From minor sparks here and there to a short fuse that could blow unexpectedly, wiring problems could arise in any electrical system, and your boat is no exception. Both new and experienced boaters can get confused when it comes to wiring their boat’s electrical system. If you are inexperienced, you should contact a professional for your marine electrical wiring concerns. But we have a few tips to ensure your boat is wired correctly.
Proper Wiring Techniques
Water can corrode wiring, short out improperly insulated or exposed system components, and wreak havoc on any electrical system. If your boat is going out on saltwater, you must factor in the constant attack of salinity. While there’s no way to fight off the sea completely, you can limit the damage with proper wiring technique. Ensure your marine electrician only strips enough insulation from a wire to give enough space to crimp a connection. Weatherproofing is also essential and should be done with the worst outcome in mind.
Use the Appropriate Wires
Only use marine shore power cords capable of handling your boat’s power load, labeled “UL-Marine.” The amperage and voltage will depend on your boat’s size. Use the set appropriate for your boat. If you use a 30-amp set for a 50-amp system, the less powerful set will fail over time from overheating.
Be sure to use marine service plugs and connectors, and don’t use regular extension cords. Marine shore power cords are designed to withstand the conditions of water-based environments. Still, you should check the cord regularly to ensure it is free of knots and frayed areas. Don’t tape damaged areas; replace damaged or deteriorated extension cords immediately.
Label Your Wires
It is essential to color code your wires to make them less messy. The standard colors are red for positive and black for negative. This approach may vary depending on the type of boat. Getting a schematic diagram of your boat’s outline could save a lot of time and effort for anyone working on it. Also, record all the modifications and repairs done on the ship previously to reduce the chance of error and make future maintenance easier.
Proper Insulation and Connection
Correctly wiring your boat requires the electrical system to be appropriately connected and insulated. Ensure the electric connections are secure, especially in the engine spaces. They should be oil-resistant and adequately crimped. Insulation resistance is also a vital factor in marine electrical systems. Using the correct insulation technique minimizes the chances of electric shock, short circuit, fire, and other accidents on your boat.
Marine Electric Systems, LLC is a Leader In the Maritime Industry
We here at Marine Electric Systems have over 30 years of industry experience. You can trust our team for reliable service and expert craftsmanship in the Maryland, Baltimore, Annapolis, and Baltimore city areas! We’re highly certified and adhere to all ABYC and NMEA regulations. We specialize in top-notch electrical solutions for recreational, commercial, and government boating clients. Anything from electrical refits, to navigation systems, or boating maintenance. To stay up to date on our services, follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram, and YouTube. You can also contact us at 410-263-0807.