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Author Topic:   Start-Up Timing of Tell-Tale Stream
David T posted 04-21-2004 07:17 PM ET (US)   Profile for David T  
How long should it take to get water out of the tell-tale (at engine start)?

I fired up the motor for the first time this spring on muffs today - at just over idle (in neutral) and didn't see water coming out of the [tell tale or water pressure confidence nozzle]. Not sure if I just didn't wait long enough, or if I have a problem. It's a 1996 Mercury 150 EFI.



Buzzorouter posted 04-21-2004 09:20 PM ET (US)     Profile for Buzzorouter  Send Email to Buzzorouter     
How long did you wait? My 90 HP Yamaha comes out in less than 30 seconds.
Chuck Tribolet posted 04-21-2004 09:34 PM ET (US)     Profile for Chuck Tribolet  Send Email to Chuck Tribolet     
We had this discussion a while back. It seems some tell-tales are before the thermostat (and will run immediately) and others are after (and won't run until the thermostat opens).

Dunno which flavor your Merc is.


John O posted 04-22-2004 12:03 AM ET (US)     Profile for John O    
My 2001 Mercury 75-HP 2-stroke fires the water out almost immediately with the muffs on or in the water.
jimh posted 04-22-2004 09:21 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
My observations is that the volume and pressure of water from the tell-tale or confidence nozzle is always lower when running on water ear muffs than when the engine lower unit is submerged in water.

The time for water to appear at the confidence outlet after engine start varies with brand and model, and it depends from where the nozzle is being fed in the cooling water system on a particular engine. The often reported situation with Mercury engines is that the tell-tale nozzle is fed from the end of the water path in the cooling system, so it often takes longer for this stream to appear than it does in other brands (like Yamaha) where the nozzle receives water directly from the output of the water pump before it goes to the engine cooling system.

Jarhead posted 04-22-2004 09:30 AM ET (US)     Profile for Jarhead  Send Email to Jarhead     
Kelly posted 04-22-2004 11:55 AM ET (US)     Profile for Kelly  Send Email to Kelly     
I had the same issue the first time I started my motor after a period of non-use. At the recommendation of responders on this site, I took a piece of weed eater line and stuck it in the tell-tale outlet. That cleared the obstruction and solved the problem. Now I keep a piece of weed-eater line in the boat tool box.


phatwhaler posted 04-22-2004 01:49 PM ET (US)     Profile for phatwhaler  Send Email to phatwhaler     
David T,

I have a 1996 Merc 150 EFI 2.0L and it takes a while for the "tell tale" to stream water when running on the ear muffs, especially if the engine is cold. If I were to guess, I'd say it takes up to a minute or two for the water to stream out, especially if the engine is running on the earmuffs and is cold. If you rev the motor up to say 3000 rpms it will pee no matter the temp. If the engine was just run and now your flushing the saltwater out, it streams water a little sooner. Also, the "tell tale" works sooner when the motor is submerged in the water. This motor has been owned by either me or my father for the last five years and it's always done the exact same thing. Another note, my water pressure guage only goes to 15 psi, and the motor will make 15 psi of pressure when I'm running at high speed. It will actually make a little more pressure than 15psi if I'm WOT. I have seen some 150HP Mercs with factory installed 25 psi guages. You also didn't say whether your engine was a 2.5 Liter or 2.0 Liter 150 which might make a difference. Mercury made both engines that year.

phatwhaler out.

andygere posted 04-22-2004 08:01 PM ET (US)     Profile for andygere  Send Email to andygere     
My '89 Mercury Black Max 200 takes about a minute to pee when on the earmuffs. Scared the heck out of me the first time I ran it in the driveway. I called my mechanic since I had just had the waterpump done, and he told me to go back out and let it run for at least a minute at idle. This seems to be a common trait of the V6 Mercury outboards.
David T posted 04-23-2004 04:29 AM ET (US)     Profile for David T    
I took it to the ramp and backed down far enough to get the lower unit in to the water.

Started up and at a fast idle it took over two minutes for the stream to start - this was with air and water both in the 40s. When it did start, it was strong.

Thanks for all the replies. And sorry for calling it a you-know-what Jim.

SpeedBump posted 04-23-2004 08:19 PM ET (US)     Profile for SpeedBump  Send Email to SpeedBump     
David T - Got to LOL - think I know what you got nailed on- Made that miserable mistake my self recently and was duly called to the carpet, funny what we find to be vulgar in this day and age.
2manyboats posted 04-23-2004 09:14 PM ET (US)     Profile for 2manyboats  Send Email to 2manyboats     
did one of you say black motor too ?

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