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Preparing Your Jet Ski for Summer

Preparing Your Jet Ski for Summer

When spring rolls around after the cold days of winter, most people are itching to get outdoors for some fun in the sun. For jet ski owners, the urge to get out on the water is even stronger. Many people think that if they properly winterized their ride at the end of last season that they are ready to ride right away, but there are a few steps in preparing your jet ski for summer. The good news is that the steps are relatively easy. Let’s take a look at the top tips on preparing your jet ski for summer.

  1. Check the fuel line and cooling lines: One of the first things to look at when preparing your jet ski for summer is the condition of your lines. The fuel line and cooling lines are important to a well-functioning machine and it is best to inspect them before another busy riding season starts up. You should check for any cracks in the line or leaks. The lines should be soft, supple, and free from hardening. If you find any issues here, make sure to tend to them before you go out for a ride since damages to this area can leave you stranded on the water with a dead machine.

  2. Check for damages/issues: Aside from inspecting the fuel line and cooling line, you should take this time to look for any concerns in other crucial areas of the ride. For example, this is a good time to check that the spark plugs are free from moisture or rust from moisture buildup over the winter storage period. You should also use this time to check and secure all wires, cables, and belts. If any of these areas show signs of damage such as cracking, stripping, or looseness, now is the time to fix it and avoid bigger problems later in the summer. You should also use this time to grease and seal all bearings to help keep out dirt, sand, and salt from the internal components of your ride.

  3. Check the exhaust pipe: If you left the exhaust port uncovered in the offseason, you should check that no critters have crawled in there before you ride for the new season. You should also check that there are no issues with this area of the jet ski to avoid having mechanical issues once you are out on the water. Check for any signs of damage such as cracking or stripping and promptly replace it before you go out for that first ride.

  4. Drain and refresh fuel/oil: If you left fuel and oil in the machine before you stored it for winter, you will want to tend to that now before your first ride of the season. This is also a good time to add a marine fuel stabilizer or treatment to safeguard your ride for the upcoming season. It is always a good idea to remove the old fluids and add fresh ones to start the season off right. If you are doing this, make sure you consult your owner’s manual on how to safely perform these tasks before you begin. The owner’s manual will also tell you important information regarding what your specific machine needs. For instance, if you have a two-stroke engine, you may need a mixture of fuel and oil in the same tank whereas a four-stroke engine has separate tanks for the two different liquids.

  5. Take care of the battery: When it comes to preparing your jet ski for summer, the battery should always be a top concern. Hopefully, the battery was stored on a battery maintenance charger during the offseason so it is charged up and ready to go, but if not, take the time to charge it now or replace it. If the battery is not sealed, you should check the water level in the cells to make sure you have the right amount of water to keep it operating properly. This is also a good time to check your terminals and exterior case for corrosion or buildup. If you find any signs of damage or buildup, you should take care of them now so you have a good start to the season and avoid any issues.

  6. Add some wax: Once you have examined and fixed any issues with your jet ski, you are ready to care for the more cosmetic aspects of your ride before the season starts up again. The wax you put on before winter storage was a great way to create a barrier from moisture or rust getting to your machine. Even if you waxed the ski at the time of storage, you will probably need a new coat to get you through the season. A coat of wax prevents damages from sun, sand, salt, and water which will help extend the life of your ski over time. Preventing damages will not only keep the ride looking great, but it will also help your resale value later on.

  7. Test your engine: The final step in prepping your ride for a great season of riding fun is to test that it all works. There is nothing more annoying than loading up your jet ski and driving it all the way to the water just to find out it won’t start up. Make sure you test your engine and start it up before you head out for that first ride to avoid this scenario. It is definitely better to discover a mechanical issue sooner rather than later in terms of a jet ski. You should also do a test run on a flush hose using the recommended flush attachment for your model to remove any old fogging oil left behind from last riding season.