Things to check when you have ignition issues

Whether you’re checking the ignition on your automobile engine or on your marine engine, you will inevitably face issues with the ignition. Problems with an ignition system in your engine can have many underlying causes, so it’s important that you first understand the fundamentals and components of the ignition system before you attempt to troubleshoot the problem. Below you’ll see an outline of the basic fundamental makeup of a marine ignition system.


The first thing that one should inspect is the boat battery and ensure that you have a dedicated marine battery with the accurate cranking capacity for the outboard. Otherwise, an incorrect cranking voltage amount, may cause a hindrance of the outboard’s starter motor, resulting in the flywheel not cranking fast enough to trigger the ignition system.

Ignition Switch

To crank your engine after you activate it, you would need to use the switch. Every electric start outboard has an ignition switch and it will open and shut the starter solenoid. Along with opening and shutting the starter solenoid, it is important to turn the engine off by shorting the CDI unit (power pack or switchbox) to the ground. A faulty ignition switch could be the root of all other issues in the ignition system and is more often than not overlooked.

Spark Plug

The last component to check but also among the most important is the spark plug. It is the  spark plug’s role to receive voltage from the  ignition coil and create a small electrical spark within the engines combustion chamber. This will cause your engine's fuel to ignite and create a small little burst to spin the crankshaft and the flywheel where the ignition process begins over and over again. Spark plugs can foul up with oil and carbon on two stroke engines resulting in poor spark. They are by far the easiest part to check first.

In order to diagnose ignition problems properly, it is important to have all the right tools and parts. If you’re in need of such parts, Aviation Purchasing Platform is the best place to acquire them. We have various items including but not limited to solenoids, spark plugs, ignition coils, and a must have for accurate diagnosing, a digital multimeter with a Direct Voltage Adaptor (DVA).

At Aviation Purchasing Platform, owned and operated by ASAP Semiconductor, we can help you find all the unique parts for the aerospace, civil aviation, and defense industries. We’re always available and ready to help you find all the parts and equipment you need, 24/7-365. For a quick and competitive quote, email us at or call us at +1-714-705-4780.


March 20, 2023

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