Gone Outdoors

How to Troubleshoot a Lowrance X-65 Fishfinder

by Dan Harkins

Oklahoma-based Lowrance Electronics makes a variety of direction-finding and sonar equipment for fishermen. The company's wide-screen, high-resolution X-65 fish finder is designed to provide hours of trouble-free sonar and school-identification assistance. Avoid costly repairs by troubleshooting an X-65 that is not performing to expectations.

Check the X-65's electrical wiring for cracks or loose connections if the device is not getting power. This includes the connector that plugs into the X-65, and separates into two wires. One of these wires runs to a plug that directs power to the speed and temperature sensors. The other wire ultimately branches off as the red and black wires that connect to the positive and negative posts of your boat's battery.

Inspect the 3-amp fuse located along the battery's positive wire. Disconnect the fish finder's positive and negative clamps from your marine battery's posts; pull apart the fuse housing and determine if the fuse is damaged. Replace the fuse, return the wiring clamps to the battery, and attempt to turn on your X-65. Do this by pressing and holding the "PWR" button in the lower right corner of the key pad.

Turn on your voltmeter and press its sensor probe. The fish finder isn't receiving sufficient power if the voltmeter reads less than 11 volts. This might be due to corroded terminals or an undercharged battery.

Release and press the "PWR" key one more time; this command enables the lights on the screen. The lights might have been been previously disabled.

Keep the X-65's electrical wiring away from the wiring of other devices; keep it away from the cabling for the stern and trolling motors. This lessens the amount of "electrical noise" affecting your device's functionality.

Inspect your transducer to ensure it's pointing directly downward. The transducer must be firmly mounted, and free of oil or other films that might affect the X-65's sonar capabilities. The transducer is located inside the hull, on the stern of your boat.

Zoom in on fish schools as much as possible when viewed on sonar; use the "ZOUT" and "ZIN" keys. This allows the X-65's monitor to narrow in on a more specific territory.

Slow your boat if you have trouble viewing schools when trolling. Consider moving your transducer to a new location if you consistently have trouble identifying schools of fish on sonar.

Items you will need
  • Adjustable wrench
  • Voltmeter

About the Author

Dan Harkins has been a full-time journalist since 1997. Prior to working in the alternative press, he served as a staff writer and editor for daily publications such as the "St. Petersburg Times" and "Elyria Chronicle-Telegram." Harkins holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from the University of South Florida.