If you are looking for a way to enjoy music while jet-skiing, you might consider installing jet ski speakers.
Jet ski speakers are designed to withstand the wet and open environment of jet skiing and can provide you with a great way to enjoy music while out on the water, but how to mount the speakers on the jet ski? Let’sLet’s find out.
Generally, to mount portable speakers on the jet ski, you have to bolt down the bracket on the ski jet’s front panel between the handles and wrap the speaker to it. To install permanent speakers, you have to drill the holes in both sides of the handlebar and bolt the speakers to the jet ski.
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Tip: If you are not willing to ride your jet ski for a long time and planning to sell it, it is better to install portable speakers like Ultimate Ears MEGABOOM 3 (link to Amazon) because modified jet skis usually have less value on the aftermarket than the original ones.
It also can be more difficult to sell one with drilled holes because not everyone may be interested in a jet ski with speakers.
But before installing jet ski speakers, there are a few things you’ll need to keep in mind. In this article, I’ll give you a jet ski speaker guide to help you choose and install the perfect speakers for your jet ski.
What are the Benefits of Having Jet Ski Speakers
First, let’s start with why you might want jet ski speakers in the first place. After all, jet skiing is already a pretty loud activity.
But there are a few benefits to having speakers on your jet ski.
- Music can help create an enjoyable atmosphere while you’re riding. Whether cruising around alone or with friends, music can make the experience even better.
- Not often, but jet ski speakers can also be used as a safety feature. If you’re out on the water and need some help, playing music loud can help get people’s attention.
Where to Mount the Jet Ski Speakers
The best place to mount the speakers on a ski jet is the front part of the jet ski, on both sides of the handlebar.
The best place for a single portable speaker on the jet ski is in front of the handlebars. This will give you the best sound quality while riding and prevent the speakers from getting wet.
You might be tempted to put the speakers on the back of the jet ski, but this is actually not the best idea.
The speakers can get in the way when you’re trying to sit down or stand up, and they can also be damaged easily by waves or other jet skis.
The back of the jet ski is a good place for the subwoofer, but this requires installing an amplifier a full waterproofing of the whole compartment.
Popular, although expensive, is to permanently mount the speakers on both sides of the handlebar. This solution is excellent for specific types of speakers, for example, the See-Doo series (link to Amazon).
How to Install Jet Ski Speakers
Now that you know how to choose jet ski speakers, the next step is to install them.
- The first step is to find a location on the jet ski where you want to install the speakers.
- Once you’ve found a spot and decide to use the portable Bluetooth speakers, you can wrap the speaker to the handlebar or use a special bracket (link to Amazon) to install the speaker on the front panel.
- Regardless of the chosen place, use the marine-grade wrap to attach the speakers to the jet ski. It’s important to use a marine-grade wrap because it will hold up well in wet conditions.
As you see, installation of the portable speaker is straightforward, but if you want to go through the details, check out the video below:
The more complicated is installing speakers on the jet ski permanently, and to do this, you have to drill holes in both sides of the handlebar (or in the front panel).
Mounting speakers permanently is a more complex process but definitely worth the time if you want to make a fantastic improvement to your jet ski.
- The first step is to determine the size of the speakers you want to install and then mark the location of the holes on the jet ski.
- Use a drill bit that’s slightly smaller than the screws you’ll be using to attach the speakers. This will make it easier to screw in the screws later.
- Once you’ve drilled the holes, it’s time to attach the speakers. Use screws and washers to connect the speakers to the jet ski. Be sure to use marine-grade hardware that won’t rust.
- The good practice is to test speakers before tightening the bolts. This will allow you to make sure the speakers are functioning correctly.
- For additional protection from the water, you can use marine-grade silicone sealant to seal around the speakers’ edges. This will help prevent water from getting into the holes.
- Let the silicone sealant dry for 24 hours before using the jet ski.
This type of installation requires dismounting the jet ski and making the whole system from scratch.
To give you an idea about the installation process and the effect of such a system, check the video below:
Jet Ski Speaker Troubleshooting: What to Do When Things Go Wrong
Installations, although planned to be done without issues, sometimes go wrong. Below I listed the most common jet ski speakers installation issues with their easy fixes:
Marine-Grade Silicone Sealant Didn’t Work.
