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  1. #1

    '02 virage question! Engine flushing and extended running out of the water?

    I will be doing some work on my ski this spring that requires the ski to be running and I don't have access to a body of water.

    What attachment do I need to get so that I can connect my hose to my water bar so I don't burn it up? 2002 Polaris virage. Thanks
    Last edited by K447; 03-20-2014 at 03:29 PM.


  2. #2
    Click avatar for tech links/info, donation request K447's Avatar
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    What work are you doing that requires the engine to run for extended time periods while out of the water?

    It is OK to run a COLD engine for 30, maybe 40 seconds without water. When already warmed up, I would limit run time to 20 seconds or less, then a multi minute cool down wait.

    To actually run the engine for extended minutes without floating in the water;
    Remove the jet pump
    Remove the drive shaft
    This is necessary to avoid overheating the driveline water seals, which are normally cooled by the water flowing through the jet pump.

    Disconnect the 3/4" cooling water feed hose at the jet pump base, inside the hull. Located down low on the left side of the pump tunnel.
    Connect a 3/4" hose barb to garden hose adapter.

    Always Start the engine before turning on the water flow.
    Use modest water pressure from the hose, just enough to maintain even temperatures across all cylinder heads.

    Turn the water off before you shut down the engine.
    Blip the throttle briefly but firmly to blow excess water out of the water box.
    Shut the engine off.

  3. #3
    Rasta Mon Condoms We Be Jammin!!!!! TxVirageTx's Avatar
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    i remove the jet pump and driveshaft.but i use a piece of clear hose that will fit over the water tube where the pump nozzle was fitted.that way all my work is at one spot.

  4. #4
    Thanks for your help guys, but to my surprise the ski started on the first try with a fresh battery. I had briefly started it last summer, but it hasn't had any lake time in the last 2 summers. Figured the carb would be a mess, but i stabiled the gas and it's running great......I was shocked when it fired up and idled fine.

  5. #5
    Click avatar for tech links/info, donation request K447's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by r6ridah View Post
    Thanks for your help guys, but to my surprise the ski started on the first try with a fresh battery. I had briefly started it last summer, but it hasn't had any lake time in the last 2 summers. Figured the carb would be a mess, but i stabilized the gas and it's running great......I was shocked when it fired up and idled fine.
    Running out of the water with no load is not a reliable indication of carburetor health.

    Stabilizing the fuel is a good thing, but it is not a 100% guarantee that the carburetors are 'clean' inside.

    These engines really don't like a less than perfect carburetor. Even running on the water at speed, it can seem to be running great, but could still be running lean and piston failure due to lean burn could occur without much warning.

    You may well be lucky and the engine will run just fine for hours and perhaps years. Without actually removing the carburetor and doing a full internal cleaning and rebuild, there is a risk.

    At the least, I would drain out the old gasoline and refill with high octane gasoline, preferably without ethanol.

    Some might suggest frequent monitoring of the piston wash pattern, but that is hard to do when first de-winterizing and test riding. The old wash pattern will be present at first, making it hard to tell what is going on unless you have a lot of experience.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by K447 View Post
    To actually run the engine for extended minutes without floating in the water;
    Remove the jet pump
    Remove the drive shaft
    This is necessary to avoid overheating the driveline water seals, which are normally cooled by the water flowing through the jet pump.
    I'm curious if this is actually necessary. I don't see how the driveline seals in the bearing housing get water cooling......aren't they well forward of the water intake / jet pump and completely inside the hull?

    The bearing housing seals are the same type used in the wheel hub on the trailer.....made to withstand the heat generated during trailering and no provision for any type of cooling on those.

    I'm not disputing it may not a good idea to run the ski out of water for extended periods......just not for this reason. The only limiting factor of running a ski out of water I've read about deals with engine cooling. Do you have a reference for this recommendation?

  7. #7
    Click avatar for tech links/info, donation request K447's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hkg3k View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by K447 View Post
    To actually run the engine for extended minutes without floating in the water;
    Remove the jet pump
    Remove the drive shaft
    This is necessary to avoid overheating the driveline water seals, which are normally cooled by the water flowing through the jet pump.
    I'm curious if this is actually necessary. I don't see how the driveline seals in the bearing housing get water cooling......aren't they well forward of the water intake / jet pump and completely inside the hull?

    The bearing housing seals are the same type used in the wheel hub on the trailer.....made to withstand the heat generated during trailering and no provision for any type of cooling on those.

