check your relays for loose connections.
my 96 175 they are on the upper front port side, look like 2 lil black boxes.
also if you can find the wire coming from the hand control you can use a meter to check, either ohms or volts. volts is easiest, check for pwr and start tracing.
lake fork FISHERMANS COVE MARINA/reservations - 903 474 7479