Whether you’re an experienced jet ski rider or a newbie out for a thrilling adventure, there may come a time when your Sea Doo, Jet Ski, or Waverunner breaks down in the open water. Imagine the frustration of being stranded, unable to get your watercraft started again. That’s when you’ll need some expert jet ski towing tips to rescue yourself from this predicament and safely make your way back home.
Towrope Specifications: Choosing the Right Gear
To successfully tow a broken PWC, you’ll need a strong, non-stretch towrope or a webbed nylon tow strap. It is essential to use a sturdy rope, preferably a floating one to avoid it being sucked into the intake grate of the towing jetski. Safety is paramount, so ensure that the rope is long enough, at least 15 feet, to allow for a safety zone between the towing and towed craft.
If you don’t already have snap hooks attached, make sure to leave extra length on each end to tie them securely to both watercraft. Remember to tie the knots properly, so they don’t come undone during the tow. The last thing you want is sudden whiplash from a loose rope.
Special Precautions: Towing a Stranded PWC
When towing a stranded PWC, it’s crucial to prevent water from entering the engine and causing damage. Follow the maximum towing speed recommended in your owner’s manual, typically ranging from 6 to 15 mph, depending on the make and model. You can also clamp off the crossover hose to prevent water intrusion while towing at higher speeds. Consult your dealer to locate the hose and mark it with colored duct tape for easy identification during emergencies.
For slower speeds, use a shorter rope to minimize bouncing caused by the towing craft’s wake. If you plan to tow at higher speeds, a longer towrope of approximately 40 feet is recommended to maintain stability and avoid turbulence between the two watercraft. Always be cautious of other vessels in the vicinity, and consider having additional jetskis ride along to warn others of your presence.
Safety Concerns: Stay Alert and Prepared
Towing a PWC poses unique safety concerns and requires careful attention. Keep an eye out for other watercraft that may not realize you are in tow. If possible, have someone ride on the stranded PWC to signal and warn other boaters, using brightly colored clothing or cloth. The operator of the towing jetski should anticipate potential obstacles and avoid sudden maneuvers.
For extra safety and communication, it’s advisable for the operator of the stranded PWC to ride behind the towing jetski. This way, they can quickly convey any issues or concerns to the lead operator. Remember that towing a broken watercraft will likely impact your planned timeline for the day, so update anyone expecting you with a new estimated time of arrival.
Jet Ski Towing Tips: Not Just for PWCs
The tips and techniques shared here are not only useful for towing broken PWCs but can also come in handy for owners of larger boats who want to tow a perfectly healthy personal watercraft for leisure or transportation. While there are specialized devices available for towing behind larger vessels, they may not be practical for use on smaller PWCs.
Remember, safety should always be your top priority. Ensure that you have the necessary equipment and knowledge to handle any towing situation. By following these guidelines and staying prepared, you can confidently navigate through unexpected breakdowns and enjoy a worry-free day on the water.
To explore more about Sea-Doo rides and get additional riding tips, visit East Coast Paddle Sports.
Disclaimer: The tips and advice provided are opinions of the author and should be confirmed for validity, accuracy, and relevancy before personal use.