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Old 09-23-2016, 10:48 PM   #1
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Outboard: Carburetor vs EFI

Anyone have an opinion about a 20hp outboard having a carburetor (Tohatsu for instance) vs EFI (Yamaha)? Seems to me that, eventually, fuel will have a chance of going sour (ethanol included) and gum things up.

A carburetor can be opened and cleaned with some simplicity. An EFI is much more complicated and expensive to repair - especially if the injectors need replacing.

Wrong assumptions?
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Old 09-24-2016, 12:10 AM   #2
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EFI keeps the gas isolated from oxygen while in standby, system is completely sealed up. EFI engines can sit for six months then start like they ran yesterday. Carbs always have fuel exposed to air in the bowl. Leave it sit six months and you are going to need tools.
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Old 09-24-2016, 01:14 AM   #3
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EFIbis also much more fuel efficient in the metering of the file across the entire power band.
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Old 09-24-2016, 01:58 AM   #4
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I've had plenty of 2 cycle carburetor o/b's over decades for dinks and runabouts. Currently have a great 1975 50 hp Johnson on our Crestliner 14'8" tow behind, four seater runabout. I simply add about 1/8 pint Berryman B-12 Chemtool to every 6 gal tank fill-up.

https://www.berrymanproducts.com/pro...ector-cleaner/

Never have problem... even after six months or longer of no use. I do recommend always off hooking the pressure line from gas tank and at engine each time of dormancy.
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Old 09-24-2016, 05:28 AM   #5
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With either system, I disconnect the fuel line and run the system dry of fuel after use. Never had an issue with fuel going bad in either type of motor.

Ted
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Old 09-24-2016, 05:30 AM   #6
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One can work around the air police bad gas requirement in many areas where non ethanol fuel is available.
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Old 09-24-2016, 06:01 AM   #7
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EFI- As others have said, more efficient, quicker start as you do not have to refill carb bowl, resistant to ethanol damage. Go for EFI!!!


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Old 09-24-2016, 06:23 AM   #8
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I have a 6hp Tohatsu with carb for my dingy and am now very proficient in dismantling the carb since I have had to do it so many times. As Ted has stated, I now disconnect the fuel line and let it run dry each time I use it and that seems to have solved the issues. On my 20 HP Yamaha EFI I just shut it off and if I don't use it for a month or two it doesn't matter, it just starts right up. I would not buy another carbed engine just to save a few bucks.
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Old 09-24-2016, 09:05 AM   #9
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With either system, I disconnect the fuel line and run the system dry of fuel after use. Never had an issue with fuel going bad in either type of motor.

Ted
I've found that by adding 1/8 pint Berryman B-12 Chemtool to every 6 gal tank fill-up (will admit I miss adding it now and then) there is no need for running dry. Have had carbureted o/b engines sit for many, many months with quick restart being no problem. As with all carbed o/b's, once both ends of fuel line are reconnected - primer bulb in line needs to be squeezed until firm resistance is accomplished and then choke used appropriately. Basically the exact same fuel primer / choke process used for multi month dormancy as for over night shut down that cools engine completely.


BTW - I've also found that by utilizing Chemtool in gasoline idle is smooth.


PS: Upon reading my two posts regarding Berryman B-12 Chemtool in gasoline... I forgot to mention the following. Sometimes (about every 4th to 6th six gallon tank fill-up I'll throw in about 1/2 pint Chemtool to really help keep fuel line internals clean! That's about the maximum recommended amount of Chemtool to add to gasoline - by %age.


This video is clearly eye-opening...


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Old 09-24-2016, 09:58 AM   #10
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Art- Did you not used to plug "Startron" additives? Why the change to start plugging "Chemtool"?

To the OP- go EFI and if you can, get a three cylinder. Two's are rough running. Wish they made tiny four stroke three's like 10-15hp.
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Old 09-24-2016, 10:15 AM   #11
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Art- Did you not used to plug "Startron" additives? Why the change to start plugging "Chemtool"?

To the OP- go EFI and if you can, get a three cylinder. Two's are rough running. Wish they made tiny four stroke three's like 10-15hp.
Ski - I consistently use and recommend Soltron, instead of Startron.

