Best Underwater Scooters
When you are exploring the wonders of any body of water, the more tools that you have to enhance your experience the better. Some divers feel a little held back and restricted in their exploration because they can only travel as far as their body will allow them to swim. Often, when weighed down with a lot of extra gear, your stamina for swimming is cut in half, and you find yourself swimming to the shore to recharge your batteries far earlier than you expected.
However, if you invest in a clever gadget called an underwater scooter, you can travel longer, further, and deeper underwater without getting fatigued as quickly. Over the years, these devices have taken on various names such as a diver propulsion vehicle (DPV), sea scooter, and swimmer delivery vehicle (SDV). They first hit the scene around World War II and their design is based upon the same tech that is used in torpedoes. Today, they are used by not only men and women in the armed forces, but also by recreational divers that are looking to get just a little bit more range out of their dives. We have done our research to find the best designs out there on the market so that you will have the ability to discover even more on your next dive.
- YAMAHA RDS250
- GoPro mount
- YAMAHA SEAL
- Incredibly lightweight
- SEA DOO SD15001
- Speed up to 5 miles per hour
10 Best Underwater Scooters
The exterior of this unit comes in four different colors: black, grey, blue, and red. It has a sleek design that is made to look like a mini torpedo with a handle along the top. Turning it on is really simple, and can even be done underwater with the flip of a switch that runs along the top of the handle. What we really like about this design is that is has a mount for a GoPro located at the top so that it will be able to record everything that you see.
One charge will give users about 120 minutes of continuous use underwater, and this device is capable of speeds up to 2.5 miles per hour. Plus, it weighs in at just 18 pounds and can reach depths up to 100 feet.
One of the things that we liked most about this model is that it has a price tag that runs about in the middle of the road in terms of price. It isn’t the least expensive out there, but it is far from being the most expensive either. With the YAMAHA name behind it, we think this is the best value currently out there on the market.
If you are looking for something that is going to get the job done and allow you to explore portions of the ocean that you otherwize couldn’t reach, the RDS250 design will be the perfect addition to your next dive trip without breaking the bank.
Some users found it difficult to close when recharging the battery
One of the things that caught our eye about this design is the fun color options that seem to stand out from all of the other basic color choices. Users can select from an all red model with white accents or a white model with bright blue accents. It has a short and abbreviated shell that hand handles that fit right below the propellers.
This unit weighs in at just 12 pounds, making it one of the lightest options to make our list. That lighter weight comes at a bit of a cost, however, and that cost is concerning speed and depth. The top speed on this unit is about 2 miles per hour, which some users find to be just a little too slow. Plus, it is only able to reach depths of slightly over 30 feet, which may not be deep enough for the type of exploration you are interested in. Plus, a full charge only last for up to 1 hour.
Sure, it doesn’t travel as fast and can’t go as deep as some of the others, but you will be happy to hear that the price tag is one of the lowest prices out there on the market. Many of the options out there exist far out of reach in terms of price for many divers, but this model will allow you to get a little boost in the water without breaking the bank.
If you were discouraged by the high price tag of almost all of the other designs out there on the market, you will be pleased to see an affordable price point in the YAMAHA Seal model. Plus, it comes with the confidence that comes when you purchase a YAMAHA product.
Some find that it is just a little too slow
This unit has a solid black plastic shell that has sharper corners and edges than you would find on some of the other designs. These features are due in part because this unit travels just a little bit faster in the water than some of the others. It has neon yellow accents on the front of the propeller. The handles are made from a softer plastic that make them just a little bit easier to grip even when you are underwater.
ONe full charge of this model will give you about 90 minutes of continuous use, which is slightly above average to other similar designs. It weighs in at 20.5 pounds, which makes it one of the heavier options out there on the market. Users can adjust the speed with three gears, and top speeds of this design can reach up to 5 miles per hour. What’s great about this design is that it can reach depths up to 130 feet- which is one of the deepest depths out there on the market.
Hold on to your wallet, because this is one of the more expensive designs out there on the market. The price tag on this unit will likely set you back about the same amount on all of your dive gear combined. However, if speed and distance is something that is important to you, this might be well worth the padded price tag if you can afford it. It is able to reach depths of up to 40 feet.
If you can look past the shocking price tag, this is a really great option for serious divers that want to travel to underwater places that they have never been before without exerting very much physical energy.
Can travel up to 5 miles per hour
Has mounts for lights or a GoPro
Users can quickly charge out batteries to stay underwater longer
Somes users have had trouble with shortened battery life
The exterior of this unit is constructed from a yellow plastic shell that has black accents around the handles as well as the cage for the propeller. The plastic used for the handles is a little softer to allow for a sure grip even when you are underwater.
