How to Paint an Outboard Motor

Outboard engines face adverse conditions out on the water, and if you’re rebuilding yours, a fresh coat of paint is a fantastic finishing touch. 

Painting an outboard is a simple job, but it does require a bit of patience. Watch the video above and follow the steps below to learn how to paint an outboard engine.

Supplies Needed - Painting an Outboard Engine

NOTE: We repainted a Mercury Tracker 40 outboard, so naturally we went with Mercury paints. Before you paint an outboard (or anything for that matter), make sure you keep the paint away from the areas you don’t want affected.

Buy Mercury outboard light gray primer

Buy Mercury Quicksilver phantom black spray

Repainting an Outboard Motor Steps

Step 1. Use masking tape on all the openings inside the motor, and trim the edges down precisely with a sharp hobby knife. Cover in bolt holes, moving parts and electrical connections.

Mercury Tracker 40 outboard painting

Mercury Tracker 40 outboard how to paint

Step 2. Prime the surface by keeping the can of primer moving while applying a light, even coat, not settling into one spot. 

How to paint a Mercury outboard engine

How to paint a Mercury outboard motor

Step 3. Wait 24 hours for the primer to dry thoroughly before adding the paint. 

Step 4. Apply the paint the same way as the primer, keeping the can moving while spraying a light coat. Wait at least three hours for the paint to dry, then check to see if you need a second coat. 

How to paint a Mercury outboard

How to paint an outboard

How to paint an outboard engine

Apply one last coat if needed to finish it up. When you’re done, wait 24 hours before you start bolting on parts so that the motor has had plenty of time to dry. 

How to paint an outboard motor

Aside from painting your outboard, a set of new decals will also improve the look of the motor. Watch the video below to see how to remove and replace decals on a Mercury outboard.




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