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What model ski? Some skis have bilge pumps that will remove excess water, but an open drain plug may overwhelm the pumps ability to remove the excess water, and on some skis the bilge pump will only operate if the engine is running.

1. Whether the ski will start or not depends on the level of the water inside the ski. Once water is over the battery it will usually not start.

2. Yes......water inside the engine can cause it to hydro-lock, which can bend valves, etc. Not to mention the corrosion issues if you were in salt water. The fact that you got it running, pretty much means that you have avoided this issue. The best thing you can do now is ride it to remove any excess moisture. If it was in salt water, I'd run some Salt-Away through it when you flush it.

3. Yes, but they will take on a fair amount of water before they sink.

4. If you have a bilge pump (which on Yamaha skis will only operate when the engine is running), just put the drain plug in and let the pump remove the water, and keep on riding. With no bilge pump, you have to get it out of the water, drain it, etc..

Drain plugs left out probably sinks more boats than anything else. Depending on the model of ski you have, it is rare to need to remove a drain plug, because even in fairly rough conditions, skis take on very little water if the hood seals are intact. I've never removed my drain plugs. I use a shop vac to remove the small amount of water in the ski after a ride..........it has never been close to the level of the drain plugs.
 
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