The specifics of this design aren’t are great as the SD15001-RS1 design, but they are still pretty impressive. It is able to hold a charge for about 60 minutes, and it has two gears that can reach speeds up to about 3.10 miles per hour- which is a little faster than some of the YAMAHA designs. It weighs in at about 20 pounds, which is still a little bit heavy than some of the other models, and it can reach depths up to an impressive 98 feet.
While it may fall a little bit short in performance compared to the RS1 model, it makes up for it in price. This unit costs about half of the RS1 model costs, saving users quite a bit of money.
If you are looking for something that can really perform underwater, but cost significantly less than some of the newer designs, this unit will be the perfect companion to bring along with you on your next dive trip.
More affordable than the RS1
Can reach speeds up to 3.1 miles per hour
Some users have found that the battery life does not last up to 60 minutes
What drew us to the Jerry Rat was that it doesn’t quite look like anything else out there on the market. It is housed in matte charcoal gray matte plastic with sharp orange accents along the propeller. Users hang on to the handles located on the arms of the wings.
If you are really looking to book it underwater, this is going to be your best options. This little unit is capable of reaching speeds up to almost 7 miles per hour. One charge lasts about 1-2 hours, and there is an LED indicator to show users how much battery life is left in the battery. On the downside, this unit weighs just over 30 pounds, making it one of the heavier options on our list.
This may be one of the fastest options out there on the market, but it also comes with one of the highest price tags. Before you take the plunge, be sure that the speed and weight of this design are going to benefit your dives.
It may come at a large price tag, but this unit can really move underwater. If you are willing to pay the high price point that will run you about as much as a plane ticket to a tropical island, this will be an excellent addition to your next underwater expedition.
Is one of the fastest designs on the market
Innovative and unique design
LED indicator light tells users how low the battery is getting
This unit of offered in a basic blue color that has black accents along the case as well as the handles. Users can press a button that is found on the back of the handle to toggle it from on to off while they use it in the water.
Like we said earlier, all of the features of this design fall about in the middle of the road. It can reach a top speed of about 3 miles per hour and can reach a maximum depth of about 98 feet. KaiRover feels that their product is perfect for casual snorkeling or shallow scuba diving.
What we liked most about this design is that it comes in at a price point that is one of the most affordable options out there on the market.
If you are looking for something that can reach a pretty average speed without setting you back too much money, the KaiRover will sure to be an excellent addition to all of your diving or snorkeling gear.
Can reach speeds up to 3 miles per hour
Not designed for deep dives
Sea Doo Dolphin
What we liked about the Sea Doo Dolphin is that is lightweight and easy to use, and it is perfect for children swimming in modest bodies of water as well as for snorkeling and shallow diving. It comes in a bright color that will be sure to get you noticed by other swimmers out on the water.
If you were in the market for something that was just a little bit more fun, this is going to be a perfect fit for your underwater adventures. It comes in two different color options that include blue with electric green trim, as well as yellow with navy trim. It has two handles along the sides that have buttons that allow users to turn them on and off again easily.
If you are looking to go incredibly fast, this might not be your best option. It has a top speed of about 2 miles per hours, and it is only able to go down about 15.5 feet. The entire unit only weighs just over 12 pounds, making it one of the easiest to carry, even by smaller divers and swimmers.
The price of this unit can pack quite a hefty price tag, even for something that isn’t really capable of traveling down that far for the more serious divers. However, users love how easy it is to use, and they feel like the 2-hour battery life is pretty accurate- which is something that can be rather inconsistent in other designs.
If you want something that you can have a little bit of fun with, whether it be in the pool with the kids, at the lake or snorkeling in the ocean, the Sea Doo Dolphin is a very solid and dependable price of gear that won’t let you down.
Comes in fun colors
Easy to use
Cannot travel very far underwater
Apollo AV-2 Evolution
This unit only comes in a solid black shell that is made from ABS resin that is considered to be shock resistant- so you can be a little hard on it and it shouldn’t break or damage in interior components. It has a front casing that is held on by the aid of two stainless steel latches. When it is time to change the battery, users simply have to unlatch the top and give it a charge and latch it back up.
What is great about the Apollo AV-2 Evolution is that it can reach depths of up to 300 feet, which is double that of what most of the other designs on this list are capable of reaching. It has a three-speed propeller system that can reach tops speeds of about 2.6 miles per hour. What users really respond positively to is the addition of an LED indicator light that signals how much battery life is left in the unit (it can run continuously for about 100 minutes). The bad news about this design is that weighs in at just over 40 pounds, which may be a little too heavy for smaller divers that don’t want to carry heavy gear.
