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  1. #1

    Exclamation Ultra 150 engine seems locked up...Big problems

    Hey everyone. I couldn't find much on this or get many comments in other threads about my minor problems so far, and I'm in no way a mechanic, so I decided to start a new thread. Sorry if this is a bit long, but here's what I have.

    Two - 2000 Kawasaki Ultra 150's that I purchased about a month ago.

    First Ski - When I bought the these skis I knew this one had 'low compression' as told to me by the seller and would not run. I was told it would cost around $1000 to fix. I tested the compression and it was 120 on the back cylinders and 110 on the front, so I think that's ok. I later found by pulling the spark plugs there were water droplets on them and probably water in the fuel. I added a bit of gas to the plug holes and the engine fired right up. However upon firing white smoke went everywhere. I ran it with the water hose for a couple minutes hoping it would burn off. It never did, but the main problem is that the smoke is coming from INSIDE the hull as well, not just the exhaust pipe. I haven't had a chance, but I was going to pull the engine to check for cracks or something else (this I was told to do by a buddy of mine). I had all plans to sell this ski, so I'd just like to get it running and in 'good condition' and try to sell it for $2500 or so.

    Second Ski - This one is the real problem. I purchased this ski 'in good running condition'. I went with the owner and rode it and it ran like a scolded dog so I bought them. I took them out to the lake by myself for the first time and after 10 minutes of riding and running great I hit a wave and the ski shut off. I tried to restart it and only got a clicking sound. I towed it to the bank and later tested all my voltages to find 12v was going all the way to the starter. Not understanding why, but thinking the starter was bad I purchased a new one. I took the exhaust pipe off the engine and closely followed the manual on changing the starter. I did however tilt the engine over to change the starter rather than removing it completely. (I didn't have anything to lift it). Pulling off the old starter I didn't find any oil spilling out as I was told I would. I put the new starter in, tightened it with new bolts, put a new gasket back on the engine where the exhaust pipe connects, and again followed the manual to the finish. I tried starting the engine again and got a weak turnover. Excited that the starter was working I put the battery on charge and reconditioned it. I tested it again and got the same results. Thinking the battery was bad I replaced it. With a brand new battery I got the same results (and also noticed the starter sounded like it was squealing a little and the engine seemed squeaky, like it had a hard time turning), so I checked the new battery and it's 95% charged according to my charger. Doesn't appear I'm losing charge. Just before pulling the battery I tried to start it one more time and it made what sounded like half a turn and then stopped completely. Now all I get is the click of the solenoid closing the contacts (just like before the starter was ever changed). Tonight I checked up under the skis for any obstructions. I found nothing on this ski. I did find a strap wrapped around the other one, but it wasn't obstructing the turning at the time, though I guess maybe it's possible that's what broke that jetski before i purchased it?

    Sorry for the long paragraph but I'd really really appreciate any help. I bought these on a low budget seeing a good deal and a chance to sell one and have an almost free jetski, but I'm not having any luck at all. I have the manual and some friends that are decent mechanics, but this is my first time ever messing with an engine like this so I'm sorry if I have too many questions. Thank you once again for ALL your comments and advice.

  2. #2
    btldigger's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    lebanon tn.
    My guess is the first one has a hole in the bottom of the engine case. Most common cause is a clog in one of the head coolant fittings. This will cause the piston to get too hot and the skirt breaks up, crankshaft drives the pieces through the bottom case.

    Second one sounds like cracked oil lines. Have you noticed any oil in the bottom of the hull? You can remove the plugs and try rotating the coupler by hand. It should rotate freely in one direction and with resistance in the other. Also take a close look at the plugs, the insulator should be a light brown. If they look gray then that means its aluminum deposits from the pistons. Since you mentioned that no oil ran out of the balancer my guess is your problem is with the #1 cylinder. It is possibly siezed. You may also want to pull the pump to be sure there is nothing caught between the impeller and wear ring

    Your best course may be to make 1 good one out of the 2 you have. Then either part out the bad one or start looking for the parts needed to fix it. When you tear them down take pics and post them. That will help us diagnose what went wrong

  3. #3
    I agree. Hole in the cases or waterbox on the first one but On the second one I would check the pump for blockage. Pull the pump and see if it spins over.

  4. #4
    Thank you guys for the quick replies. So the one that likely has a hole in it also likely has a deeper problem (which probably made the hole).

