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Thread: Random spark

  1. #1

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    Random spark

    Ok I recently got water in my electrical box. Blew the fuses and all. Replaced the fuses then the ski started right up ran terrible. Took it home went through all the connections and the ski started right off. Went out of town for two weeks come back and now I have intermitten spark. It's like clockwork there is no spark when I'm cranking but as soon as I let off the starter button I get one single strong Spark and thats it. i replaced stator, and cdi as well as the electrical board last season i cant imagine one of those are bad! any suggestions would help I want to sell ski soon and want it to run right for the next guy Please HELP!


  2. #2
    Moderator beerdart's Avatar
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    Check and clean all the grounds... Also all the connections in the box again.

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    Click avatar for tech links/info, donation request K447's Avatar
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    Check the battery voltage while cranking, using a multi-meter at the battery terminals.

    If it is under 11 volts, time for a new battery.
    Well, you can try re-charging it first, of course

    If you do need a new battery, I suggest an AGM battery, like the East-Penn Deka brand ETX16L (also sold at West Marine).

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    ph2ocraft's Avatar
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    Spark when you release the battery is a sign of a weak battery or stator. Verify you have 10.6 plus volts (measured at the battery) while cranking the engine. I'm assuming we're talking a Domestic engine?
    If it's a Fuji engine (Domestic as well), verify there is no water, droplets, and/or rust on the pins.

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    Ok PH20 When you said release the battery i'm assuming you meant release the start button? I will put the battery on the charger today and see how that works out, But how would I test the thing with the multimeter? If I switch modes on the display to voltage won't that tell me what the battery is at while i'm cranking? I really hope it's not the stator cause I just replaced it last season and as you all know it' a huge pain in the a** something I hope to do never again!

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    Click avatar for tech links/info, donation request K447's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by explude View Post
    Ok PH20 When you said release the battery I'm assuming you meant release the start button?
    Yes, I think he meant to say Start button release.

    I will put the battery on the charger today and see how that works out,
    Be careful. A charged but internally weak battery might get it started, but let you down later on. Weak batteries are a frequent cause of problems. A high quality AGM type battery is your best defense.

    But how would I test the thing with the multimeter?
    Set the meter to measure volts DC, put the probes right on the battery posts. It should show around 12 volts. Then press the start button to crank the engine. Voltage must stay above 10.5 volts, and really should not dip below 11.0 volts if the battery is healthy.

    If I switch modes on the display to voltage won't that tell me what the battery is at while I'm cranking?
    The MFD voltage display is not accurate enough for this test. Use a real multi-meter.
    ...
    Let us know what you find.

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    well i tested the battery sitting and it only had 10.3 volts i tested known good battery and got 12.38 so i know i was using the right settings. While cranking that went down to 9.23 volts so i put on charger and wait for that. in the meantime is there anything else i could check anything else that would cause a spark problem? also what did ph20 mean when he said rust on the pins what pins are we talking about?
    Last edited by explude; 07-30-2008 at 08:06 PM. Reason: oops

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    Click avatar for tech links/info, donation request K447's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by explude View Post
    well i tested the battery sitting and it only had 10.3 volts i tested known good battery and got 12.38 so i know i was using the right settings.

    While cranking that went down to 9.23 volts so i put on charger and wait for that.
    10.3 volts without load indicates an excessively discharged battery. It MAY accept a charge, but will probably not fully recover to being very healthy.

    Given how often people on here report grief caused by a weak battery, you should consider buying a top grade battery, and being SURE the battery is going to keep working for you, and not leave you stranded out on the water, or at the dock.

    If you can, by an AGM (Absorbed Glass Mat) type battery. More expensive, but an excellent choice for a watercraft.

    in the meantime is there anything else i could check anything else that would cause a spark problem?
    If the battery is weak, that has to be corrected before you can go any further. Often enough, all it needs is a healthy battery.

    To be considered healthy, the battery MUST be able to deliver more than 11.0 volts while cranking. Any less means the battery is done - time for a new one.

    also what did ph20 mean when he said rust on the pins what pins are we talking about?
    Inside the electrical box, make sure there is zero moisture, and no rust or corrosion, on both sides of the terminal board.

    Check that all connections are clean and tight inside the box.

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    After reading deadinwater's thread on same problem and K's AGM battery solution I am going to buy a new battery and quit messing with old POS. K can you suggest a good battery for a 1999 SLX?

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    Click avatar for tech links/info, donation request K447's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by explude View Post
    ...can you suggest a good battery for a 1999 SLX?
    AGM battery - I like the East-Penn Deka ETX16L, which is also sold by West Marine under their SeaVolt label.

    I trimmed the 20mm plastic spacer that comes with the battery, and positioned it on top, to give me room for the cable connections, and still install the stock Polaris plastic battery cover.

    There are other brands of AGM battery, but I am not as familiar with them.
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