There has been a couple of recent threads about a problem with regard to a Monaco Product where there was a TSB (Technical Service bulletin) issued for a problem involving a potential problem ENGINE COOLING SYSTEM/RADIATOR ASSEMBLY the TSB number is 124 and the NHTSA Item Number: 10003083
Quote is from one of the referenced threads
TSB 124 (Technical Service Bulletin) during 2001-2004 "to fix a serious risk of transmission failure resulting from vibration between adjoining coolant and ATF fluid lines. If the lines fractured between themselves, it would cause the engine coolant to mix with ATF. When ethylene glycol gets in the transmission clutch plates, it is all over, requiring a complete rebuild"
In doing some research I learned that there were a significant number of models involved so I decided to post this in the hopes that it will save some one who has one of the affected coaches and has not had the TSB performed.
I would urge any member that owns one of the coaches to insure that this TSB has been performed so that you do not end up in a situation where you experience the failure and are faced with a significant repair bill.
According to the NHTSA data base the following coaches are potentially affected
Make : MONACO Model : KNIGHT Year : 2002
Make : MONACO Model : KNIGHT Year : 2001
Make : MONACO Model : DIPLOMAT Year : 2002
Make : MONACO Model : CAMELOT Year : 2004
Make : HOLIDAY RAMBLER Model : SCEPTER Year : 2003
Make : HOLIDAY RAMBLER Model : IMPERIAL Year : 2003
Make : HOLIDAY RAMBLER Model : ENDEAVOR Year : 2002
Make : HOLIDAY RAMBLER Model : AMBASSADOR Year : 2003
Make : HOLIDAY RAMBLER Model : AMBASSADOR Year : 2002
Make : HOLIDAY RAMBLER Model : AMBASSADOR Year : 2001
Make : BEAVER Model : ZANZIBAR Year : 2002
Make : BEAVER Model : PATRIOT THUNDER Year : 2003
Make : BEAVER Model : PATRIOT Year : 2003
Make : BEAVER Model : MONTEREY Year : 2003
Make : BEAVER Model : MONTEREY Year : 2002
Make : MONACO Model : KNIGHT Year : 2003
Make : MONACO Model : WINDSOR Year : 2002
Make : MONACO Model : WINDSOR Year : 2003
Make : SAFARI Model : CHEETAH Year : 2003
Make : SAFARI Model : SAHARA Year : 2002
Make : SPARTAN Model : BARON Year : 9999
I believe the last entry refers to a Dynasty Baron but that is just a guess.
While not listed on the TSB, the issue is also connected to steel radiators from the same manufacturer as well. We had the same failure on our 2003 Scepter (more than once), not listed on the TSB due to the build date and the components used.
Another way to notice if the problem is beginning to show up is to keep an eye on your coolant overflow bottle. If the cracks occur you will begin to see little spots of pinkish oil floating on the top of the coolant when all temperatures are cold. Or, if you've been running for a while you might see frothing in the coolant bottle, caused by the oil and coolant mixing while they flow through the systems.
You can also see bubbles on your trans dipstick if there is interaction between the two fluids.
Finally, if you check your trans fluid level by the dipstick and it appears too high and then check it with the Allison keypad and it reports that it's too low you might want to really start watching your coolant overflow bottle. The mixing of the coolant and oil will cause a false reading from the keypad method.
Once the cracks are mature enough you will begin to flow fluids out of the coolant overflow tube and all over the back of the motorhome. Keep an eye on the area around where the tube goes to the ground, in our case it covered the hydraulic reservoir and the left rear leveling jack.
The earlier you catch the issue the better. Our first failure was resolved with a trans rebuild. The second time we limped home further and it caused more internal problems - it took a trans replacement due to heat issues with internal trans components.
gswcgi, This is not a recall but a Technical Service Bulletin... TSB 124 If you go to the link above NHTSA data base and go to the Technical Service Bulletin you can find the reference which is below. for a quick search you can just enter the NHTSA Item Number: 10003083 but all you are going to see is what I cut and pasted below.
You will want to know for certain that this TSB has been performed. Contact Monaco and they should be able to tell you. Just make sure you differentiate between was a notice sent and was the work actually performed.
The actual text of the bulletin is available for a fee but you ought to be able to get the specifics from your dealer. You also might want to send StuartT a PM since he more than likely knows all the specifics.
Make : SAFARI Model : CHEETAH Year : 2003
Manufacturer : MONACO COACH CORPORATION
Service Bulletin Num : 124 Date of Bulletin: AUG 13, 2003
NHTSA Item Number: 10003083
Component: ENGINE AND ENGINE COOLING SYSTEM/RADIATOR ASSEMBLY
Let me jump in and add some details. I have become pretty familiar with this since loosing my transmission.
