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I HAVE A 2000 REGAL SKI BOAT WITH 4.3 MERCRUISER ENGINE. NOT GETTING POWER TO DASH GAUGES, SWITCHES OR IGNITION. I HAVE CHECKED BATTERY CONNECTIONS. ANY SUGGESTIONS?

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This being spring and all, perhaps your battery has just gone flat while in storage over the winter. Be sure to disconnect it and place it on a battery charger overnight to ensure it is FULLY charged before you try anything else.

After that check to see if your boat is fitted with a main battery shut off switch, and if so, make sure it is in the ON position. Also check the Starter Circuit Breaker button in the engine compartment to ensure it is not tripped. This is also a good time to check all the fuses in the main power distribution panel while you are at it.

Also be sure to check that the negative terminal of the battery is connected securely to the engine block grounding stud. Unscrew, clean, then retighten this connection if possible since it is highly succeptible to corrosion and vibration. You may need to replace that battery cable altogether if it is in poor condition.

Also be sure to check for loose connections at the ignition switch and tighten them if necessary.

If those are not the problem, then you will have to use a voltmeter to check for voltage at each successive point in the system starting out from the positive terminal of the battery until you find the source of the problem.

Here is a link to a online Mercruiser forum website with some diagrams and discussions which may assist you in your troubleshooting:

http://forums.iboats.com/showthread.php?t=255566&page=1

?
Just use your mouse to click on the link, which is the underlined and highlighted text just above. This will open a new web browser page automatically for you and allow you to view the information and items at the website indicated.

Please comment back here to this page if you have any details to add, have any questions, have difficulty accessing the links, or just require further general assistance and I will respond as soon as I see it.

Thank you very much and good luck.

Joe.

Posted on May 19, 2011

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So the problem is it starts and then dies? How many amps did the alternator show? Was it enough to run all power circuits and charge the battery as well? That could be a concern. It is possible you have a bad ignition switch, but first check the fuse for the gauges in the instrument panel fuse block-it may be labeled "gauges" or "meter". The fuse should get power with key on, and then power is sent to the gauges on the dash. Without a voltmeter to test for power coming out of the switch, it's kind of a guessing game. If power is not getting to the gauges, it may also not be going elsewhere out of the switch.

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Or does power just shut off when you turn the key to start, everything goes out, no warning lights or gauges? Then check cables, battery terminals, grounds for clean tight connections. There is a problem between the battery and the ignition switch.

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