    I'm not disputing it may not a good idea to run the ski out of water for extended periods......just not for this reason. The only limiting factor of running a ski out of water I've read about deals with engine cooling. Do you have a reference for this recommendation?
    Well, Jay is one of the more knowledgeable guys around regarding Polaris PWC.

    Quote Originally Posted by 2&4strokepolaristech View Post
    ... I would also like to mention that everyone that flushes their unit on a hose should not run it for more than 2 minutes at a time. The reason being that the seals the face the water side are cooled by the machine being in the water.

    If the unit is not in the water you will start to melt the seals and eventually damage you seals and cause premature failure. THIS APPLYS TO ALL PWC'S!!!!!
    The driveshaft is wet (when the hull is in the water) all the way forward to the through-hull bearing assembly, where the water facing rear seals press against the driveshaft surface.

    Behind the impeller is another double seal set for the stator stub shaft which is also cooled by being immersed in the water. In addition to the seal faces being wet, the flowing water absorbs heat (as it may be) from the metal driveshaft.

    These seals are not exactly like vehicle axle seals. Automotive wheel bearing seals are designed to run for thousands of hours, but with minimal or no static pressure against the seal faces.

    On the watercraft the seals are designed to keep liquid water at pressure out of the bearings. Even a small amount of water getting into the bearings will drastically shorten bearing life. Water pressures can rise into the dozens of PSI range, alternating with partial vacuum during hard launch acceleration. So these seals are fairly tight on the spinning shaft.

  8. #8
    B/C you mentioned water cooling of the shaft seals.....are you saying it's the shaft which cools both seals? I'm not following......

    I have a pretty good handle on why the seals are there, how they're configured and how they work. What I'm having trouble understanding is this water cooling mechanism when water only touches one of the seals.....and that's if the ski is just sitting in the water. Seems like as you allude to above....with the pump running, it'll evacuate any water/pressure on that rear seal. How is it water cooled then?

    I'm honestly not trying to start a p*ssing match here, but I've never seen a manufacturer reference to this with either my older Polaris ski or my new Waverunner and I'm trying to determine for myself the validity of the recommendation. i.e. the contradiction for me is....the water cooling only applies to the rear seal except when the pump's not turning?

  9. #9
    Click avatar for tech links/info, donation request K447's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hkg3k View Post
    B/C you mentioned water cooling of the shaft seals.....are you saying it's the shaft which cools both seals? I'm not following......

    ... What I'm having trouble understanding is this water cooling mechanism when water only touches one of the seals.....and that's if the ski is just sitting in the water. Seems like as you allude to above....with the pump running, it'll evacuate any water/pressure on that rear seal. How is it water cooled then?

    I'm honestly not trying to start a p*ssing match here, but I've never seen a manufacturer reference to this with either my older Polaris ski or my new Waverunner and I'm trying to determine for myself the validity of the recommendation. i.e. the contradiction for me is....the water cooling only applies to the rear seal except when the pump's not turning?
    When the watercraft is on plane at speed there is positive water pressure inside the jet pump intake tunnel. This water pressure can be quite high.

    When the hull is floating, engine off, engine running, idle or wide open, the jet pump tunnel is always completely flooded with water.

    From the service manual.

    Quote Originally Posted by Service Manual 9917164, page 2.28
    Caution: Never operate the engine for more than 15 seconds while the watercraft is out of the water. Overheating of engine and drive line components will result.
    Quote Originally Posted by Flushing Procedure, page 2.26
    ... Rev the engine intermittently for one minute to completely flush cooling system.

  10. #10
    Again, not to be argumentative....but it's my understanding the jet pump operates as a venturi.....high pressure behind the impeller and low pressure in front. It's also my understanding while underway, the entire tunnel is not "completely" flooded....just a laminar pathway from the intake, to, and thru the impeller.

    The excerpts from the service manual deal primarily with engine heat and "drive line components" doesn't specify the bearing seals you originally asserted and with which I have question. If you go back to my original post, I didn't assert running out of the water is not detrimental to certain drive line parts.....just the idea the bearing seals are somehow water cooled when their housing is inside the hull and so far removed from the actual path of the water. Shaft/hub seals have existed long before their use in PWCs without any cooling mechanism whatsoever.

    What about the front seal? It's identical to the rear......how is it water cooled or protected with an additional thermal load being closer to the engine? Why doesn't it "melt?"

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