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Old 31-12-2008, 20:20   #1
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Submerged Outboard - Fix Myself?

Recently our outboard (a 5hp new Tohatsu 4stroke) got submerged - probably for an hour or so bfore we realized.

This happened a couple of days ago. After hauling it out I replaced the oil, pumped oil through the spark plug opening and cleaned out the carb (twice). I also oiled/greased EVERYTHING in sight.

Now I've got the outboard running again, albeit roughly, but in the process over tightened the carb mounting bolts and damaged the fitting it mounts to. Last thing before I broke this part it would start and run at about 2k rpm but not idle, and has only been run for about ten minutes since the "incident". It was definately running smoother after the second carb cleaning but the fresh spark plug used came out with more soot on it.

What I'm pondering is do I cut my losses and take it to someone who knows what they are doing, or continue trying to get this nearly new motor back up to speed myself? What would you do? If I continue going myself should I dismantle and clean more of the motor than I have so far?

Getting a mechanic to look at it will cost more, have a higher chance of not messing up more and will teach me less.
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Old 31-12-2008, 21:09   #2
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My 15hp honda 4 stroke sat on the bottom of our freshwater lake for a day until we could locate it and retreive. Did the same as you but didn't mess with the carb and it started right up w/ no other problems. I would guess that the electrical components are messed up because of the salt water and need to be replaced.
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Old 31-12-2008, 22:43   #3
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Outboard carburetion is my bane as well..as handy as I am I havent mastered it yet..and end up paying the money to have them tinkered with after I have exhausted my patents.

In my outboard experiance electrical isues genrally show up with a dead cylinder period or start acting up once hot...my guess is you are corect and its an air fuel mix at idle...I hate that..most likely junk in a tiny fuel/air Passage somewhere.

I have an 18 hp Johnson 2 stroke that some mice decided to build a nest in over last winter sitting on the floor of my shop..I did not notice it untill 200 miles from home on a fishing trip with my buddy's..it just died at full throtal running across the lake...I popped the cover and there was this huge mess of pink fiberglass insulation the little buggers had pilfered out of my shops walls.

Well I sucked some of that crap in the carburetor and I never did get it to Idle well that trip...back home I got busy with life and put it off long enough to completely forget about it until this year when it was to late do do anything about it..so I just loaded it up sort of disgusted with myself and off we went on our yearly trip to the same lake...not a big deal really we only use the gas moters to usually fly back in at the end of the day or to get off the lake if our trolling batteries die or the wind over powers them....well lo and be hold it ran like a champ the whole trip after a couple of the same tweaks to the crab I had tried the year befor to no avail ...go figure.

Moral to the storie... you could just Keep running it and it may clear itself out.

As far as the dammage you have done to the flange ..if it causes a vacuum leak you have got to fix that somehow.

The soot is just from the wrong fuel/air mix..It will disappear when all things are corect.
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Old 01-01-2009, 05:55   #4
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The biggest issue with dunking an outboard in saltwater is the electrical system. You should hose everything down as soon as possible with freshwater. Then blow it dry with an air hose if you have one and squirt WD40 everywhere you see wires or ignition parts. Then pull the sparkplug, blow it dry, and turn the engine over a few times, change the oil if its a 4-stroke, drain the carb bowl, reassemble, and get it started and run it for at least half an hour. Afterwards, hit the starter recoil spring with a bunch of WD40. If you want to be extra careful, pull the flywheel and treat the ignition stuff there, but chances are it will run for a long time without problems.
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Old 01-01-2009, 12:56   #5
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It sounds like I'm on the rght track then - just need to replace the part I bust and keep playing with it.

Wonder what part of the general learning curve this is... Thanks for the responses and welcome to 2009!
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Old 01-01-2009, 13:08   #6
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Wonder what part of the general learning curve this is... Thanks for the responses and welcome to 2009!

My brother in law once told me " We enter the world wearing diapers and we'll leave the world wearing them"

Sadly my learning curve has peaked and I'm headed down the other side where mistakes are picking up speed again.....

