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Will New Regulations Mean More Costly Problems for Boaters?
Unless you haven’t put fuel in your car in the past ten years, you’re probably familiar with the term E10. It refers to the 10 percent ethanol that is blended into the gasoline you buy at the pump. If you’ve owned an outboard-powered boat during that same time period, you are far more familiar with E10 than your over-the-road counterparts.
Yamaha offers a popular line of four-cylinder four-stroke outboards that are used in a wide range of installations in both fresh and saltwater all over the world. From pontoons to center consoles, bass boats to work skiffs and even water taxis, they are great performers and real workhorses. The most popular are the 90, 115 and 150-horsepower models and many are used in climates where they are taken out of service for the winter months.
While we always recommend having your engine winterized by a certified Yamaha dealer if possible, these engines are designed to make the process easy enough for owners to do the job themselves. We asked Pete Reils, a certified Yamaha technician at Garden State Marina in Pt. Pleasant, New Jersey to provide a step-by-step tutorial on how you can winterize your engine(s).
CHARITY EVENT RAISES FUNDS FOR INNER-CITY AND DISADVANTAGED YOUTH
On Saturday, August 6, 2016, the Ike Foundation®, in conjunction with the Mid-Atlantic Youth Anglers & Outdoors Program, held its first celebrity Pro-Am Bass Tournament, charity dinner and kids fishing fun day on the waterfront in Camden, New Jersey. The goal was to generate funds and awareness for introducing America’s children, especially inner city and disadvantaged youth, to fishing and the outdoors.
Systems Designed to Improve Performance, Efficiency and Ride
The dynamics of driving an outboard-powered boat are very different than driving a car. With a road vehicle, you’re basically rolling its mass over a flat surface on wheels, but with a boat you’re pushing the mass of a vessel through water. The more a boat’s hull planes—or rises up out of the water—the more it reduces the amount of surface actually in contact with the water. Keeping the boat balanced fore and aft and on an even keel affects how efficiently a boat will run. It’s called “trim,” and a properly trimmed hull has two very beneficial results: reduced fuel consumption and increased speed.
Should Your Skiff Have One?
If you run any kind of skiff or bass boat in shallow water, consider this column a must-read.
Electro-hydraulic jack plates are add-on brackets that provide two more adjustability dimensions to your outboard engine trim: straight up and down.
A Comprehensive Approach to Pre-Season Boat Prep
Brian Rice is a charter fishing captain who plies the inshore and offshore waters off northern New Jersey with his 2006 31-foot Contender® center console. The boat is powered by the original 2006 Yamaha F250 outboards, and the hull and motors have over 2,200 hours of use on them without a major repair.
The electrical system on your boat is the power behind the power. Without it, the outboards won’t start, the pumps won’t pump, the lights won’t illuminate and the navigational electronics show only black screen. Many boat owners don’t have a basic knowledge of the electrical system on their vessels and that lack of knowledge can result in lost days on the water or worse. Today’s outboard powered boats have sophisticated power distribution systems that incorporate multiple batteries, isolators, chargers, breakers, switches and fuses - you should understand the function of each.
A Little Well-Spent Time After Each Use is All it Takes
Have you ever pondered the question, “How can some relatively new boats appear so old while so many older boats look like new?” The distinction can be striking and in most cases, a boat’s appearance and operating condition have very little to do with how much the boat is used. The deciding factor is simply how well the owner cares for it after and between uses. Here’s a case that illustrates the point while providing a template for keeping your boat looking and running like new.
Five Knots Every Boater Should Know
If you spend a little time in docking areas, you’ll be able to identify the novice boaters from the experienced just by watching how they tie up their boat. When you see a shiny new boat pull up to the dock and someone on board throw a few granny knots around a cleat or piling to secure it, there’s a good chance you are observing a new boater in action. Watching someone else struggle to untie their boat because they used an incorrect knot to secure it is another identifier. While most boating courses teach newcomers the basic rules of the road and safe operation of their craft, very few cover ropecraft – and it is an important part of safe boating. Just ask anyone who has watched their boat drift away from the dock and down the river after it was improperly secured, only to watch it hit two other boats before it was rescued by a passing Good Samaritan.
