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Author Topic:   Electrical Connection Protection in Saltwater Environment
mojack posted 07-14-2009 06:51 PM ET (US)   Profile for mojack   Send Email to mojack  
I've read posts on here that lean toward not using di-electric grease (sp) on electrical connections. I can totally see why this may not be needed in freshwater environments but what about boats on saltwater? This winter I plan on cleaning all electrical connections I can on my new-to-me boat since the corrosive nature of the environment looks to have done its damage to the connections. I would like to only do this once if possible and would like to see if anyone else on saltwater has done this and how it worked for them.
Chuck Tribolet posted 07-14-2009 07:34 PM ET (US)     Profile for Chuck Tribolet  Send Email to Chuck Tribolet     
I think there are better solutions.

My whaler sees salt water about 70 days a year. The only
place I use dielectric grease is on the trailer plug. The
rest is Ancor hot-melt-glue-lined heat shrink crimps, and
soldering where I'm doing a butt joint.


mojack posted 07-14-2009 08:05 PM ET (US)     Profile for mojack  Send Email to mojack     
Hey Chuck,
Thanks for the reply. I definately use heat-shrink when needed for splices but what about connections like the bulb sockets and the connections on all of the gauges in the console. I'm on the gulf coast and even the air is salty here :-).
SC Joe posted 07-14-2009 08:55 PM ET (US)     Profile for SC Joe  Send Email to SC Joe     
After finishing your connection,, a protective spray like Boeshield T9, CRC-656 (even though it is not marketed for this purpose, it does well with it), or a coating of Bombardier/Evinrude anti Corrosion spray would be a wise addition.
mojack posted 07-15-2009 02:41 PM ET (US)     Profile for mojack  Send Email to mojack     
Thanks Joe, I'll definately try it.
White Bear posted 07-15-2009 03:28 PM ET (US)     Profile for White Bear  Send Email to White Bear     
Try Corrosion-X in the red can - you will not be disappointed (it is also an excellent product for freeing stuck nuts, bolts, etc.).
mojack posted 07-15-2009 07:32 PM ET (US)     Profile for mojack  Send Email to mojack     
thanks for the tips guys!
Mr T posted 07-16-2009 10:49 AM ET (US)     Profile for Mr T  Send Email to Mr T     
I have been using the fluid film spray on my motor and battery connections after a dab of dielectric at the crimps and it seems to be working very well.

Sneddog posted 07-24-2009 10:25 AM ET (US)     Profile for Sneddog  Send Email to Sneddog     
I have to agree with White Bear. Corrosion-X is the ultimate rust inhibitor / lubricant. We use it on everything. We've thrown away every other lubricant type of product we have. I even recovered my nephew's cell phone after he dropped it in to pool by opening it up real quick and coating every surface.

The RejeX product is also fantastic on the boat and cars.

I'm not just saying this because we are a distributor of the products, it really works!

deepwater posted 08-01-2009 05:05 PM ET (US)     Profile for deepwater  Send Email to deepwater     
I have only used the dielectric and silicone spray or liquid ,,no corrosion no cracked wires or hoses and no failures
HAPPYJIM posted 08-01-2009 06:25 PM ET (US)     Profile for HAPPYJIM  Send Email to HAPPYJIM     
Dielectric grease is good to use especially if in a salt water environment. It is a non-conductive grease. It seals out moisture which causes corrosion which leads to bad contacts and either dim or no lights at all. It is ideally suited for low voltage systems as we have on our boats. When assembling lamps to sockets, apply enough grease to slightly squeeze out of the socket then wipe off the rest to prevent dirt build-up.

I have used dielectric grease on low voltage lighting systems and irrigation systems for almost 30 years in salt air environment. The stuff works well.

mojack posted 08-06-2009 09:48 PM ET (US)     Profile for mojack  Send Email to mojack     
Thanks guys,
I found an electronic connection cleaner by CRC that I was planning on using to clean the switches, fuse panel and light sockets then protect them. A few weeks ago I was on my way back home after dark and my bow and stern lights wouldn't come on, luckily for me I had a set of clamp on lights that I had left over from my 13 that were in the console and had just enough battery left in them to get me home. I say luckily for me because I ended up passing the marine police with someone else pulled over in a no wake zone (for no stern light evidently).

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