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Power sliding door works but needs a nudge

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    #16
    On my Braun openers there's no clutch, just a motor that drives a chain that operates the door, really kind of crude but it's been working trouble free for the 17 years I've had it. I've never seen the Ricon version.

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      #17
      The guy said it could be the motor or clutch. He never saw it. But it's just as well. He was already working on the up-sell over the phone and insulted me in the process by saying "What kind of a person wants to drive a used handicap van?" as if to say I am so helpless that I have to buy a new van with a warranty to be all safe and secure. What a condescending jerk.

      Looking at the schematic, it's pretty basic. Relays power the motor, which drives the chain. No clutch. I was not able to get to it today. Shop was closed. I don't recall seeing the spring in the attached picture from the service manual. Hopefully it's missing and that is all.
      Attached Files

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        #18
        Originally posted by August West View Post
        ......"What kind of a person wants to drive a used handicap van?" ...
        Me, me, me, I'd love to put him out of business. Besides it sounds like you found the problem, that spring tensioner fits the description of the symptoms you described.
        I have had periodic paralysis all my life. I lost my ability to walk in 2011 beginning with a spinal block, which was used for a hip fracture caused by periodic paralysis.

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          #19
          Originally posted by nonoise View Post
          Me, me, me, I'd love to put him out of business. Besides it sounds like you found the problem, that spring tensioner fits the description of the symptoms you described.

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            #20
            Same here August, I'dlike to do what Nonoise said. Amazing how yu guys fighure ut stuff so easily. Ya'll ust be engineers or something.

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              #21
              Correction: there is a clutch. See part 15. It just isn't shown in the schematic because it's a mechanical part not an electrical part.

              RustyJames was right on about the GM parts. Here is a picture of a Ricon door opener. It's says Delco! Part 16623509 is a door lock motor.
              Attached Files

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                #22
                Doing a search on that motor number only came up with this: https://www.ebay.com/itm/16623509-07...MAAOSwAExZmt6Q

                But it definitely appears to be a GM window or wiper motor. I still think your problem is going to be a dragging roller, the middle back hinge assembly has 3 rollers on it.

                https://www.ebay.com/itm/BRAND-NEW-O...53.m1438.l2649
                Last edited by Rustyjames; 18 Apr 2018, 9:51 AM. Reason: Added link

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                  #23
                  Here's a diagram, #16, 17 & 18 have rollers, if one isn't spinning the way it should could be your problem.

                  https://www.oemfordpart.com/auto-par...side-door-scat

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                    #24
                    Got many things to check out now. This is on top of the list. Because the door just seems harder to open than it should be even manually. Thanks!

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                      #25
                      I have a newer Econoline van that has the stock door, no opener, and can tell you that it slides very easy. Some of those rollers, especially on the middle hinge are hard to get to for giving them a shot of lube.

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                        #26
                        Here's a good video that gives you an idea of the lube points: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LIaPKPQ2NwI

                        The bottom and middle hinges have 3 rollers each, and hard to get to, so you really have to flood the area. Here's a link to how the rollers are orientated on the hinge: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LIaPKPQ2NwI

                        Don't use WD40 a good grade of cable/chain lube is preferred.

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                          #27
                          I got to the bottom of it. It wasn't the door motor, hinge lubrication, hinge alignment, nor chain alignment. It was the battery. After deep charging the battery, the sliding door opens without hesitation. It even opens uphill. Before deep charging the battery, the door wouldn't even budge when opening uphill even with the motor running. Because even when the motor is running, the electrical load runs off the battery, not the alternator. The alternator just charges the battery. The alternator can't compensate for the inability of the battery to hold (and consequentially deliver) a charge.

                          It's time to replace the battery. But it's important to note that even a new battery won't get fully charged by city driving, even if it's every day. It needs frequent highway driving for at least 20 - 30 minutes to fully charge. Even then, if the battery has lost it's charge deep enough, the alternator will never fully charge it regardless of how many highway miles are driven.

                          This is why some people get only 3 years out of a battery. They are killing the battery slowly by their driving habits.

                          Lesson learned: the most reliable way to to keep a full charge on a battery is to deep charge it periodically even if it's new. This will also extend the life of the battery.
                          Last edited by August West; 13 Sep 2018, 3:52 AM.