This is one of the most expensive units currently out there on the market. However, if you are looking for something that is made to least, and is designed for serious divers that really want to explore reaches of the ocean that they have never seen before, this is going to be well worth the price tag to be able to achieve those things.
For serious divers that want something that will allow them to reach new depths in their diving, and have the extra money to buy something as expensive as this design, you won’t be disappointed with the performance of the Apollo AV-2 Evolution.
LED indicator light for battery life
Can reach depths of up to 300 feet
Easy speed adjustment for excellent maneuverability
The outside shell is coated with a resilient yellow plastic, and it offers 3 seals to ensure that no water will enter the unit and compromise the battery. The handle and the propeller cage are accented with a matte black plastic.
The downside that we found about this model is that I just don't have the same battery life as some of the other models. It takes about 4 hours to reach a full charge and will last about 40-50 minutes of continuous use in the water. It can, however, go just a little bit faster than some of the other designs out there on the market, and can reach a top speed of just shy of 4 miles per hour.
The cost of this unit runs about in the middle of the road. It isn’t the most expensive design out there, but it isn’t the most affordable as well. Considering that it can move pretty fast, and is made from high-quality materials, we find that it is well worth the price tag.
If you are on the market for something that is high quality without spending the amount of money that you would some of the higher end designs, the DEPTH RATING will be a great addition to your next diving trip this summer.
Can get rather fast
Easy to use
Takes 4 hours to charge and battery will only last about 40-50 minutes in water
YAMAHA Mount Professional
We love the exterior look of this unit. It comes in a solid black shell that has sharp edges that looks like it was just made to slice right through the water without skipping a beat. It has sharp elective yellow accents along the top as well as on all of the buttons.
Top speeds can reach up to 4.35 miles per hour, which is pretty fast for a YAMAHA which typically have speeds that top around 3 miles per hour. It is able to reach depths up to 130 feet, and it weighs about 21 pounds- even including the battery. With a full charge, it can give users up to 120 minutes of continuous use.
The downside about all of these great features is that the price tag is a little painful This unit is some of the more expensive designs out there on the market. However, considering that it comes with the YAMAHA name, and it has a lot of features that will really enhance your dives, we feel that if you can afford it, it is well worth the price tag.
You can’t really go wrong with a YAMAHA product. This unit gives experiences divers all of the tools that they will need to help them get the most out of their dives every time they jump into the water.
Lightweight and fast
Long battery life
Our Criteria for Underwater Scooters
When it comes to underwater exploration, anything that will allow you to stay underwater for longer periods of time is going to be worth its weight in gold. One of the reasons that divers feel like the need to swim back up to the surface is because they are afraid that they won’t have enough energy to be able to make it back, so they cut their trips short to play it safe. If you have ever been in that situation before, you know first hand how frightening that can be. Also, the more physical energy that is output means that your body is going to require more oxygen, and when you are underwater oxygen is a valuable substance. We made sure to select designs that were going to be able to not only hold a charge long enough to allow you to really explore, but that also would travel fast enough so that you didn’t have to do a whole lot of swimming. There were a few other things that we also kept in mind to ensure that you will have more time to enjoy all of your upcoming underwater expeditions.
This was just a little bit tricky because the price tags for most of these designs really pack a punch. We were able to find some brands- from trusted companies such as YAMAHA that offered options that were at an affordable price point that might set you back as much as you spent on your wetsuit. However, the more affordable options often weren’t able to travel the same speeds, go down as far, or hold a charge as long as the higher end models. If you are a casual diver that isn’t interested in diving down more than about 15-30 feet, you might find that the more affordable options might be better suited for your needs. The higher priced options that we selected might set you back about four digits, but these options are designed to really move and are made for the more serious divers.
Many companies may claim that their batteries will last anywhere from 60-120 minutes, but we made sure to check with previous users to ensure that those numbers were accurate. In some cases, there were an overwhelming number of users that didn’t feel that their battery lasted very long, and if there were enough users making those claims, we moved on to another design. Not only did we want to make sure that these products had a decent battery life, but we also took a look at how easy they were to charge. In most cases, users simply had to twist off the front of the unit in order to give it a good charge, and then twist it back on before heading back into the water.
There are very few adjustments to the original torpedo design that was used in the 1950’s. The idea behind this is that if it isn’t broke, there is no need to fix it. While there were some minor adjustments in style- such as sharper edges or bright colors, there was one thing that really concerned us, and that was in regards to the cage of the propeller. It was incredibly important that the cages to the blades were small enough so that fingers couldn’t accidentally get trapped but large enough to let water in to improve speeds. We liked designs that created a good distance between the handles and the propellers so there were absolutely no risks of any underwater mishaps.