Soltron and Chemtool are completely different animals.

Soltron is for keeping fuels clear of "bugs" as well as emulsifying water into a fuel substance that mixes into (becomes fungible with) fuels in tank while virtually eliminating separation factors of E-Fuels. I always add that in my Tolly's 100 gallon tanks when fueling. It enables keeping gasoline/diesel really clean with ability to sit idle for up to years if necessary without turning bad.

Chemtool is for dissolving deposits off interior walls and other surface areas of fuel lines.


Tolly's 200 gallon fuel may last for some time before 100% change happens, if it ever really does... at best it is intermixing with old and new. O/b six gallon tank drains often to empty with all-new fuel at replenishment.
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Old 09-24-2016, 11:27 AM   #12
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DW8928-yup, wrong assumption. Some folks put "mouse milk" in their gasoline outboard fuel. Many swear by this solution. I have owned carbureted outboard engines (2- and 4-cycle) for some 50 years now, only use non-ethanol gasoline, and have religiously run my carbureted outboard motors dry after every use. No mouse milk, however. While this technique has prevented issues with blockage of the fuel system, it has NOT prevented issues with the routine need for adjustment, priming, cleanout, "fiddling", and other associated ills with carbureted outboards.

And by the way, ditto the above for my lawn mowers, weed eaters, pressure washers, etc. that I use on dry land. Interesting that many dealers for industrial and consumer land-based small engine products (Stihl, for example) now offer single-use non-ethanol cans of premix for their 2-cycle carbureted engines. Carbureted engines that sit unused for long periods of time are simply a PIA.

My latest outboard (30hp Tohatsu) is EFI. WAY better fuel system than on ANY previous carbureted outboard to date. Easier to start, better fuel economy, better idle, better throttle respone, blah blah blah. And there are many very real (and non-pollution related) technical reasons why most all modern internal combustions engines are now fuel injected. In my opinion (YMMV), fuel injection is the correct choice for any outboard powered boat. Hopefully this technology will percolate down to the lower-powered outboards soon, so ALL can take advantage of it.

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Old 09-24-2016, 12:18 PM   #13
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I've been told that Tohatsu has developed an EFI for under 25hp OBs but that they are relentlessly testing the system before release - supposedly still a few years away apparently.

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DW8928-yup, wrong assumption. Some folks put "mouse milk" in their gasoline outboard fuel. Many swear by this solution. I have owned carbureted outboard engines (2- and 4-cycle) for some 50 years now, only use non-ethanol gasoline, and have religiously run my carbureted outboard motors dry after every use. No mouse milk, however. While this technique has prevented issues with blockage of the fuel system, it has NOT prevented issues with the routine need for adjustment, priming, cleanout, "fiddling", and other associated ills with carbureted outboards.

And by the way, ditto the above for my lawn mowers, weed eaters, pressure washers, etc. that I use on dry land. Interesting that many dealers for industrial and consumer land-based small engine products (Stihl, for example) now offer single-use non-ethanol cans of premix for their 2-cycle carbureted engines. Carbureted engines that sit unused for long periods of time are simply a PIA.

My latest outboard (30hp Tohatsu) is EFI. WAY better fuel system than on ANY previous carbureted outboard to date. Easier to start, better fuel economy, better idle, better throttle respone, blah blah blah. And there are many very real (and non-pollution related) technical reasons why most all modern internal combustions engines are now fuel injected. In my opinion (YMMV), fuel injection is the correct choice for any outboard powered boat. Hopefully this technology will percolate down to the lower-powered outboards soon, so ALL can take advantage of it.

Regards,

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Old 09-24-2016, 12:37 PM   #14
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FWIW - Berryman B-12 Chemtool is:


45-50% Toluene
20-25% Acetone
20-25% Methanol
Plus trace solvents
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Old 09-24-2016, 02:34 PM   #15
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Art- Did you not used to plug "Startron" additives? Why the change to start plugging "Chemtool"?

