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Need help with no crank on starter with OMC 5.0-gctid368733

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    Need help with no crank on starter with OMC 5.0-gctid368733

    I just launched two days ago and have the following problem, my starboard engine will not crank no starter crank the port engine runs fine. I ran both engines on the hard and flushed the week before and both engines started fine.

    Here are the specifics:

    1989 2958 with OMC 5.0 V8 engines

    Both batteries are good checked and cleanhed cables, batteries fully charger the port engine will crank ad the generator cranks and starts no problem


    no water in the oil on the starboard engine, all clean

    I pulled all of the plugs on the starboard engine as I thougt it may have water lock, and all of the plugs are good with no water

    I also was able to turn over the engine with a wrench with plugs out

    I also checked the 50 amp fuse

    I did not check the 8 pin plug, but will also clean and check this plug

    OMC has a engine starter solenoid before the starter solonied, I did not replace this yet.

    I checked all connections on the starter soleniodand batteries, and grounds...all good

    I am thinking I have a bad starter of bad soleniod before the starter, how can I test this without taking the starter out? Witht the set up on this boat you have to remove the manifold to get to the starter and it is a real job to get the starter out.

    Any suggestions to replace or test the soleniod before the starter and test the starter would be very helpful

    Thank You for your input..

    There are three solenoids which look the same on the mounting bracket off the top of the engine. One is trim up, the other trim down, and the other is the one you're looking for. Jump across the two large terminals with a screwdriver or better yet with a remote starter switch you can probably rent free for the day at your local auto parts store (no sparks!) to see if the starter fires. Check all the terminals coming in to that solenoid for corrosion (inside the ring terminals too!) and for loose connections (again, check the ring terminals crimp to the wires). If they are corroded, wire brush them off completely, reassemble and use some CRC Corrosion proof spray on the terminals. I 've used that stuff for years on all my connections (batteries every year,) and have never had an electrical/corrosion issue since.


      The assist solenoid you are looking for is behind the starboard head.

      First check the 50 amp fuses in the rubber boots on the shift cable bracket. One of these is for the trim, the other is the live hot 12V to the assist solenoid. If the fuse is good, and has 12V coming into it, then check the 2 outside terminals on the assist solenoid. The terminal with the Red/Purple wire is getting 12V from that fuse, so you should have 12V there all the time.

      Next, check the middle terminal. It should have 12V when you are cranking (or trying to crank). And last, the final terminal should have 12V when you are cranking. That last 12V goes down to the starter solenoid. If you have 12V there and no crank, then you have to check the starter.

      You can test the starter/starter solenoid using the remote engine start switch mentioned above. First make sure you have 12V on the large red wire at the starter. Then connect the remote switch between that terminal and the one with the Yellow/Red wire on the starter. Hit the switch and see if she goes. If not, and all the contacts on the starter are clean and tight, and the battery is good, then the starter probably has to come out. I can remove/replace my starter blind and contorted without removing the exhaust. A little tedious, but doable. I would try that before removing the exhaust.

      I PM'd you some info also.


        Before you start jumping circuits, take a volt reading at the end path of each circuit.

        The yellow circuit coming from the key switch (while in start position) should give voltage.

        There may be a neutral safety switch in this path.... check this switch to see if it's closing the circuit.

        Once the yellow circuit powers the slave relay, you should see power out of this relay.

        Now check the power path further towards the starter motor.

        If the large terminal of the starter motor is receiving power, yet no motor action, then it may be the motor itself or the solenoid on the motor.

        You should see a succession of power through the paths.

        If/where the power is interrupted, or does not operate the starter motor, there lies your problem.
        Rick E. Gresham, Oregon
        2850 Bounty Sedan Flybridge model
        Twin 280 HP 5.7's w/ Closed Cooling
        Volvo Penta DuoProp Drives
        Kohler 4 CZ Gen Set



          I had a problem with identical symptoms as yours on my 5.0 OMC powered boat. Finally resolved it. Here is a link to my thread.



            Thanks I have no voltage at the solenoid for the starter on top of the engine I will trace the path per Rick and also check the fuses. The solenoid connections are rusty and need to be cleaned. Thank you for the input I will get back to this mid week after the holiday. Well the bait is in the water in the maintenance dock and not moving. I am really trying to rule out all other issues before pulling the starter. My boat has a generator and the manifold has to

            Come off to allow access. I can touch the starter contacts and will test for voltage once I clean and replace the top solenoid. I also

            Read in my owners manual that these engines have a circuit breaker on the trim tilt is that breaker for trim only? I do have good voltage to both trim solenoids and they do operate

            Thanks for all Of the good insight I now have a place to start and work hhis out this group is great !

