Teleflex Marine makes boat steering systems, gauges and cables for a variety of applications, including your outboard motor. Taking care of the Teleflex cable that steers your outboard motor is both more complicated than it seems at first glance, and not as taxing as it could be. You only have to remove the ends of the cable from the helm and the motor, so you avoid the pitfalls associated with installing a steering cable through spaces behind walls. Even so, the cable ends need cleaning and lubrication on a regular basis.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- Adjustable wrench
- White marine grease
- Clean rag
- Torque wrench
Remove the bolt and locknut that connect the steering link rod to the tilt tube, using an adjustable wrench. Remove the locknut from the end of the steering link rod. Pull the end of the cable from the steering link rod and out of the tilt tube.
Remove the nut that connects the steering cable to the helm, the steering unit under the dashboard. Clean the end of the cable with mild soapy water and allow the cable to air dry. Slather white marine grease on the exposed cable end, and from the cable end to the sheath.
Clean the end of the cable with mild soapy water and allow the cable to air dry. Clean out the tilt tube as much as possible with a clean rag. Put a healthy dollop of white marine grease on the "motor" end of the cable, and also from the cable end to the beginning of the cable sheath.
Re-install the cable by following the removal steps in reverse order. Tighten the locknuts, at the steering link rod end to 20 foot-pounds with a torque wrench. Tighten the bolt that connects the steering link rod to the tilt tube as well, also to 20 foot-pounds. Set the cable end over the steering rod of the helm and tighten the bolt to the torque directed by the manufacturer.
Tips and warnings
- There is no need to pull the cable out of the boat entirely. Cable maintenance is limited by the construction of the cable, to maintenance done at the ends of the cable.
- Disconnect the negative cable of your battery before performing any maintenance work on your outboard motor, to prevent electrical shock or accidental starting. Remove the nut from the negative post with a 5/16-inch box-end wrench. Lift the cable from your battery, move it outside of the battery box and close the lid of the battery box.
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