Do Jet Skis Have Alternators?

Jet skis do not have an alternator but instead, use a stator.

The way a stator works is similar to an alternator but also not the same either.

Jet ski Stator Vs. Alternator

An alternator charges batteries, and so does a stator.

The key difference is that a stator is designed more for maintaining a charge, while an alternator is meant for complete charging.

A stator provides just enough energy to the battery to keep everything functioning, making it a slow charger compared to an alternator.

Unlike a magneto, which is solely for creating spark, a stator supplies power for that and additional functions.

If your battery is entirely dead, you can’t rely on a stator to charge it quickly. It will charge the battery, but very slowly.

Since jet skis use PWC engines, they have the same stators as PWCs, meaning the charging systems on a PWC and a jet ski are essentially the same.

How To Keep Jet ski Batteries Charged?

One question I often get is, how can you charge your batteries if you’re not using them?

Many people take their boats out to relax, listen to music, or camp, which requires using the boat’s electrical power.

If this sounds like you, the best solution is to use two batteries—one for starting the engine and another for sustained power usage.

This means having a starting battery and a deep cycle battery.

You can use battery switches to swap between batteries. When idle, use the deep cycle battery. When it’s time to go, start the engine with the starting battery.

Once the engine is running, you can switch to using both batteries to recharge them. However, keep in mind that this won’t provide as much charge as an alternator would.

If you’re worried, you can always keep a jump box like this one on Amazon (ad) with you when you go out. You may never use this jump box on your long trips but does give you peace of mind.

Solar Panel Battery Charger Can Help!

Another option is to use a solar battery charger.

When you’re not using the boat, connect the battery to the solar panel, and it will charge the battery. Although the charge is slow, it is usually sufficient.

A solar charger is especially useful if there are no power outlets available for charging your battery. This makes it an ideal solution for lake or river homes.

It also doesn’t hurt to get a portable 10-watt solar charger like this on Amazon (ad) to keep in the boat at all times. When in the hot sun, it can help put back what the radio takes from the battery. It also works well when you’re not using the boat and want to keep the battery from dying.

Don’t Worry Too Much

If you’re going out for the day to relax, it’s usually not a big deal unless you have a high-powered aftermarket stereo system.

If you notice your battery dying after extended use, check to ensure the battery isn’t faulty. A good battery in a jet ski should handle a day of riding and then resting in the afternoon without any issues.

This issue can affect any boat, not just jet skis.

To make this a non-issue for any boat, you can get boat towing membership like from SeaTow or Tow Boat US. It doesn’t cost as much as you think and worth it for the peace of mind.

Don’t forget to ask if your boat insurance has towing as a part of your membership.

And if you’re still worried get a jump pack as we talked about above.