Sea-Doo Switch Top-Speed [How Fast?]

Top Speed

The Sea-Doo Switch comes in a couple engine options from 130HP to 260HP, here are the top speeds of each option.

  • 130HP ~ 26MPH
  • 170HP ~ 34 to 37MPH
  • 230HP ~ 44MPH

Since weight, riding conditions and many other factors can affect top speed, these numbers can vary a little.

To new boat owners these numbers can be a little underwhelming, but the average pontoon boats range from 15MPH up to 50MPH, so the Switch is within the competition. Also, doing 20MPH in your car doesn’t feel fast because you have a roll cage around you, but doing 20MPH, especially being pulled on a tube, feels a lot faster and way different!

This often brings up the next question that people have about the Switch, can it pull a tube?

RPM & Top Speed

RPMs and speed are not always related, they can vary from each other. Speed can vary due to so many factors that it’s often better to go off what the RPMs are reading. The speed-o is using GPS, which can often be unreliable, but the RPMs are directly from the engine. So if you’re sweating a couple MPH’s, look at what the RPMs are telling you.

The supercharged 230 HP model should be getting over 7,600 RPMs, if not closer to 7,800 or more. If you’re under 7,600 RPMs then the supercharger is not kicking in and you have a problem.

The 100, 130 and 170 should be getting over 6,600 RPMs, but they can go up to 7,600. The 100, 130 and 170 are just about the same engine with some minor tweaks to limit the lower HP models. It’s the computer that determines the HP of this engine, and yes, there are turners that can adjust it, but I don’t suggest them.

What Affects Top Speed

There are several things to keep in mind when it comes to the top speed of your Sea-Doo Switch. Not everyone will get the same results, even if two of the same boats are next to each other in a race.

Below is a list of things that can affect the top speed of your Sea-Doo Switch.

  1. Hull: The longer the Sea-Doo Switch, the more weight and more touching the water, and thus the slower you go. The 21 foot with the 230HP won’t go as fast as the 18 ft with the same engine.
  2. Weight and Load: A heavier boat generally requires more power to move at the same speed as a lighter boat. Cargo, fuel, water, and gear can all add weight.
  3. People: The more people you have on the boat, the slower you’ll go and the lower RPMs you’ll reach.
  4. Engine Power: More horsepower typically means a faster Switch, though the relationship isn’t always linear. At some point, you’ll hit diminishing returns where adding more power doesn’t proportionally increase speed. The hull and other factors will only let any boat go so fast.
  5. Pump Damage: If you sucked up a rock, manufacturer defect, or anything, damage to the wear ring or pump can keep the Sea-Doo Switch from going fast. Often, a damaged pump or wear ring is obvious, it feels like it wants to take off but doesn’t get going, like it’s slipping gears.
  6. Water Conditions: Calm waters usually allow for higher speeds than choppy waters. Currents can also impact speed: a boat will be faster going downstream compared to upstream.
  7. Water and Air Temperature: Engine performance can vary with temperature. Cold air is denser, which can provide more oxygen for combustion, potentially enhancing engine performance. However, very cold water can increase hull drag. An engine that is warmed up will also run faster, too.
  8. Altitude: At higher altitudes, the air is less dense, which can impact engine performance because there’s less oxygen available for combustion. Many people forget this and wonder why they don’t get the same top speed as the manufacturer suggests. Sea-Doo tests their boats in Florida, and often during perfect weather.
  9. Drag and Hydrodynamics: Marine growth on the hull or a damaged hull can increase water resistance. It’s best to keep the Sea-Doo Switch out of the water, as the marine growth will easily rob you of 5 MPH, if not more on the top end.
  10. Fuel Quality: Good quality fuel can improve engine performance, while poor or old fuel can degrade it. And if you have a supercharged 230HP model, run premium, no matter what Sea-Doo says.
  11. Maintenance: Regular maintenance ensures that the engine and other components function optimally. Old spark plugs, old oil, or a damaged wear ring can all reduce speed.
  12. Gear and Equipment: The presence of external equipment, such as fishing gear, diving equipment, or additional appendages, can increase drag and thus reduce speed.
  13. Trim and Balance: Improperly balanced boats or those that aren’t trimmed correctly can plane inefficiently, causing reduced top speeds.
  14. Wind: Strong headwinds can significantly reduce a boat’s speed, while tailwinds can enhance it. Crosswinds can also influence a boat’s stability and handling.

Limited Top Speed

It’s important to note that all Sea-Doo Switch will have a break-in mode that will limit the top speed and take off power of your new boat.

This break-in mode is most noticeable on the supercharged Sea-Doo Switch, like the Cruise. You won’t get full RPM’s until after 5 hours, but it can take up to 20 hours for some models, all depending on the computer and how you drive.

During break in mode, you need to change up your speed every so often, avoid tubing and other pull sports that require you to keep the engine at one speed. Going full throttle is fine and encouraged, just don’t keep the speed pinned down for minutes, change it up a bit every so often.

Sea-Doo Switch Not Reaching Top Speed

If your Sea-Doo Switch doesn’t feel fast, and its RPM is within range with limited weight and ideal conditions, then you may not have a problem.

The honest truth, it’s a pontoon boat.

Pontoons are not fast, it’s for cruising and for the family to hang out on. If you’re sweating 5 MPH, and I know that can be a lot for this type of boat, don’t. There are so many factors at play causing this speed difference that you’ll only drive yourself crazy. Sea-Doo max speeds are calculated in the most perfect conditions.

I’m honestly curious, if your Sea-Doo Switch is not getting to the top speed, please leave a comment at the bottom of this post. Along with everything you’ve tried, maybe there is something you haven’t considered yet.

Supercharged – Yes On One Engine Option

A supercharged engine is a more powerful engine, and only the 230HP Sea-Doo Switch has a supercharger.

While a supercharger gives you more power, they do use more gas and need more care.

Honestly, I’m a fan of the 170HP Switch, but the 230HP is needed if you want to go as fast as possible on the Switch.

Sea-Doo Switch Can Pull Tubes

Tubing behind a boat is a fun family activity that many pontoon boat owners love to do.

While the Sea-Doo Switch is different from other boats in that it uses a jet drive system, the Sea-Doo Switch has no problem pulling a tube!

As talked about in our post on what horsepower is needed for a pontoon to pull a tube, we found that it’s more about what speed the pontoon could reach. For pulling tubes, you need to be able to go at least 15MPH, which even the 100HP Sea-Doo Switch can do just fine.

You do need more horsepower for other pull sports like waterskiing and wakeboarding.

Pulling Skiers

Tow sports is not a fast event, most never go over 30MPH and often stay below 25MPH.

So long as your boat can go above 25MPH, you can pull a skier.

The 100HP Sea-Doo Switch can go 26MPH, but I would at least go with the 170HP option, as it will have more bottom-end that a skier needs to get up plane.

What’s great about the Sea-Doo Switch is that it has SKI-MODE which allows you to set a take-off power and top speed which gives you repeatable pulls every time.

The Sea-Doo Switch is not a replacement for a ski-boat or even a wakeboard boat, but as a general good family boat that can also pull tubes, skiers, and wakeboards.