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  Lowrance 337: GPS Module Failure

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Author Topic:   Lowrance 337: GPS Module Failure
David1877 posted 05-17-2008 02:55 PM ET (US)   Profile for David1877   Send Email to David1877  
I own a Lowrance 337c. I fired up for the first time this year. An alarm came up which reads "Alarm GPS Module not responding." I have the external (puck-style) antenna. It is not obstructed. I powered the unit ON and OFF a few times--No success. I opened the external antenna cover, and it has water in it, that might have been in there all winter. I don't know. There is no visible damage to anything. The connections appear to be good. Any suggestions on a fix?
seabob4 posted 05-17-2008 03:25 PM ET (US)     Profile for seabob4  Send Email to seabob4     
That water in the beacon is not a good sign. It probably froze over the winter, and that may have done some damage that's not readily visable, if at all. See if you can "borrow" a NMEA 2000 GPS beacon from a local electronics supplier, temporarily wire it in, and see what happens.
seabob4 posted 05-17-2008 03:31 PM ET (US)     Profile for seabob4  Send Email to seabob4     
Dave,
If need be, I can get you a new Lowrance LGC-2000 antenna for $125, including shipping. But see if the antenna is the problem first.
jimh posted 05-17-2008 04:15 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Is the external puck-style "antenna" just an antenna? Or is it the actual GPS receiver built into that external enclosure? Also, I am surprised that you could disassemble it. The ones that I have seen are usually sealed up and there is nothing to disassemble. They're usually encapsulated in a block of plastic or epoxy.

Electronics and water do not mix. If your device has been sitting in water for six months, there is no surprise it does work. The surprise is how the water got inside the device. If it was intended for external mounting on a boat, it should have been waterproof. I'd check with the manufacturer to see what coverage they might offer on this. An external antenna should not be susceptible to water ingress, unless it has been damaged physically.

David1877 posted 05-17-2008 07:13 PM ET (US)     Profile for David1877  Send Email to David1877     
Thanks all. The [GPS module] screws off the mounting plate. I think the mounting plate was not sealed well during install at Twin Cities Marine. I will apply a line of sealant to keep water out. After I posted earlier, I planned to reset my unit as advised on the Lowrance website. I reconnected the unit and data popped up. Not sure what I did differently, maybe there was a small amount of corrosion on one of the cables. Anyway, it now works. Hope it continues to work. Will keep you posted. I hooked up the radio to the Lowarnce to share data and it is not working, but that is the subject of another posting.

David

jimh posted 05-17-2008 07:57 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Over months of winter storage some condensation probably developed in a connector associated with the GPS receiver. Try using a water displacement spray (like WD-40) to restore connections that look like they have had moisture in them.
David1877 posted 05-17-2008 09:45 PM ET (US)     Profile for David1877  Send Email to David1877     
Thanks Jim. I emailed you about the GPS/Radio connection. Need some help trouble shooting.
David1877 posted 05-20-2008 12:26 AM ET (US)     Profile for David1877  Send Email to David1877     
Thank you for the posts.

Based on the working/not working behavior, I suspect this problem is related to a poor connection with the GPS antennae.

I sprayed a little WD-40 in the connection as suggested.

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