How to Tune Up a Jet Ski

Explore America's Campgrounds

When you bought your jet ski, you may have done so as an inexperienced shopper, or as someone who just wanted a terrific watercraft for recreation with friends and family. As you've used your jet ski, however, you may have noticed you wanted more: more horsepower, more acceleration and more maneuverability. The good news is that it's possible to turn up a jet ski to get even more performance out of it.

Items you will need

  • Tune up kit

  • Tools

Keep your jet ski's engine clean and well maintained. This means changing out older parts and replacing them with new ones, as well as clearing debris or dirt/dust buildups that occur through regular use.

Buy upgrades and replacement parts from an online dealer. You'll find great official as well as third-party parts for a multitude of different jet ski models.

Replace the air filters in your jet ski regularly and upgrade to more efficient models. This will better regulate air flow into the engine and the firing chambers, increasing engine performance. Newer, high-performance air filters can range in price from inexpensive and moderate, depending on the manufacturer.

Buy a high-performance exhaust kit, one with a narrower channel cone. A high-performance exhaust kit can dramatically increase speed and performance on your jet ski by channeling a greater volume of water through a narrower opening, thereby causing more thrust. It's important to note that this modification doesn't change the horsepower of the jet ski.

Splurge and upgrade your jet ski's engine. Custom built engines are available from many manufacturers both primary and third-party. Such "souped-up" engines are known for increased power and output, as well as improvements in torque and horsepower. This kind of upgrade is very expensive, however.


  • Don't install replacement or tune up parts in a jet ski if you don't know how to make such upgrades. There is a very real danger you will break other important components in the process if you are inexperienced. Always consult a professional when you want to tune up a jet ski and are unsure how to do it.


  • Invest in a high performance jet ski right off the bat. More powerful jet skis are a bit more expensive, but the added cost often translates into greater horsepower and improved performance over less-extravagant models. Even these high-performance models and get a tune up, too, making them even more powerful.
Gone Outdoors