Voltage issue - 2000 270 fiesta vee

Hi all, I recently purchased a 2000 270 fiesta vee.  I am having an issue with voltage at the helm.  Boat starts and runs just fine.  Alternator is putting out 14.some volts to the isolator and then from there each battery is reading 13.some while running.  But at the helm with the key switch off I get battery voltage taking the reading at the power port.  When I turn the key on I am reading 1 or more volts less than the battery voltage and this is after the fuel pump cuts off.  When I start the engine I am reading two volts or more below the battery voltage.  I cannot figure out where to look to resolve this.  All is working fine, but for example, my trim tabs move very slow because they are only getting 10 or 11 volts while the boat is running.  I have tried unplugging some of the lines on the fuses to see if maybe I could isolate what is causing the draw, but nothing helped.  Any ideas on how to troubleshoot this would be greatly appreciated.  Thanks
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Comments

  • Handymans342Handymans342 Member Posts: 8,149 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Battery Switch corroded, check grounds too
  • aero3113aero3113 Long Island, NYMember Posts: 3,732 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Definitely check all of your grounds. 
    2008 330EC
  • WillhoundWillhound Lake Simcoe, Ontario, CanadaMember Posts: 2,406 ✭✭✭✭
    First of all @gherkin, Welcome! I've had a similar experience with my 2000 270.
    First of all, I find it sort of normal to drop almost a half to sometimes a full volt at the helm power port. Running at idle I sometimes dip down into the high 11's, 11.9 - 12.1, but yours sounds more than that. The obvious places to check are all the battery cables and connections, as well as the grounds. The not so obvious one's are the connections at the battery switch (have to remove the switch housing to get to connections at the back) as well as the connections and grounds at the helm. If you unscrew the helm panel and take a look behind you'll be amazed at the mess of wires in there. I don't know if it's factory, but I also have a 12 volt receptacle on the back side of the locker/closet facing the v-berth. If you have one, check that too and if different than at the helm it can be another indicator of a bad connection somewhere.
    "Knot Quite Shore" - 2000 FV270
  • gherkingherkin Member Posts: 12
    All,   I have checked both grounds and they go somewhere behind the engine, they seem to be tight and when I check ground from the engine to the batteries I get proper battery voltage.  I took the switch compartment out and everything in there is clean and tight and voltage checked out.  I then took out the compartment where the cooler goes expecting to hopefully find some sort of junction block for the power going to the helm, but nothing but a ton of wires.  I tested the power ports in the cabin and they are working fine, no drop in voltage with key on. So the issue just appears to be the helm.  There has to be somewhere that there is a junction or something that feeds the power to the helm.  If I could find this I think I would probably find the issue.  Any other ideas?
  • aero3113aero3113 Long Island, NYMember Posts: 3,732 ✭✭✭✭✭
    There’s a main plug for each dash panel that supplies power to the gauges/switches. Also other connectors that you can check if you remove the dash panels.
    2008 330EC
  • aero3113aero3113 Long Island, NYMember Posts: 3,732 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Could be your ignition switch also.
    2008 330EC
  • PickleRickPickleRick Member Posts: 1,306 ✭✭✭
    edited March 24
    Can you verify this,  is the voltage reading 12.5 or less at idle then when you rev the engine it reaches 13.5 or more?

    If you're getting voltage at high rpms but not low idle rpms chances are your alternator is on it's way out so long as nothing funny is going on with the isolator.

    So long as both your batteries are healthy and charged you should see 13 volts or more at idle while running.  13.5 to 14.5 is the sweet spot you want to reach

    Also trim tabs move pretty slow, a little adjustment can go a long way so they are not designed to be fast but i bet 10 volts does push the pump slow compared to 14 volts.









  • gherkingherkin Member Posts: 12
    Alternator is working fine at idle.  It’s putting out 14 plus to the isolator and the batteries are getting 13 plus. Batteries are brand new.   I’m gonna try to do some more work on it today.  I’m gonna try to do some testing to see if it is ground related. Will keep you posted. 
  • PickleRickPickleRick Member Posts: 1,306 ✭✭✭
    So your issue is just the voltage display reading low at the helm when the key is turned on?  

