c.2003 160 DAUNTLESS: Oil Pressure Gauge Not Working

Repair or modification of Boston Whaler boats, their engines, trailers, and gear
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Todd
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c.2003 160 DAUNTLESS: Oil Pressure Gauge Not Working

Postby Todd » Tue May 30, 2017 10:20 am

Hello again. The oil pressure gauge [on a 2003 Boston Whaler 160 DAUNTLESS boat with a Mercury 115 FOURSTROKE engine] does not work. I know the gauge is getting power because it lights up, but the gauge does not register anything at all. [Seeks] suggestions on how to diagnose the cause of the gauge malfunction. Thanks.

BACKSTORY. My first foray into trailer boating with the 2003 160 Dauntless went well. Got [the boat] off the trailer and took a two-hour cruise around a small lake to get familiar with the boat and make sure everything worked. As usual with boating, circumstances and conditions change. My first challenge was the outboard engine wouldn't turn over or even click. I knew the batteries were good and the power tilt worked, so a quick check found the throttle-shift lever was slightly engaged. With that corrected the Mercury 115 FOURSTROKE fired up right away and ran great: smooth, quiet and powerful. The worst thing on the trip was my wife spilled her mimosa when I put her up on plane. The other challenge was the wind kicked up trailing one-footers which made putting her back on the trailer a bit of a challenge but we did it just fine.

MillieTheBoat
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Re: Oil Pressure Gauge Not Working

Postby MillieTheBoat » Tue May 30, 2017 4:01 pm

Hey Todd--check out this thread. I have the same problem with my gauge and it is water pressure. Not oil. I have not had a chance to fix it yet.

viewtopic.php?t=1002

jimh
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Re: c.2003 160 DAUNTLESS: Oil Pressure Gauge Not Working

Postby jimh » Tue May 30, 2017 4:30 pm

The fact that the gauge illumination circuit works really has little bearing on the gauge instrumentation function. The two are almost always completely separated.

TODD has made a very reasonable inference: the gauge that is malfunctioning is probably a water pressure gauge that monitors the engine cooling water system. If TODD's inference is correct, then the gauge shows water pressure, and the cause of no water pressure being shown is likely to be from:

--really poor water pressure in the engine cooling system (but see below);

--an obstruction in the rubber or vinyl hose that connects the input port of the gauge to the output port of the water jacket where the pressure is to be measured; or

--the hose fell off the hose barb fitting at either end, that is, at the engine end or at the back of the gauge.

The probability of the actual water pressure being low is probably not very high, particularly when considering your report that you ran the engine for two hours. If there were no water pressure, then the engine would likely have overheated by the end of two hours running time.

The obstruction in the line could be some debris or just a pinching of the line. Locate the hose, which is usually a black vinyl or polypropylene material of about 0.375-inch OD, and inspect if for being pinched off anywhere on the run from engine to helm gauge panel

The hoses also are known to fall off the hose barbs. If the hose falls off the hose barb on the back of the gauge, you should see water running out from under the helm console. If the hose fell off at the engine, you probably wouldn't see anything unusual. Allowing a lot of cooling water to escape from the cooling system via the pressure take-off port is a problem. The loss of water volume could reduce the total cooling available.

If it turns out TODD's inference was wrong, you really have an oil pressure gauge, please confirm that. Completely different advice will need to be followed in that case.

jimh
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Re: c.2003 160 DAUNTLESS: Oil Pressure Gauge Not Working

Postby jimh » Tue May 30, 2017 4:34 pm

ASIDE: I enjoyed hearing the backstory on the new boat, but I became alarmed when you wrote:

The worst thing on the trip was my wife spilled her mimosa when I put her up on plane.


Putting your wife up on plane must have been difficult.

:-)

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Todd
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Re: c.2003 160 DAUNTLESS: Oil Pressure Gauge Not Working

Postby Todd » Tue May 30, 2017 5:10 pm

Thanks for the information and direction. Gives me some things to check out. I had NO idea it was water pressure and not oil, duh. I checked for the water pump function when I started the engine and it was just fine. I'll go after the water pressure line next.

Shall I say the boat planes better than the wife? No, that's probably another dumb thing to say...you guys are going to get me in trouble and I handle that job just fine all by myself!

Thanks again.

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Todd
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Re: c.2003 160 DAUNTLESS: Oil Pressure Gauge Not Working

Postby Todd » Thu Jun 01, 2017 8:53 am

Hello all. I think I found the problem. See picture attached. Any thoughts on what type of tubing it is and how to replace it? I found the other end of this and it's very brittle and just breaks off in pieces when you touch it. Looks like a major challenge to run it from the engine to the gauge on the console. Thanks.--Todd
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Jefecinco
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Re: c.2003 160 DAUNTLESS: Oil Pressure Gauge Not Working

Postby Jefecinco » Thu Jun 01, 2017 10:12 am

Any marine supply place should have the tubing. Replacing it SHOULD be easy. There is a "rigging tunnel" that runs from the engine well to the console. There should be a pull string tied off in the console and/or in the bilge compartment under the engine well. It is there so cable, etc, can be pulled through the tunnel to or from the console.

Before using the string ensure you have a way to leave it in place for the next use. A way to do that is to attach a replacement string to whatever you are pulling so it can either be left in place or used to pull the old string back into position.

I recommend you do this yourself to learn the method for the next time you need it.

If the string is missing you may need a "fish tape" such as used by electricians to both pull the tubing and install a replacement string. Others can recommend alternative methods.
Butch

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Todd
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Re: c.2003 160 DAUNTLESS: Oil Pressure Gauge Not Working

Postby Todd » Thu Jun 01, 2017 10:40 am

Thanks Butch. I noticed a reddish string under one of the stern seats and wondered what it was for...I'll follow your advice and DIY. I love working on this boat having come from an all electronic Sea Ray with Merc SmartCraft systems that required a computer hook up to diagnose anything. Much appreciated.

Todd

jimh
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Re: c.2003 160 DAUNTLESS: Oil Pressure Gauge Not Working

Postby jimh » Sat Jun 03, 2017 5:16 pm

Based on the image provided, it appears the hose attached to the gauge with some sort of threaded fitting. The fitting appears to attach to the hose with some sort of compression fitting. To replace the old, missing, cracked, brittle hose, just get new, flexible hose of the same diameter and material. The hose is most likely either rubber or some sort of vinyl-plastic. The fitting on the engine end may be in better shape and give more clues to the nature of the hose.

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Todd
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Re: c.2003 160 DAUNTLESS: Oil Pressure Gauge Not Working

Postby Todd » Mon Jun 05, 2017 11:49 am

Thanks for the thoughts on this topic. I've now been to two marinas that are Mercury dealers and also West Marine, no luck finding the plastic hose that will work, one place suggested I start visiting the automotive stores in the area. I may resort to that but maybe one of you folks has a suggestion for a vendor that I can order it from? It's a very small inside diameter tubing, I'll measure one of the pieces to be sure. Thanks.