To the OP- go EFI and if you can, get a three cylinder. Two's are rough running. Wish they made tiny four stroke three's like 10-15hp.
I've always wished for a small multi-cylinder OB. Had the same thoughts. But they would be heavier, burn more fuel and make less power unless rev'ed higher like 7-8000rpm. In my motorcycling days I learned lots of cylinders made engines that were flat on power and even more so on torque. The 350 honda 4 was heavy and slow whereas the twins were great. In the days though I rode Suzuki 2 stroke twins. Very light and very fast.

Think 2 stroke 2 cyl like my 4hp "Light Twin" OMC. With one of those angle drive lower units. Very smooth and relatively quiet w the FG cover. Note that a 2 stroke twin has the same # of power strokes as a 4 stroke 4 cyl. I just reciently got my third one. The first two were hopelessly salted. This little 4 seems OK. Only 32lbs too.

As to the OP all the above is true to my knowledge but small carbuated engines seem OK if given special treatment. One huge difference though is that you can fix a carb engine.
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Old 09-24-2016, 03:48 PM   #16
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I think that is the BIG advantage of a carb - the ability for self help almost anywhere. I would be lost on an EFI. Plus the injectors are expensive.

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I've always wished for a small multi-cylinder OB. Had the same thoughts. But they would be heavier, burn more fuel and make less power unless rev'ed higher like 7-8000rpm. In my motorcycling days I learned lots of cylinders made engines that were flat on power and even more so on torque. The 350 honda 4 was heavy and slow whereas the twins were great. In the days though I rode Suzuki 2 stroke twins. Very light and very fast.

Think 2 stroke 2 cyl like my 4hp "Light Twin" OMC. With one of those angle drive lower units. Very smooth and relatively quiet w the FG cover. Note that a 2 stroke twin has the same # of power strokes as a 4 stroke 4 cyl. I just reciently got my third one. The first two were hopelessly salted. This little 4 seems OK. Only 32lbs too.

As to the OP all the above is true to my knowledge but small carbuated engines seem OK if given special treatment. One huge difference though is that you can fix a carb engine.
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Old 09-24-2016, 03:53 PM   #17
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In my opinion (YMMV), fuel injection is the correct choice for any outboard powered boat. Hopefully this technology will percolate down to the lower-powered outboards soon, so ALL can take advantage of it.
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I've been told that Tohatsu has developed an EFI for under 25hp OBs but that they are relentlessly testing the system before release - supposedly still a few years away apparently.

The newer Suzuki 9.9/15/20 models are fuel-injected. So far, our DF15A seems to be dealing with the ethanol we get around here better than our 2-stroke carbureted outboard.

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Old 09-24-2016, 04:10 PM   #18
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One of the reasons for running the fuel out in a 2 stroke was that if you didn't, the gas would evaporate leaving behind the 2 stroke oil. While not impossible to start the next time, it was easier without the oil residue. Back when I had a gasoline powered truck, I would empty the 6 gallon boat fuel tank into the pickup tank and start with fresh fuel each boat outing. Still have a 2 stroke Mercury 6 HP. Run it on ethanol free gas and Mercury 2 stroke oil, no snake oil. Still going strong after 30 years.

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Old 09-24-2016, 04:24 PM   #19
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Go EFI. I had a Yamaha F40 carb motor that one year I made the mistake of forgetting to winterize the fuel system(10% Ethanol here in NJ). It got to the point that I could remove, disassemble, clean, and re-assemble the 3 carbs in less than 2 hours flat because just the slightest speck of dried gas crud would clog the low speed jets. It would run fine for maybe an hour before another speck would find its way to the jet again. Thankfully it was almost always the bottom carb which was the easiest to get to the culprit.
On my 5 hp Tohatsu 4 stroke, you can remove the low speed jet for cleaning without disassembly. Just takes a couple minutes.
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Old 09-24-2016, 05:25 PM   #20
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For years I ran my ethanol run 4 stroke out of gas...no issues....first time I forgot to for 4 months.....clean the carb big time.


I am no mechanic...but based on how many people I towed....additives are pretty much snake oil, using an outboard without running it dry if full of ethsnol...a crap shoot, run it dry, no problems. My experience backs that 100 oercent.

2 strokes a different animal....

If the mechs say injection is less likely to foul...that's the way I would go...and learn the few tricks to get them going when they don't start.
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