Yamaha gives you the tools to reduce fuel consumption
Gasoline—it was once so cheap it was a non-factor in everyday life. You stopped at the gas station and filled up that gas guzzling four-wheeled monster without a second thought. The same went for your boat. Gather up the family, fill the tank and away you’d go for an afternoon of fishing, waterskiing or cruising because fuel expense was just no big deal for the average middle class family.
ARE YOU A YEAR-ROUND BOATER? IF SO, THEN YOU SHOULD READ THIS.
It was January 2, and a snowstorm had just passed through central New Jersey. The temperatures were in the teens, and the wind was blowing so the wind chill was pushing zero. The marina was empty except for four boats still floating in their slips, and all four just happened to be Yamaha-powered center consoles in the 24-to-32-foot range. Without doubt, all of these were hardcore recreational fishing boats. From the footprints in the snow you could see that three of the owners had already been there to shovel the decks, the fourth would likely be along shortly.
Every new boat requires an owner break-in period. Experiences from this new owner just may help you with yours.
Dan Keating has owned several boats over the years and is an avid fisherman. When he decided to replace his aging center console with a new Yamaha-powered Contender® 32ST, he realized it would take some time to acclimate himself to his new fishing partner. Anyone purchasing a new boat might benefit from his experiences with the dealer and what he did on his own in the weeks after taking delivery.
Are you equipped for a life-threatening emergency?
“Emergency Beacon and Flotation Devices Save Two off Miami Beach”* read the headline of a recent press release sent in October by the U.S. Coast Guard. It continued, “A personal locator beacon (PLB), life jacket and an inflatable cushion likely saved the lives of two people who were rescued by a Coast Guard aircrew after their boat sank, stranding them in the Atlantic Ocean...”
How to Make Sense of Charts and Markers on the Fly
Even small children know what street signs mean. Stop, one-way and the like come easily. But boating traffic aids are different. First of all, the words “map” and “sign” aren’t even part of the lingo when it comes to nautical navigation. Rather, “charts” and “markers” serve as your guides, and it takes some savvy to know how to interpret them without pause.
Is your boat equipped and ready to pass one? It should be.
It was a hot Saturday afternoon in July, and the river was busy with boats returning from the ocean waiting to pass through a narrow railroad bridge a quarter mile from the inlet. There were recreational boats of all sizes—large sportfish and cruiser types, personal watercraft and outboards of very description. While waiting to make the passage, a familiar orange vessel appeared off our starboard side with its blue revolving light shining brightly. It was a Coast Guard RIB, short for rigid inflatable boat, and a guardsman was standing on the bow motioning to our boat.
Everyone knows that close-quarters maneuvering can represent one of the most stressful times for most boaters. Whether pulling into a marina, shore- side restaurant or launch ramp, not wanting to look like a newbie can really turn the knuckles white. Add some adverse conditions to the mix—like foul wind or current—and you can suddenly feel every eye on shore staring at you – just waiting for you to make a mistake.
Protection is Key to Preventing Sun Damage
For millions of Americans, there is no place they would rather be than on the water enjoying the boating experience. Whether you are water skiing, fishing or just enjoying time with friends on a beautiful sunny day, being on the water is an extremely popular form of recreation. As with any outdoor activity, there are precautions that should be considered, and not all of them revolve around the safety equipment or the safe operation of your vessel. Everyone who spends a lot of time on the water shares a concern about exposure to the sun and, without taking the proper precautions, there is potential of falling victim to a number of health problems that can arise as a result.
Freshwater flushing is one of the simplest and most important maintenance procedures a boater should perform to protect an outboard from corrosion. Earlier this spring, Yamaha published a detailed Boater’s Logcovering the three recommended methods for freshwater flushing. As a compliment to that article, Yamaha also recently released an instructional freshwater flush videoon YouTube® that visually walks viewers through each method.
Don’t Leave the Dock Without Them
Many boaters have trim tabs and rarely use them. Others may use some tab if an overweight passenger leans the boat to one side. But so many benefits can be derived from trim tabs that they should be a constant for any operator.
Not everyone has a windlass or needs one. Here’s the easy way to weigh anchor without the work
One of the oldest and most basic pieces of equipment found aboard any boat is the anchor. Some of the earliest anchors discovered by archeologists date back over 2,500 years to the Sea of Galilee, and they were little more than circular, heavy stones with holes drilled through them to attach a rope.
