Outboard Expert: $500 Upgrades

Editor’s Note: Outboard Expert Charles Plueddeman shares a few inexpensive upgrades that will improve your boating.

Just because this wasn’t your year for a new outboard doesn’t mean next season you can’t have a better boat. Here are some affordable upgrades you can probably handle yourself.

This Mercury ECO-Screen reports fuel use in miles per gallon and can be used to optimize your boat’s economy.

Install a Remote Fuel Filter
A 10-micron remote fuel filter is your best protection against water-contaminated fuel and injector-clogging gunk, both symptoms related to the ethanol-blended fuel that is getting harder to avoid. All of the outboard manufacturers offer remote filter kits and the replacement filters, or you can order a Racor filter kit from West Marine. Prices for the kits start at about $90 and go up to $140 for larger filters. The replacement filter elements cost about $20 to $30, and you want to keep a spare on board. We went through the installation process in a previous Outboard Expert column.

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