    I just looked through the chapter on removing the pump and impeller and it looks like a pretty big job for someone like me. I also don't have those special tools. Is there a way around these? Any idea what it might cost if I took it to the local Kawasaki place to have one or both fixed? Also is there a place I can order the parts if I decide to work on them myself that would be cheaper than the Kawasaki place? They charged me $20 bucks for the gasket I bought.

    I saw one of these with a blown up engine sell on ebay for $1100. Maybe I just need to get rid of both of them and the double trailer and try to get my money back. I really don't have a lot to spend, and I don't want one $3000 jet ski. Do you think it's possible the guy knew about this problem since it broke within 10 minutes of my riding, or is it just bad luck since it ran fine at first?

    Maybe I should pay you to fix it digger! lol. When I hear back I'll decide whether to attempt to take it apart myself or not. Problem is I don't have a good shelter or garage to work under. I'll figure something out. Thanks again!!

  5. #5
    btldigger's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    lebanon tn.
    Doing the work isnt as bad as it sounds. Pulling the pump takes less than 5 minutes, the book just makes it sound complicared. You can get paarts from the online store here for new stuff or ebay and other places depending on the parts needed. You can partialy tear the motors down inhull, but since you are new to this I would sugest pulling them. Makes it easier to get them rite. You really wont need alot of special tools. The ones that come to mind are a 5mm hex wrench 10, 12 and 14mm sockets and a trorque wrench that measures ft lbs.

  6. #6
    Thanks again Digger. I might try to tackle it tomorrow (trying to decide whether or not to skip work for it. Sometimes holidays are easy money days). I was worried about not having the impeller wrench and the bearing driver set the book talks about, but as far as sockets or anything I've got all that. I'm willing to give it a shot if it's possible I could fix it myself. Like you said I can always borrow parts off the other one for now. I'll keep you updated once I've done something.

  7. #7

    Unhappy Starting the project back up

    I know it's been a while, and I don't know if anyone will even reply unless I start a new thread, but I thought I'd give it a shot.

    Apparantly the idiot that owned these skis before me got water all in the engines. Somehow he was lucky enough for it to work while he showed them to me and I saw how well it ran...not sure how that worked exactly...

    I sent the two jetskis to a repair shop since I didn't really know what I was doing. I got some pretty bad news. The one jetski has a hole in the casing, just like you guys suspected. The second jetski they told me is "hydro-locked" and there is rust and corrosion in it. They wanted to charge me $6000 to rebuild both engines and do the R&R.

    I checked eBay and some other companies and found that I can get one guy to rebuild them both and give me another casing for the cracked one for $2900. I have no idea how to rebuild them myself so I figured this was probably the best deal. I just wanted some input from you guys as to whether or not this sounds worth it, or if I should just try to sell the hulls and toasted engines to get what I can and get out while I can.

    I really don't know exactly what's involved in rebuilding one, otherwise I might would be able to find the casings and the other parts I need from separate locations and put them together myself. I really don't have a great place to work on them, and I have no idea how to lift the engines out to send the cores off for rebuilding. Any advice or thoughts would be greatly appreciated!

  8. #8
    btldigger's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    lebanon tn.
    Both places are on the high side. You should be able to take the parts you have and put 1 of them running. You dont really need any special tools just a metric socket set and a tourque wrench and most important the manual. You can do a search here and get it as a pdf file. Pulling the motors is no problem, you should be able to get it out in an hour. When its at pulling size it weighs about #125. You can use a rachet strap and squat lift it out of the hull. Post pics as you tear them down. We can walk you rite through it. Watch ebay and post up a wtb thread in the classifieds for the cases. Or you might find that they can be welded.

  9. #9
    Thanks for another quick reply digger. I've got to get them back from the shop first. Probably next weekend at the earliest. I thought I might be able to make one run out of both, and then I could just buy one engine. I just have no idea what I'm doing. But I think as long as I have my camera, my manual, and you guys to back me up I can handle it. I don't really have a good place to work on them right now, but I'll see if I can't get into someone's shop. I might build me at least one cart to put the ski on so I can move it around easier. I'll let you know what's going on as soon as i can get my hands on them and find a place out of the weather to tear them down.

  10. #10
    steve45's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    When running on the flush hose, make sure you use the proper technique: Start the engine, THEN turn on the water. Turn off the water, THEN shut off the engine. NEVER run the water if the engine is not running! To do so can allow water to flow backwards through the exhaust and get into the cylinders.

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