Wednesday, 15 December 2021 10:57


You've had the boat for a while now and you've finally come to a crossroads. Its time for an upgrade but the real question is what route do you take. Are you looking for a new boat, new-to-me, or are you just looking to repower the old 2-stroke. One of the main things you should be thinking about is how the boat performs for your application of use. Does it do everything you need it to and if not, what would you like different? More often then not, the answer to this question is as simple as repowering the rig.

If you still love your boat and it does everything you need it to, whats the point of getting rid of it?

I tell this to a lot of customers who come into Vans looking for some advice. Honestly, you would be surprised just how much installing a new fourstroke really changes the appearance and ease of use of an older boat. It can make them look and perform like a completely new rig. One of the biggest advantages to repowering is that it's a heck of a lot cheaper than buying a brand new or new to you boat, especially with how the boat market has been this year.

When your in the market for repowering your outboard it can get a tad overwhelming with all of the different makes and models out there, unless your a diehard fan of a particular brand. In that case you have a good idea of exactly what you want. Here at Vans we carry all of the top names in the industry such as Yamaha, Suzuki, Mercury, and Tohatsu. We used to be a dealer for BRP Evinrude as well, but unfortunately they have gone a different route with the company and are no longer making outboards. Based on your price range or application, we have a variety of options and the expertise to get you exactly what you need.

Starting out, we like to ask you a few questions before we get things going and show you some options. One of the most important things we need to know is what the max horsepower for your boat is. This is important because all boats are rated for a certain size motor based on what the transom can handle. We wont sell or install an outboard that your boat is not rated for. The best way to find the max horsepower is to look at the coast gaurd tag near the consol. There you will find the max capacity and max horspower rating for the vessel.

Next we will ask if your boat currently has controls on it. We ask this because it can be cost effective to stick to the brand motor you previously had so that you can use your existing controls. If you switch to a different brand motor you will need new controls to go with it. A lot of people assume that the controls come with a new motor but they do not for the fact that not everyone needs new controls when they purchase a new motor. When your looking at controls and rigging, you can expect to tack on at least $500-$600 dollars to the motor cost. Thats going to be your control box, wire harness, steering cable, throttle/shift cables, and a tachometer. Hence why we ask what controls you have in hopes that we can save you some money and rigging time.

Another bit of information we like to know is the application are you going to be using the motor for. Depending on your application whether it be a pontoon or bassboat, we will set you up with the right horsepower or motor. I say this because if your pontoon can handle 50hp but you live on a no wake lake, you probably dont want a 50hp outboard. You can save some coin and get away with something much smaller. On the other hand, if your a pleasure boater or you tournament fish, you will want to get as close to the max horsepower as you can based on your budget. A good rule of thumb when powering or repowering your boat is to not go any lower than two thirds the max horsepower. This will ensure that you get the intended performance out of your boat.

On rare occasions people come asking me to put a jet drive motor on their boat or pontoon because they think it sounds cool. It does sound cool, but those motors are designed for a flat bottom boat that is meant to be run on the river. They are designed to go through skinny water and avoid unseen structures like rocks or dead heads due to not having a lower unit hanging below the boat like a typical outboard. Any other application just doesnt make sense for this style of outboard.

Lastly, I want to remind you that just because you're tired and fed up with your old 2-stroke, doesn't mean its not worth something to someone else. When we sell a new or even a used motor to a customer we usually take their old motor in on trade. Based on its condition, we will purchase it for parts or to be fixed up and resold in our used motor inventory. Like I said, just becasue your looking to upgrade doesn't mean that your old motor wont be an upgrade or the perfect fit for someone else.