bearing to seize. What does your exhaust look like?

Regarding the start circuit, there is probably a neutral detect switch in the shifter? Try turning the key to start and wiggle the shifter when it is in neutral. If the starter make sounds of engaging, you know that the switch either has to be replaced or re-adjusted. This test won't tell you if the switch is broken and open or if you have lost a starter wire connection leading aft.

Your coach is much newer than my FC, but there are many similarities. Let us know what you find.

Donn
'76 FC33
South Kingstown, RI
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  #3  
Old 04-14-2008
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Mike Hohnstein Mike Hohnstein is offline
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Location: NW Milwaukee Metro Area
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That's the way it works, lower return, upper supply. Heat rises to the top, thermostats sense the heat and open, we hope. Supply is generally on the same level of the thermostats. Lower radiator hose is 'suction' side of the pump, or return.
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  #4  
Old 04-25-2008
Donn Donn is offline
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Jim,

What was the outcome of this coolant leak?

Donn
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  #5  
Old 07-09-2019
davidfaulk davidfaulk is offline
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Here is a page out of my 1978 Blue manual
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1978 FC31

Last edited by davidfaulk; 07-09-2019 at 08:03 PM.
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