Engine Fix to keep you on the water and tips to get off the water.
Fix it and Tip #1
Last year while fishing the Clear Lake BBT Tournament, with partner Chris Perez, we made our initial run to the spot we marked the previous day, and loaded the boat with our limit of 5 right off. Upon starting the engine to go to spot #2, fuel poured out everywhere. You could not only smell it but see it. We couldn’t very well take the cowling off over the water, and you can’t get off the boat during a tournament, so the only option we had was to limp several hours back to the weigh in and get off the water. It was exasperating, being on fish right off and only fishing for 2 of the 9 hours. Once back at the launch, we hauled the boat out of the water to take a look.
This is not a quick fix, but fortunately this is a simple fix, especially for someone that knows nothing about Marine engines. A little consult with RB Anglers, Mike Tremont, Sean Wayman and Chris Perez, a visual on Youtube and an internet search on Mercury’s website provided me with enough knowledge to do it myself. Completing the task was easy enough, as it was an electrical disconnect and a nylon nut to unscrew. What I found was, the electrical wires that run through the nut, into the Water-Fuel Separator, was held in place by some sort of gel or glue. Obviously over time the Fuel additives had dissolved this gel or glue. A tip here is to keep your old one and fill the area, where the gel, was with gorilla glue or some kind of glue. At the very best it’s an emergency replacement part that can save your day.
(See Picture #2 and #3 below) I ordered a new one and a quick electrical connect and screw in, and I was back on the water.
Fix it and tip #2
My partner Chris Perez and his other tournament partner Ryan Hall borrowed my boat for a Delta tournament, and while on the first run out, my alarm beeps a pattern of low oil. I’m beginning to hate that alarm. They stopped and fished on and off, but it continued to beep when tried to get on pad. After a phone call to me, to hopefully find out what the problem is, which was futile, because I’m the guy that knows nothing about Marine engines. They had no choice but to continue to fish, on the trolling motor and stay near the launch area.
After getting the boat home, once again I found myself on Youtube and the Mercury internet site looking for information. What happened was that my oil sensor (see Picture #4 below), on the On Board oil reservoir (See picture #5 below) sensed low oil, when in fact that reservoir was full. What did that mean? Not sure, but figured it was a faulty sensor. I pulled the sensor out and through the knowledge I had gathered, I turned the key on and got the beep alarm. When I put the sensor back in the reservoir, it still beeped. I found out that the float inside the tank, surrounding the sensor was magnetic. It floats up and down, with the oil, and sends a magnetic signal, as to what the oil level is in the tank.
With that in mind, I went to the house and got a turtle magnet off the refrigerator (See picture #6 below).
Back at the boat I turned it back on and got the alarm beeps again, as expected. I went over and applied the little magnet to it the senor and the beeps stopped. Amazing! Each time I took off the magnet the beeps would begin. So this told me the magnetic float, in the on board oil tank, that the sensor goes into, was demagnetized. The only fix is buying a new tank, as it comes with the senor, which you can’t buy separately. The Tip? Keep that little turtle magnet or any magnet on your boat. If this happens to you, and after you check that your tank is actually full, you can tape the magnet to the sensor and see if the beeps stop. If so, you can get on pad and at least get back to the launch, without it beeping all the time, or go fishing. Your choice. Hope this was informative and helps! Stay safe and take a kid fishing.
RB Bass Angler