Jun 232012

Interested in installing a fuel pump on your boat?  Check out this guest post by our friend Jessica.

Installing a fuel pump in your boat is something you can likely tackle on your own if you have a modest amount of DIY skills. While vacuum pumps and electric pumps have slightly different instructions, you should be able to handle the task with the right guidance and the right tools. It’s always a good idea to have a friend handy to assist you or answer questions, especially if you’re new to boat ownership.

Tools to gather

Before you begin, make sure you have the right tools on hand. Nothing is quite as frustrating as getting halfway done with a job and finding you don’t have the tools necessary to finish. For this project, you will need the following:

  • Thread locker
  • Torque wrench
  • Torque driver
  • Soldering iron
  • Standard slotted screwdriver
  • Rosin-core silver-bearing solder

Image Source: http://www.public-domain-image.com

Do not let the list of supplies intimidate you. The project is not that difficult once you get started.  Please note you should also have a fire extinguisher on hand, just in case. Safety should be your number one priority.

Installing an electric fuel pump

1. Attach the pump
Apply the thread locker to the mounting bolt threads. Connect the pump and the pump gasket and then insert the mounting bolts through both pieces. Set the pump in its place, threading the mounting bolts into position. Tighten as recommended by the manufacturer.

2. Connect the fuel lines
Begin with the fuel line coming from the water-separating fuel filter, sliding it into the pump’s “in” slot and clamping it in place. Do the same thing with the fuel line from the fuel cooler, but connect this one to the “out” slot on the pump. Tighten both clamps using the screwdriver.

3. Attach the wires
Solder the red power wire on the pump to the vacant terminal on the pump switch. Loosen a grounding bolt on the engine block and wrap the black wire from the fuel pump around the bolt, tightening it to hold the wire in place. Finish the job by switching on the pump and checking for leaks.

Installing a vacuum pump

1. Attach the pump
Thread the mounting bolts in place, connecting them to the pump and pump gasket. Place in the correct location in the engine and tighten into place.

2. Insert the fuel lines
Locate a nipple on the intake side of the pump and insert the fuel line from the tank, clamping it in place. Press the other fuel line into the nipple on the outflow side, clamping it in place as well. Place the vacuum hose over the remaining nipple, located in the center of the pump and use a hose clamp to hold it securely.

To finish, pump the primer until the bulb feels firm. Look for leaks.

Your boat’s fuel system is vital to whether or not your vessel functions effectively. While the vacuum pump is slightly simpler to take care of, both electric and vacuum fuel pump installation are tasks that the average boat owner should know how to take care of.

Jessica is interested in traveling and spending time outdoors. She enjoys spending time fishing and blogging on behalf of Sears and other products she trusts.


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  • Really appreciate for sharing this tutorial, will be really helpful for boat owners who want to tackle such jobs on their own.

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