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Personal Watercraft (PWC) Engines

There are many brands and models of personal watercraft engines on the market, including Yamaha, Sea Doo, Kawasaki, and others. Each has various speeds, fuel usages, electric power usages, block sizes, and other aspects that must be considered to make the proper purchase for your needs.

How do you choose a PWC engine?

With so many variables of each boat available, it may seem impossible to decide. But much of the work has been done for you once you decide one important aspect: the boat horsepower. Knowing the horsepower you want for your PWC narrows your choices. You’ll also need to consider these options:

  • Gas or diesel
  • Outboard motor
  • Conventional inboard
  • V-drive inboard
  • Jet drive or Stern drive

Armed with these bits of information, you've trimmed your options considerably.

How do you maintain your personal watercraft?

The most important aspect of personal watercraft (or PWC) ownership is maintenance. Depending on your planned usage of your watercraft, there are many things to consider. You should examine the electrical system for frays, loose wires, and dead bulbs. If you're planning to store your personal watercraft, you need to drain the fuel. Make sure when your watercraft is in use that you're using the correct fuel. Also consider:

  • Keep the motor clean, both externally and internally.
  • Once a year, change the oil and the filter.
  • Watch for loose parts, and replace anything that looks old or damaged on the motor.
What are some watercraft safety procedures to remember?

While personal watercraft may be small, the horsepower can be equal to a much larger craft. It's required that life jackets be available. Operators of the personal watercraft should take boating safety classes. Know the laws. Don't carry more passengers than recommended on your boat, and never drive or ride under the influence. Keep an air horn available to warn other boats of any size that you're in the vicinity. You don't know what other boats can or can't see. Be aware of where you are. If there are environmental rules, or laws, to follow, be respectful of those laws or guidelines. If you're pulling skiers or tubing devices in the water, have a rear-view mirror attached. It's for your safety as well as those you're entertaining.

What defines personal watercraft?

Generally, a boat is considered personal watercraft if it is between 8 to 13 feet long. No more than three passengers can be on board a personal watercraft while it is in the water.

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