    Is the voltage gauge analog or digital 
  • WillhoundWillhound Lake Simcoe, Ontario, CanadaMember Posts: 2,406 ✭✭✭✭
    Keep in mind that it is somewhat normal to drop almost a full volt sometimes just because of length of wire, resistance at connections etc. Just my opinion but I think 12.8 to 13.4 is about perfect normal at the helm. My electric/hydraulic trim tabs will drop voltage to the low 11's sometimes when actuated. My blower even more.
    "Knot Quite Shore" - 2000 FV270
  • Aqua_AuraAqua_Aura Lower Columbia River, WashingtonMember Posts: 181 ✭✭
    edited March 24
    Willhound said:
    Keep in mind that it is somewhat normal to drop almost a full volt sometimes just because of length of wire, resistance at connections etc. Just my opinion but I think 12.8 to 13.4 is about perfect normal at the helm. My electric/hydraulic trim tabs will drop voltage to the low 11's sometimes when actuated. My blower even more.
    I would agree with this as well. I think at the helm mine reads about 13 (analog gauge)

    If anything it does seem like possibly bad connection or not so good connection some where. I was re reading about your slow moving trim tabs. 
  • gherkingherkin Member Posts: 12
    It’s not the gauge. I’ve checked and it is reading properly.  After I went behind the engine and jiggled all the ground connections the issue seems to have gotten worse.  Now even with the key off we are dropping almost two volts.  So I am now thinking that the issue is ground related.  I have to get back at it and run a temporary ground wire to the helm to do some testing and see if that helps.  If it does then I will have to tear into that stupid ground connection that they had to put behind the engine where it’s difficult to get to.  Will keep you all posted. 
  • aero3113aero3113 Long Island, NYMember Posts: 3,732 ✭✭✭✭✭
    The ground behind the engine isn’t that bad to get to. You just need patience. I just cleaned and protected the ground wires on both of my engines. Also, does your 270 have a ground block in the engine compartment and/or at the helm? Remove and clean each wire if you do.





    2008 330EC
  • gherkingherkin Member Posts: 12
    So it's not a ground issue.  I ran a wire directly from the battery and monitored the voltages at the helm.  this is so weird.  I went out this morning and turned the key on and boom, voltages were perfect, only the usual slight drop from battery to helm.  but then after messing around a bit I noticed that the voltages are fluctuating and then all of a sudden back down to like 9 volts.  Now sometimes when I turn the key off I have proper batter voltage there and sometimes I don't.  it is just jumping all over the place now, but almost always staying too low to run things properly.  I literally don't know where to go from here as far as how to troubleshoot this as I don't have any type of diagram that tells me where all the various power lines come into the helm.  Any ideas?
  • WillhoundWillhound Lake Simcoe, Ontario, CanadaMember Posts: 2,406 ✭✭✭✭
    Ignition switch?
    "Knot Quite Shore" - 2000 FV270
  • aero3113aero3113 Long Island, NYMember Posts: 3,732 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Willhound said:
    Ignition switch?
    Yea, I said that earlier. Pull the dash and look at the wires on the ignition switch. You might have a loose wire or corroded wire. It’s possible that the switch is just failing.
    2008 330EC
  • gherkingherkin Member Posts: 12
    Sorry I didn't respond to that earlier, but I had checked the ignition switch long ago.  I have already pulled all the dash panels looking for anything that would jump out at me.   The issue is somewhere prior to the ignition switch as the power coming into that is unstable.  As you showed in your pictures aero I would expect to find some terminal blocks for both ground and power somewhere on this boat, but I am not seeing that.  I can't even find where the power comes from that goes to the helm.  I am going to go back out and start to try to look a bit harder for where the power originates. 
  • WillhoundWillhound Lake Simcoe, Ontario, CanadaMember Posts: 2,406 ✭✭✭✭
    Power goes right from the battery switch to the helm. 
    "Knot Quite Shore" - 2000 FV270
  • WillhoundWillhound Lake Simcoe, Ontario, CanadaMember Posts: 2,406 ✭✭✭✭
    I thought I saw a 270 wiring diagram in the archives here, but can't seem to find it.
    There was one from @Cableguy Greg for a 280 that should be close, and the link below is for a FV250 which looks just like the layout on my 270.
    https://www.dropbox.com/sh/5hhpd27ogrbh19g/AADKiYf7KGmYEUeXyATWqtWga/Rinker%20FV250%202006%20wiring%20diagram.pdf?dl=0
    "Knot Quite Shore" - 2000 FV270
  • Cableguy GregCableguy Greg Pittsburgh, PAMember Posts: 4,118 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Here is the 280EC wiring diagram. It is close. The 270 doesn't have as many circuits. 

