water in engine

How Does Water Get Into A Jet Ski Engine?

If you love to jet ski and have ever wondered how the engine works to move you forward, you have come to the right place! Jet skis need water to run, so how does water get into the engine?

Jet ski engines have an impeller powered by the engine to suck water into the jet ski. The jet ski then uses jet propulsion to expel the water and move the watercraft forward.

In this article, we will review whether or not a jet ski engine needs water to run, what could happen if the water doesn’t get pushed out of the watercraft, why there might be excess water in your jet ski engine, and how to get it out.

Additionally, we will cover what can happen if your jet ski fills with water, if you need to replace your jet ski engine if it gets filled with water, and how to prevent water damage to your jet ski engine.

Does a Jet Ski Engine Need Water to Run?

A jet ski does need water in order to move forward. The engine supplies the power needed to run the impeller which pulls water in from the jet skis surrounding environment and cycles it through a jet propulsion system. As the water shoots out the back of the watercraft, the force pushes the vehicle forward.

Without water, a jet ski would not be able to move. It is the momentum of motion provided by the water propelled out of the back of the jet ski that causes an equal and opposite reaction to allow you to move forward. If it did not have the ability to intake water through the impeller, the jet ski would just sit in the water motionless.

If your engine runs perfectly, but the impeller is broken, then your jet ski cannot run properly. It takes the combination of the engine, impeller, and jet propulsion system to use water to make your jet ski function.

Does a Jet Ski Engine Need Water to Run?

What Happens If the Water Isn’t Pushed Out of the Engine?

If water is not pushed out of the jet ski by the jet propulsion system, there are two things that will happen. The first is that the jet ski will not move forward. The forward motion of the jet ski relies on the force of water propelled out of the back of the jet ski and pushing against the water body in which the jet ski sits.

The second thing that can happen if the water isn’t pushed out of the jet ski is that the water can flood the engine. While the engine needs to use water to make the jet ski run, if that water gets into the engine, it can make the engine seize and die.

Sometimes, the amount of water in engine is negligible and can be solved by drying off the spark plugs and riding the jet ski around for a few minutes. Other times, the water can do much more damage to the engine that may not be as quick of a fix.

Why Is There Water in My Jet Ski Engine?

Although jet skis are designed to take in water to run, they need to push that water out and will if the vehicle is working properly. However, there are some reasons why you might find standing water in your jet ski engine.

The jet propulsion system could be damaged so that the impeller takes in water, but the propulsion system cannot push it all back out. There could be a number of reasons why the jet propulsion system isn’t working, but the most common is that it gets clogged up by seaweed, rope, rocks, or debris from the water body.

Storms can cause water to get into your jet ski engine, and if it was a particularly violent storm, can even toss the vehicle around and damage it even further. Water can also easily get into the engine if your jet ski flips while you’re running it or if you neglect to put in the drain plugs properly, if at all.

How Do I Get Water Out of a Jet Ski Engine?

There are several different methods for getting water out of your jet ski engine depending on the severity of the inundation. If the engine is only a little wet, towel it off. Be sure to unplug the spark plugs and get those thoroughly dried off before reattaching them to the engine.

If there is a lot of standing water in the engine, make sure the drain plugs are open and tilt the jet ski forward to let the water run out of the opening. Once most of the water has been drained out, use a towel, sponge, or shop vacuum to clean up the rest of the water from the engine.

In order for the engine to work properly, it needs to be dry. A jet ski engine will not start if the parts are wet, especially the spark plugs. Once all of the water is out, ride the jet ski for at least ten minutes to allow the engine to completely dry out.

What Will Happen If My Jet Ski Fills with Water?

If your jet ski fills with water, there are a few things that can happen. The most likely scenario is that your jet ski can sink if it fills with water to the point that the jet propulsion system can’t push all the water out or the engine can’t run the system because it is flooded.

Water in your jet ski engine will inevitably cause the engine to seize and if the problem isn’t addressed immediately, it could permanently damage the engine. If your jet ski is full of water, you need to pull it out of the water and assess the reason why there is water in it and how to fix it.

Most times, you can fix it by simply allowing the water to drain through the drain hole. However, if there is a leak or the jet ski hull is cracked or damaged, you may have a more serious problem on your hands that you will need to take care of before it does worse damage to the engine.

what I Do If My Jet Ski Stopped In The Sea

Do I Need to Replace My Jet Ski Engine If It Has Water in It?

Just because there is water in the engine doesn’t mean that you need to replace it completely. Don’t start your engine until you have disconnected the intake and removed the spark plugs. If there is water in the cylinders and you start the engine before taking these actions, you could cause severe damage to the engine that may result in needing a new one.

However, if you remember to take these steps, then when you start the engine, any water inside should shoot out and you can effectively dry your engine without having to replace it. Another helpful hint to save you from replacing the engine or dropping a lot of money into engine repairs is to use an anti-seize compound on the spark plugs when you put them back into the engine.

If you have tried all of the instructions above regarding how to get rid of water from your jet ski engine, but it still doesn’t work, then you may need to bite the bullet and buy a new engine for your jet ski.

What Can I Do to Prevent Water from Damaging My Jet Ski Engine?

There are a few preventative measures you can take to help ensure that your jet ski’s engine isn’t damaged by water. First and foremost, always make sure the drain plug is securely fastened when you go for a ride; this will prevent water from flooding the hull and getting into the engine.

Try to avoid flipping your water vehicle or allowing the bow to dip aggressively below the water too much. Most jet skis have instructions on how to right a flipped watercraft to help prevent water from getting into the engine.

When your jet ski is out of the water, whether you are traveling back home or in storage, leave the drain plug loosened so that any rainwater can easily drain away and not collect and flood the engine.

Lastly, if you suspect that your watercraft is leaking, have it inspected before you go out riding again to ensure that the engine is not at risk of damage and your safety is assured.


How Does Water Get into A Jet Ski Engine?

Jet skis need water in order to run. They take in water through the impeller and push it out with the jet propulsion system to make the vehicle go forward. All of this is powered by the engine, which can be damaged if it takes in water itself.

Always be sure to keep the drain plugs in when riding and drain any excess water from the engine before attempting to turn the vehicle on. If you take the steps to take care of your jet ski’s engine, you can always enjoy the ride.


More Aqua Sports Articles:
– Snorkeling in Kauai
– Snorkeling with Seals
– How to Snorkel in the Underwater?

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