Now where did I put my dang glasses..."hey Dad there on top of your head"...Oh thanks honey..............
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Old 01-01-2009, 13:39   #7
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Keep in mind WD40 doesn't conduct elec. and if not cleaned off some wires or areas can cause problems that will drive you insane as I found out!! Check the label.
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Old 01-01-2009, 14:32   #8
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Just an observation but with all the outboards I've messed with, the not idling thing has come up over and over and is almost always a problem with carburetor cleanliness. Hondas, Suzuki, Gale, Johnson all seem to develop over time a problem with idling. It always seems to clear up when the carb is cleaned out really well.
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Old 01-01-2009, 19:05   #9
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When looking to replace the manifold intake I finally found some decent diagrams of the motor from this site: Tohatsu- Nissan- Parts.com

JohnL - I'm pretty sure you're right about the carb still being the problem, there were some parts that I didn't take apart because I was afraid of upsetting factory set tuning. Having a decent diagram now I have a better idea of what's what and will strip it down again!
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Old 01-01-2009, 19:43   #10
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Lot's of 4-strokes and 2-strokes gt dunked. They are a pretty simple animal. Enjoy the troubleshooting process and treat it as a learning exercise.

A friend here was complaining that his OB would not idle when cold and would quit. periodically until warm. He said that sometimes he could "pump" the fuel bulb and catch it from quitting.

In 5 minutes I discovered that the inline fule filter had a big air bubble in it and when you pumped the bulb it would fill the filter. Why did it run after warm? Could be a number of things but the air bubble was there when warm.

The band clamps on the rubber hose were not installed anywhere near the filter (slid back on the hose). I put a new filter, new hose and new hose clamps.

No problems since.

The point being that all engines are cause and effect.

Think hard aboiut the boundary parameters. i.e. It's running at high RPM but not idle. What's different about high power vs. idle?

Compression, Spark (at the right time) and fuel.

Good luck.
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Old 08-02-2009, 15:47   #11
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Well, a month later and the motor is still giving me problems. It still won't idle

The motor runs and starts fine, and I'm still thinking the idle jet is the problem.

Being a new Tohatsu there seem to be some parts of the carb I can't get at to clean, which are somewhat suspect....

Going to soak it one more time tonight and then spray it hard with a jet hose tomorrow before reinstalling it in one last attempt then I suspect its time to think about ordering a new carb body. Unless anyone has a bright idea.

Which seems a bit ridiculous and not particularly feasible on a deserted island somewhere nice...
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Old 08-02-2009, 16:32   #12
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Well, a month later and the motor is still giving me problems. It still won't idle

The motor runs and starts fine, and I'm still thinking the idle jet is the problem.

Being a new Tohatsu there seem to be some parts of the carb I can't get at to clean, which are somewhat suspect....

Going to soak it one more time tonight and then spray it hard with a jet hose tomorrow before reinstalling it in one last attempt then I suspect its time to think about ordering a new carb body. Unless anyone has a bright idea.

Which seems a bit ridiculous and not particularly feasible on a deserted island somewhere nice...
Haven't seen one of these outboards before but try this before you go the expensive route. Replace the needle and seat, sounds like it is sticking. Had this exact thing with one of my outboards last summer. It is a SUPER simple job and cheap to boot.
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Old 08-02-2009, 16:51   #13
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may just need to clean the seat unless it is damaged from turning it to tight
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Old 08-02-2009, 17:01   #14
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may just need to clean the seat unless it is damaged from turning it to tight
I could never clean it and get it to work right, for $6.50 I cured the problem...lol
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Old 08-02-2009, 17:08   #15
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check your plug wire ends when an engine gets dunked the water pressure will force moisture in every where, also i assume you have electronic ignition. also there are orifices with plastic plugs on them that are passages for air/etc. usually the only way to get these clean is to open them up and blow them out with air. you could try doing with out by heating oven to 100 degrees and put carb. in and warm it up (remember just warm not HOT) this will dry out these passages. with more on the plug you are not getting full burn. this is either ignition or the float is sticking in the carb. is/are the plug(s) just sooty or sooty wet? if wet? is it oil? my 4 stroke Mercury flooded carb. and intake. my fault! anyway had to take carb off and put in container of min spirits to rinse out oil and flushed gasoline in cylinders and rotate without plugs to get excess gas out. runs fine now.
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