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Dan, Technician
Category: Construction and Road Equipment
Satisfied Customers: 5585
Experience:  17+ yrs. shop and field experience with all major brands of heavy equipment and trucks - 1995 WyoTech graduate.
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I have a Vermeer Libra Excavator 116S Model. The battery

Customer Question

I have a Vermeer Libra Excavator 116S Model. The battery would no longer hold a charge and after starting the excavator this spring and finding that to be the case, I replaced the battery. Upon installation of the battery, I observed an electric arc from the single extra wire that goes to the rubber glo plug preheater button on the instrument panel. Visual inspection resulted in a tear in the rubber insulation of the wire. Acccordingly, I replaced that wire. Next tried to fire the engine and observed smoke coming from the 6 wire disconnect plug to the transformer. After looking at the disconnect plug, I observed that one wire had been burned through and that the disconnect plug was itself in bad condition and shorting. Accordingly, I bypassed the disconnect plug with all six wires ensuring that I correctly matched wire from one side to the other of the disconnect. After completing this task I turned on the ignition to the wait position and depressed the pre-heater button and immediately all power was lost to the panel. No power was present at the ignition. In order to reestablish power I had to remove both battery terminals and reseat. The next time I pushed the preheat button first and then turned the start switch to the power position. In this instance, the lights illuminated on the controls as normal and indicated when the pre-heat cycle was completed. I then turned on the start switch to start and the same loss of power occurred and a click was heard at the transformer. So, it would seem that the transformer, starter switch and/or the glo plug pre-heat switch are bad. Any ideas?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Construction and Road Equipment
Expert:  Dan replied 1 year ago.

Hi Joe, My name is***** would take a very close look at the harness ans clean and tighten all grounds starting at the batteries and starter connections. Poor grounds can cause a lot of problems. Also if you have burnt or melting wiring it is an indication of a shorted harness or component. Place a test light or volt meter inline between the battery ground and ground battery post with it disconnected from the battery. Start pulling fuses or disconnecting components one at a time until the light goes dim or voltage drops indicating a draw on that circuit. Let me know

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
the harness to the transformer was in very bad shape at the disconnect and that is why I bypassed the harness disconnect and directly joined all six wires to the transformer. Grounds at the battery posts is good. There are no components still connected the lights were removed years ago and there is no wipers. So, the engine start circuits and glo-plug pre heat circuits are all that is left. fuses are all good. Joe
Expert:  Dan replied 1 year ago.

Thanks for the update. If the starter and alternator do not fail the draw test, all connections and grounds are good ( Do the draw test with the alternator connected and disconnected to check for shorts and draws) If okay then you suspicions of the transformer are likely the cause. Let me know