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                            #28
                            Originally posted by August West View Post
                            I got to the bottom of it. It wasn't the door motor, hinge lubrication, hinge alignment, nor chain alignment. It was the battery. After deep charging the battery, the sliding door opens without hesitation. It even opens uphill. Before deep charging the battery, the door wouldn't even budge when opening uphill even with the motor running. Because even when the motor is running, the electrical load runs off the battery, not the alternator. The alternator just charges the battery. The alternator can't compensate for the inability of the battery to hold (and consequentially deliver) a charge.

                            It's time to replace the battery. But it's important to note that even a new battery won't get fully charged by city driving, even if it's every day. It needs frequent highway driving for at least 20 - 30 minutes to fully charge. Even then, if the battery has lost it's charge deep enough, the alternator will never fully charge it regardless of how many highway miles are driven.

                            This is why some people get only get 3 years out of a battery. They are killing the battery slowly by their driving habits.

                            Lesson learned: the most reliable way to to keep a full charge on a battery is to deep charge it periodically even if it's new. This will also extend the life of the battery.
                            I am glad to hear that you appear to have the problem sussed August.
                            Having said that, the unit is 26 years old so there will be accumulative wear and tear on the mechanism ie rollers, shafts and pivots. Check any rollers for flats, chips and roller bore to shaft clearance. A fully charged battery that can carry load will often be able to cope with the current draw that worn mechanisms demand.
                            A cheap trick with batteries is to turn on your lights momentarily before starting. Then turn them off and hit the start key. It works well on cold mornings.
                            My last battery was 11 years old when it began to lose its punch. And that was running about 15000km/year of mostly around town. The car was a 1994 Toyota Corona GLX sedan- bulletproof.
                            We now own a younger, later model; a 1995 Toyota Corona GLX Hatcback
                            Make sure that your charging system is optimum.

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                              #29
                              That's good advice slow_runner. I've been learning a lot about batteries recently.

                              • Even with the car running, loads run off the battery (not the alternator).
                              • Large loads like lifts may require full battery power, which is only available from a fully charged battery, even if the car is running.
                              • Low RPMs (idling the car in the driveway, driving in the city) will never fully charge a battery. It may add a little charge or it may drain it.
                              • There are only two ways to fully charge a battery: 1) High RPMs (highway driving) for 20-30 minutes, and 2) battery charger.
                              • If the battery has lost enough charge, there is only one way to fully charge the battery - a battery charger.
                              • Even a new battery won't provide it's max power if it isn't fully charged.
                              • Most reliable way to be sure your battery is providing full power is to deep charge the battery periodically.

                              I was ready to replace the door motor and/or have the mobility dealer service it, which would have been several hundreds of dollars. Instead, this little $60 battery charger saved the day. By the way, I'm not promoting any particular brand of battery charger. Just make sure you get one that automatically reduces power after the battery is fully charged. That way you can leave it connected indefinitely (like when you don't drive the vehicle for several days) without overcharging the battery.
                              Attached Files
                              Last edited by August West; 13 Sep 2018, 5:08 AM.

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                                #30
                                Originally posted by August West View Post
                                That's good advice slow_runner. I've been learning a lot about batteries recently.

                                • Even with the car running, loads run off the battery (not the alternator).
                                • Large loads like lifts may require full battery power, which is only available from a fully charged battery, even if the car is running.
                                • Low RPMs (idling the car in the driveway, driving in the city) will never fully charge a battery. It may add a little charge or it may drain it.
                                • There are only two ways to fully charge a battery: 1) High RPMs (highway driving) for 20-30 minutes, and 2) battery charger.
                                • If the battery has lost enough charge, there is only one way to fully charge the battery - a battery charger.
                                • Even a new battery won't provide it's max power if it isn't fully charged.
                                • Most reliable way to be sure your battery is providing full power is to deep charge the battery periodically.

                                I was ready to replace the door motor and/or have the mobility dealer service it, which would have been several hundreds of dollars. Instead, this little $60 battery charger saved the day. By the way, I'm not promoting any particular brand of battery charger. Just make sure you get one that automatically reduces power after the battery is fully charged. That way you can leave it connected indefinitely (like when you don't drive the vehicle for several days) without overcharging the battery.
                                I have a 2014 Sienna with a VMI conversion. My drivers side sliding door will open no problem but won't close all the way. I thought it was the battery but when checked it was at 12.5 volts. Could it still be the battery?

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