Skerries RNLI volunteers launched the lifeboat shortly before 2pm when Dublin Coast Guard tasked them to assist the boat, with four men on board, that was experiencing engine trouble.
Those on board the casualty vessel was able to provide the coastguard with GPS co-ordinates for their position.
As a result the lifeboat, with volunteer Joe May at the helm and crewed by Steven Johnson and Laura Boylan, were able to proceed directly to the vessel.
The motorboat was then taken under tow by the lifeboat and returned safely to Howth. Conditions at the time were clam with a slight sea fog.
Speaking after the callout, Skerries RNLI lifeboat operations manager Gerry Canning said: "Everyone on board was wearing a lifejacket and they were able to give us their exact location. Even the most prepared can encounter difficulties at sea.
"We would just like remind people that if they are in difficulty or see others who may be in difficulty to dial 999 and ask for the coastguard."
Skerries RNLI is currently on the lookout for new volunteers to join its 18-strong crew, as previously reported on Afloat.ie.