There’s no feeling like riding waves on your jet ski during summer. However, jet ski hulls are susceptible to damage both in and out of the water, which can greatly take away from your experience. Knowing the cost of repairing a jet ski hull can, therefore, help you determine whether to go the DIY way or involve an expert.
It can cost anywhere from a hundred to a few thousand dollars to repair a jet ski hull, depending on the extent of the damage. For example, if the only damage is on the topcoat, it can likely be fixed for a few hundred dollars. However, if the fiberglass gets dented too, it will be a lot more.
This article talks about the cost of repairing a jet ski hull and some valuable tips to prevent and repair damage to your jet ski.
Factors That Effect the Costs of Repairing a Jet Ski Hull
The hull is arguably among the most important parts of a jet ski as it houses the machine’s electronics, battery, engine, and other critical components.
Designwise, jet ski hulls have a pointed front and a V-shaped bottom that flattens out toward the back. V-shaped hulls make it possible for jet skis to leap up and plane on top of the water. This results in a smoother and faster riding experience.
Most jet ski hulls are made from fiberglass. However, there are various other materials used to make hulls. These include:
- Sheet Molding Compound (SMC)
- Closed Mold Technology (CM-TEC)
- Carbon Fiber
The cost of repairing a jet ski hull will depend on several factors. First, the type of material used in repair plays a huge role in determining how much a single repair will cost. Other factors such as the extent of damage and labor cost also determine the overall cost of repair.
To that end, there are no definitive costs available, as each case will be different.
Below we’ll go over the factors that can increase the cost of the repair.
Type of Material
As mentioned earlier, jet ski hulls are made from different materials. The type of material will determine which repair method can be used to fix the hull breach effectively.
Fiberglass and Gelcoat repairs, which are the most common, can cost around $400.
Furthermore, the higher the quality of repair materials, the higher the total cost of repair.
Level of Damage
The damage extent will determine how many materials you will use to repair your jet ski hull. Holes and cracks take longer to repair, while gouges and chips require much less time.
The extent of hull damage can also affect the time required to repair, which can be costly if you hire someone. And since some experts charge by the hour, repairing extensively damaged hulls can end up costing more than initially anticipated.
For example, one forum user in Texas stated that he was charged $350 for damage the “size of a quarter or so.” It cost more because there was some damage to the fiberglass too.
Another user in the same thread was quoted $75 for similar work, which ended up costing $750.
If you’re not able to fix the hull yourself, you will have to hire someone to get the repair job done. Your repairman might charge you per hour, which can be costly depending on the level of damage.
Repair costs tend to vary between $70 to $100 an hour, though that may vary depending on state regulations and the company’s policy – if they are working for one.
Labor costs can go down if you have an independent repair expert that’s been servicing your jet ski regularly.
Of course, going DIY can save you a lot by cutting labor costs. Another user in the forum mentioned above claimed to have fixed more minor dents and scratches with black epoxy, which can cost as little as $50.
Though that would only be effective on superficial scratches and wouldn’t fix the fiberglass.
Tips To Maintain Your Jet Ski
Below are some ways to maintain your jet ski and ensure it serves you a long time.
Clean Your Jet Ski
Yes, your jet ski is meant to be in the water, but this doesn’t necessarily make it clean.
First, salty seawater doesn’t do an excellent job cleaning, and even if cruising on freshwater, a personal touch is still needed.
As you clean, make sure you drain all the water from your jet ski and clean the outside, too. It would help if you washed your jet ski after every long ride.
Also, using a high-quality lift on your jet ski will prevent its intake from getting blockages.
Check for Damages
Though jet ski hulls are made from solid materials such as fiberglass and carbon fiber, they can still get damaged. For example, you can damage your jet ski hull if you hit your machine against another object or surface, such as a dock.
Some areas of the hull easily get damaged upon heavy impact, which can lead to unsightly scratches and even breaches. So be sure to check for any signs of damage before and after taking a ride.
Use a Cover
The adage “prevention is better than cure” is valid here. Using a cover on your craft while outdoors will prevent it from getting scratches that can gradually develop into cracks and holes.
Do this when done flushing and cleaning after every ride, and you’ll see a decline in surface-level damages – if you’re a careful rider, that is.
Can You Repair a Jet Ski Hull on Your Own?
You can repair a jet ski hull on your own with materials found in your local store. Scratches and chips are easily fixed with epoxy. However, deeper cracks should always be seen to be professionals as fiberglass can be tricky to work with and isn’t advised for hobbyists.
Scratches are easily among the least demanding types of repairs and can be fixed as DIY projects. Steps to repair scratches include sanding down the scratch, applying epoxy primer using a paintbrush, and applying the gel coat layer using another paintbrush.
Fixing cracks and holes is more complex as it requires more materials, such as a fiberglass mat, fiberglass resin and hardener, and acetone remover. You will also need personal protective equipment like facemasks, gloves, and safety glasses.
Many jet ski owners do their own repairs, meaning it’s possible if you have the right motivation and basic repair knowledge.
All in all, if you’re relatively inexperienced in repairs, it would be best to take your jet ski to a professional for proper repair.
The overall cost of repairing a Jet ski hull will depend on the material used, the extent of damage, and labor cost.
However, inspecting your jet ski regularly and checking for damages before and after rides can help you avoid performing major repairs.
And although you can repair a jet ski at the comfort of your garage, it would be best to hire a professional if the extent of damage is severe.