    https://rinkerboats.vanillacommunities.com/discussion/3038/280-ec-wiring-diagram
    2008 280 Express Cruiser, 6.2MPI, B3, Pittsburgh, PA "Blue Ayes"
    Go Steelers!!!
  • gherkingherkin Member Posts: 12
    Thanks for all the links everyone, I will check them out in a bit.  I have done some more poking around.  I removed each line from the fuses and even disconnected the radio.  Did not fix it.  The only fix is to remove the line from the switch that turns the fuel pump on.  I then tried unplugging the fuel pump and that didn't help either.  I did manage to find the main power line that seems to feed all the fuses.  So I am thinking two things to check next.  The fuel pump relay, which I believe are on top of the engine correct?  Gonna try to find that and disconnect it and see what happens.  If that doesn't do anything just gonna run a temporary line directly from a battery and switch out the one that I found that seems to power everything and see what happens.  If one of those two doesn't do it then I am completely stumped.  If anyone has any other ideas, please let me know.  Thank you all so much for your responses, I really appreciate it! 
  • gherkingherkin Member Posts: 12
    Another very strange thing that I noticed.  when I turn the key on it draws things down to 10 or 11 volts, but it bounces around.  Then I turn the key off and sometimes it bounces back to 13.3, but sometimes it doesn't and it will hang around 12 something, until I disconnect the incoming power line and then plug it back in and everything goes back up to 13.3 again.  Just so weird,  I can't explain any of this, but wanted to throw it out there just to keep you all updated.  Thanks.
  • WillhoundWillhound Lake Simcoe, Ontario, CanadaMember Posts: 2,406 ✭✭✭✭
    An ignition switch can have poor internal connection even if the outside connection is good. They are less than 20 bucks and good to have a spare on the boat anyway. Or borrow one or whatever and see. You'd be amazed how many of us chased gremlins only to find it was the switch.
    "Knot Quite Shore" - 2000 FV270
  • rasburyrasbury Sanford, FLMember Posts: 6,131 ✭✭✭✭✭
    interesting....
  • gherkingherkin Member Posts: 12
    I’ll go ahead and order a switch. I agree it’s cheap and good to have around.  But I have already disconnected the power and the other wire that seems to be the issue and jumped them together and the problem still occurs. So I’m pretty certain that the switch isn’t it.   Marina flooded today so I’ll post back with results when I am able to get back.  Thanks everyone. 
  • Aqua_AuraAqua_Aura Lower Columbia River, WashingtonMember Posts: 181 ✭✭
    Flooded, where are you? Better to have a flooded marina than a dry one 🤔
  • gherkingherkin Member Posts: 12
    I’ve reviewed the wiring diagrams and there are two things that I am looking for that I just cannot find on my boat. The helm distribution bus and the ground block.  Likely my problems are at one of these two. But I have no idea where they are and I literally have taken every panel off.  Anybody have any idea where these are located on a 270?  I would think these are easily accessible but maybe I’m just not looking in the right spot.   If nobody has any ideas I will keep searching when I get back to the boat.  Thanks. 
  • gherkingherkin Member Posts: 12
    I’m on the Tennessee river. Wheeler lake.  The area we are in is narrow kind of a bottleneck and floods quite often this time of year.  We are usually sitting in 7 feet of water and it’s supposed to get up around 20.  So parking lots and roads in are all underwater only way to get to your boat is with another boat. LOL. 
  • Handymans342Handymans342 Member Posts: 8,149 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Distribution bar on my boat was in the main helm. Have to pull out the main dash. 
  • rasburyrasbury Sanford, FLMember Posts: 6,131 ✭✭✭✭✭
    On my 06 270 I have what I assume is the ground bar on the transom on the starboard side...by the trim pump. Not aware of any other distribution panels and assume the perko switch would be that...crap load of wires are on that...but all will attest I have 0 electrical skills?
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