There are 2 types of lights which your boat can have, personal lights and navigation lights. Boat navigation lights are those which are required by law and are essential for every boat owner in the world. In order to install new navigation lights you need to understand how the lighting systems on your boat work.
Lighting systems can be added as and when they are required. These will be required for all sorts of different activities. Adding fishing lights or docking lights for example can be useful. These can be added into existing lighting systems, but ideally each system should have their own circuit.
Step 1 – Research
If the boat doesn’t currently have navigational lights, then you will need to wire a new connection into your boats circuit breaker. If there are currently navigation lights then you can simply remove the old ones and you should be able to use the existing wire.
If your breaker board has enough capacity then you should wire the boat lights into a new circuit. This makes it much easier and safer to control the various circuits on your boat.
Step 2 – Turning off the Circuit Breakers
The power to your boat needs to be switched off so that you can safely work on the electrical circuits. You must make sure that all of the electrical systems are turned off so that you can safely work on the lighting systems without any danger.
Step 3 – Marking the Wall
Use a marker pen to mark the location of any navigation lights so that you know where to drill holes and connect wires through. Use the hole saw to cut holes in any panels where the wires will pass through the wall. Also make sure that you mount switches in the right places and know how to connect the navigation lights to the control panel.
Step 4 – Wiring
Wiring schematics for boats can be very confusing and they may not follow conventional wiring rules. Read through the owners manual of your boat so that you can find out how to wire up the navigational lights safely. Connect the wires so that they are all safely tucked behind the panels and not visible.
Step 5 – Connecting the Control Panel
Connect the navigation lights to the control panel according to the instructions in your owner’s manual.
Step 6 – Waterproofing
The navigation lighting systems on your boat are very important and you need to be able to rely on it. You must make sure that all of the connections and terminals are waterproofed and protected from the water.
Step 7 – Replacing Panels
Panels need to be replaced so that all of the wiring is hidden and protected from danger. Once you have finished there shouldn’t be any signs of the work you have just done on your boat.