When replacing or upgrading the outboard motor on your boat, you need to consider some things to ensure the replacement will work correctly. Outboard motors are not all the same, and choosing the right one is critical for the performance and safety of your vessel.
When considering outboard motors for your boat, the engine displacement size and the power it produces are essential considerations. If the outboard is too large, it can damage the boat's transom or cause hull damage or loss of control at high speeds.
Boats with larger outboard motors that are the correct size can be extremely fast, and the engine is very fuel efficient. Newer engines using fuel injection are also available that can take advantage of the engine size to squeeze out more power and performance for your boat and are not difficult to upgrade to.
Outboard motors use a driveshaft from the engine to the transmission and drive at the unit base. There are several different shaft lengths for different-sized boats.
A long shaft outboard will fit most boats with a straight transom, but these may be too long on boats with a cut-down transom. The result is a propeller sitting too far under the water to effectively get the boat to trim off correctly.
If the shaft is too long, you may also run the risk of dragging the propeller on the ground in shallow water, damaging or breaking the vanes off, and requiring a new propeller.
Outboard motors require maintenance to keep the engine, transmission, and drive in good shape. When the boat has been in the water for an extended period, it is a good idea to change the oil in the outboard to ensure there is no water in the case.
Seals around the propeller shaft and water jackets inside the outboard motor's cooling system can leak over time. Fixing the issue is easy in most cases, but if you are not changing the oil regularly, you may miss the leak, and the potential for water to get into the oil is higher.
Before the boat goes into the water, it is a good idea to take it to a marine service shop and have them go over the outboard motor and systems on the craft to ensure it is safe and running correctly. The marine service can tune the outboard motor, check all the seals, change the oil, and make any adjustments that will improve the performance and dependability of the power unit while it is in the shop.
Contact a professional to learn more about outboard motors.