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Old     (beachshack)      Join Date: Oct 2004       06-29-2009, 11:23 AM Reply   
I recently changed my deck on my Mastercraft with no problem. I added tower speakers and replaced an old amp. However, when I hook up the new amp, Kicker ZX450.2, the fuses on the amp blow out, including the ones on my stereo. I have a separate bat. (+) wire running from the battery and the ground (-) as well. I tried grounding to the engine block and the fuses blew as well. My old cheap amp did not have a problem, has anyone else had this issue? Why would I keep blowing the fuses? I am connecting the same way my old amp was connected, what is going on, is it the amp? Please help.
Old     (philwsailz)      Join Date: Feb 2009       06-29-2009, 12:39 PM Reply   

Something is not right here...

Blowing fuses tell us that there is WAY more current flowing than the head unit and the amplifier were designed for; that is why the fuses are there. You probably threw one heck of a spark when you first connected things!!!!

One common thing that can happen that will cause this is wiring the power to the amp backwards. That can in some instances blow fuses in the radio and the amplifier.

Where did you get the amp?

Old     (beachshack)      Join Date: Oct 2004       06-29-2009, 1:27 PM Reply   
I got the amp on ebay from a authorized Kicker dealer. I did not have this problem with the old amp. The first time I connected it it actually melted the wire. Do you have any suggestions? Why would I have so much power coming in now when I use the same wires my old amp was connected with. I am not sure what is causing this shortage, or oversupply of power. Please help.
Old     (beachshack)      Join Date: Oct 2004       06-29-2009, 1:32 PM Reply   
The head unit worked fine, all my speakers worked fine fine, once I connected the amp, it all went to hell, yes it was a great spark.
Old     (philwsailz)      Join Date: Feb 2009       06-29-2009, 1:51 PM Reply   
Curt, authorized and e-bay almost never go together in one sentence when describing a dealer. Sorry to the few dealers that are authorized that sell there...

Something is wrong with the amp, and you probably need to get in touch with your dealer and have him see what he can do. Hopefully he can help you.

I still am scratching my head... Something is amiss. Amps never take out head units. The only thing connected is RCA cables and a tiny turn-on wire. New amps do not behave that way; blown amps do all kinds of weird stuff. Are you sure it is new?

Old     (beachshack)      Join Date: Oct 2004       06-29-2009, 7:58 PM Reply   
I'm shipping the amp back and they are sending me a new one. One quetstion I have for you is where should I ground the new amp? I'm picking up a 4 gauage wire, which the amp can fit, to ground it. I was thinking of running it to where my main black wire connects to the engine, which is about 10 feet away. is this to far away or should I look to do something different. I have been getting a little distortion out of my inner speakers if I crank it to high so I was hoping this will help. I have a clarion deck. Just in case you need to know I have a 1989 tristar mastercraft.

I can't wait to get my new kicker speakers going.
Old     (ncsumalibu)      Join Date: Mar 2009       06-30-2009, 5:52 AM Reply   
I may be wrong but I would recommend grounding all amps back to your battery with the shortest length wire possible. If you ground it to your engine block you are more than likely going to pick up alternator whine/engine noise in your speakers. I think you will be fine when you get a good amp back. Even quality products have a bad one once in a while.
Old     (philwsailz)      Join Date: Feb 2009       06-30-2009, 6:40 AM Reply   

For a marine installation, the quietest (noise-free) installation is as follows:

Wire the amp straight to the battery, with at least the wire gauge recommended in the owners manual, or larger.

Install a fuse or MANUAL reset circuit breaker near the battery. New boat builders are required by law to have this over-current protection within 7" of the battery terminal. The current rating of the fuse or breaker should be at least equal to and not exceeding 1.5 times the sum of any fuses installed on the amplifier.

Re-wre your head unit so that it gets its power from the amplifier power terminal lugs. Wire the black head unit wire to the ground or B- lug. Wire the yellow head unit power wire to the 12v positive or B+ terminal. Wire the red power wire of the head unit to the 12v positive terminal as well, but provide for a switch of some means, (dash switch, toggle switch, relay triggered by the keyed accy switch, etc) so that you can flip the switch to turn the stereo on and off.

Do your stereo wiring in this manner and you should eliminate most problems with alternator noise, buzzes, etc. Sometimes you will still get pops from solenoid controlled valves, (ballast valves, trim cylinders, etc) and there is a different cure for these noises if you have them and if they are bad. Most of the time though, proper gain settings prevent these from being loud, or even noticeable.

Good luck, let us know

Old     (beachshack)      Join Date: Oct 2004       06-30-2009, 7:22 AM Reply   
Is it possible to leave the yellow as is that gets power from the ignition key so that I can use the blue wire that connects to the amp to turn it on once the ignition is turned on?
I can understand grounding the head unit with the amp and connecting the power as well. As far as the ground, the current ground wire is connected directly to the battery without a breaker, the 12v is also connected without any fuse from the battery. Do you recomment changing this as well.
Old     (philwsailz)      Join Date: Feb 2009       06-30-2009, 7:38 AM Reply   
I left off the blue wire description; it goes to the amp turn-on lead in either situation. Sorry, I could have mentioned that too. It is there so that the amp turns on and off with the head unit.

Your yellow power wire for the radio is not supposed to be switched. It is responsible for radio station presets, tone control presets, clock, etc. If you have the yellow power wire through the key switch, you need to change it so it is always energized. Put it directly to the amp 12v+ power lug.

Ideally, the red wire should be moved too; the idea is to get all the power/voltage from the same source, but you want to red wire switched by some means. If you are using the key switch to turn the stereo on and off, you can use a relay. I have posted a schematic showing how to do this on some other threads.

If you did not have noise before, you can probably leave the radio power wires where they are; I just mentioned it all in my post above, as it is the best noise-free way to wire a stereo.

You do not have a need for a fuse or breaker for the ground wire but you for sure should put a fuse or breaker on the 12v positive wire. If you short the 12v wire without a fuse or breaker, it will get real hot, melt the insulation and start a fire or explosion. The fuse by the battery is not installed to protect your amp. It is there to protect you, your boat, and the lives of any riders of guests you have on board. Absolutely get a fuse on the 12v positive wire, right next to the battery.



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