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Volvo D2-40 electrical problem

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catarch View Drop Down
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    Posted: 16 July 2017 at 19:11
We have been experiencing a intermittent engine control problem. It first started as a sputtering of the engine with a loss of revs and then a stall. Thought it may have been a fuel problem but it is not. Now we are having a problem with the Volvo in cockpit engine control. At first the start button would not turn on the fan and engine control. I turned the battery off and then back on and I was able to get the engine started. Once running I could not turn off the engine from the cockpit. The controls did nothing and I had to use the fuel cut-off on the engine to shut it down.

Any ideas? We have a Volvo dealer about 10 miles away but I am hesitant to  try and go there since the possibility of the engine cutting out again is still there and we need to go under a drawbridge to get to the dealer.
Tom Catalano
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High Time View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote High Time Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 July 2017 at 20:02
Hi Tom

When you are having problems (starting/stopping) from the engine control panel in the cockpit, is the rev counter still working correctly? If the rev counter is working it probably means the MDI (the black box on the port side of the engine) is OK. If the rev counter is not working I would suspect the MDI unit or, particularly the cable and connectors between the MDI and cockpit panel.

If you think the MDI may be OK (from the check above) I would carefully check all the connections to the MDI for an intermittent contact, both the black plug ins (3 of them) and the 3 bolted wires underneath. Also check the earth connection to the MDI which goes back to the negative connection (B-) on the alternator. If the problem is intermittent, as you describe, then I would carry out these checks with someone watching the control panel to see if anything changes as you 'disturb' the wiring.

If that all checks out OK then maybe we can look a little deeper into the inner workings of the MDI and control panel.

If you are OK with electrics, if you give me your email address I can send you a service booklet on the MDI which details it various functions and connections. Unfortunately, I don't have any info on the cockpit units.
Roger

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catarch View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote catarch Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 July 2017 at 20:21
Roger,

Thanks for the information. I am heading to the boat to try and check the items you mentioned. 
When the engine starts sputtering the rev counter is still working as it shows the drop in revs.
I checked that back of the control panel and there are no loose wires there so no I will check the engine area.
My email is catarch11@gmail.com

Tom Catalano
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote High Time Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 July 2017 at 22:12
Hi Tom

I've sent a copy of the MDI Service Manual to your email address. 

The fact that the rev counter appears to be working is encouraging. The most likely cause of the problem is an intermittent connection, I think. The Manual I've sent should help you understand the functions, connections and fault tracing for the MDI.

I'll check back in a couple of days to see if you've found the problem. 

Good luck.

Roger
Roger

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catarch View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote catarch Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17 July 2017 at 21:58
Roger,

Thanks for the help. I have checked all the connections but nothing is loose. next I will try and start the diagnostic steps in the manual that you supplied.

Thanks,

Tom Catalano
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Mr Bluesky View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mr Bluesky Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 July 2017 at 21:50
Hi, it's the MDI. I had the same problem with my engine, it's caused by the MDI being mounted too close to the engine, the gel inside the unit expands and contracts as it heats and cools, then you suffer a broken circuit. As the engine stop solenoid is power to stop, it's receiving a signal causing the engine to splutter. It can be bypassed by diconecting solenoid, but not recommmended. You need to ask Volvo to take a look and supply a new unit. FYI you will loose all stores info such as engine hours so make a note first.
Mr Bluesky
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mr Bluesky Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 July 2017 at 21:59
Where are you based? Darthaven Marina (Volvo agent) diagnosed and fixed ours last October, so you could call and speak with them. Best to get Volvo to visit rather than risk going to them, as the fault does develop and will get worse, not worth the risk if it's a tricky Harbour.
Mr Bluesky
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote catarch Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 July 2017 at 10:30
Thank you for the information. I had a local Volvo rep on the boat yesterday but no report from them yet. IF it is the MDI how does a replacement not have the same problem eventually?
Tom Catalano
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mr Bluesky Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 July 2017 at 11:04
There is no guarantee a new unit won't have the same fault in a few hundred hours, but I was told the cereal number had been updated 6 times since my original was fitted, so the dealer thinks it's a known fault and the MDI supplier has probably rectified it. Our boat is a 2016 model, there may have been a faulty batch, who knows?! But if it does fail again I now know I can disable the stop solenoid to keep the motor running, and if it won't crank on the button, it can be jumped across the starter between the battery live and ignition live. Fingers crossed, my engine has recorded 100hrs since the replacement, the original clocked up 120hrs, so not long now I feel it's going to fail again.
Mr Bluesky
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mr Bluesky Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 July 2017 at 11:06
* if it's going to fail again. Not I feel it will. Predicted text sorry.
Mr Bluesky
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