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Old 18-05-2009, 20:34   #1
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Yanmar 4JHTE Won't Shut Down

I'm about to launch my new to me, Baba 40. I put new batteries on the boat last week and wired them in with the help of a local friend familiar with electrical systems. In checking the power at the engine control panel, I turned the key to be sure that I had power there. I accidentally turned it too far. The engine immediately fired up. No cranking at all, it fired immediately. I turned the key off and pushed the kill button and nothing happened, the engine kept running. We had to starve it of fuel to shut it down. We couldn't find any other means to shut the engine down.

Has anyone dealt with this situation? Where do I look to resolve this issue? I checked the back of the panel to be sure all the wires were in place. I was concerned that while working in the Lazerette that I may have nocked something off but everything looked fine there. It is well protected.

Your help would be appreciated. I launch on Thursday and would like to get this figured out before it goes in.


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Old 18-05-2009, 20:55   #2
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If it's a kill buttton (instead of a pull cable), you are actuating a little solenoid on the engine that stops the fuel flow (just like a pull cable).

Have somebody push the button and see if the solenoid moves. If not, a bit of electrical troubleshooting will see if you have power to the solenoid when the button is pushed. If no power it's the wiring; if power is at the solenoid, the solenoid has likely failed.

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Old 18-05-2009, 21:21   #3
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I have a 4jh4e. Simple problem. I tell everyone on the boat about it. Need to leave the key on when stopping the engine. If you turn the key off there is no power to the solenoid and the stop button does not work.
Fair Winds,


Between us there was, as I have already said somewhere, the bond of the sea. Besides holding our hearts together through long periods of separation, it had the effect of making us tolerant of each other's yarns -- and even convictions. Heart of Darkness
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Old 18-05-2009, 22:04   #4
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+1 what Charlie said...
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Old 18-05-2009, 22:15   #5
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Great, pose a problem and get a solution in less than an hour! Great forum!
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Old 19-05-2009, 00:19   #6
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Ayup. And while making mental notes about that part of the engine, another is this, discovered when mine wouldn't start as I was taking down the sails in rising winds off a lee shore with the evening's marina in sight: no start, not even a click.

True to geek form, after a quick perusal of Calder, I frantically googled my way to a forum that discusses such things and discovered that this flavor of Yanmar can get that little solenoid-actuated fuel shut-off widget stuck in the off position (actuated, and thus disabling the engine). It's spring-return, but the sliding mechanism can get sticky... as mine did.

Rocks looming, I grinned at my mate, and with a little flourish plunged my hand into the depths of the engine room, groped around for a moment, and tickled the widget... which immediately relaxed into its ON position. A quick touch of the key and we were running.

Folks tell of the diesel's simplicity, but I'm new to them and somewhat intimidated... especially with a 20-year-old quirky one. Each little encounter adds confidence, though. Congrats on the new boat!

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Old 19-05-2009, 01:10   #7
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also when you turn the key off while the engine is still running your generator wouldn't like it...
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Old 19-05-2009, 05:17   #8
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Thanks for the help guys. It is great to have this kind of help at your fingertips. I think I will wait until it is in the water to test this. It all makes sense and seeing that some of you have this same engine, I am sure this is my solution.

I am so excited to get the boat in the water. I spent a minimum of 30 hours every week since I bought it replacing the fuel tanks, water heater and numerous other things. With all of that work I still have a lot to do to get her looking good but that can wait till next off season. It's time to get her into Lake Michigan and enjoy the summer.

If you want to see the fuel tank project, check out the pictures in the gallery of my new blog. I just started it because a lot of my friends wanted to see what was going on with the boat. There is not much there yet but the pictures with their captions show the tanks.

Thanks again for your help.

Lots of loose ends | Mezzaluna
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Old 19-05-2009, 06:12   #9
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I had the exact same experience and learned where the solenoid actuating lever is. On the stbd forward side of the engine near the injector pump you'll find this lever. Pull it manually and it shuts everything down. My solenoid had become electrically disconnected during maintenance.

Here's an old thread on it: I Said "STOP!" Already...!!!

All hands aboard should know where this lever is and be able to stop the engine in an emergency.

Betcha that now as you think back on the event you find it kinda funny. I know mine was.... lots of drama in boating is good for the soul
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Old 19-05-2009, 07:56   #10
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I turned the key off and pushed the kill button and nothing happened, the engine kept running.
Push the kill switch first, with the ignition turned off there is no power to actrivate the shut-off solenoid.

"It is not so much for its beauty that the Sea makes a claim upon men's hearts, as for that subtle something, that quality of air, that emanation from the waves, that so wonderfully renews a weary spirit."
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Old 19-05-2009, 08:05   #11
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I had to wack the solenoid with a hammer from time to time.
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Old 19-05-2009, 11:03   #12
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Aloha Jeff,
You were out of the water when the engine started and was running? Hope it didn't run long enough to overheat. Check your cooling water when you start the engine in the water and your impellers might need to be replaced.
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Old 19-05-2009, 12:26   #13
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i never turn the key off before killing the engine .. was told this can cause damage.
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Old 19-05-2009, 12:46   #14
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If nothing else I imagine your exhaust hose from the mixing elbow to the muffler will be toast. And for sure replace the impeller. And good luck.
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Old 19-05-2009, 15:08   #15
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Funny how things happen at the same time! We have recently taken over the keys on our new boat and it has a 4JHTE as well. Our kill switch actually wasn't working at all and thankfully my clever husband knew what to do straight away and killed the engine manually. (and yes I too now know how to do it if he isn't able to get down there) so after much reading and fixing the solenoid switch it worked first time on trial. It does state in the manual that you have to leave the key on to make it work and ours did just fine.

Having said that our engine is now in a hundred pieces being serviced. Had to get the heat exchanger and core sent away as they had rusted holes in them. Slowly getting it put back together but bloody hell the bill is going to sink us! and that is with Ray doing some of the work himself and having quite alot of spares already on board. Bleeding pirates aren't on the water!

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