If you keep your boat in the water, these simple steps can help prevent engine damage and save you money
Do you keep your boat in the water during the season like thousands of other boat owners? Maybe you live in one of the southern states and keep it in a slip year-round. Regardless of your circumstances, if your boat stays in the water for extended periods of time, there is one simple procedure you should perform after each outing. This important task can prevent lost boating time, save money on unnecessary repairs, and keep lubricants out of the marine environment. If you’re like many of your fellow slip-bound boaters, you probably forgot all about it after initially reading the operating instructions in your outboard owner’s manual.
Most of us take good care of our marine equipment. We wash and wax our boats and outboards, change the oil and oil filter regularly, and replace the fuel filters, but what about your outboard’s cooling system. Unfortunately, it is often overlooked in a maintenance regimen.
It has long been recognized that sunken ships and natural hard bottom areas are home to all manner of sea life, including recreationally popular gamefish. Anglers who discover such oases on the ocean bottom keep the “numbers” as secret as they would the combination to their safe deposit box. They also understand the value of creating habitats where no such structures currently exist in order to improve and encourage the growth of marine ecosystems. Welcome to the world of artificial reefs.
Are You Prepared for the Next Major Storm?
She came in the middle of the night at high tide on a full moon packing high winds and pushing an unprecedented wall of water ahead of her. Hurricane Sandy was the most storm to hit the Northeast coast in recorded history, claiming over 75 lives and destroying thousands of houses and businesses. The massive flooding compounded by wind damage to the power grid left tens of millions of people in the dark, and 20 days after the storm, there were still tens of thousands of homes in New York and New Jersey without power.
Earning NMMA® FC-W® Oil Certification
By now, you’re probably aware that automotive lubricants aren’t adequate for use in your four-stroke outboard, and that you should look for marine-grade oils displaying the National Marine Manufacturers Association® (NMMA®) FC-W® (Four-Stroke Cycle, Water-Cooled Gasoline Engine Lubricant) certification label.
Are Your Electronic Navigational Charts Up to Date?
From their inception, electronic navigational devices capable of providing accurate positional information on a real-time basis have proven to be a major benefit to military and commercial vessels. The earliest was Loran (Long-Range navigation system), which relied on a chain of shore-based radio towers that transmitted signals on predetermined frequencies at specific time intervals. The first iteration of Loran, called Loran A, required a huge onboard receiver unit and an engineering degree to operate. The Loran A only had a modest degree of accuracy, so very few ever made their way onto recreational boats. That model was followed by an improved system designated Loran C, which incorporated microprocessors and provided an easier way to determine position. It proved to be amazingly accurate.
Kids on Board Add a New Dimension to Going for a Boat Ride
Spending time on the water with the entire family is a great way to embrace the sport of boating. However, seldom do we discuss the details of what it means to pack up the family (and/or friends) for a safe and enjoyable aquatic excursion. There are a few things you must remember before you embark on a boat outing with a group of any size.
Quick, Easy, and Nearly Fool-Proof – You Can Handle This One
Small outboards – less than about 20 hp – are super simple to install, especially if the outboard is a tiller-steer, pull-start model.
These are general guidelines; please refer to the engine manufacturer’s owner’s manual for instructions specific to your outboard.
“Getting stuck” isn’t usually a welcome boating term unless you are anchoring your boat. Unfortunately, too many boaters are unfamiliar with anchoring systems, how to select the right components and how to deploy them correctly. The anchor serves a variety of functions when boating and fishing, but your anchor can also be a safety item of last resort should you find yourself without power with the wind blowing your boat ashore, or on a river being swept away into whatever lies around the next bend. Needless to say, it’s important to be prepared with the right ground tackle.
Outboard Overheating Frequently Fatal to Engine One thousand one, one thousand two, one thousand three … an overheated outboard can go from fine to fried in a matter of seconds … the silence when a hot engine stops running can be a sobering and expensive experience.
Idling through the marina or cruising across the lake, we’ve all seen boats with snazzy paint jobs and condo-like luxuries that tempt us to covet our neighbor’s vessel. Hundreds of boats look cool above the rubrail, but it’s what you can’t see – the hull design – that determines how the craft handles the realities of open water.
We can handle most of our outboard’s routine maintenance – the simple stuff like oil changes, replacing filters and such – but where do we take the boat when it needs professional help?
