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Author Topic:   1994 Johnson 140-HP: Intermittent Alarm
Jeff52 posted 07-16-2007 02:05 PM ET (US)   Profile for Jeff52   Send Email to Jeff52  
I just purchased a 1994 Four Winns Horizon with a 1994 140-HP Johnson outboard. There is an alarm that goes off sometimes when I turn the key to start. If you turn it off and on several times sometimes it will go away. While driving it this weekend we stopped for lunch and when we left the dock the alarm was sounding again. After driving for say 10 minutes it stopped. Then started again shortly after and stopped again. It did it cold at the dock when I test drove it as well but turning the key on and off a few times it cleared.

I topped up the oil tank, so that is not the problem and there is water coming from the tele tale. I will look for the buzzer tonight and check the terminals for continuity with my multimeter, if I can find the buzzer.

Any tips will help.

jimh posted 07-16-2007 07:52 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Does your OMC outboard motor have the SystemCheck feature? The buzzer is often hidden under the top mounted shift and throttle control enclosure. There are usually four sources for an alarm: temperature sensor, OMS mixing pump sensor, fuel line vacuum sensor, and oil tank level sensor. Each has a difference cadence to the alarm. Please describe the alarm buzzer cadence when sounding.
Jeff52 posted 07-19-2007 09:37 AM ET (US)     Profile for Jeff52  Send Email to Jeff52     
I will have to check the manual. I found a buzzer so next time it goes off I will disconnect it to make sure it is the right one. When it goes off it is a constant sound which I believe might be overheat. However it is not overheating it is cold. I start holidays today so I will be boating alot in the next two weeks. I will bring my multimeter so I can check it out. I disconnected and reconnected the wires on the buzzer and the wires in the motor looking for corrosion or bad connection. Everything looked good there. I will start tonight by reading my manuals. "When all else fails read the instructions."
Thanks for your post.
Plotman posted 07-19-2007 10:19 AM ET (US)     Profile for Plotman  Send Email to Plotman     
You are correct that the constant tone on an OMC is an overheat alarm. I just went through this where I was getting a low oil alarm on an OMC where the VRO is disconnected and I am running premix. Nothing a good whack of the control box won't fix (seriously, if I hit it, the alarm stops).

Anyway, your next step is to check the temperature sensor and its circuit to make sure it works. There are test procedures in the manual, but the short version is to test the circuit, you disconnect the sensor wire from the harness at the bullet connector and then connect the harness connector to a clean ground on the engine. If the alarm sounds with the key on, the circuit is working properly.

The next step is checking the temp sensor, which involves pulling it out of the engine, putting it in a hot oil bath and seeing if it closes the switch at the appropriate temperature.

Total time to check is maybe 20 minutes, but don't let your wife catch you heating old motor oil on the stove in one of her saucepans. Most expensive part of the repair was the new saucepan to replace the one that now lives in the garage. If you use corn oil, she won't get as mad.


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