There was a Technical Service Bulletin (TSB) #124 filed with the NHTSA, which covered certain Monaco products with aluminum intercoolers (radiators) manufactured by JB Radiators of Sacramento, CA. The affected models are listed above in JohnnyT?s opening post. This was not a federal recall. Internally, Monaco refers to this as TSI 124 (Technical Service Instruction). A TSI is considered more important within Monaco than is a TSB.
As stated above, this TSB/I was initiated to fix a serious risk of transmission failure resulting from vibration between adjoining coolant and transmission fluid lines inside the intercooler unit. It was problematic for both side draft and rear draft model. If the lines fractured between themselves due to road vibration, the fracture would cause the engine coolant to mix with ATF, creating a frothy, slippery coolant solution like a watery milkshake. When the ethylene glycol finally gets into the transmission, it is all over, and requires a complete rebuild. It is easy to recognize the symptoms when this starts to happen. Shifting will become stiffer and stiffer over a 20 mile run, banging as it shift both up and down. Soon, the shifting starts slamming gears hard enough to force a reduction in speed or risk the transmission scattering on the road. It definitely becomes that violent. At slow speeds, the strength of the downshift will kill the engine if you come to a stop. You will not be able to continue to a destination of more that a couple of miles as the slam shifts continue to increase in intensity. You will have a mess all over the rear cap and on your dingy if your towing one. It is this rapid deterioration of the transmission that make me still feel it should have been a federal recall. I can think a several scenarios that could be dangerous.
The repair includes the rebuilding of the transmission with all new solenoids and clutch plates, damper assembly, control pack, etc. Then the transmission fluid section of the intercooler (radiator) assembly is capped off to make it a stand alone engine coolant radiator only. On rear-radiated models, an axillary cooling unit, approximately 20" square (I do not have my coach at home to measure it exactly) is bolted in front of the original intercooler unit. Looking from the rear of the coach, what you will see to verify this TSI had been done, is the 20" +/- square axillary unit situated over the right, lower half of the original existing intercooler. You can't miss it, and to verify, it is bolted in place and has two hoses entering and exiting on the right hand side leading to the transmisson.
I do not know exactly how a side radiated unit is configured, but the added transmission cooling unit will definitely be somewhere over the original cooling unit with hoses running from it to the transmission. Hope that helps.
Galvanizd, I have been trying to post a picture of my add on cooling unit installed per TSI 124 all evening, but there is a problem with the Verizon website where I have my web space. I am working with them to try and resolve the issue, and when corrected, I will post the picture so you can see how to recognize whether the fix has been made to your coach. Stand by!
Kawboy01, while you may have a residual TSI problem, you more likely have a different situation. I would guess you have picked up a pebble off the highway, which flipped up into the fan and was driven into the cooling unit. On my trip home from purchasing this Endeavor, I pulled into a rest stop south of Olympic, WA and took a nap. When I woke up and went out to walk the dog, I saw a large puddle of green coolant under the engine. A small rock had punctured the radiator right in front of the fan. I was towed to a Cummins dealer where the repair was made. Fortunately it was picked up by my comprehensive coverage after the deductible was applied.
I think that is the more likely cause of your leakage, but I could be wrong. It is still possible that the engine coolant and transmission fluid tubes continued to rub in some spot, and while the ATF has been rerouted, the continued rubbing has created a path for the engine coolant to begin to leak. In either case, the radiator assembly needs to be pulled and sent to a qualified radiator shop. Try to get a determination of the exact cause, because the pebble off the road scenario may be covered by insurance.
* This post was
edited 03/13/06 12:58am by StuartT *
Great info. My 2002 Knight already had the fix (separate Trans cooler)installed. My question now is do they cap off the radiator connections from the old cooler/radiator? I just got back from a trip and I now can see coolant seepage on the lower 1/3 of the radiator but only on the sides where the tubes meet the side tanks. What portion of the radiator was for the Trans? I would hate to think my radiator is going south! Any help or insight would be appreciated.
Johnny/ Stuart. thanks for the post. I appreciate the time spent here. Stuart sorry to hear about your troubles. I have a 2003 Monaco Diplomat and although its not on the list above, I will be going over it very carefully checking for this problem. I figure that 2003 is close enough that its certainly worth it to check. Again , thanks for the info. Good to see a well written, informative post.
May be over concern on my part but I figure that my coach was really constructed in 2002 and sold in 2003.
Stuart, should this auxillary unit be evident on a 2003 Diplomat or was a "fix" done for this on the newer than 2002 models?
* This post was
edited 03/12/06 11:33pm by Galvanizd *