When it comes to replacing a boat engine, there can be a lot to consider. How much do boat motors actually cost? The answer depends on the type of motor, and the type of boat.
A typical engine can last upwards of seven years. However, there are a lot of different engine types and they all have varying costs attached to them. What engine you get depends on what type of boat you have.
It also depends on what brand motor you buy, what model it is, and whether it is brand new or pre-loved.
Maybe your engine has broken, or it’s just not performing like it used to. Whatever the reason, we’ve put together a guide on the different types of boat engines and how much they could cost you.
The Different Costs And Engine Types
As we’ve discussed, there are a few different types of boat engines out there. To determine the cost, you have to narrow your search down.
Here is a rundown of the most standard types of boat engines, and what they typically cost.
1. Outboard Engines
An outboard engine is one that sits outside of the boat. It consists of an engine, a gearbox, and a propellor. It is normally located at the back of a boat and its function is to provide power for the boat and to aid steering.
When it comes to smaller boats, there will also be a hand tiller, which is essentially a varying sized bar that you turn by hand to direct the boat however you choose. Tillers are used in the place of steering wheels for smaller boats.
With bigger boats, alongside the outboard engine, you’ll get a steering wheel too.
The outboard engine has the propellor and also the gears underwater, which adds to the speed and steering abilities of the boat.
How Much Do Outboard Engines Cost?
This question is quite open ended, as there is no official price stamp for all the different outboard engine types.
Typically, you are looking at a price range starting from around $100 to anywhere up to $90,000. That seems like a pretty steep range, and it is.
2. Inboard Engines
An inboard engine is located inside the boat, typically in the middle. Otherwise known as the hull of the boat.
With an inboard engine, everything is inside the body of the boat. They are stereotypically a feature of larger boats but can be used in smaller vessels too.
Just like outboard engines, steering can be controlled with a steering wheel. Instead of a tiller, inboard engines tend to favor rudders. Rudders are wooden and attached to the back of the boat or the stern.
Inboard engines have better fuel efficiency than other types of boat engine. They, therefore, lean towards being more environmentally friendly.
How Much Do Inboard Engines Cost?
This again depends entirely on the size of the boat you are buying a motor for.
You can expect the costs to range from around $400 – $80,000. This figure fluctuates depending on whether you buy new or second-hand and on the size and horsepower of the engine.
3. Sterndrive Motors
Sterndrive motors are a popular choice.
They work by having an inboard engine, so an engine is built into the boat. The gear case is on the outside of the stern, like outboard motors. They are well suited for easy steering.
How Much Do Sterndrive Motors Cost?
Sterndrive, like all the other types of boat motor, has a wide range in costs.
Expect to pay between a couple of hundred or a couple of thousand dollars for these types of engines.
4. Jet Drive Motors
Jet engines are not as powerful as other types of engines. They are used in smaller water vessels.
They work in quite a simple way. The jet engine takes in the water underneath the boat itself and then passes that water back out of the back of the boat.
This action ‘jets’ the boat forward. They can be quite fast and are suited to shallower water, though still work in deeper water too.
How Much Do Jet Drive Motors Cost?
With jet drive motors, the cost varies from around $300-$40,000. They come in different sizes and strengths and what you pay depends on what size of jet drive you opt to buy.
5. Pod Drive Motor
Last but not least, we have the pod drive motor. Pod drives are generally a more expensive option. However, they do tend to last a long time and are capable of harnessing a great amount of horsepower.
Pod drive boat motors sit on the bottom of the boat. They are typically powered by diesel fuel.
How Much Do Pod Drive Motors Cost?
Pod drive motors tend to have a higher price bracket. They can be anything upwards of $1000.
Though they may come with a higher price, they are super efficient and good on fuel. They are also built for longevity.
Factors That Dictate The Price Of Motor
There are lots of things that can influence the price of the motor. Below we will run through some typical external factors that may affect what you end up paying for your boat motor.
These include boat size, horsepower, hull weight capacity, new motors vs secondhand motors, place of purchase, and fuel efficiency considerations.
What Size Of Boat Do You Have?
The answer to this question will give you a more specific price range for your engine replacement.
If you have a smaller boat, you may need an outboard engine. For larger boats, an inboard engine is required. The bigger the boat weighs, the bigger the engine requirement.
If you have a lighter boat, you can get away with a lighter engine.
What Horsepower Do You Need?
Horsepower is a term used to describe the overall power measure of an engine.
With a bigger boat, you will need a bigger engine. This means a larger measurement of horsepower. These put you at the top of the price bracket for boat motors.
A general rule is the weight per pound of the boat amounts to what measurement of horsepower you may need.
What Weight Can Your Hull Take On?
Boats are very precise things. They are engineered with precision and there are different things to think about to ensure that they continue to work properly.
How much extra weight they can take on should be a big consideration. If you get this wrong, the boat will break or even sink.
Larger boats are much more capable of taking on larger weighted engines. That being said, engine weight does not dictate engine power necessarily.
You can get a lightweight engine that still has a big capacity for speed and power.
New Motor VS Second-hand
Buying new v.s. Buying second hand is a major dictator in terms of boat engine price.
If you buy something brand new, naturally it will cost more than something used. However, you can grab a great used boat engine for a fraction of the price it would be when brand new.
There are plenty of used engines to be bought. These start from low prices such as $100, which is the bottom price range that you’d expect to pay for a decent, functioning motor.
Where You Buy the Motor
Where you buy your motor can influence the price dramatically. There are so many places to buy a bot engine, including new and second hand.
Included in this subcategory is the brand of the motor.
What brand you buy and where you buy it can influence cost greatly. There are plenty of options on the internet for buying second hand and a quick search can yield tens of thousands of acceptable results.
If you are buying new, it is probably safer to go directly to a manufacturer or a credited and certified boat engine sales site.
When buying an engine you have to consider the fuel costs and how far the fuel needs to go. If you’re going on a longer trip, you don’t want to be caught short by a miscalculation with regards to fuel.
There is no doubt that diesel engines are the best when it comes to fuel efficiency. Most boat motors take this into consideration and diesel is a popular choice of fuel.
How much do boat motors cost, and the cost of replacing an engine has a lot of different answers.
There are several external considerations. These include boat size, what type of engine you are buying, horsepower requirements, fuel requirements, and whether you are willing to buy second hand or need a brand new motor.
Costs can vary from $100 up to as high as $90,000.
For typical, non-commercial personal use vessels, the cost is a lot lower. Outboard engines are generally cheaper than inboard engines, as are jet drive and sterndrive motors.
However, inboard engines tend to be the more environmentally friendly option, They are more efficient with fuel and last for a longer time than other types of motor.