Best Marine Boat Engine Fuel Filters Inline, Spin-On, Turbin Gas/Diesel, Inboard/Outboard Review

Posted by
Ryan Peters
Updated by
Bill Miller
Last updated:
April 1, 2021

How to select a fuel filter for your boat? As the name implies, fuel filters are important for pulling out particulate matter and water from your fuel so that your engines run at top efficiency. They're also an essential part of extending your engines life. Let's look at five criteria for selecting a fuel filter for your boat.

Gas or Diesel Filter Type

First, fuel filters are generally designed to work with either gas or diesel, although some can be used with both. There may actually be different regulations between a gasoline fuel system and a diesel fuel system. So you want to make sure that you're using the correct filter for the type of fuel that you're usin.

Fuel Flow Rate

Second it's important to match the size of the filter to the fuel flow of your engine. For example Sierra filter has a 90 gallon per hour rating, while this diesel filter from Ray Corps has a 30 gallon per hour rating. Remember on a diesel you may be passing more fuel through the filter because it gets returned to the fuel tank so you need to look at the fuel flow not the fuel consumption.

Inline Filter, Spin-On Filter or Turbine-Style Filter?

Third you want to choose the type of filter that you're looking for. There are really three types. The first is little inline filters which is generally used on a small outboard. The second is a spin-on filter (from Sierra or from a variety of Racor models). And the third would be a turbine style filter generally found on larger motor boats and sport fishing boats.

Inboard or Outboard?

Fourth - the type of engine installation you have may affect the type of filter that you can use. For example inboard powered boats can't use a filter that has a clear sediment bowl, and they may have to use one that has a metal sediment bowl. So how your gasoline boat is powered may affect your filter choice.

Single or Double Elements?

Finally, certain filters are available with different micron ratings on the filter elements. For example, some filters all fit the same filter body, but one of them is a two micron filter, another - a 10 micron filter and other is a 30 micron filter. Now this information will be spelled out in your engines owner's manual. So make sure that you choose the proper filtration based on what your owners manual commends. For any engine to give you the best possible service you've got to give a clean air, clean lubrication oil and clean fuel.

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