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Beware of cheap switches from Walmart and Radio Shack. They will fall apart and cannot stand the weather. I have had better luck buying heavy duty switches from truck stops. It's frustrating to spend time rewiring stuff and then have a switch fail while you are on the water. Expect to pay $8-10 for a quality switch.
 

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I look for the ones which states marine applications. Even a land lubbing truck stop switch may fail in boats. Of course, marine switches fail also. lOL
 

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I have just about given up on finding a good switch. Every place on my boat that has had a switch eventually ends up with a couple wires I tie together.

The only ones that have held up are the ones I mounted under my console, out of the sun/rain/snow.
 

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Most of those Dang Switches Ya get at Walmart and the auto stores are made in Mexico and Don't hold up worth a Darn!! You can get a Decent switch at some Electrical supply houses,Just check around. J.D.
 

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Most of those Dang Switches Ya get at Walmart and the auto stores are made in Mexico and Don't hold up worth a Darn!! You can get a Decent switch at some Electrical supply houses,Just check around. J.D.
Sometimes.
Even when I worked in a supply house in the 80's for a couple of years it was an issue to get quality thumb switches.
Even at that time most of that type stuff was made overseas.
Today, even most of your house switches and receptacles are made overseas.

It's not only overseas production but the American owned companies have cheapened the product. It dont matter where its produced. Its the quality that goes into it.

I will not leave home with a lamp plugged in. Not just cut off but plugged in because how the sockets and switches have been cheapened.
I never really thought about it that much until I was reading a book laying in bed one rainy Saturday morning and the BRAND NEW lamp from Lowes didnt slowly catch on fire but burst into flames. Switch failure.
Counter top appliances get unplugged as well.
 

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I learned this lesson a long time ago. I'm currently in the process of adding navigation lights to my jon boat. Because of all the salty and brackish water we have here on the chesapeake bay, i went directly to a marine supply store for my switch. It cost a fortune, but i bought a sealed switch and the rubber boot to go over it. The switch will still be mounted in a sealed box and up under the boats corner support. I'm hoping not to have to worry about it for a while.
 

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Here is an idea that I use with the 120 ac on my boat. Rather than try to have switches hold up, I just wired all the 500 watt quartz's on different cords. I have 2 outlets on the generator and I can plug in what I want. When it's unplugged it is guaranteed off. lol
 

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Also and most important, pick switches matched to what your using them for.. Make sure you are using heavy enough ones.. A 15 amp switch won't hold up to 20 to 30 amps going thru it for very long.. It is better to spend the xtra money and buy switches rated for a heavier application than you'll ever need. And then run all wiring thru a fuse block for each circuit..
 

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I HAVE FOUND OUT THAT SEA DOG MAKES A VERY GOOD SWITCH, IT IS WATER PROOF AND I PAID AROUND TWELVE DOLLARS. AND YOU CAN GET IT WITH MON ON-OFF-MON ON, OR JUST ON AND OFF, ALSO YOU CAN GET THEM LIGHTED WHICH I LIKE, YOU CAN GO ON LINE AND FIND ALL KIND OF WATER PROOF SWITCHES. ALWAYS REMEMBER " YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR " I HOPE THIS HELPS YOU............:big_smile:
 
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