There are no easy answers to this one, just a few things to consider as we’re seeking someone to heal our ailing vessel.
Have you ever found yourself in a conversation with a veteran boater or a boat salesperson, nodding your head knowingly as they spoke, without having a clue what they’re talking about? Nautical jargon fills the air, and it’s like trying to understand a foreign language – you’re totally lost.
Helpful hints for preparing and operating your outboard boat
If this is your first outboard boat, or if it’s been a while since you’ve driven an outboard-powered boat, we strongly recommend reading the engine and boat owner’s manuals to familiarize yourself with your particular boat and outboard.
Selecting dock and anchor lines for your boat can be an intimidating experience, with dozens of colors, sizes, construction and materials from which to choose, not to mention trying to determine price versus value.
If we approach line selection systematically, distilling the information into easily digestible pieces, deciding what lines are the best for your application shouldn’t be too time-consuming.
If you leave your boat in the water for any appreciable amount of time, Mother Nature is going to take up residence on the bottom of your boat’s hull, the gearcase, and other underwater running gear in a matter of just a week or two.
It’s an all too familiar sight – the happy angler cruising down the highway with a boat in tow, and the big outboard on the back is jumping for joy every time the trailer tires cross a crack in the pavement. Our angler is thinking about fishing, while the outboard is considering jumping ship on the way to the lake.
The current economic environment has created an excellent boat buyer’s market, and pre-owned could be a great way to go.
It’s Off to Tow We Go
Shop by the Numbers and You’ll be Trailering to Exotic Destinations in No Time
EPIRBs and DSC/VHFs – Technology to the Rescue
Although boating is a lot of fun—serene sundown cruises, fishing for the next record catch, or doing whatever you like —the reality of being on the water is that if something goes wrong, situations can deteriorate rapidly.
Choosing the best propeller for your boat isn’t nearly as complicated as it may seem. A boat’s weight, its hull style, how much horsepower is on the transom, and the captain’s performance goals (slow trolling, pulling kids on tubes, being the first to reach a hot fishing spot in a tournament, fuel conservation, etc.) influence the type and size of propeller for a given boat.
After successfully parking your boat alongside a dock or in a slip, now it’s time to make sure the boat stays in place, using dock lines – also called mooring lines – to tie the boat to the dock.
You Have Questions – We Have Answers
Log on to any online boating forum and ask a couple of simple questions about your boat’s propeller. Chances are you’ll get dozens of answers – and we’ll wager that most of the responses are different.
Patience and Practice Pay Off
Docking your boat isn’t as difficult as you might imagine; take it slow and easy – and you’ll do just fine.
As a result of new EPA regulations, changes to portable marine fuel tanks, fuel hoses and primer bulbs will soon affect many boaters. If you use portable marine fuel tanks during your boating expeditions, you need to understand these changes in the fuel system components, and you need to learn how to operate them properly.
Pampering Your Prop Isn’t a Sign of Weakness – It’s OK to Show You Care.
Do you think that you work hard? Try being a propeller for a day, swirling in circles for hours on end in nasty, weed-infested water, plowing blindly through mud and muck, grinding away over gravel, then whacking the occasional rock or deadhead – now that’s hard work.
Before You Approach Sponsors for Support, There are a Few Things You Should Know
There are many anglers across the country who fish competitively during the weekends in local, regional and sometimes even national tournaments. If you are one of these anglers who have had success during these types of tournaments, and you are looking to get a little more serious about your fishing career, one of the first things you will need to do is approach sponsors for support.
Your Tow Vehicle Can Stop on a Dime – Can Your Boat Trailer Do The Same?
Let’s face it; towing a boat down the road requires that you alter your normal driving habits to compensate for the mass on the trailer behind you. Swinging wide on turns, keeping the trailer in your lane, and hanging back a little farther from the cars ahead of you are all common towing practices.
It’s time to put your boat in the water!
Recommissioning – taking your boat out of mothballs after a long period of inactivity is an exercise involving attention to detail – a lot of details, actually. The time and money you’ll expend relates proportionately to how well you prepared your boat prior to storage.
As we discussed in Part 1 of “Battery Tech,” choosing the right battery for the job is very important. However, boaters should pay an equal amount of attention to how batteries are mounted in the boat and maintained once in use. Marine batteries are heavy and can be cumbersome. As a result, they must be properly secured and the terminals protected.
