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avidfisher

electrical problem (loss of all power)on boat

18 posts in this topic

Hi and thanks in advance. I was out fishing in my 1986 crestliner when the motor died and i lost all power gauges and lights. I know my battery is good. Fortunately my trolling motor is ran direct to battery and i used it for 2 hours to get back in. Also while i was getting us back in with trolling motor my brother lifted the engine cover to check for a loose wire he made contact with the altenator and it was hot enough to burn his arm pretty good. What could be the cause of this. Could it be just the ignition switch cause i turn the key and i get nothing no gauges or lights. Is there a main fuse or something. I found 2 inline fuses under the dash and the 5 or 6 on top of the dash one for each operation horn,bilge.navagation,blower,ignition all are fine.what could this be and also by my alternator getting so hot is it fried? Any help would be appretiated as the next 6 weeks is usually the best fishing.

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If you have lost everything, lights won't even light, even dim. I would follow and check ground and power circuits from battery to engine and boat. Make sure all connections are good and clean, use a test light or a dvom to voltage drop the circuits. Alternators create heat, that is why they have fans in them, if it is charging wide open it will get quite hot. I have fixed charging systems that have open circuits from the alt output to the battery and the alt will put out in excess of 40 volts, they won't last long in that situation. I think fron the sound of the symptom that you have and open ground or power circuit from battery to engine.

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Check your positive cable on battery terminal, some have a small rectangular box (approx 1' x 1/2") with a little red button, it's a resettable breaker, be sure button is not popped.

Also check for power from + red cable to starter motor, right at the terminal.

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Fuses?

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Don't you think if the alternator is HOT, you have a short or something thru it?

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I have thought of that. Figured since i have a fully charged battery and don't even get navagational lights,guages,radio or blower motor that it would be something else. All of these items have ran before with out the key turned on and now they don't. Would the alternator do this???? I am not electricl savy.

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This is a stern drive, correct? OMC probably. you will find 2 large 50 amp fuses near the back of the engine. they will be in black rubber fuse holders. one is for the trim system, the other is for the rest of the electrical system, including power to the key switch. check there

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I would like to thank everyones responses. Yes it is stern drive omc 4.3. I checked both and they looked fine. I also found i believe 2 others on the top of the engine, and two under the dash a 30 and a 20 amp. If the fuses look good can they still be bad? I bought an olmeter but am going to have to read directions since i am not familar with it.

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Wow, ok this is a different issue, an inboard like that is almost like a car.

I actually have same setup on my Lund. I would suggest following all the wiring from battery, to starter to everywhere.

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Like Valv suggested before, check all connections. then start at the battery, and work your way up the line, checking for power. Does the trim system work or not?

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i started at the battery and fully charged it, then i cut the wires and reconnected at the posts (to prevent corrosion) the trim works

anything running direct such as the trolling motor and fish finder work. Everything else is dead. It seems like there would be a main fuse or something. Can the ignition do this. I know in the past i did not need the key turned to operate anything.

I am trully baffeled.

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Quote:

two under the dash a 30 and a 20 amp. If the fuses look good can they still be bad? I bought an olmeter but am going to have to read directions since i am not familar with it.


In doubt replace them, it's cheaper than buying the ohmmeter.

There should be 2 main wires (+ and -) going from battery to dash, be sure you reconnected them after disconnecting battery

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I forgot to ask, but does the engine crank over?.

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Follow the directions others have stated here.. if that doesnt work, get a test light or volt meter and find out where your not getting power.

I suspect its something like a blown fuse, or bad connection somewhere. If there is no fuse issue(even corrosion in fuse holder), and you have tripe-checked all electrical connections everywhere.. I would start looking at the ignition switch itself, or the wiring pertaining to it.

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Do you have a switch like this and is it in the off or wrong battery selection? I say wrong battery because you only have one battery but the switch has a choice of two batteries.

52591.jpg

Are you shifted into neutral when trying to start?

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Hows it going?

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now that the weekend is here and hopefully no rain i will look at it tomorrow

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The fusing system on the OMC sterndrives are know to have problems with corrosion and causing headaches. 12 volt test light and just keep poking red wires till you understand where the power is and where it isn't but should be.

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