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Jet Ski Maintenance Checklist

Floating PWC Lift and Jet Ski Lift from JetDock

Jet Skis are a fun way to spend time on the water with your friends and family during the long days of summer. Compared to a boat, Jet Skis can be quickly launched from storage without a lot of prep work or lengthy safety checks, and can easily be hauled. However, knowing how to maintain a jet ski is crucial to enjoying it for years to come.

When it comes to Jet Ski maintenance, taking preventative steps can keep you having fun and avoid being stranded out on the lake, ocean or gulf. The following are some Jet Ski maintenance tips to get you started.

1. Consult The Owner’s Manual

Whatever make or model of personal watercraft (PWC) you have, always reference the owner’s manual for model-specific instructions and exact procedures to follow. Keep in mind that our Jet Ski servicing and maintenance checklist is not exhaustive and should be considered a high-level guide to help you along.

2. Maintain Engine Fluids

Some of the older model Jet Skis have 2-stroke engines, which means they require premixed oil and fuel. Newer Jet Skis have 4-stroke engines that don’t require a mixed solution; rather, they have separate fuel and oil areas. When you take your Jet Ski out of storage, be sure to properly evaluate your fuel. If you stored the PWC with fuel in the engine and no fuel stabilizer, make sure that you add a fuel cleaner and stabilizer prior to starting the engine.

3. Dispose Of Old Fuel

If old fuel remains in the engine, you'll want to properly dispose of it. Consult a PWC maintenance expert if you’re not sure, and ask them to drain and dispose of the old fuel. Never dispose of old fuel in the trash or any body of water, including storm drains, streams and sewers. This can cause fires, explosions and ground contamination.

4. Check for Loose or Damaged Parts

Before you start your PWC and go out on the water, you will want to look over all of the wires, including throttle cables and trim. This is a vital part of regular Jet Ski maintenance. Look for any loose or damaged parts, and always replace them if you notice any damage or extensive wear. It’s important not to start your Jet Ski’s engine if you can smell fuel; this could be a sign of a leak, loose cable or damaged fuel tank.

5. Clean The Exterior

Every time you go out on the water, your Jet Ski is exposed to aquatic elements. Be sure to wipe down the windshield and seat to prevent corrosion or staining. Knowing how to clean a Jet Ski right is vital to keep it running right and looking nice. Keep in mind that saltwater is corrosive to metal and proper cleaning of the body of your Jet Ski is essential to extending the life of your investment.

6. Use A PWC Lift

PWCs aren't intended to be stored in water for long periods of time. Floating PWC lifts prevent hull delamination and PWC intake fouling. When you’re cleaning your Jet Ski, it’s easier and safer to walk around the watercraft when using a PWC lift, like those available from Jet Dock. They also make boarding and exiting the watercraft easier and safer for riders of all ages.

7. Annual Tasks

Not all PWC maintenance is done multiple times throughout the year. At least once a year, make sure to change the engine oil and filter, drain the pump oil and replace it with new oil, add grease to all seals and bearing fittings, and lubricate the parts.

8. Winterize Your PWC Jet Ski

When the summer is over and it’s time to winterize your personal watercraft, make sure that you drain any water from the engine, clean the craft thoroughly, lubricate metal hinges and handles, fill up with fuel, add fuel stabilizer, cover it up and store it in a safe location! For a more in-depth look, be sure to check out our guide to How to Winterize a Jet Ski.

Upgrade Your Jet Ski Lift with the Help of Jet Dock

Keeping your Jet Ski up and running properly is essential to extending the life of your PWC. Jet Dock’s PWC and Jet Ski lifts are maintenance-free, leaving you more time to focus on your Jet Ski, boat or other watercraft. Jet Dock offers single floating PWC lifts, double Jet Ski lifts and combination Jet Ski lifts. Have a question about how to maintain a Jet Ski lift or how to install your new Jet Ski floating dock? Reach out today and we'd be happy to assist you!

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