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  1. #1

    Kawasaki ultra lx 2008 engine hydrolocked after riding and sitting in water.

    Hi,
    I recently bought a second hand 2008 Ultra LX after taking it out to an island I stopped for lunch. When I returned it would not start and said battery alarm. I decided to get a new battery ski still failed to turnover at all (just loud clicking sound). I manged to get a jump start from a car at the boat ramp and it still failed to even turn over. I called a jet ski mechanic and they said the engine was hydro locked. I pulled the coils out and seen water on coil number 1. I dried it and tried to start again, nothing. checked coils again and seen moisture on coil 1 again leading me to believe my engine was full of water some how! In the end I was towed back to the mainland by the coast guard.

    I then took my Ultra to a mechanic who said the engine was completely full of water from the tow by coastguard. The ski is currently being drained of water and having multiple oil changes. And because I (stupidly) tried to start it after being towed he thinks there is a chance I have bent the the pistons. Is this plausible even tho it didn't turn over while full of water?

    The mechanic has found that the spark plug 1 thread on the head of the engine casuing a bad seal (which explains my top speed issues of only 72kph and leak water on coil 1.

    My main concern is trying to find out what caused the engine not to start in the first place????? is there a common issue here? I was thinking some sort of exhaust leak causing the engine to fill up with water after stopping? My mechanic isn't really sure.

    Any help or previous experience would be greatly appreciated!

    Regards,
    Tim


  2. #2

    Kawasaki ultra lx 1500

    Hi Tim i have the same problem. Were you able to fix it. If you did can you help me As i dont know what to do anymore. Kind regards Rupert. [email protected]. Or cell no +27 832338456

  3. #3
    nicjak's Avatar
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    if the threads on the spark plug were damaged sounds like you have had a manifold leak for some time, very common.

  4. #4

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    I had the same with my Ultra LX (2008 or 2007 - can't remember but they're both the same). We were sitting out in the water 200 meters from shore, got the ski biscuits organised, went to start and same as you. Half a crank, followed by the battery alarm. Difference was that we got blown a number of kilometers off shore before the Police launch hauled us back in.

    I believe that ours filled the cylinders with salt water for one of two reasons - either the fact that we were over the 225kg weight limit by about 25kg causing the ski to sit low in water, or using the biscuit rope to pull the ski towards the biscuit, forcing water back through the pump, up the pipes and into the exhaust.

    I'd suspect that those with more experience than I (first ski, haven't had it for two months yet) might reject the latter as being an issue, but I'm convinced that it is. Last weekend the ski drifted away while we were organising a waterskier and rather than swimming to the ski, I pulled it back to me fairly carefully using the ski rope. Jumped on, went to start, and hydraulic locked again! It wasn't too bad, because it groaned into life on the third attempt (I possibly should have not tried to restart knowing there was a lock). It ran on 3 cylinders for about 10 seconds, then we were off again.

    With respect to your query about damaging the engine by cranking with water in the cylinders, you can in theory bend the conrods. I'd be surprised if the torque of the starter motor was stronger than the conrods, but I sell accounting software for a living - I'm not a mechanic!

  5. #5
    fx160's Avatar
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    That's more likely just s coincidence
    The water will be leaking from somewhere
    Many people have pulled a ski back to shore with an anchor rope with out hydro locking

  6. #6
    nicjak's Avatar
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    yep you have other issues water wont back up the exhaust from excess weight or pulling the ski backwards with a rope. more than likely a common manifold leak.

  7. #7

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    Thanks nicjak. Is the common issue an easy fix? Just gaskets/seals, or does it need manifold weld/replacement and/or head work?

  8. #8
    fx160's Avatar
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    You will need to remove it and see what it is first

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by nicjak View Post
    yep you have other issues water wont back up the exhaust from excess weight or pulling the ski backwards with a rope. more than likely a common manifold leak.
    It's happened again!! This time it's happening every time I use the ski, so whatever was a small intermittent issue is now a permanent feature. Looking at the bright side though, I guess it'll be easier to tell if when it's fixed.

    Nicjak - I presume that the common issue with the manifold leak is the exhaust manifold and not the inlet?? And can you usually tell that something's wrong by taking it off and having a look, or does it tend to be internal and difficult to find? The rate at which water is flooding the cylinders leads me to believe that whatever is wrong is not going to be microscopic fissures and cracks!

  10. #10
    nicjak's Avatar
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    you sure its water and not just bad spark plugs, if its not the later its either leaking manifold or possible cracked head but yours isnt a s/c ski so at this point i would rule the head out.

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