4 Practices For Solving Boat Tachometer Not Working Issue

boat tachometer not working
boat tachometer not working

The tachometer on a boat is an instrument that measures the rotational speed of a disk or shaft.

This allows people to check how fast they are going as well as keep a check on the throttle.

While older vehicles used an analog tachometer, you will notice that these are now displayed using an LCD.

Dealing with a bad tachometer can be quite annoying when you can’t narrow down on the actual issue.

There are many factors that play into issues with your indicators and gauges. Most often than not, you will find that the issue is somehow linked to bad wiring.

So, you should always start the inspection with a voltage measuring unit to fix the issue better.

Boat Tachometer Not Working Problems

Lately, there have been many reports regarding the boat tachometer not working. This can be frustrating as people are unable to keep their motors in check.

If you’re in a similar situation and the boat tachometer is not working, then here are a few methods that can help you maneuver this problem.

Make sure that you go through the steps carefully as there are several reasons why an issue like this can appear.

  1. Fix Ground

If your tachometer is not working properly, then there is an eighty percent chance that you’re stuck in grounding issues.

It can be quite challenging to narrow down the ground problems, and your best bet is running an additional ground wire.


Just connect the wire to the tachometer terminal and ground it through the battery terminal or use the floor to isolate the issue.

If you’re lucky, then everything will be fixed at this stage, and you won’t have to bother with more troubleshooting methods.

So, start the troubleshooting process by running an additional ground wire from your tachometer, and hopefully, everything will be fixed.

  1. Check Power Source

If the problem is not fixed by running an additional ground wire to the battery, then you will need to check the power output.

power button

Try using a multimeter across the terminals on the tachometer. Similarly, you should also verify the power output from the battery. This will help you isolate the problem with bad wiring.

If the reading on the multimeter doesn’t match the power requirements of the tachometer, then you will need to replace the wiring or battery.

So, if the output from the battery terminal is optimal and you are noticing power deficiency on the tachometer terminal, then the issue is linked to the wiring.

All you have to do is replace the wires connecting the tachometer with the battery terminals.

People should note that the best way to identify faulty cables is by observing their condition.

If you notice any cracks or breaks on the wire, then it means that it is damaged. This mostly happens due to improper routing which is why this should be avoided at all costs.


While you can easily replace the cables on your own, the process can be dangerous as well. This is why some users might feel hesitant to try this out on their own.

In this case, it is better that you contact a specialist instead.

People who want to replace the wires on their own should consult the manual provided along the vehicle.

This should help them in ensuring that they connect all the cables properly. Hopefully, the tachometer will start working perfectly at this stage.

  1. Battery Might Be Faulty

As mentioned above, the battery on your boat is another important part that should be kept in check.

faulty battery

This is responsible for providing the entire vehicle with the power and ensuring that everything keeps working.

The most common problem that you can run into with a battery is that it is not getting charged.

This simply results in the battery not providing your vehicle with enough current further resulting in devices like the tachometer not working.

Now that you understand this, the first thing that should be checked is what type of battery you are using.

If this is a dry battery, then you can skip this step but if you have a standard battery then it requires water. This should be kept filled up so that your battery can charge easily.

If you notice that the water inside the battery was low, then simply filling it up should fix your problem.

On the other hand, if the water was filled up but the battery is still not working then it might be too old. You should note that batteries tend to lose their ability to hold a charge.

This takes several years but the life of a battery can drastically decrease depending on how frequently you use it.

Keeping this in mind if you notice that your battery is getting old then it is best that you get it replaced with a new one.

There are several things that should be kept in mind when purchasing a new battery.

Make sure that you get it from a reliable brand and ensure that the voltage ratings are the same.

Other than this, the battery should be kept maintained to prolong its life.

Talking about this, some people report that their battery was new, but it still started running into issues.


In cases like these, the main culprit is usually a lack of maintenance. If you had not been keeping the terminals on your battery clean that it might cause problems.

The battery usually gathers dust over time which can prevent current from passing through the terminals.

You can remove this to fix the issue, but some people report that there is corrosion forming. This can also be scrubbed off if you clean the battery frequently.

However, if the corrosion is old then you will have to use a stronger solution to remove it.

There are tons of cleaners that can be poured to soften the corrosion and you can then scrub it off.

Once done, let your battery charge for some time and the tachometer should now function.

  1. Replace The Tachometer


Sometimes even when there are no issues with the wiring of your unit, it is quite common to run into issues with a defective tachometer.

A common issue with a defective tachometer is the needle getting stuck in one position.

So, if you’re sure that there is no problem with the wiring on your boat, then you need to purchase a new tachometer.

Luckily, the replacement unit is not that expensive, and you will have to spend a minimal budget on buying this component.

Moreover, the installation won’t take more than a few minutes. So, just go to your nearest dealer and purchase a new tachometer for your boat.


If you don’t know how to install the tachometer, then you can always seek help from other anglers in your region.

Involving experts can help you get around the hassle quickly, and you won’t have to spend as much time on the replacement procedure.

You can also contact the support team for your vehicle as they might help you in getting a replacement.

If your vehicle was still under warranty, then you might be able to get a free tachometer. This is why make sure that you go through the warranty guidelines once.

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