To ensure your jet ski is kept in the best shape possible, it needs to be winterized. If this is not done, there can be a lot of damage done due to water freezing inside. You may be wondering how much it will cost to get your jet ski winterized where you are living. I will give you the average cost below.
The average cost of getting a jet ski winterized by a mechanic is $600-$800. To get an accurate price for your personal jet ski, call a local dealer and they will be able to tell you a more exact price.
What Does Winterizing Include?
Winterizing your jet ski is the most expensive maintenance you will have every year. However, if you do not winterize your jet ski, it will cost you even more to restore it. Here is a list of what is included in winterizing your jet ski:
- Draining the water out. Once you have finished using your jet ski for the summer, your mechanic will completely drain the water out of the cooling system. After the water is drained they will also flush out all of the dirt and grime from the cooling system
- Clean it. Once the inside is cleaned out, they clean the outside. They will use a mild soap to wash the hull and then clean and wax the outside of your jet ski to protect it from UV damage. Most often mechanics use a jet ski lift to make cleaning easy and efficient
- Fill it up. They will then completely fill up your gas tank with a stabilizer to keep it clean. They will run the engine for no more than 30 seconds at a time to make sure the stabilizer is mixed with the fuel.
- Lubricate. It is very important that every seal and cable is well lubricated. The mechanic should make sure to refer to the manual from your jet ski to use the recommended protectants
- Oil it up. They will then spray the carburetor and spark plug cylinders with fogging oil. It is important that they coat the insides of the PWC to prevent corrosion
- Take the battery out. To prevent reducing the life of your battery, they will remove it and ask that you connect it to a trickling charger to add some charge to it over the break
This is a lot of steps for one person to do, which is why most people take it into a mechanic to ensure it gets done right. Almost everything needs to be cleaned and lubricated which takes a lot of equipment. Without all of these precautions of winterizing, your jet ski would not be ready to run when the season starts.
Why is Winterizing so Expensive?
To put the expenses into perspective for you, I wanted to share the check you would have to write up if you did not winterize your jet ski. The worth of damage from not winterizing your jet ski can get up to $5,000! If you have water that freezes inside your engine over the winter, it will damage your entire jet ski.
So although winterizing seems expensive, it is a necessity for your jet ski every year. Even if you live in an area where it does not get too cold in the winter season, you still need to winterize your PWC.
Winterizing is expensive because there is a lot of equipment you need to use on your jet ski, and it takes a lot of labor to complete a winterization.
Jet ski parts are super expensive and in order to keep them in spit spot shape you need to invest in quality motor oil. You may think that you are an expert and can do the work yourself, but if you make even one small mistake it could end up in a huge disaster.
Even just overfilling your engine with oil can result in an expensive mess you have to clean up. Take my advice, go to a mechanic if you are not well aware of your jet ski and how it needs to be winterized.
A jet ski is a high-performance powerboat, not a lawnmower, and you need to make sure it is taken care of by someone who knows what they are doing or it could die.
How to Winterize Your PWC Yourself
If you do have experience with jet skis and how to winterize them, you can save some cash by doing it yourself!
- Get your jet ski positioned in the draining position. Make sure the front is higher up than the rear so you can drain it properly. Position it carefully on your trailer.
- Turn the jet ski on and move the throttle back and forth in fast short bursts. To prevent overheating, do not exceed this process for more than 30 seconds. Continue until all of the water is out.
- Mix RV antifreeze with water to prevent liquids from freezing inside your jet ski. Mix one gallon (3.8 L) of RV antifreeze with one gallon (3.8 L) of water in a 5-gallon bucket.
- Hook up a hose or water pump to your flush outlet with the other end inside the water/antifreeze solution. Once the entire mixture has gone through the engine turn it off.
- Fill up a bucket with warm water and some car safe soap. Wipe down the entire exterior focusing on the bottom of the jet ski where slime and algae usually build up.
- Rinse your jet ski well and then let the jet ski completely air dry. If you want, you can also out some high shine wax to buff and shine.
- Add a bottle of fuel stabilizer to your gas tank according to the label instructions. This will help prevent contamination and residue from building up.
- Top off your gas tank with PREMIUM gas. This will prevent condensation covering the inside of your gas tank.
- Spray lubricant such as WD40 on rotating parts of your jet ski. These include the steering nozzle, reverse, and brake mechanisms and the engine along with electrical components.
- Disconnect the negative terminal of the battery and then disconnect the positive. Take your entire battery out and charge it while your jet ski is stored. Make sure the battery is charging in a spot where the temperature will not drop below freezing.
Steps for De-Winterizing Your PWC Early
You should be checking your jet ski often to make sure it is in healthy operation. Here are some steps you can take before fully winterizing your jet ski:
- Check the battery. Since the average battery life is 4 years it is a good idea to check your battery often and see if it still holds a strong charge. Cleaning the area around the battery and even taking the wires from the charge post out to scrub away the dirt is a smart idea.
- Test the electronics. Make sure all of the switches and knobs work. This will ensure that the battery is running and working.
- Check the spark plugs. It is a good idea to install new spark plugs at the beginning of every season, but it is smart to check them often just in case. Make sure to have a spare set at all times.
- Tighten up. No wire, cable, or belt should go unnoticed. If one seems to be wearing or is damaged then replace it as soon as possible.
- Wash it. After every single outing, you should make sure to drain and rinse off your jet ski. Saltwater can be especially damaging to your engine so make sure to use soap to clean it all off.