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Jason, Marine Mechanic
Category: Boat
Satisfied Customers: 15646
Experience:  Degree in Marine Technology. Gas and diesel marine mechanic.
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I replaced the starter and alternator on my mercruiser, but

Customer Question

I replaced the starter and alternator on my mercruiser, but it still won't start. When I removed the starter there was a bundled up rubber band lodged in the fly wheel well. I assume that this was maybe rigged to connect the starter to the fly wheel... what other possibilities would be keeping the engine from turning over?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Boat
Expert:  Jason replied 1 year ago.

Good morning, my name is ***** ***** am I speaking with?

There shouldn't be any kind of rubber band up in there. Can you take a picture of it so I can see that with my own eyes.

Next, what is going on when you turn the key, is the starter engaging but not turning the engine over, or not engaging at all?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
We determined that had nothing to do with it.I think it has to do with lack of spark or something wrong with the fuel system.Brand new battery, starter, and alternator. What steps would you take to troubleshoot?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Starter is engaging, but not turning over.
Expert:  Jason replied 1 year ago.

What is the story on this engine, when did it last start and run?

How old is the fuel?

Have you checked for spark with a timing light, or see if it will hit on some starting fluid?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
It ran about a month ago, but since then it has taken on some water that had affected the electrical components.The fuel isn't old, and I don't think the water was high enough to get into the fuel system.I have not checked the spark or starting fluid.I purchased this boat as kind of a 'starter boat' so that I can learn the ins and outs of boats. I have a repair manual and some tools, but I am definitely a novice.Do you have instructions for checking the spark and starting fluid?
Expert:  Jason replied 1 year ago.

Have you ever used a timing light or starting fluid before?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I have not.
Expert:  Jason replied 1 year ago.

A timing light has an inductive end that you hook up to a plug wire. Have a helper crank the engine over. If it flashes there is spark, if it doesn't flash there is no spark. Starting fluid you simply spray down the throttle body while cranking the engine over. The engine needs 3 things to run, compression spark and fuel. Starting fluid is a fuel. So if it runs on starting fluid but nothing else there is a fueling issue that needs deeper investigation. But if it doesn't hit on starting fluid, then there is either no spark or no compression. Does that make sense?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Check all of the plug wires?
Expert:  Jason replied 1 year ago.

Just 1 is fine.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
There was a spark with the plug wire light test.I am not sure if I am applying the starter fluid to the right part of the throttle body. I sprayed a bit in the opening showed in the video that is attached. It sparked, but didn't start.Can you give more detailed instructions on where and when to apply the starter fluid as well as how much is needed.Thanks

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