Although your boat uses a gasoline engine for its primary propulsion, without ample electricity, that outboard is pretty much out of business.
When it’s time for a new outboard, bigger isn’t necessarily better; you have to match the outboard to the way you use your boat, your budget, the size and type of boat; and the vessel’s weight and horsepower capacities.
Doing it right the first time is the only way to electrical success
Working on a marine electrical system is a near certainty if you’re a hands-on boat owner. It doesn’t matter if your foray into the jungle of your boat’s wiring is voluntary – adding electronics or accessories, or involuntary – troubleshooting and repairing an electrical malfunction, there is a right way to get the job done.
“Ditch Bags” keep critical rescue equipment organized, readily accessible in case of on-the-water emergencies
Boating safety takes many forms. For example, the U.S. Coast Guard® recommends everyone aboard a recreational boat wear a personal flotation device at all times. The introduction of compact PFDs has been beneficial in increasing this safety practice among America’s boating public. Another example is the kill switch lanyard worn by the boat operator that turns off the engine(s) should something happen that forces him/her away from the helm. These are passive safety devices that can save lives, but is your boat prepared for an emergency that requires you to abandon your craft and enter the water?
Marine canvas protects our boats from the sun’s brutality, rain, bird droppings and sundry other evils, as well as shielding us from the elements while we’re embracing the boating lifestyle.
As with everything else associated with owning a boat, marine canvas requires your attention periodically to allow the canvas to do its job and look good in the process.
Once you’ve found your slice of heaven on the lake, how do you keep your boat in place? Easy, just lower the anchor over the side, make sure it has a good grip on the bottom of the pond, then open the cooler and break out the refreshments.
The boating lifestyle has its own set of official rules that we’ve covered in previous editions of the Boater’s Log series. In addition to the governmental mandates, a big part of being a safe, responsible boater is becoming familiar with the fundamentals of nautical courtesies.
When we hit the highway, we know that there are certain rules and laws that we must obey. Things like stopping at a stop sign, using your turn signals to let other drivers know your intentions, keep to the right, pass on the left, and so on.
Basic Boating Knots Made Easy
Some of the most essential pieces of gear on your boat are the “lines,” nautical-speak for the ropes on the boat. These basic pieces of equipment can fasten loose items above and below deck, connect the anchor to the boat, and secure your vessel to the dock.
Boating at night can be a fantastic experience – the waterways are less crowded, the fishing is usually pretty good, not to mention the whole moon, stars and skies aspect of a nocturnal cruise.
Electrical problems can be extremely frustrating, and can cause many of us a great deal of confusion. Last year, in The Boater's Log - Vol. 1, No. 16, Juicitricity, we talked in detail about marine batteries. Now, we'll do our best to point you in the right direction with professional advice and some easy preventive maintenance tips to keep that electrical juice flowing like it should.
Fuel system troubles are, for the most part, preventable if you pay close attention to the details. Regular fuel system maintenance isn't difficult, doesn't require a lot of time or special skills – it's simply a matter of following the instructions in your engine and boat owner's manuals and applying a little common sense in the process.
A new generation of smaller, more affordable emergency products can enhance your safety on the water.
For most of us, our boats will spend most of their lives on the trailer. Unfortunately, boat trailers tend to be one of those out-of-sight, out-of-mind things that don't receive the attention they deserve until something breaks in the middle of nowhere.
In the weeks following the BP®/Transocean's® Deepwater Horizon oil spill, Yamaha has received many calls from concerned consumers who wish to learn more about the operation of Yamaha outboard motors in crude oil contaminated water. The conditions that currently exist in portions of the Gulf of Mexico are unique and unusual. There is very little data to support any assertions for how the products might react when exposed to them.
Most of us take good care of our marine equipment – we wash and wax our boats and outboards, change the oil and oil filter regularly, and replace the fuel filters religiously.
There are a lot of benefits to repowering your boat, and the benefits are greater with the arrival of new-generation outboards.
Regular Lubrication Service Key to Marine Engine's Longevity
You have a lot of money tied up in your outboard and it only makes sense to do everything you can to help the engine last as long possible, doesn't it? The "anti-aging secret" isn't difficult, nor is it particularly expensive, and if you're somewhat mechanically inclined, you can work this magic without putting the boat in the shop.
