Does it matter how far away my battery is from my inverter? S.G., via e-mail
Your inverter should be as close to the battery as possible. Besides the voltage drop inherent in long runs of wire, the heavy wires needed to carry high current on the 12- or 24-volt side of the inverter are more expensive, less flexible, and harder to install.
The oil pressure on my stern-drive engine is higher than usual. Yet during a recent oil change, I did nothing different than before. What might be wrong? M.O., via e-mail
Using the wrong viscosity oil can cause this. If this is the case, you’ll have to drain it, change the filter, and refill with the right oil. If that doesn’t fix the problem, check your pressure-relief valve, as it may have gotten stuck or clogged. Cleaning and resetting the valve should solve your problem.
What is the recommended procedure for keeping wire runs free from flexing and vibrations? A.H., via e-mail
The American Boat & Yacht Council (ABYC) recommends that they be continuously supported all along the run—or at the very least every 18 inches—by proper clamps, straps, and supportive devices. In addition, nonmetallic clamps and straps should not be used in areas where any kind of support failure will result in the conductor becoming a hazard. Such conditions can occur over engines, shafts, or passageways.
Where metal clamps are used, they should be lined with moisture- and petroleum-resistant material. They should also have smooth, rounded edges.
For more detailed information on this and other related subjects, visit the ABYC Web site at abycinc.org.
What is the white to light-brown deposit I noticed on the plugs of my tender’s outboard during a recent tuneup? P.F., via e-mail
This deposit is usually the result of using a fuel or oil additive while running your outboard motor. Check with your engine manual for the proper additives, if you don’t have one, contact the manufacturer for its recommendations.
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