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Alko Atc Red Light


Kazb
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Hi all

 

After using our van for about 9 months with no problems whatsoever, we have recently encountered a problem with the ATC. We travelled down to Dorset in August, stopping halfway overnight to split up the journey. When we first set off, all was fine. We got to our half way site and stayed there overnight. In the morning, we got ready to carry on to Dorset when we could not get a green light on the ATC. It just stayed red (it was not flashing so we could still tow). During this second journey I was on the phone to the dealer asking what to do. Hubby pulled over in a layby as the phone signal was intermittent so he stopped so that I could talk to the dealer properly. While in the layby I got out of the car and the light had gone green whilst we were driving. On the return trip a week later, all was fine, we had a green light.

 

Just been away to Ashbourne for the weekend and lo and behold, when we hitched up to go the light was red. This time it stayed red. However, on the way home we hitched up and it was green.

 

I understand from the dealer that it needs to register 12 faults before it turns red. What causes a fault to register? And why do you think it is sometimes red and sometimes green?

 

Your thoughts would be most welcome.

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On the rare occasion that my ATC has had a red light it has occurred immediately after the caravan has reversed slightly. The green light has always returned after 20 to 30 yards of forward motion.

 

Mine [now 3 years old] has been very similar on a very few occasions; these have been when stopping a bit too quickly for it, in a lay-by.

As with "anglebox" mine has always cleared by driving forwards and stopping a bit more gracefully.

 

In your position I would be discussing it with Al-Ko UK's technical department. I did with mine and they said basically if it is returning to green not to worry.

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Mine went red when hitching up at dealer after first service. He said it often happens and pulled the van handbrake on and off a few times and light then turned green. I think you will also find that Al-Ko instructions advise you to leave the van plugged into the car overnight in order to clear the computer memory. Apparently doing this takes very little drain off the car battery. I can't comment on this as I have not had to do it.

 

HenryB

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As our van is in storage, it's not really possible to leave the van connected to the car overnight. If we did this whilst on a site, what would we do about the electric hook up, would we have to unplug that from the van or can you have the EHU and car plugged in at the same time? Thanks for your replies by the way.

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I've posted same experience elsewhere, but this has occurred 3 times in last 2000 miles. Our previous ATC equipped Bailey no problems in 2. 5 years. But our Lunar which is 8 months old has had this red light.

I phoned ALKO who told me it could be down to voltage drop with the car or dirty connection. Again same car no problems before.

Will get the supplying dealer to check out when in for its first service.

here's what happened to us :

1/ Left hooked up to car on ferry for 2. 5 hours, red light on, drove away stopped after 10 miles green light on.

2/ 1500 miles later stopped at services after 3 hour towing, red light on, drove off and checked after 10 miles green light on

3/ Next day stopped at services after 150 miles towing, red light on, drove off and checked after 10 miles green light on.

Since then have driven 300 miles no problem.

Since I had the red light come on after being on the ferry, I have always unhooked if stopping for more than 30 minutes.

 

I've heard the story about 12 recorded faults, if this is so, does anyone know how to reset the ATC please?

Does it make sense to unplug from the ATC unit under the caravan and then re plug again?

Lunar Ultima 560 towed by VW Tiguan 2. 0TDi

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I had this problem earlier this year see

 

http://www. caravantalk. co. uk/community/topic/48902-atc-gives-false-readings/

 

It appears that the ATC system requires a constant 12+ volts otherwise the problems you are describing happen, I eventually had to have my tow bar rewired. Personally I think that as usual Al-Ko have a good a idea but when put into practice they don't work too well, in this day and age wanting such a constant high voltage seems like poor design to me.

 

ElBeardo :)

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I had this problem earlier this year see

 

http://www. caravanta. ..false-readings/

 

It appears that the ATC system requires a constant 12+ volts otherwise the problems you are describing happen, I eventually had to have my tow bar rewired. Personally I think that as usual Al-Ko have a good a idea but when put into practice they don't work too well, in this day and age wanting such a constant high voltage seems like poor design to me.