Improved Bottom Fishing Success is Only an Anchor Away!
There are few types of saltwater fishing more relaxing and enjoyable than bottom fishing. With a little experience it can be fast fun with the added reward of tasty fish dinners. It's great for novice or experienced anglers and kids love it!
Here's a situation that happens more often than we would like. A customer invests thousands of dollars in a new outboard, then puts generic oil of questionable origin from some discount store in the engine. Before long, that customer is usually crying the blues when the powerhead fails because of inadequate lubrication.
It's been a long, cold winter even in areas of the country that are not used to dealing with snow and temperatures below freezing. Spring commissioning has always been a ritual in more northern latitudes, but if you are not familiar with the process here are some helpful tips and checklists that will make your boating safer and more enjoyable as we spring into the new season.
Tell me if you've heard this one before: A man fires up his outboard for the first outing of the season. He didn't put any fuel stabilizer in the tank before letting the boat sit for many months. But guess what? The outboard fires right up. No problem.
Most fuel-injected marine engines made in the past decade are controlled by a cutting-edge on-board computer for maximum power and efficiency; however the industry's "standard" instrumentation – the gauges at the helm – are often analog devices that haven't changed (or improved) appreciably for over a half-century.
Outboard-powered boats can consume an incredible amount of electricity, with all the electronics, lights, trolling motors, windlasses and blow-your-mind sound systems swilling electrons like vampires on spring break – and that doesn't even include the juice to start the engine.
Installing an outboard ("rigging" in marine industry speak) involves not only bolting the outboard to the transom, but can also include connecting the steering system, wiring harnesses, throttle and shift controls, and instrumentation.
When spending money on a new outboard, it's nice to have some assurance that the outboard is going to work as the manufacturer intended. That's why manufacturers include a limited warranty with each new outboard they sell. When purchasing an outboard, it's important to consider not only the manufacturer's reputation for quality products, but quality service, both before and after the sale; it's about their proven willingness to take care of you…the customer.
Whether you're considering putting a fresh outboard on your present boat, or you've found a deal on a classic sitting in your neighbor's backyard that just needs an outboard to be as good as new, you owe it to yourself to examine the boat thoroughly before spending your hard-earned money to repower.
Operating an outboard powered boat requires a proactive approach on your – The Captain's – part to ensure a trouble-free boating experience.
Buying a new outboard (or boat/motor/trailer package) requires a financial commitment that can range from a few thousand dollars to hundreds of thousands. Whether your investment is in a small boat or a multi-outboard offshore rig, you want to get the most for your money by taking advantage of every promotion, sale, deal, rebate or warranty—anything that can ultimately save you money.
Last month, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) received a waiver request from an ethanol industry group encouraging the agency to raise the ethanol blend wall in gasoline from 10 percent (E10) to 15 percent (E15). Since 1978, the limit has remained at 10 percent (E10) for conventional (non flex-fuel) vehicles.
Buying a new boat and Yamaha outboard is an exciting experience. It's also accompanied by a dizzying blur of paperwork -- sign this, don't forget that, any questions? – then you hitch up and drive away with your pride and joy. By the time you get home, it could be tough to remember half the things the dealer told you and when you finally hit the water, you probably have even more questions. Not to worry, we're here to help.
What is the most important thing when choosing a propeller? Pitch. No matter what size engine or what kind of boat, if the propeller isn't the right pitch, the boat isn't going to live up to
Yamaha Pro Dave Wolak, after only four full seasons as a professional angler, advanced to the final round of the Bassmaster® Classic last week ahead of many well-known, long-tenured professionals. Some might attribute his achievement to the element of chance that is a part of any professional sporting endeavor, but Wolak thinks equipment plays a definitive role in his success.
Two-stroke outboards are alive and well at Yamaha, and they are also widely available to customers through Yamaha dealerships across the country. While it's true that Yamaha won't be able to provide these outboards indefinitely, the company will be able to ship them for the remainder of the 2009 calendar year.
The effects E10 fuel, a combination of 10 percent ethanol and 90 percent gasoline, though positive for conservation measures, can damage marine engine systems. When introduced into the fuel tanks of marine engine systems, E10 fuel can dissolve fuel system components, creating contaminants that cause plaque to form, which may ultimately lead to the destruction of the engine itself.