View Full Version : Battery not holding a Charge

El Jeffe
08-02-2012, 02:38 PM
I have an 2006 X1 that is having battery problems all of a sudden

Put it into the water a few weeks ago (horrible summer in Seattle this year)

Ran for a few hours and put it up. Next time I went to use it the battery was dead...Assumed it was something left on and threw a charge on the battery overnight. Started right up...Ran for a few hours with no issues. Went to fill up the ballast tanks and the low volts alarm starting whaling...Headed back to the dock...Put her up and shut her down. Tried to start her again and nothing.

Pulled the battery (interstate marine battery) and had them check it...No issues with the battery. Put it back on the charger it registered very low.

I've gone ahead and charged it back up but fear I have larger issues.

Any tips on how and what to test? hate to pay a mechanic $175 to diagnose.

I have the MCX 5.7 L in this boat.

Any help would be appreciated.

08-02-2012, 02:39 PM
Do you have any none factory installed stereo equipment?
Do you turn the battery "off" when you are not using the boat?

El Jeffe
08-02-2012, 02:41 PM
Boat is all stock. I do not have a battery switch installed...plan to do this in the fall and possibly add another battery.

El Jeffe
08-02-2012, 02:42 PM
BTW...Radio will not turn on either. Was attributing this to a bad fuse but had not jumped into that yet given the much more urgent situation.

Where are the fuses? I found a small panel below the wheel but no fuses...just little plastic bubbles that appear to be push in reset type thinggys

08-02-2012, 03:17 PM
Start checking for loose bad connectors, then grounds and any marginal wiring. A bad ground will give you a similar symptom as a low battery. Start at one end and clean, tighten and inspect every terminal and wire. It's time consuming and certainly not fun but with electrical in a boat grounding and installation quality is a basic necessity.

08-02-2012, 03:20 PM
Recently had a dead boat where battery seemed to drain instantly or not charge at all. Had battery tested and was fine. Replaced cable terminal ends for pos and neg and totally solved the problem. Also helped an issue of slow cranking when starting when everything was warmed up.

08-02-2012, 03:22 PM
How old is the battery?? They are only good for about 5 years..........

El Jeffe
08-02-2012, 03:23 PM
How old is the battery?? They are only good for about 5 years..........

Battery came with the boat...Test at the auto parts store showed that the battery was tip top.

Anyone know how to test the alternator? Or test the relays?

08-02-2012, 03:37 PM
I wouldnt trust it.........5 years max.

But thats just me.......

08-02-2012, 03:48 PM
Original battery in an 06? Time to replace that bad boy... whether the test says so or not.

Confirm the alternator is charging by putting a voltometer on your battery terminals while the boat is running. You should see 13.3+ volts at those terminals. If you have good voltage, alternator is most likely charging. From there, it's gotta be a bad battery.

El Jeffe
08-02-2012, 03:54 PM
That helps. Will test with the voltmeter.

El Jeffe
08-02-2012, 04:02 PM
Fully charged battery on my workbench reads 12.99

08-02-2012, 04:08 PM
Fully charged battery on my workbench reads 12.99

You need to have the boat running and the alternator feeding it a charge. Bench test doesn't tell you anything about your charging system.

El Jeffe
08-02-2012, 04:10 PM
You need to have the boat running and the alternator feeding it a charge. Bench test doesn't tell you anything about your charging system.

Sorry...that was just a comparison reading...

08-02-2012, 04:12 PM
Fuse for the head unit is in line on the power wire to the radio, almost certain.
As mentioned above, go thru all the connections.
The one p!ss poor quality item on my 06 was the wiring to/around the battery. I found that all the other factory connections, engine bay, ballast breakers, under the helm were/are top notch, but it looked like they had a high school drop out fresh from putting the first boom box in the back of his Firebird wire everything up to the battery.
On a stock boat with 48hrs on it when purchased, it had stereo "noise", itermittent ballast operation, and a general flustercluck of wiring hooked to the battery terminals.
Never even tried to isolate the issues, but when I upgraded the stereo, I cleaned up all the wiring for the OE functions and put them on their own dist block using the +/- to teh orig battery and put in a separate dist block for the stereo amps with their own dedicated +/- feeders and ALL the issues went away.
I ran it like that without a battery maintainer for over a year and batteries never went dead between uses.
That said, if you replace the battery do not get an Optima. Long story, but unless you like buying $150 batteries every 2 years on the dot, get something else!

El Jeffe
08-02-2012, 05:34 PM
With the engine started I'm getting 12.4 when I connect my voltmeter to the black and red terminal fittings

08-02-2012, 05:36 PM
With the engine started I'm getting 12.4 when I connect my voltmeter to the black and red terminal fittings

Alt is not putting out. Try bringing the RPM's up to 1500 and then back down to idle and see what the voltmeter does.

El Jeffe
08-02-2012, 05:42 PM
At both 1500 and then back at idle it still reads 12.36

El Jeffe
08-02-2012, 05:43 PM
Where is the alternator in this thing? Can I test volts at the alternator?

El Jeffe
08-02-2012, 06:01 PM
Is there a master fuse somewhere that I can Check?

08-02-2012, 06:27 PM
There's a master engine breaker, can't recall on the MCX because i haven't needed to look for it. Red button on a box near the ECM, back of engine (towards the front of the boat, over the v drive). If that was blown, the boat wouldn't start, no power to the ecm.
Alternator is the only other thing on the serp belt besides the crankshaft and waterpump.
Ck charging voltage there on the large red wire coming off the alternator (with the neg grounded to the engine block) or at the starter.
The red charging wire from the alt (8 or 10ga?) will run down to the big post on the starter motor. You can test charging voltage there as well. From there it transfers into the 2ga wire that goes from the starter to the battery.

El Jeffe
08-02-2012, 07:05 PM
how difficult will it be to replace this thing on my own? anything I need to look out for?

08-03-2012, 07:41 AM
See if you can find a shop that rebuilds alternators as you'll need this one rebuilt or replaced with a marine alternator. They should also be able to do a load test on the one you currently have. Do not replace with an automotive unit as it is not set up correctly to prevent explosions.

08-03-2012, 09:37 AM
Sounds like you are in for Alternator work. Might need a full rebuild, or could just need a voltage regulator.

08-03-2012, 10:07 AM
Have you checked the second battery?