There’s no denying that outboard motors suffer some of the harshest conditions. They’re continually exposed to salt water and a corrosive marine environment. So, it’s no surprise that they require regular maintenance.
Maintenance not only prevents rust, it also ensures that your engine runs at its best. After all, you need to rely on your outboard motor when you get into the water. With a wide array of quality outboard motors for sale, here are the top maintenance tips you need to know about.
- Run the Outboard Regularly
Outboard motors just don’t do well if they go long periods without use. They’re complex engines with moving parts that could seize. The problem is compounded by the likelihood of rust setting in from the salt water. A common cause of damage to these motors is a seized impeller. The rubber component form a part of the water intake on your engine.
So, it’s an important part of your motor. But, due to the design of the pump, an impeller sits a little off-camber and because it’s rubber, it can deteriorate with age and use. If it goes unused, the arms on one side are then exposed to uneven pressure which can bend the arms out of shape.
- Check for Obstructions
Sometimes, it’s insects that can cause problems when they build a home in your motor. Wasps, especially, favour the water intake as the perfect place for a nest. If the insects go unnoticed, it can block water from being properly ingested by the engine. What happens then is catastrophic engine failure because of overheating. The same thing can happen if the outboard ingests silt or mud.
- Flush the Motor After Each Trip
One of the most important part of your maintenance is the wash-down after use. Whenever you use your boat, it’s going to be covered in salt. All you have to do is wash it down. But, your outboard motor needs a little more attention. Aim to flush the engine with fresh water each time you’ve used it. Then run the engine in neutral at idle to allow it to pump the fresh water through the intake and get rid of any salt.
- Make Sure Fuel is Fresh
Stale fuel can lead to poor performance or none at all. If your motor has been unused for a long period of time, consider draining the fuel tank and filling it up with fresh fuel. If you do decide to do this, make sure you dispose of the fuel in a safe and environmentally friendly manner.
- Check the Oil Levels
Make sure your engine always has sufficient oil. This is usually an issue for the four-stroke varieties as they have built-in oil reservoirs. But, some of the modern two-stroke engines do take a similar approach and mix fuel and oils themselves. Check the model with an expert to determine the oil requirements. It’s an important step in maintaining the outboard motor.