Buy Suzuki Outboard Parts


No announcement yet.

Water in Lower Unit

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Water in Lower Unit

    Ok so I’ll admit I am new to boat engines. Mechanically inclined but new to boats. We recently purchased a 2012 pontoon with a Suzuki DF60A motor on it. When I purchased I checked the oil after running while connected to the hose for 5 mins. I think my downfall was I didn’t have it in gear for more then the time it took me to check and
    and sure the throttle linkage was good. When I pulled the plug and checked the lower unit oil it was clean as could be. Not milky it looked brand new. The motor apparently has less then 25hrs on it. We took it out this week and ran it for a good 8 hours. Trolled a lot while fishing and a good couple hours ripping up the lake 3/4-full throttle. When we pulled it out I noticed milky oil from
    the water intake port. I then checked the lower unit and it’s milky. No metal filings in it. Drained it tonight and no metal filings on the bolt or in the oil. Just looks like milky oil doesn’t smelt burnt either just like gear oil. Apparently the guy bought it for his kids but they bought a wakeboat so never ended up using it. It sat for the last 2.5 years and was ran for 15 mins a year. Basically from the boat launch to his lift where it sat. Not sure if this dried the seals out. He had also mentioned something in the prop assembly was replaced because they left it tilted up slightly in the winter and it got water in it and froze. He showed me the piece they replaced and to be honest it looked like the mechanic was trying to remove the bearing housing and used a puller on it and broke 2 pieces off. It’s not cracked but rather broke in the same spot on either side like it was pried on. Doesn’t look frozen so not sure if this is maybe a seal issue down there however with it coming out of my intake ports I would assume it would be an upper seal? I also didn’t replace the washers on the oil plug when I checked it when we bought it. Tonight after reading up and realizing these should be replaced every time there taken off I noticed there actually quite hard. More like plastic then rubber so hoping this is the easy fix. My plan was to drain the oil over night then “flush it” with cheap gear oil. Fill run for 5 mins, drain hot, fill and run again till my oil runs clear. Replace cheap oil with marine oil and replace plug gaskets. Take it out on the lake again then check oil again for water. Any other advice on my plan or opinions on what his maybe? Common issues I’ve missed?

  • #2
    Yes all that.

    Plus consider getting the lower unit pressure tested, it might save a lot of guessing and will pinpoint the location of any leak if there is one.

    Always drop the leg once every year anyway, otherwise the bolts etc can become corroded and then you will have big problems getting it off. Do a water pump kit replacement while you are there and change the gearbox oil.


    • #3
      Pressure testing as Moonlighter suggested would be important at this point
      Several years ago I bumped the top of a sunken piling and bent the prop shaft. After the dealer repaired it, I had oil leaking. the only way to find it was apply an air hose to the lower unit vent hole. The result was when the dealer inserted the drive shaft unit into the housing, the O-ring gasket did not seat correctly. so other that a bearing seal gone bad, this is another potential place for water getting in.


      • #4
        So I drained it over night refilled it and ran it while connected to the hose port for 15 mins. Checked oil and just as milky again. I’m guessing there wouldn’t have been enough residual water in the unit to make the new oil milky again? I’m still waiting for the original oil to separate again to see how much water I got in there. I’m going to watch a few YouTube videos on making my own pressure tester to try and pin point the leak. As I was connected to the hose and getting water, and the oil coming out of the intakes I think I would assume it’s the upper seals near the water pump or would I be wrong to assume this?


        • #5
          Or maybe the shift rod seal? That entire area does fill with water, however, the drive shaft seal is the most probable seal leaking? But both seals do go into the transmission oil case.

          Good luck.