With the IBEX Boat Show coming to Tampa, Florida, we’ve been reviewing switches commonly used in boats and other watercraft, but we can’t forget about boating equipment and accessories. Here are some of our switch solutions for common boating equipment and accessories.
You’ll find a fish finder on just about every boat around these parts. Bass, walleye, northern pike, and even salmon are plentiful in the Land of 10,000 Lakes. Fish finders and GPS devices on watercraft feature up to a dozen tactile switches that should probably be protected from dust and moisture at a rating of at least IP67. Switches with an IP67 ingress protection rating are totally protected against dust and can be submerged in up to one meter of water for 30 minutes.
The best switches E-Switch offers for fish finders and GPS devices are sealed tactile switches like the TL6300 Series. The TL6300 Series operates in temperatures ranging from -40 to 90° Celsius and has a life expectancy of 10 million cycles. It’s conveniently sized for fingertip actuation, has through-hole termination for slim devices, and can be covered with a cap that often accompanies switches on this type of technology.
Another viable option would be the TL52 Series sealed, radial lead tactile switch. This tact switch comes in radial packaging and is rated IP67 for dust and moisture protection. The TL52 Series operates in temperatures ranging from -25 to 85° Celsius, has a life expectancy of 100,000 cycles, and two operating forces are available: 160gf and 260gf.
Trolling motors don’t feature too many switches on the motor itself, but many have a “push-to-test” battery meter switch that allows you to see your battery level. For this application, a surface mount, sealed tact switch with minimal travel like the TL9320 Series is suitable. The rubber actuator on the TL9320 Series travels just 0.9 millimeters and has the soft feel commonly associated with battery level checkers. This tact switch has a life expectancy of 500,000 cycles, so it’ll likely outlast the trolling motor itself.
Many trolling motors include remote controls so you can use them while fishing from any location on the boat. Sealed tactile switches serve as perfect solutions for splash-proof remote controls or even submersible remote controls, so if your remote falls overboard, it could still function properly. Ideal tactile switches for waterproof remote controls include the TL3145, TL6150, TL6330, TL6400, TL6700, TL6800, and TL9320 Series. E-Switch offers 17 tact switches featuring ingress protection.
The TL9320, TL6800, TL3145, and TL6150 Series are especially suitable for remote controls because of their long lives. The TL9320 should last 500,000 cycles, the TL6800 can be pressed up to a million times, the TL3145 can last up to three million cycles if you select the 180gf option, and the TL6150 Series switch can last up to five million cycles if you choose the 160gf option.
Yes, some boats have TVs. Yachts even have switches for making TVs appear out of furniture! Wouldn’t it be nice if all those switches were protected from dust and moisture at an IP67 rating? Yachts deserve premium push buttons like E-Switch’s ULV Series and PV Series anti-vandal switches. The marking graphic options are vast – from “START,” Bluetooth, WiFi, and vehicle horn symbols, to common radio symbols like FM, play, previous, next, fast forward/seek, plus, and minus.
Boat bilge pumps require high current, sealed switches like the R7 Series illuminated rocker switch. The R7 Series is electrically rated to handle up to 20 amps, has an electrical life expectancy of 10,000 cycles, and is IP67 rated to the front panel, making it splash-proof. Wire leads are even available. Simply contact an E-Switch sales representative or use the chat box in the bottom right of your screen to discuss those options.
E-Switch has the perfect bilge pump switch being released in the first quarter of 2024. The PVHC4 Series is UL-certified to handle 20 amps and is rated IP67 for dust and moisture protection. It also features optional dot or ring illumination to let you know when the switch is actuated.
Visit our booth (#1-1003) at the IBEX Boat Show in Tampa, Oct. 3-5 to get your hands on some of these switches for boating equipment and accessories.