#8: The Boat Won't Steer


When you turn the steering wheel, the engine/outdrive doesn't turn. Or, it's frozen in place.


Most likely, the steering system is low on hydraulic fluid, or it has sprung a leak. Add fluid as needed to get the system working. If you do notice fluid seeping out of the console or a fitting near the motor, see if you can tighten the fitting.
If the drive is frozen in place, it could be a mechanical failure - possibly a loose connection on the steering arm. On boats with full mechanical steering, the glitch could involve any part of the cable system. Tracing the lines is the best way to find the problem.


Check the steering fluid level periodically, and lubricate and service mechanical systems.

Carry Onboard:

An extra jug of hydraulic fluid and a small funnel.
We hope this List assisted you in your ability to remain calm in the face of possible "on the water" problems, helping to insure many a successful boating adventure.