There are countless types of personal watercraft (PWC) that are available in the market and choosing the perfect one to buy can be a bit challenging.
Besides the different types, there are also several technical aspects about a watercraft that need to be considered before making an investment; one of which is the watercraft weight limits.
Contrary to popular belief, a PWC weight limit is not the same thing as its own weight.
The “weight limit” means the weight what a PWC can carry includes the weight of the riders, the fuel and any additional accessories that might be attached to the watercraft.
It should be noted that there is a wide range of watercraft weight limits available in the market depending on the model.
Sea-Doo, Waverunner and Jet Ski weight limits
|Brand||Model||Weight Capacity (Lbs)||Rider cap.|
|Sea-Doo||GTR-X 300, RXP-X 300||400||2|
|Kawasaki||SXT-15F, Ultra series||496||3|
|Yamaha||EXR, EX series||529||3|
|Sea-Doo||GTR, GTS, GTI, GTX, RXT||600||3|
|Sea-Doo||Wake series, Fish Pro||600||3|
These three market leaders alone produce about 46 different models and each one has its own weight limit. The range of average weight limits can start from 300 pounds to up to 600 pounds depending on the size and price of the model you’re looking to purchase.
Some models manufactured by Yamaha do not come with an official weight limit but it is estimated to be around 500-600 lbs. However, it should be noted that this number is a mere estimate and is not official information provided by the company.
Rider capacity vs. Weight limit
As far as the rider capacity is concerned, it’s not difficult to guess that the lowest rider capacity crafts will have the lowest weight limit.
The smallest are the stand up watercrafts that can be ridden by just one person.
Moreover, they are themselves extremely light in weight, which is why the rider can’t even take any accessories along. Simply put, anything more than the weight of an average grownup means trouble.
On the other hand, there are bigger models also available that have the rider capacity of two-to-three people. These are often also called the sit-down models.
However, in the case of the smaller Rec-Lite models, it should be kept in mind that the rider capacity can be perhaps misleading. That is; if all riders on the seats are adults, a two-seater might better be considered a one-seater and just two persons might better ride a three-seater.
These safety warnings are in place to help prevent any unfortunate incident out in the waters. Even in advertisements featuring the Rec-Lites, there are always two adults and one child on a three-seater watercraft.
The weight limit is no joke
It should always be noted that the weight limit mentioned on a PWC is not to be taken lightly.
It is more of a safety warning than a suggestion and should be paid special attention to in order to avoid any sort of a life-threatening incident.
While it is true that heavier devices can carry more weight, the weight limit has more to do with its stability on water and the control of the rider. An overloaded watercraft can quickly lose all control and this can lead to an insecure situation in the water especially around the docks.
Moreover, overloaded vehicles also increase chances of the watercraft not being able to do tricks or jump waves properly, leading to potentially dangerous situations where it can flip over.
If you’re looking for a light, one-person watercraft, it would be wise to look into the Stand up categories.
If you prefer sit-down models, you can find several good and nimble crafts in the Rec Lite category. These are the ones that offer the lowest weight limits and are also the most affordable ones on the market.
On the other hand, if you’re looking for a bigger, heavy-duty vehicle, the Luxury & Performance models might be the fit for you.
If you have a restricted budget and are not too concerned about the highest performance of your jet ski, the Yamaha EX series is one of the best choice for you. The models available in this series are affordable and offer a higher weight limit than their counterparts; as high as 529 lbs!
In conclusion, when looking to buy a jet ski, you should always pay special attention to its specifications. They are mentioned for a reason.
Moreover, do not confuse the weight limit with the PWC weight itself. These two numbers are pretty different and mixing them up could cause a bit of problem for you.
Compare the models thoroughly and double-check all your weight calculations before riding your new watercraft.
You can discover and compare all current models in our Sea-Doo vs. Waverunner vs. Jet Ski comparison tool.
It’s also wise to ride the different models in some watercraft rentals before purchase your own jet ski.
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