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Lower unit questions

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Steve Gaylord

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Guys,



I have two questions. #1 I have had my boat a year now and recently changed the oil in my lower unit. The oil had a light green sludge in it. Not a whole lot but it was very noticeable. I have not seen any sign of an oil leak anywhere though. Is this a big deal or what I should expect from about 1 years use. #2 If I pull back on the prop with my hands without removing the nut as if I am trying to pull the prop off I have about 1/16 to 1/8" of play. This play is in the lower unit the prop is tight on the shaft. Again is this normal?



My motor is a 99 225 Optimax.



Thanks,



Steve
 

Dan J.

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If the lower unit oil is still dark, it's probably no big deal. On your initial lower unit service it's not uncommon to have a slight discoloration, as long as it is still a dark translucent color overall. If there is any milky colored oil, lighter grayish tint, you've probably lost a seal. DO NOT RUN IT UNTIL REMEDIED. Or you'll wish you had. Shaft play is normal. I'm on my third Opti 225 and all have been about that much. Most V6's have that little bit of slack. Good luck.
 

Steve Gaylord

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Dan,



Thanks for the reply. The oil was mostly a dark green color. The first part that came out when I drained it had a little grey sludge look to it. Is there anything I can check myself to see if I need to replace the seal before taking it to the dealer?



Thanks again,



Steve
 

Mebassn

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Steve, the light grey sludge might be shavings from the normal break-in process (i am assuming you are the original owner). The first time i changed my lower unit oil i had simila color come out and i was not happy but after taking the pan into the sun you could see the shiny teeny tiny partcles, almost like silver dust shimmer in the light. I also looked at the mag plug(lower plug) and saw the same looking stuff there(no chunks) so i went about replacing the grease. I ran the motor for a month or so and changed the grease again this time there was alot less shiny stuff and a normal used look to the grease.

If there was any sizeable metal flakes attached to the mag plug, take the plug to the nearest dealer or the one you bought it from and ask then there opinion. If they are a good dealership you should have no problem and they will send you on your way, if you don't like what you hear get a second opinion or ask an EXPERIENCED friend.



Hope this helps,

Eric
 

Dan J.

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Steve,



Next time you run it, drain a couple of ounces for visual inspection. Wait until you get home before so. This should eliminate the natural frothing of the oil. If milky or cloudy, greyish, you've lost a seal. Most likely, it will be as nice and dark as when you put it in. Top it off and check/change every 50 hours of heavy use, 100 hours occasional use.
 

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