 

ElBeardo :)

 

As you require over 12 volts to charge the battery while towing, and cool the fridge, i don't see any thing wrong with ALKO designing a system to work on 12volts .

 

A healthy system should see 14 volts plus across the battery towing.

 

I think owners should specify there requirements clearly to the tow bar fitters, and insist on two 3mm cables for the fridge and permanent supply.

 

My Valencia has a slightly more powerful fridge element now than my old senator, so cutting back on cable sizes isn't a good idea.

 

I have fitted a couple of LEDS to duplicate the ALKO LED, this is on a trailing lead in the car, to date the led has always stayed green while towing.

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We have tried it with the fridge switched off whilst towing and this made no difference to the red light coming on. Regarding the towbar wiring, it has all worked fine for the last few months so not sure why it would be any different now. How could you check that the wiring is working OK? Thanks for replies.

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As you require over 12 volts to charge the battery while towing, and cool the fridge, i don't see any thing wrong with ALKO designing a system to work on 12volts .

 

A healthy system should see 14 volts plus across the battery towing.

 

I think owners should specify there requirements clearly to the tow bar fitters, and insist on two 3mm cables for the fridge and permanent supply.

 

My Valencia has a slightly more powerful fridge element now than my old senator, so cutting back on cable sizes isn't a good idea.

 

I have fitted a couple of LEDS to duplicate the ALKO LED, this is on a trailing lead in the car, to date the led has always stayed green while towing.

 

Clearly 3mm would be great but as most car looms to the caravan supplies are only 2. 5mm its not gonna help much. Better in my opinion to have a supplementary earth closer to the van ie directly it enters the rear of the towcar. The quality of earth connections cannot be overstated. I think I have said before mine was more reliable after ditching the 2x7 adaptors to the 13 pin.

 

Jt

Coachman Pastiche

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Clearly 3mm would be great but as most car looms to the caravan supplies are only 2. 5mm its not gonna help much. Better in my opinion to have a supplementary earth closer to the van ie directly it enters the rear of the towcar. The quality of earth connections cannot be overstated. I think I have said before mine was more reliable after ditching the 2x7 adaptors to the 13 pin.

 

Jt

 

The entire car body acts as a negative return/earth, i use to run a separate earth to the battery direct to the boot, but only to try and prevent corrosion of the car joints, with modern cars i don't see this as a requirement, but i am open to argument.

 

My car was wired professionally with one 3mm cable, which does the job, but my next car will have two 3mm cables at my request.

 

Converting to a 13 pin system i think is also a step forward, as the pin connections are less prone to poor connections.

 

When you say most car looms, usually the car battery, fridge side off the wiring has to be installed, its not been there to start with in all the tow cars i have had.

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The entire car body acts as a negative return/earth, i use to run a separate earth to the battery direct to the boot, but only to try and prevent corrosion of the car joints, with modern cars i don't see this as a requirement, but i am open to argument.

 

My car was wired professionally with one 3mm cable, which does the job, but my next car will have two 3mm cables at my request.

 

Converting to a 13 pin system i think is also a step forward, as the pin connections are less prone to poor connections.

 

When you say most car looms, usually the car battery, fridge side off the wiring has to be installed, its not been there to start with in all the tow cars i have had.

 

Yeah I guess your right my Saabs and Vw's didnt. The last 2 Subarus i have had though already have the supplies in the rear one permanent, one via split relay. I suppose its something to do with its farmyard/trailer heritage.

 

Jt

Coachman Pastiche

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Hi blackvinyl

I guess the fact you had no lights at all was simply a bad connection somewhere. this happened when we had our 2008 series 7 Pageant, the plug in connection under the front seat base, was faulty allowing the connection to come undone sometimes. Needless to say the dealer didn't find the problem I did.

Lunar Ultima 560 towed by VW Tiguan 2. 0TDi

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