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Should You Rebuild Or Replace Your Sea Fishing Boat's Outboard Motor?

Modern outboard engines are very durable and sophisticated, but they experience wear and tear over time just like any other engine. The outboard engine of a fast, sea-going fishing boat can take an especially heavy beating, and after many years of hard running, even the most well-built outboard motor will eventually suffer from intractable mechanical problems, such as excessive oil consumption or failed powerheads.

Fortunately, you don't automatically have to shell out for a new outboard engine if your existing engine is worn out. Many marine service companies offer outboard engine rebuilding services, which can bring a non-functioning but salvageable outboard back to life. Rebuilding your outboard has numerous advantages over replacing it, but it is not suitable for every circumstance

Less expensive than replacement

During an outboard engine rebuild, your fishing boat's stricken motor is detached and thoroughly disassembled by professional outboard engine mechanics. Any damaged or destroyed components are repaired or replaced as necessary, but components that are still functioning and do not show signs of wear are left in place. The engine is then reassembled, thoroughly tested, and re-installed on your craft.

The chief advantage of choosing outboard motor rebuilding over replacement is simple — it costs a lot less. While having a two horsepower engine for your boat's tender rebuilt probably isn't worth your time, rebuilding a larger outboard engine can cost thousands of dollars less than replacing it with a new engine of equivalent capacity.

Minimises performance differences

No two outboard engines are ever quite alike, and if you are forced to replace your non-functional outboard engine with a different model (for example, if your model of engine has been discontinued), you will probably never experience the same performance from your fishing craft as you once did. While this is a minor problem when you're out on the ocean, it can make piloting through narrow inlets and docking bays challenging until you become accustomed to it.

Purchasing a new, different outboard engine can also lead to problems with compatibility. You may be forced to switch out fuel hoses, odometer cables, and other minor but necessary components if they do not fit your new engine problem.

What are the advantages of having my fishing boat's outboard motor rebuilt?

Pointless for older outboard engines

A good outboard engine is built to last, and many avid fishermen and women still use watercraft built in the 80s, 70s or even earlier, complete with their original outboard engines. Unfortunately, when one of these semi-vintage outboard motors fails, rebuilding it is usually a pointless exercise.

Replacement parts for these older engines can be nearly impossible to obtain, and the engine will lack components considered essential in modern outboard engines, such as powered trim, electronic fuel injection and filtration systems designed to reduce emissions. In these cases, replacing your engine is usually the only feasible option.

Can be time-consuming

It can be difficult to know how long an outboard motor rebuild will take before the engine has been disassembled. If your engine has suffered extensive wear, or components that are difficult to obtain need to be replaced, a engine rebuild can take weeks or even months. This can be highly inconvenient if your engine breaks down during the height of the fishing season, and will also increase labour costs substantially.