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Baffling engine shut-down-gctid398387

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    Baffling engine shut-down-gctid398387

    I'm wondering if anyone has any ideas on troubleshooting a problem I've experienced lately. I have a 2002 2858 with a MerCruiser 350 engine. Recently, I inadvertently started the boat using the house battery. Then, as the engine was warming up at idle, I switched the battery switch from house back to starter, because the starter battery was recently replaced and I wanted to make sure it was fully charged. When I did so, the engine stopped abruptly. I figured the new battery was faulty, switched back to the house, and re-started without incident.

    We then took the boat out for a nice day on the water. On the way back home, after a total of about 2 hours of running time, we were cruising along and the engine quit suddenly. No alarms or anything indicating low fluids, but I checked the fluids and they looked normal. I re-started the engine, checked the gages (normal), and resumed the trip home. Almost as soon as we got up to cruising speed, the engine quit again. This time, it wouldn't re-start. We dropped the anchor and called the Coast Guard and Vessel Assist, figuring we'd need a tow.

    After about 15 minutes, just for grins I turned the key, and the engine started right up. The engine had died before only at cruising speed, so I figured maybe we could limp home at idle speed, which we did. Back in the slip, I shut down the engine, switched back to the starter battery, and it started fine, so apparently that wasn't the cause of the engine dying earlier at idle.

    We had our mechanic come down to check things out. He couldn't reproduce the problem at the dock, as it started up and ran just fine for him. He replaced the battery switch and suggested I run it around near the marina sometime and see if the problem recurs. A few days later I did just that, and after about 45 minutes the engine quit again. This time it wouldn't re-start at all, even after I waited over a half hour, cranking from each of the batteries in succession. It cranked and cranked but wouldn't start. This time we did need a tow.

    It seems really weird to me that the boat would start and run fine, then quit for no apparent reason at cruising speed. Any ideas?
    2002 2858 Ciera flybridge
    For,merly 1998 2855

    #2
    I would wager that it's the ignition module

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      #3
      Is it just a straight cut-out-and-die or does it sure at all before? My old sea ray does that sometimes, but usually it acts a little funny right before.

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        #4
        Sounds like electrical. unless it sputters THEN dies. I had an issue like this years ago. It turned out to be a condenser. We'd be going 40mph, then wham nothing. You're probably electronic ignition nowadays but everyone said a condenser is either good or bad, no inbetween.. I'd replace elec. parts that may look bad. Cheapest ones first.

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          #5
          9986mkoh wrote:
          Is it just a straight cut-out-and-die or does it sure at all before? My old sea ray does that sometimes, but usually it acts a little funny right before.
          My mechanic asked me the same thing. It's been pretty much dying suddenly, with no noticeable sputtering or anything like that. That's why we supect the problem is electrically related.
          2002 2858 Ciera flybridge
          For,merly 1998 2855

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            #6
            Unless the mechanic you use is an in-law or friend, I would try to find a different one. Changing the battery switch solved nothing and was a shot in the dark to start with.

            Since you say it 'cuts off' - doesn't sputter or try to run - I would suspect something other than fuel, which leads to something ignition or electrically related. Besides what Craig mentioned in his post, things that come to mind are a defective primary or secondary ignition component. First, check that your lanyard switch - is it half on? Do you bump it when running?

            P.S. Can you confirm your engine alarm works? If the alarm didn't work then you wouldn't know if it was going off or not.

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              #7
              Yeah I meant surge instead of sure in the last post. But these intermittent problems can be really tough to solve, as I'm still messing with my old sea ray. I'm almost sure in my case it's fuel related, like an old line collapsing or just water in the gas at this point since it surges and shuts down. In your case, it seems like something elsectrical as they've said. It's just odd how it happened tho, and didn't just blow something.

              And I just re-read your post, it's probably not a good idea to mess with the switch at all while its running since I'm assuming that year is fuel injected and computer run. A power cutoff then surge could have done more than it would've carb'd.

              Comment


                #8
                this part is the most likely culprit.

                http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Ignition-S...item53edbdc48b

                if you have a spark tester remove lead from plug and put in series,unplug your green/white wire and strike as quick as you can repeatadly to earth.if you have no spark then ^^^^^^^^^ part is the culprit.

                http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/SEALEY-VS5...item53ed01ace4 u may have similar in usa

                will leave you stranded but mine had similar consequences as yours first give a couple of warning breakdowns first ............then bang no starting.

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                  #9
                  if you have an ;off-1-2-1+2 battery switch are you sure you never went through off when you changed over as this is a no no when engine is running?

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                    #10
                    FYI, the problem turned out to be a problem with the... I think it's called the crankshaft position sensor, apparently an integral component in the electronic fuel injection system. This was replaced and the engine now runs fine. Thanks for the helpful suggestions.
                    2002 2858 Ciera flybridge
                    For,merly 1998 2855

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                      #11
                      I think it is called the hall sensor. I had issues on my BMW bike with it once.

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                        #12
                        Also check your battery cable runs and make sure nothing is accidentally grounded anywhere. I had the same thing happen a few months back. Had done some re-wiring and didn't notice that the cable from my anchor windlass touched the riser. Engine did a safety shut-down as soon as I used the windlass. You might have something similar -- battery cable grounded.
                        Terry
                        1999 Bayliner 3388
                        Twin Cummins 4BTA
                        Fisherman, Cruiser, Boaticus-enthusiasticus-maximus
                        Member Royal Victoria Yacht Club

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