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Old 06-04-2019, 07:46 AM   #1
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International 3800 not starting

Halp! Our skoolie won’t start. 2000 International 3800 DT466E. When we turn the key to hot it doesn’t even crank and there is a light that says “water in fuel.” I drained the water separator... perhaps too much? I drained it for a long time.. Anywho it still doesn’t start and we are stranded and trying to figure out what’s next. Any ideas? Or knights in shining armor in Nashville? 😍
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Old 06-04-2019, 07:52 AM   #2
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When you say “crank” you mean the motor doesn’t turn at all? Sounds right of the bat like dead or weak batteries. Do you hear a loud click when you try to start the bus? Try testing the batteries with a multimeter to see what voltage they’re at. You might get lucky and just have a loose connection.
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Old 06-04-2019, 07:54 AM   #3
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Dont worry about the Water in Fuel light. That always comes on when you try and crank the engine.

There are 2 most likely suspects: starter is fried(that happened to me a while back) nothing would happen when you turned the key, just the clicks of the solenoids.

2nd: could be electrical such as an interlock preventing start, battery issue, or solenoid issue.

Good luck!

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Old 06-04-2019, 07:57 AM   #4
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If it's not even cranking (spinning the engine when you turn the key) I would start by checking the interlocks. on the windows, hatch, rear door, etc. These can all interrupt the starter circuit.

if those look OK, I'd next test the starter by bypassing the starter solenoid. Locate the solenoid (likely attached tot he starter, and note there are 2 big terminala and 2 small terminals. If you bridge the 2 big terminals with a plastic handled screwdriver, you are bypassing everything that decides if the starter should spin and applying power directly. of course, make sure you are in neutral with the parking brake set. If the starter doesn't spin when you bypass the solenoid, verify there is 12v power on one of those big terminals (one comes from the battery, the other goes into the starter. the one from the battery should have 12v). If you have power, the starter is bad.

If however the starter spins, you can next test the solenoid itself. Use your multimeter to determine which of the small terminals is a ground, and apply power tot he other small terminal. This bypasses the interlocks, neutral safety switch, and everything else north of the solenoid. If applying power to the solenoid properly triggers it, the starter should spin. If not, your solenoid is bad.

If you've gotten this far, you'll have to check your interlocks and neutral switch for proper function, and even the ECU I believe can prevent the start command on that one... So hopefully one of the earlier steps has found the problem!

If the starter spins,
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Old 06-04-2019, 08:04 AM   #5
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Correct, it doesn’t crank at all. I do hear a fairly loud click from my left from the fuses area or from behind the various switches. I’ll see about testing the battery... voltmeter on the dash shows 12V
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Old 06-04-2019, 09:08 AM   #6
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May be apples and oranges, since my mill is a 444E. I was experiencing the same symptoms, ran thru all the preceding procedures, no joy!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aimless View Post
Correct, it doesn’t crank at all. I do hear a fairly loud click from my left from the fuses area or from behind the various switches. I’ll see about testing the battery... voltmeter on the dash shows 12V
Digging deeper, I found what sounded like a nut-job suggestion. The guy making it was a pro bus driver, so I gave it a try.
rum, rum, rum, VROOM!
Is there a bundle of wires coming down thru the firewall, in the corner, forward of your left foot?
OK, this is where it gets complex, so I'll type really sloooooow.
Lightly tap the bundle with your foot, and try to start it again. It worked the 1st time for me. If not, well, lather, rinse, repeat...
I know- improbable! Doesn't mean impossible.
Hope that's all it takes for all y'all! 🤞
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Old 06-04-2019, 09:53 AM   #7
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12v on the dash indicator does not guarantee charged batteries. A charged bat would actually be over 12vand closer to 13-14. The dash gage often just isn't that accurate. If the solenoid clicks when you turn the key, i personally would suspect dead (not fully charged) batteries as opposed to a lockout
.that or bad connections. Of course,make sure it's in natural. It it beyond super common for this to happen and these engines need a lot of juice to turn over and to power all the components in the electrical systems.
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Old 06-04-2019, 10:54 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by haz.matt.1960 View Post
May be apples and oranges, since my mill is a 444E. I was experiencing the same symptoms, ran thru all the preceding procedures, no joy!Digging deeper, I found what sounded like a nut-job suggestion. The guy making it was a pro bus driver, so I gave it a try.
rum, rum, rum, VROOM!
Is there a bundle of wires coming down thru the firewall, in the corner, forward of your left foot?
OK, this is where it gets complex, so I'll type really sloooooow.
Lightly tap the bundle with your foot, and try to start it again. It worked the 1st time for me. If not, well, lather, rinse, repeat...
I know- improbable! Doesn't mean impossible.
Hope that's all it takes for all y'all! 🤞


I was a radio tech air when I was in the Air Force back in the day of tubes, resistors, and capacitors - some mornings we would get a report of a non serviceable radio or transmitter - the first thing we would do was to unfasten the wing nuts that held the piece of equipment in place, slide the black box out on it's rails far enough that it disconnected the multi-pronged plugs on the back of the bus, then SLAM it back into place - that insured the plugs made proper contact, and frequently saved us hard working ( NOT ) airmen a lot of work - lol
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Old 06-04-2019, 11:02 AM   #9
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LOL
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sleddgracer View Post
I was a radio tech air when I was in the Air Force back in the day of tubes, resistors, and capacitors - some mornings we would get a report of a non serviceable radio or transmitter - the first thing we would do was to unfasten the wing nuts that held the piece of equipment in place, slide the black box out on it's rails far enough that it disconnected the multi-pronged plugs on the back of the bus, then SLAM it back into place - that insured the plugs made proper contact, and frequently saved us hard working ( NOT ) airmen a lot of work - lol
Don't know if you watched, "The Sopranos," but there was a funny scene where their ill-gotten DVD player wouldn't work.
Paulie said all it needed was the Cordovan Treatment he'd learned in the army.
And them proceeded to slap the sh1t out of it with his shoe.
(That SOP didn't work on the DVD, BTW...)
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Old 06-04-2019, 11:18 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by haz.matt.1960 View Post
LOLDon't know if you watched, "The Sopranos," but there was a funny scene where their ill-gotten DVD player wouldn't work.
Paulie said all it needed was the Cordovan Treatment he'd learned in the army.
And them proceeded to slap the sh1t out of it with his shoe.
(That SOP didn't work on the DVD, BTW...)
didn't see that one, but I can believe an Army guy would do it that way - lol


moral of the story of course, is make sure all connections are actually connecting
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