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Sniffing PWC engine compartment for evidence of fumes
After fueling, open the engine compartment before starting the engine and sniff to check for gas fumes.

Serious accidents also can occur when fueling a personal watercraft (PWC). Spilled or leaked fuel can ignite and explode, especially in an enclosed space. PWC operators should pay particular attention to these fueling guidelines.

  • Check the entire fuel system for leaks and inspect fuel system connections frequently. Engine vibrations and the pounding from operating on rough water can loosen connections.
  • Avoid fuel spills when fueling in or near the water.
  • Do not tip the PWC in order to fill it all the way up. The tank is designed to leave space for the fuel to expand. If the tank is overfilled, the fuel may expand and spill into the water.
  • After fueling, open the door of the engine compartment and sniff to check for any evidence of gas fumes. Do this before starting the engine. If you do smell gas fumes, determine the source and make repairs immediately.