Why a Boat Motor Overheats

Boating is a fun and exciting pastime, but it comes with its own challenges – especially when operating a boat rental. An overheating boat motor is one of the most common problems boaters face out on the water. While we do everything we can to keep our motors in tip-top shape here at Jordanelle Rentals & Marina, instances arise that cause motors to overheat, and here’s why.

Why a Boat Motor Overheats

Lack of Water Flow

One of the most common causes of a motor overheating is a lack of water flow. A boat motor needs a steady water supply to maintain a safe operating temperature. If it’s not getting enough water, it can quickly overheat. The first thing you should check is the water pump and ensure it functions correctly. Also, check the hoses, strainers, and impellers for any blockages or damage that could be restricting the water flow

Low Oil Level

A boat’s motor oil lubricates and cools the internal parts. If the oil level is too low, it can cause excessive friction and heat, which can lead to overheating while in use. We check oil levels regularly, but if you’re having issues out on the water, it could be an oil leak somewhere. The best thing to do is come back to the marina and let us look at it.

Clogged Cooling System

Our pontoons and fishing boats get a lot of use, so it’s not uncommon for the cooling system to clog with dirt, debris, and even marine growth. This eventually restricts the flow of water through the system. While we clean these systems regularly, they can become clogged quickly, leading to an overheated motor. Just make sure to communicate any issue when you return the boat.


Overloading your rental boat with too much weight can cause excessive strain on the motor. The heavier the boat, the harder the motor works, generating more heat. This is why we have strict capacity requirements for each vessel. It’s not because we want to damper your fun; it’s for your own safety and so everyone can have a great time out on the water.

Let’s Get You Out on the Water

Are you looking to have some fun out on the water here in Salt Lake, UT? Then reserve your boat rental from Jordanelle Rentals & Marina. We have a great selection of watercraft, including ski boats, jet skis, kayaks, and SUPs. Have questions? Give us a call at (435) 615-7397.

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