Yamaha Outboard Won’t Start (Troubleshooting Guide)

Yamaha Outboard Won't Start

This article is about the Yamaha won’t start for fuel injection models. For other uses, see outboard won’t start (carburetor)

At some point in time that Yamaha motor mounted on the stern of your boat is not going to turn on and begin to work. An outboard engine that will not start is defined as; engine cranks but won’t start, engine won’t crank over at all, starting the engine is difficult.

Maybe the outboard cranks but won’t start or maybe it won’t crank over at all. Whatever the case, if your engine fails to fire up and start operating, you should refer to the troubleshooting guide listed below.

This troubleshooting advice will help you trace and correct faults within the engine’s electronic or mechanical system. That includes fuel and starting system, too. The information herein was sourced directly from the factory service manual.

It is highly recommended you download the factory repair manual for your exact model and year Yamaha outboard. An outboard that won’t start might have many possible causes and solutions. This information is extensive but it might not include every detail that is specific to your model or year. 


Starting System

The starting system on your Yamaha outboard includes the starter motor, battery, fuel pressure sensor, throttle position sensor, ignition system, starter relay, wiring harness, switches and more. These parts work together to convert electrical energy from battery into mechanical energy to rotate the crankshaft and start the Yamaha outboard engine. Use the directions below when troubleshooting the starting system.

Check Starter Motor, Fuel Pressure Sensor, Throttle Position Sensor, Ignition System

Ignition System

The ignition system on your Yamaha outboard engine is a system in which fuel-air mixture is ignited so as to fire up the internal combustion engine and keep it running. Parts of the ignition system include spark plug(s), coil resistance and ignition coil leads, spark plug caps, correct ECM output peak voltage and more. Use this guide to trace and correct faults within the engine’s ignition system.

Check spark plugs, electric oil pump, crank position sensor, ECM output peak, Spark cap resistance

Fuel System

Your Yamaha outboard’s fuel system is an electronically-controlled system that injects a precise amount of atomized fuel into the engine’s cylinders. Main components within the fuel system include the fuel pump, fuel filter, check valves, fuel hoses, fuel pump diaphragm, injectors and more. Use these step-by-step troubleshooting procedures when checking the fuel system for a no-start issue.

Electric Fuel Pump Relay, Fuse Holder, Fuel Filter Clogged Valves, Injector Resistance

Remember to check the basics. To start and run, a Yamaha outboard needs a properly timed ignition and correct air/fuel ratio. Also, be sure to check if the emergency shutoff switch cap is in place. If it still won’t crank, check the neutral switch. If you hear a clicking sound when the starter motor attempts to engage the flywheel, inspect the starter solenoid.

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4 thoughts on “Yamaha Outboard Won’t Start (Troubleshooting Guide)

  • Does anybody knows the ignition/fuel system on the newer Yamaha 2015 and up on how it works? Reason is I got intermitten or no spark at all.
    Parts change with brand new oem parts
    Main fuse relay
    Pulsar coil
    Spark plugs
    Water separation filter
    Low side fuel pump filter
    Fuel tank
    Good pressure on the fuel injector rail
    Vst tank good and clean
    Hook up to a separate key ignition/good

  • Marty bishop


  • Mark Holland

    Bought new from dealership. And I do not have a service manual. Or even a owners manual. How do you adjust RPM’s on the tiller handle ? Was idling a little ruff and died after 3/4 throttle on water hose. 2019 6FMK S 1030212. FS25SWHC

  • I just put a 2004 50 hp 4 stroke motor on my boat that I got from my dad. It has Yamaha controller, and I hooked up the power cord to the motor and also to the battery. When I turn the key nothing happens. The tilt and trim work with the button on the side of the motor but not on the throttle handle!!


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