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Indoor Storage > Storage Tips >How Often Should I Change the Oil in My Boat?
How Often Should I Change the Oil in My Boat?
You should change the oil in your boat every 100 hours for a gasoline engine and every 50 hours for a diesel engine. The problem is that, unlike an automobile, boat engines don't really have accessible drain plugs, and on top of that, theydon't afford a lot of room for capturing the oil.
A foil roasting pan, often used for turkeys on Thanksgiving, is often a good solution, one that can slip under the boat engine while you drain the oil.(Good luck on getting a wrench around the drain plug, however; the space is usually very cramped.)
Another option is to replace the drain plug with a hose fitting, through which you can drain the oil to an external container. Of course, the hose has to run downhill, and that too can be a challenge.
If spaces and downhill routes are limited, another option is to connect a pump to the hose, so the pump can extract the oil into a container.
Some people even mouth the pump permanently to the engine, so that oil changes become a simple, automated process.
Even worse are the boat engines that totally lack drain plugs. In this case, you have to rig a hose and pump to the dipstick tube. Some people even replace the dipstick tube with 1/4-inch copper tubing, connected to a pump mounted to the boat's bulkhead.
When extracting the oil, it helps if the engine has just been running and the oil is hot. Oil flows more freely when it's hot.
A good receptacle for the discharged oil is a large plastic milk container. Also, when finished draining the oil, remember to change the oil filter each time before refilling the oil. Your engine manual will provide you with the viscosity and API rating for the oil recommended for your engine.