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Joe, Marine Mechanic
Category: Boat
Satisfied Customers: 7251
Experience:  ASE, electronics, Marine mechanical and electronics, pwc, wiring, all around repair tech,
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Cant get engine hatch to open on a 2004 Sea Ray 320

Customer Question

Cant get engine hatch to open on a 2004 Sea Ray 320 Sundancer. It's not a battery problem, as both engines start easier and cabin lights all work. Manual lifting not possible because it weighs a ton and difficult to get a grip on it anyhow. How do we get it open without someone breaking their back? Richard B
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Boat
Expert:  Joe replied 1 year ago.


Thank you for allowing me to assist you, my name is Joe and I will be happy to assist you with your concern today.

If the problem is not electrical related and the lift has power and ground along with switch passing power correctly, then you will usually need to manually lift the hatch. This is done by usually depending on configuration removing the pin from the strut which will then release the lid from the strut arm and allow the hatch to be manually lifted.

Check that none of your house batteries are dead as that could be the problem, you will then want to use a voltmeter at the switch to be sure it is getting power. If there is lack of power a harness to an external battery can be used via the accessory adapter port to provide power for it.

Thank you!
- Joe

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If you need any further assistance you can reply back at any time for my help.
I'd be happy to answer any other questions you have even if not related.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
But as I said in my question the hatch lid weighs a ton. To manually lift it, even with pin taken out, seems almost impossible.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No I am not satisfied because you didn't answer my question. As I said in the original question I already tried to lift manually after extracting pins and it was not possible to lift it more than a few inches--there was just too much resistance. There must be some other way. You cant run a boat without being able to get inside the engine hatch and it wont open either via the lift motor or manually.
Expert:  Joe replied 1 year ago.

Good afternoon,

I greatly apologize, I lost my father last month due to a drunk driver and have been away from my office handling some things and I did not reply back to you. I will do my best to reply back.

This is correct, the lids are extremely heavy to lift and if the electronics are working up to the units but the actuators not lifting then the only option is manually lifting the hatch, this can sometimes require multiple people to achieve. Some have manual cranks and others a pin you remove and manually lift the hatch like in your vessel.