The faster that the propellers can take you means that you will be able to travel much longer distances on one charge. We make sure to include some of the fastest designs out there on the market that could reach speeds up to about 5-7 miles per hour. The faster designs typically have different gears that users can shift into to slow it down and speed it up as they see fit. The slower models that go anywhere between 2 and 3 miles per hour were typically set at a lower price point but often didn’t have enough juice to travel down very deep.
Various designs were able to travel at a wide range of depths. The more affordable options could only reach depths from between 15-30 feet deep. Depending upon what you intend to use these items for, this depth might just be perfect for you. Some of the higher end models are made to achieve depths that reach from between 50 all the way to an impressive 130 feet. It is important to keep in mind, however, that the designs that can reach depths of up to 130 feet often come at a much higher price point.
Before you take the plunge, consider what type of diving you will be using this item for. If you are more of a recreational diver that just loves to be in the ocean and it doesn’t matter how far or deep you dive, you might save yourself a lot of money and option for a model that isn’t designed to travel as deep or travel as fast. If you are a veteran diver that is looking for new tools to help reach lower depths to discover new ocean life, you would probably benefit by dishing out the extra money and opting for a model that can travel faster as well as be able to travel deeper.
Q: How do they benefit my dives?
There are two distinct things that are keeping you from staying under the water for longer periods of time: muscle fatigue and oxygen. Diving gear is heavy, and the more gear you have on, the quicker your muscles are going to start feeling tired as you start exploring the water. With the aid of one of these devices, you will be able to conserve a bit of your strength and let these gadgets do all of the hard work. Additionally, when you are huffing and puffing from all of the physical energy you are exerting, you will run out of oxygen more quickly. However, if you let the device do all of the huffings and puffing for you, you will be able to conserve a lot more oxygen.
Q: Will they harm the environment?
It might seem a little strange to bring something like this down into the water with you, but experts ensure environmentally conscious divers that they are completely harmless to the waters and the creatures living in the water because they do not use an engine- they use a battery. If they were gas powered, they would be able to travel a whole lot faster than 2-7 miles per hour!
Q: Are they hard to control?
Most users find they are not hard to control at all, and sometimes they are even used by kids that are about 12 years old swimming in the deep end of their swimming pool. Due to the fact that the products run off of a battery, it means that the power just isn’t there to allow users to lose control of their devices. Plus, with speeds topping out on about 5 miles per hour, it just isn’t fast enough to lose control.
Q: How do they work?
These tools were originally used in World War 2, and they used the science behind torpedos as inspiration. Much like a torpedo, these devices have a series of propellers that are housed by a safety cage. When the user turns their unit to the on position, the propellers start to move and the narrowed nose allows users to glide through the water. There are typical handles along the sides that are easy to grip and there is no danger of anything being caught into the blades (there are also safety mechanisms in place for most models to ensure that it will shut off if it senses anything coming in contact with the blades.
Q: How fast do they typically go?
There is no need to worry about hopping aboard a fast moving rocket on your next dive because these typically move pretty slowly. On the lower end of the price, the scale is the designs that can only reach top speeds of about 2 miles per hour. Users like these because not only are they generally more affordable, but they can be used by first time divers that aren’t quite all that familiar with the equipment. On the higher end of the price scale are designs that can reach top speeds of about 7 miles per hour, and these designs can typically travel just a little bit deeper than some of the slower designs.
Q: Do I need to have a lot of diving experience?
Absolutely not! If there is a body of water that you are willing to explore, and you have all of the gear and the appropriate safety equipment to keep you safe, these devices can be used by just about anyone. We even noticed that some users that opt for the slower and more affordable options allowed their kids to use them on the deep side of the swimming pool. Plus, these aren’t very difficult to operate at all. There is generally a switch located right by the handle that can turn the unit on with just a simple flick of a button.
Q: Are they safe?
Due to the fact that they run off of a battery, there is no need to worry about them being unsafe. The propellers generally do not move fast enough to be able to cause any real harm, and the blades are housed within a very secure cage that will keep anything from penetrating. If anything does penetrate the cage will cause an automatic shut off to trigger to ensure that users, as well as marine life, will remain perfectly safe. As we had mentioned earlier, a lot of users purchase the slower, more lightweight options to be used by children (typically over the age of 12) to be used in a pool or a lake for a little bit of extra fun. If they are ok for children, they are going to be safe fur just about everyone.
Q: How should I store it in the offseason?
When the weather starts to get cooler, or you arrive home from your beach vacation, you might be a little perplexed as to where to store your unit to ensure that it is safe and will not become damaged in storage. The most important thing that you need to ensure that you do it to make sure that it is completely dry before you pack it away because any added moisture could damage the battery. Be sure that you put it in a location that is high and dry to ensure that you get the most life out of the battery.