VIP Marina Lake Travis

How To Properly Change a Boat’s Oil

Sep 19, 2017 | Boat Storage | 0 comments

Properly changing your boat’s oil and filter should ideally be done every 100 hours of runtime. However, it’s most likely the single boat maintenance chore that gets neglected by far. That’s inevitably because it’s a dirty job that seems too complicated. Especially if you’re not mechanically inclined! So, you procrastinate and make excuses until your engine performance tanks – or fails altogether.

If this sounds familiar, you can take your boat to our service department and have our certified technicians perform the oil change for you. No fuss – no muss! Or, you can pull up your big boater britches and continue reading to find out how to properly change a boat’s oil yourself.

To change your boat’s oil you’ll need tools, oil, and a filter. Stop by our parts center to pick up the manufacturer recommended OEM oil filter and marine oil in accordance with your owner’s manual. If you can’t locate this information, ask our service and parts staff. You will need an appropriate sized oil filter wrench, a box wrench for crankcase drain plug or one of two varieties of oil change pumps. You will also need: a large capacity bucket, grease rags, and a sealable plastic baggie.

Now the real nitty-gritty fun begins. Ladies and gentleman, start your engine! Allow it to warm up to at least 130° and turn it off. The reason we do this is twofold. Hot oil drains thinner and it brings up gunk and contaminants that are unhealthy for your engine.

Next, place your bucket into position. Begin to drain your oil by either pulling the drain plug or using the preferred choice of oil drain pump. Once the flow has slowed to drips, replace the drain plug or close the oil pump’s valve. Be careful not to overtighten or cross-thread the plug!

Grab your filter wrench and loosen the oil filter until it freely moves with your hand. Grasp the filter with a plastic baggie and finish removing it without spilling. Place the filter upright in the bag, seal it and set aside.

Wipe the oil filter housing mount with a rag to give you a clean surface and ensure there’s not a double gasket to cause a leak. Place a small amount of new oil on your index filter and smear it onto the gasket of the new filter. Finally, screw on the new replacement oil filter snugly with your hand. Again, do not cross-thread or overtighten.

Refill your crankcase with the recommended amount and type of oil. Never overfill or under-fill, and be sure to clean up any spills or drips. Replace the oil cap and start the engine. Allow it to run for 60 seconds – watching for leaks around the plug and filter. If you spot a leak, immediately stop the engine and correct the problem. Otherwise, check the dipstick level. If it is still below proper level, add small amounts of oil until it is full. Viola! You’re done. Easy peasy!

Still intimidated?

Give our service department a call today!


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