Top Tips for Buying a Used Outboard

Family Enjoying Riding A Boat On Lake Garda

It can be tough to know where to start and what to look for in an engine when buying a used boat motor. At ARG Marine, we’re here to help you find the best and easiest deals on outboards.

Tips for Buying Used Boat Motors

When you are ready to buy a used boat motor, you’ll want to do your research, set a full budget, decide on your goals, and start shopping. Before seeing a used motor in person, ask the seller a few questions.

When you evaluate the motor in person, you’ll want to confirm that the motor is in acceptable condition. Next, make sure the correct paperwork is completed and that and legalities are taken care of. Finally, enjoy your new-to-you motor!

Research Online

Before you start looking at specific motors, start thinking about your needs and wants are. Do you need a motor in good condition between 15-25 hp? Or are you prepared to re-build an older motor? Do you want a specific brand? Is engine weight a consideration? Do you want a four-stroke engine or a used two-stroke engine? Set your budget and goals, and start researching your options.

When you have a good idea of what you want, research makes, models, and options online.

Ask Questions

When you find a used motor that seems like a good deal, ask the seller a few questions before going to see it. Here are a few examples of questions to ask:

  • How often has the motor been used?
  • Has it been used in fresh or saltwater?
  • What maintenance has been done?
  • Will you be able to run the motor for me?

In-Person Evaluation

When you’ve found a good engine and decided to see it in person, the next step is to see it. When doing an in-person evaluation, ask to see the motor running. The motor should never be run dry; the seller should run it in the water, in a bucket, or with a hose attached.

If it’s a small engine with a pull-cord start, see how many times it takes to start the engine. If it’s a larger motor, watch to see if it starts right away. As the engine is running, look out for any weird noises, smells, or smoke.

Ask to see receipts for any work performed. If the seller has receipts, it shows that the proper maintenance has been performed and that the owner is conscientious about completing his maintenance.

For Sale By Owner Motors

When buying a for sale by owner motor, make sure you see the engine in person and verify that it is in expected condition before handing over cash. Also, make sure all legal paperwork is completed. Check with your local DMV for forms and procedures. Some states require you to register outboard motors.

Buying a Used Motor at a Dealer

Buying a motor at a dealer can be more straightforward than buying a for sale by owner motor. The dealer is in the full-time business of looking at engines, fixing engines, and selling engines. So, it stands to reason that a dealer knows about engines! At ARG Marine, we’ll help you every step of the way. Dealers usually service their used engines and have a good idea of what maintenance has been done and what needs to be done.

Dealers are also familiar with the paperwork needed to complete the sale and legally protect all parties.

Tips for Buying a Motor in Palm Beach County

There are a lot of boats in Palm Beach County and a lot of motors! If you are on the search to re-power your boat, give us a call at ARG Marine. We’ll see you out on the water!