Motors for inflatable, plastic, and aluminum boats can be gasoline or electric, two-stroke or four-stroke, and vary in power. The motors also require maintenance, and they need additional accessories.

When electric motors are needed

Silent and environmentally-friendly electric motors are equipped with boats that move in nature reserves where it is forbidden to use internal combustion engines.

Inexpensive models will be able to disperse a small boat. More expensive motors have more functions, for example, there is an “electronic anchor” mode, in which the engine, guided by GPS signals, automatically keeps the boat in one place, despite the wind or current.

Which boats are equipped with gasoline engines?

Gasoline engines with a capacity of 2-30 hp, which are controlled by a tiller handle, are installed on inflatable PVC boats up to 3.9 m long. Gasoline engines with a capacity of 30 hp are controlled from a rotary steering wheel. Engines of this type are installed on boats with a prepared control console and boats with rigid plastic or aluminum hull.

What does the engine power affect?

The engine power directly affects the speed of the boat. The more powerful the outboard engine, the heavier the boat can move on the water. The optimal indicator is considered at the rate of 1 horsepower per 20-25 kg of the weight of the boat with passengers and equipment.

When buying a motor for river navigation, you should take into account the speed of the river — 5-10 km/h, and when buying for sea — the wind speed. On average, more powerful engines are needed for rivers and seas than for standing reservoirs.

Average indicators of the maximum speed of rubber boats with one person, depending on the engine power:

– 2-4 hp — 15-17 km / h;

– 5-6 hp — 19-23 km / h;

– 8-15 hp — 29-40 km / h;

– 18-30 hp — 35-50 km / h.

What engine power should I choose for different boats

On boats with a 2-6 hp motor, it is comfortable to move around small lakes and quiet rivers, you can fish on the shores of large lakes or seas. Such motors are light and inexpensive, they do not need special permits.

Outboard motors with a capacity of 8-15 hp are installed on boats with a length of 3-3. 6 m. They are suitable for multi-day, relatively fast, and economical movements on large lakes and rivers. Such motors weigh 30-35 kg, so they need to be carried together. 

Motors with a capacity of more than 20 hp are installed on all-metal boats, catamarans, and small yachts with a length of more than 4 m. On boats with such motors, you can move at high speed and overcome long distances, as well as water skiing. They consume a lot of fuel, it is difficult to move at a low speed, for example, when trolling — a method of fishing from a moving watercraft.

The power of the gasoline engine should not exceed the indicators determined by the boat manufacturer. Installing a more powerful engine is not safe.