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Decarbing your Outboard

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I picked it up on another board and have been using it for awhile now,works great.Tip for the Week Do-It-Yourself Engine Tip; A Simple and Cost Effective Way to De-Carbon an Outboard By Capt. Bob Dunkelberger [email protected] This works for Carbed, EFI, Ficht, HPDI, Opti-max and even 4-strokes... and should be administered after every 50-60 hours of use. First you need a separate small fuel tank. One of those 3-gallon red Tempos works well or an empty gallon milk jug in a pinch, but it might be a bit messier. I use Seafoam over the OEM (original equipment manufacturer) stuff like OMC Engine Tuner or Mercury Power Tune. Note: in the last few years they changed the formula and you have to let them sit up 12 hours. Who's got time for that? Seafoam does the job in 15 minutes and can be purchased from NAPA, Car Quest or other auto stores. You'll need 3/4 gallon of gasoline and one 16oz can of Seafoam for each engine. Don't forget to add 3oz of oil if you are pre-mixing in a carbed engine. Use a 3 ft piece of fuel hose off the small tank. Connect this tank to your engine by pulling off the main tank fuel hose from the intake side of your water separating fuel filter and plug the hose off the small tank onto that fitting. Or you can separate the fuel line on the tank side primer ball, so you can still use your primer. If your engine has a fuel plug then you will also need a fuel plug on the smaller tank's hose. Start the engine, let it warm up and start pulling the mix into the engine. You may have to increase the idle to keep it running once she gets loaded with the Seafoam. Run the engine 15 minutes at the dock or just cruising around under 2500 rpm's. Then shut it down and let it sit for another 15 minutes. Restart the engine; the smoke you see is the carbon burning off. Do the whole thing again and let her sit again for 15 more minutes. If she smokes after the second time do it again. I've never seen one still smoke after three doses. (I bought a Bronco two years ago that had 95,000 miles on it. When I used Seafoam on it I had the neighbors hanging out of their front doors looking for where the fire was after I started it the first time there so much smoke) The gallon mix should be just enough to do this 3 times. You don't need a wide-open throttle and you don't need to change the plugs. The plugs are cleaned at the same time as the combustion chambers. My suggestion is that every 50-60hrs is the optimal time to change plugs in most engines. I cleaned an antique Evinrude once that had a 1/4" of solid carbon on the exhaust chamber walls by running a 1/2 gal of the aforementioned mix through it. Seafoam, a great product, has been around since the 1930's and it's what they used when they were burning straight 4 stroke 40SAE oils in outboards. For you guys with the 4 stroke outboards? Those engines work 10 times as hard as any auto engine ever will and they too will carbon up. Too many are under the assumption that it's totally the 2 stroke oil that causes the carbon, Wrong... it's also the additives they put in the fuels today. The carbon inhibitors in 2-stroke oil are there for this reason also. Remember when gasoline used to smell like gasoline, today it smells more like bad cologne. For those guys that like to work the carbon treatment by spraying it down the carbs, Seafoam also comes in spray can called Deep Creep. It's the same stuff under pressure and notes on the can, "Oxygen Sensor Safe". After that, if your engine manufacturer recommends a daily additive treatment then do so. The tank and hose are a one-time purchase and the Seafoam is only costs $5-6.00 per can.

Last year I did this on my 115 omc and it really cut down the amount of smoke it put off at idle speed.

I hope it helps.


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