            Thank you again


              Maybe the throttle is not in neutral.
              Be good, be happy, for tomorrow is promised to no man !

              1994 2452, 5.0l, Alpha gen. 2 drive. Sold ! Sold ! Sold !

              '86 / 19' Citation cuddy, Merc. 3.0L / 140 hp 86' , stringer drive. Sold ! Sold ! Sold !

              Manalapan N.J


                Chief Alen wrote:
                Maybe the throttle is not in neutral.
                Could be. Hold the key in the start position and wiggle the shift lever.
                Started boating 1955
                Number of boats owned 32
                3870 presently owned
                Favorite boat. Toss up. 46' Chris Craft, 3870 Bayliner


                  That is a great idea, I also will check voltage at the bottom of the shift lever and check to see if I am getting voltage to my first solenoid before I pull the starter...I have a strong feeling that this problem is my first relay or the safety switch . I have to check both shift levers as I have dual stations. I am trying to eliminate all of the voltage issues and will trace the voltage back to the starter before I remove the manifolds and pull the starter. On the set up of my boat the only way to get to the starter is to pull the manifolds.

                  Thanks for the Help everyone from this site has provided great insight...I will update at the end of the week if i can Resolve this problem..



                    If you do narrow it down to the safety switch, and suspect it is the problem, you can unplug the wires from the switch, and short or jumper them together. If the switch is the problem, this will allow the engine to crank when you turn the key.

                    However, before you do this make sure the actual throttle lever is in the neutral position, and the prop area is clear. Otherwise the engine could start in gear and cause injury/damage.


                      Well I got down to the boat and did the following and still have the same clicking problem.

                      1. Batteries all charged, other motor and generator starts no problem

                      2. Traced "good" voltage thru the harness to all points based on Ricks suggestions. - key, solenoid,second solenoid, starter

                      3. I replaced the top solenoid just in case and checked for voltage all good

                      4. I by-passed the throttle safety switch to check for short, same clicking sound from the new soleniod.

                      5. Checked all fuses two large 50 amp and smaller fused, cleaned with CRC

                      6. I cleaned the 8 pin plug and checked for contact all good.

                      The only thing I did not do is try to jump the starter, as I am getting good voltage. I am open to any other suggestion before I remove the manifold and pull the starter, trying to avoid this. Is there any way to check the starter or jump it before I pull it from the boat?

                      This problem is driving me nuts, and I have the boat in the maintenance dock..not my normal slip

                      Thanks for the help so far, open for any other suggestions..


                        [img]/media/kunena/attachments/vb/673624=26339-soleniod.JPG[/img]This is the Soleniod I replaced ...I am still having the same problem


                          You're getting clicking out of the solenoid 12v should be going to the starter..... Those starter connections are very susceptible to corrosion as they are way down in the bilge. How are they?


                            Define "clicking" for us please!

                            Also, define which solenoid is clicking.... assuming that your system is using a slave solenoid also.

                            If one click only while the key is being held in the "start" position, the solenoid is holding as it should be.

                            If multiples clicks one after the other, then the solenoid is pulling "IN", but is releasing immediately upon sensing the heavy load.

                            When the load is dropped, voltage returns and the solenoid pulls in again..... and it just repeats the process in a click/click/click/click fashion.

                            This info may help determine where the problem is.


                            Next time you are at the boat, can you take several good photos of the engine, solenoid, starter motor, etc?

                            Take more than what you may think we need!

                            Post these.... ya never know what someone may see that has been over-looked.

                            If it boils down to a starter motor replacement, please educate yourself on the HTGR/MPGR starter motors.

                            No OEM is using the non-gear reduction motors these days.

                            The gear reduction motors will kick butt over the old OEM style...... and the HTGR/PMGR cost is very reasonable.

                            Rick E. Gresham, Oregon
                            2850 Bounty Sedan Flybridge model
                            Twin 280 HP 5.7's w/ Closed Cooling
                            Volvo Penta DuoProp Drives
                            Kohler 4 CZ Gen Set


                              From my previous post above:

                              "You can test the starter/starter solenoid using the remote engine start switch mentioned above. First make sure you have 12V on the large red wire at the starter. Then connect the remote switch between that terminal and the one with the Yellow/Red wire on the starter. Hit the switch and see if she goes."