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Waverunners, Etc. - Worth It?


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Being a rider of BMWs (obviously), I look at Waverunners and similar brands, and think: Damn, that looks like fun!


To those of you who have them...are they? And are they worth the attendant expense and hassle? Looking for some considerations before I leap off and make a costly mistake. Thanks!

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Danny caddyshack Noonan

Don't and haven't owned one. But, I've owned boats. The happiest two days of a boat owners life is the day you buy it and the day you sell it.

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If you're into speed, cornering, etc., riding one is as much fun as you can imagine! Owning one on the other hand can have its disadvantages.


There's a fair amount of liability for the owner, and maintenance (especially on the earlier versiosn) can be frequent and somewhat costly. Fuel consumption and the availability of fuel are additional considerations. And, they seem to be a lot more fun if you have four people or more and two of these to ride. So, now you're talking gas, food, and liquid refreshments for four.


If you already have a boat to use as home base, they are a blast!!



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Gotta agree with the "two happiest days"..


I fooled around on PWC's (personal water craft) this summer and had a blast...But I don't own one, just used a friends... :grin: I did some shopping though, and can come up with the following short story:


If serious, shop now. End of season, and bad economy. Deals can be had, I even saw some dealers with 09's still left,discounted heavily.


My money was on SeaDoo for performance. Turbo rotax motor, it flat screams, also some good handling/operating features that others don't have..they lead, the others follow.


Yamaha has solid stuff, nothing special, good machines for the money. A few k's less than SeaDoo. Great bulletproof motors. The one I rode had an R1 in it.


Honda I hear is getting out of the biz.


Wouldn't waste my time with Kawi...Overpriced machines for the money..


Trailers are extra, ya might get the dealer to give ya a basic one at cost. The SeaDoo has a cool integrated trailer, ease of loading the caveat.


Whatever ya get, make sure it has a closed loop cooling system.

(that is, you don't use the lake water to cool) Some area's won't let you run anything but. Tahoe here is one heading that direction, if they already haven't by now.


Good luck




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I have almost bought one several occations. I live right along a major river and have my choice of about 6 boat launches within 5 miles, so it could potentialy get lots of use.


What it breaks down to for me...........new ones are too damn expensive, used ones are a complete crap shoot unless you know it was properly cared for, and if you can't work on it yourself then be prepared to pony up some serious $$$ to have it worked on.


The other thing I was suprised to find out is how poorly they do with fuel efficiency. I was thinking that I could pick one up and use it on the weekends for some cheap fun in the summer. Then my buddy offered on a Saturday to take his wave runners out and have some fun. We rode for about 3-4 hours with plenty of stops for BS'ing. When we were done I offered to fill the tank on the one I was riding (figuring it had a ~5 gallon tank). Oh boy was I wrong. These things all have ~18 gallon tanks on them and we damn near ran them dry in the short time we were out. That isn't a huge killer right now with gas in the mid $2.50 per gallon range, but this was back last year (or was it two years ago?) when gas prices went through the roof. Either way, I ended up spending over $65 to fill the tank. Then you have registration fees for the ski and trailer, more insurance......yada yada yada. That changes it from entertainment into a hobby. Sorry, I already have too many expensive hobbies. I still look everytime I see one for sale, but I don't think I will ever buy one.

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We have a Sea-Doo and a ski boat. While I of course have heard of the two best days addage, there's ways to avoid that!


We really enjoy our Sea Doo, but the key to enjoyment is that we also have a lake-house where we park it. No trailering, no messing with the fracas at the boat ramp. Just get on and go. The other source of joy is that we paid $5K for a like-new used one, and not $12K for the latest and greatest. While there have been improvements year to year, they have not been enough to warrant the expense and depreciation. Now would be the time to shop, as freshly put-away summer toys are taking up garage space around the country.


We know we will continue to use ours as it serves as rapid transit to other parts of the lake (friends houses, sandbar, etc). I will not be drawn into the brand wars you will see on the PWC forums, but having a local dealer who knows your brand is a good thing. These things take a lot of abuse, so there is maintenance to be done.


My favorite boating addage is this: If it pains you see it not being used, it's too big and expensive.

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My take on PWC after owning 4 of them 1st was a standy up Jetski. Everyone I know learned on this had no problems until I started modifing. Bought a Yamaha Waverunner for the wife later then bougth and Yamaha stand up and Waveblaster 2. Never had any problem with the Yamaha. In 98 I started to work for a friend that hand the Honda, Yamaha, SeaDoo, Polaris dealership. We saw more work on SeaDoo's, then Polaris. Yamaha with the most relaiable. SeaDoo's and Polaris were good machines when older riders were the only ones that rode them. Buying used I would what to know the people that I was going to buy from

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Second on the maintenance issue.

Too many places don't have qualified or dependable service for these products.

(In)Frequency of use another issue.

Good luck.

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Been on them a number of times, a few house boat trips with PWC. My problem with them is that they become very boring very quick.


My first time on one, I thought holy s#@t this thing is fast. After about 30 minutes I was thinking, is this as fast as it will go?


Other than speed there is nothing they do. Give me a sail boat, or even a Kayak, both keep my interest far longer.


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