Thermo King Transport Refrigeration Alarm Code #17 Troubleshooting.

Thermo King Transport Refrigeration Alarm Code #17 Troubleshooting.

Introduction: Why take time to write a report on Alarm trouble code #17 thermo king?

This is one of the most common codes that owner operators, company drivers and shop technicians deal with.  Also most of any technical information for any transport refrigeration happens to be reserved by the dealerships and limited solely for their own technicians only.

So why not post some online technical assistance that will save much time for others and thus hopefully  lower the cost for this type of diagnosis and repair?


  • Code 17 means Engine Failed to Crank when start is requested by the Microprocessor.
    • Check Battery and cables
    • Check Starter (unfortunately lately new thermoking starters often fail for some reason).
    • Fuel pull in Solenoid failed or its circuit.

How this Alarm is cleared?

This Alarm is needs to be cleared manually through the kew pad interphase display.

Could there be any other Alarms that are associated with Alarm #17?

Yes, this Alarm can be accompanied by Alarm# 84 Restart Null, however, the diagnostic procedure for Alarm 17 should still be followed first.

How is Thermoking microprocessor programmed to spot and set this Alarm?

Microprocessor will monitor the engine RPM, and when the engine fails to reach 40 RPM then Alarm 17 will be set. Also if the engine does rice above 40 RPM but then suddenly the RPM drops below 40 then this will also cause the Alarm 17 to be set.


What’s the most effective diagnostic procedure that should be followed for Alarm code 17?

  1. Check the battery for proper voltage, load test the battery to make sure that the battery internally is able to hold that charge.
  2. Check the fuse/relay interface circuit board for Fuse that controls the fuel shut off solenoid. Often times this would be Fuse F3. (Please make sure that you wear a wrist ground strap to avoid circuit board internal damage due to static electricity).
  3. Place the unit in continuous mode and study the little LEDs that light up on the circuit board, find the LED light for the starter signal. (usually LED 25).  These LED’s are basically installed there by the manufacturer there for testing purposes and serve as test lights that are placed in the most strategic areas for most common diagnostic areas.
  4. Check for pushed pin in connector  in 8S circuit, also check for open or broken wire there.
  5. See if you can bar the engine over by hand and the engine is not seized or stuck.
  6. If by chance this Model is equipped with Electric standby motor, then also check the clutch on the electric motor make sure its not seized.


Thanks for reading my literature. If you need any mobile truck repair assistance in the Sacramento area, give us a call.



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