If you used marine-grade silicone sealant to seal the speakers, and it didn’t work as planned, the first thing to do is clean up the speaker’s area before applying a different sealant.
Use a razor blade to remove any old silicone sealant from around the speaker.
Once the area is clean, apply a new layer of silicone sealant and let it dry for 24 hours before using the jet ski.
The Speakers Are Loose.
If you’ve mounted the speakers on the jet ski, but they’re loose, try tightening the screws that hold them in place.
If that doesn’t work, you may need to use bigger screws or attach the speakers with bolts instead, but make sure you use a smaller drill when drilling the holes in the first place.
One of the Speakers Is Not Working.
If one of your jet ski speakers is not working, the first thing to do is check the wires or Bluetooth connection.
Make sure all the wires are correctly connected. If they are, then the problem may be with the speaker itself.
To test the speaker, you have to disassemble it from the jet ski and open the enclosure to check the wiring connection.
If the wires are correct and the speaker still does not work, it may be defective, and you’ll need to replace it.
It is important to test the speakers before installing them, especially when you want to use silicone sealant.
The Sound Quality Is Poor.
If you’re not happy with the sound quality coming from your jet ski speakers, there are a few things you can try to improve.
- First, make sure you use speakers designed to work in the open environment, and they can actually be louder than the noisy engine.
- Second, make sure the speakers are mounted in the correct location. They should be pointing towards your face and not mounted behind you or too close to the engine.
- Third, check the wires and make sure they’re all connected properly. If they are, then the problem may be with the speakers themselves. Make sure you’ve selected marine-grade speakers designed for use in a wet environment. Otherwise, they will quickly stop working.
- Finally, if you’re still not happy with the sound quality, you may need to install a separate amplifier to boost the signal.
The Speakers Are Vibrating.
If your jet ski speakers are vibrating, it’s likely because they’re not mounted securely. So the first thing to do is tighten the screws or bolts that hold them in place.
If that does not solve the problem, and you still notice the vibrations, try mounting the speakers on rubber washers. This will help to dampen the vibrations and improve the sound quality.
How to Choose the Right Speakers for Jet Ski?
Now that we know why you might want jet ski speakers, let’s talk about how to choose the right ones.
When choosing jet ski speakers, there are a few things you’ll want to keep in mind.
- First, you want to make sure that the speakers are waterproof. This is the most crucial thing because jet skis are used in wet environments, and standard speakers will get damaged in no time.
- Second, you want to choose speakers that are designed for open spaces. This means that the speakers should be able to produce loud sounds so that you can hear them over the noise of the jet ski engine.
- Finally, you want to consider where the speakers will be installed on the jet ski. The best location for jet ski speakers is typically on the front of the jet ski, near the rider. This allows for the best sound quality and prevents the speakers from being damaged by water or debris.
The Best Jet Ski Speakers on the Market
You can choose from literally thousands of different speakers, and the search can be overwhelming.
Do not worry, though. I did the homework for you.
Below I am going through portable as well as permanently installed speakers with my few top picks:
Portable speakers for ski jets are the most straightforward solution that does not require any wiring, etc.
All you need to do is buy a pair of good quality portable speakers and bring them with you on your jet ski adventures, and for the smaller models, you do not even need to install any brackets.
The most significant advantage of portable speakers is their portability, meaning that you can take them with you wherever you go.
Another advantage is that they are much cheaper than permanently installed speakers.
JBL Clip 4
For example, the smallest JBL Clip 4 (link to Amazon) is a portable waterproof Bluetooth speaker that can be attached to nearly anything you can think of.
Thanks to the integrated carabiner clip, you don’t have to worry about losing it when cruising at speed.
JBL Clip 4 can be connected to devices wirelessly via Bluetooth or an attached cable (3.5mm audio).
Its rechargeable battery has a 10-hour life that should be sufficient for most days on the water. You can charge it via USB, which makes it an excellent choice for trips on the water, but it takes approx 3 hours to fully recharge the battery when flat.
