As a boater, you will agree that your outboard motor is a critical part of your boat and your investment’s most expensive piece. Therefore, making sure a motor stays protected while towing to and from the water should be a top priority for any boater. To ensure your motor is secure, you can either pull your boat up or down.
You should tow a boat with the motor down. Most manufacturers’ manual recommends towing boats with the motor down to avoid the chances of it bouncing. However, if you have to tilt the engine up to the tilt mode to get the proper clearance, you will need to have some transom saver device to secure the motor from bouncing.
Today, we will go in-depth in this article and know whether you should tow your boat up or down. We will also provide sane reasons why you should tow your boat with the motor and secure a boat motor for travel. Sit back, relax, and enjoy safe towing!
Should You Tow Your Boat With the Motor Up or Down?
Generally, you should tow your boat with the motor down, especially if your trailer offers good ground clearance. Additionally, most manufacturers recommend that you should pull your boat down.
However, you can choose to tow with the motor up if you desire ground clearance.
When I got my first boat, I ensured I went through the manufacturer’s manual to confirm my suspicion. After that, I discovered most boat manufacturer advocates for downward tow.
The following are some of what I discovered from the most of the manuals I went through;
It would be best if you trailer your boat with the motor down in the vertical operating position. The reason why you should tow it down is to prevent the prop from spinning freely during transportation.
But, if you require an additional ground clearance, the outboard should be tilted up using an accessory outboard support device such as a transom saver.
Additional ground clearance may be required for railroad crossings, driveways, and trailer bouncing.
Remember, if you want to maintain proper ground clearance for trailering, do not rely on the power tilt/trim system or tilt support lever. This is because the motor tilt support lever is not designed to support the outboard for trailering.
Why Should You Tow Your Boat With the Motor?
To Protect Your Motor from Damage
Towing your boat down with the motor protects your motor and other boat devices from damage. While towing the boat, your motor tends to bounce and jostle around. This movement can cause major damage to your engine’s housing, steering, among other things.
To Ensure Motor Durability
If you want your motor to have a long lifespan, try to tow your motor down. Even if the boat bounces, if you lock your engine properly, it cannot be destroyed.
To Secure A Boat Motor for Travel
Most people tow their boats with a motor if they want to secure a boat motor for travel. If you are traveling on the road, you will need to tow your motor up, but you’ll have to tow your engine down when you are on the water.
To Maintain Proper Ground Clearance
If you want to maintain proper ground clearance for trailering, tow your motor up. Ground clearance may be required for railroad crossings, driveways, and trailer bouncing. Therefore, towing your boat with a motor will ensure a proper ground clearance.
But remember, do not rely on the power tilt/trim system or tilt support lever because the motor tilt support lever is not intended to support the outboard for trailering.
How Do You Secure a Boat Motor for Travel?
One of the best ways to secure a boat motor for travel is to use a transom saver. This device is designed to lock your motor into place. It can also prevent costly damage to the transom by supporting your motor as you travel.
Keeping a boat motor properly secure and safe while you travel should be a top priority. Therefore, we have researched and put together the following list of the best ways to keep your outboard motor secure while traveling.
Use the Motor Mate
A Motor Mate locking system is one of the best ways to keep your outboard motor safe and secure while trailering. This locking system is rock solid, easy to install, and will help protect your investment for years to come.
Motor Mate is designed to fit in most Evinrude, Johnson, Mercury, and Yamaha outboard motors and does an excellent job protecting and providing support as your trailer.
Secure Your Boat Motor with Extreme Max Transom Saver
I would highly recommend an extreme max transom saver if you are looking to secure your boat motor for travel.
This type of transom saver is made of heavy-duty steel and thick rubber material. These materials will help keep your motor locked into place and protected under the most challenging toeing conditions. Also, the saver mounts over the trailer’s rear roller and comes in different extension lengths to help you quickly pick the right one for your rig.
Even as you trailer your boat to and from the lake, this saver is a great option. The saver will ensure that it gives you confidence and less worry.
Use a Mean Mount Transom Saver
This type of transom saver is a high-end and top-of-the-line transom saver, especially when it comes to quality. It is also an excellent choice for protecting your boat and motor during towing.
This boat motor saver takes the pressure off your hydraulic system, which helps prevent damage. It will also secure your boat by eliminating any movement as you trailer your boat.
Adjustable Transom Saver
You can also use an adjustable transom saver to secure your boat motor for travel. Atwood Adjustable Transom Saver is an excellent example of an adjustable saver, especially when you are on a budget.
The saver is relatively universal and will fit on most boat motors. Also, it is highly regarded as a great overall option to secure your boat.