With this size however, although it is an outstanding speaker for hiking or other outside adventures, you cannot expect too much sound quality or loudness in a noisy jet ski environment.
Ultimate Ears MEGABOOM3
I own both and have to say that MEGABOOM is a different class thanks to larger Passive Radiators.
It is slightly more expensive, but bass starts at 60Hz instead of 90Hz, therefore, a larger dynamic of any music is definitely worth the few extra dollars.
The rechargeable battery lasts up to 20 hours, and you can charge it in the car or at home via the USB port in around 3 hours.
There are basic controls on the speaker itself in the form of large buttons. You can also control it via Bluetooth from your phone.
When it comes to using them in the water, both models have IPX7-rated waterproof, which means they have no problem being dunked in the water of up to 1 meter.
The great thing about these speakers is that they actually float in the water, so there is no problem finding them on the surface, especially if you have them finished in any of the bright colors available.
Instead of using a portable speaker, you can take a step ahead and permanently install speakers onboard your ski jet.
This is a great solution, assuming you are comfortable with higher costs and additional wiring or wetproofing the whole system.
Another thing is that there are not many companies that make complete sound systems for jet skis, so you will need to purchase separate speakers and make modifications to the jet ski’s body.
Such modification is definitely something worth doing, assuming you are willing to use the ski jet for a long time because the value of the modified equipment is usually lower when it comes to selling it.
Aside from the drilling and mods required, installing a sound system can also be a long process. Any PWC sound system requires much more work than a motorcycle or ATV speakers.
Regardless of the drawbacks of built-in speakers, many people find them worth it. As long as the sound system is made by a reputable company, it can be worth the process.
However, for the less tech-savvy people, it’s much easier just to buy a portable speaker instead and be done with it.
A fantastic example is the Sea-Doo PWC BRP Premium Audio System (link to Amazon) with a built-in player that looks impressive and makes amazing sounds.
The downside is definitely the price over $1,000, and also, keep in mind you may need an accessory harness to do the installation.
Installing a Sea-Doo is not an easy task, but go for it if you need the best-looking and playing sound system on the jet ski.
In the video below, you will see a detailed installation guide:
Another Audio system worth considering is the Sea-Doo BRP Audio-Portable System (link to Amazon) which does not require any drilling or extra wiring.
It plays much better than any single Bluetooth portable speaker, mainly due to the large size and two 50W speakers.
The price is around $700, which may seem high, but it is an excellent value for the product compared to the above Sea-Doo model.
Check out this quick video to see it in action:
As you can see, both systems are great and have their advantages. If you want the best possible sound quality, go for the built-in system.
However, if you’re not willing to do the installation or don’t have enough funds, the portable speaker is a great alternative.
How to Protect Jet Ski Speakers
When mounting speakers on the jet ski, it is also essential to consider how you will protect the speakers from damage.
One way to do this is to use speaker covers, which can help to keep water and debris from damaging the speaker cones.
Since jet ski speakers are designed for the wet and open environment, they’re already pretty durable. But if you worry about your jet ski speakers getting damaged, you can do a few key things to help protect them.
- First, make sure to bolt down the bracket on the jet ski’s front panel. This will help keep the speakers in place and prevent them from being damaged by waves or other jet skis.
- You should also consider adding a cover over the speakers. This will help protect them from the elements and keep them clean when not in use.
- Another option is to mount the speakers in a way that they are recessed into the jet ski body. This provides more protection but can require more work to install.
No matter how you choose to protect your jet ski speakers, test them out before heading out on the water.
How Can I Prevent My Jet Ski Speakers From Being Stolen?
The best way to prevent your jet ski speakers from being stolen is to keep them out of sight when you’re not using them.
If possible, remove the speakers from the jet ski and store them in a safe place.
Installing jet ski speakers is a relatively easy process, but there are a few things you need to keep in mind, especially when you are willing to install speakers permanently.
- First, make sure that the speakers are waterproof and designed for open spaces.
- Second, choose a location on the jet ski where the speakers will be heard well.
- And finally, use marine-grade adhesive to attach the speakers to the jet ski.
With these tips in mind, you will be able to enjoy music while jet skiing in no time.