Pontoon boats are quite unique because of its monohull design. The pontoon boat weight is one of the major factors to consider; if you need to tow your own pontoon on a trailer.
Yet I see how easily most people overlook this important detail when making their buying decision. Speed, size, and motor capacity are great but knowing the weight of your boat is important. Do you know how much a pontoon boat weights?
Practically a pontoon boat weight varies based on its size, manufacturer and design. But on average a pontoon weighs around 2200 pounds or 1000 kilo’s. Further, it can hold another 1800 to 2000 pounds of crew, guest and accessories.
So the total average weight of a pontoon in water is about 4000 pounds. Now when you add the weight of the trailer ( 1200 pounds ); it rapidly cross over 5000 pounds in total.
Not to mention the weight of the fuel at about 6 pounds per gallon of gas.
Thus to tow or pull a pontoon in a trailer; you need a truck or a high power SUV with a towing capacity at least 2500 pounds more than the weight of the boat in the water. For example, if the weight of the pontoon is 3000 pounds the towing capacity of the truck must be at least 5500 pounds.
How Much Does A Pontoon Boat Weight?
Technically it is correct and quite safe to say; the average weight of the pontoon is about 2200 pounds. But not all pontoons are equal even when they all have a flat deck mounted on top of the hollow tube structure.
For example, the Avalon venture fish 16′, weighs 1350 pounds while Avalon Catalina DRL 24′ weighs 2050 pounds.
There are different sizes, styles and lots of accessories to consider; that have a significant impact on the weight of a boat. Further, there are pontoons that have single, double and sometimes more motors fitted onto them. Add them all and the weight increase rapidly.
When I first looked for buying a boat it was tough but exciting. Although I know much of the basics about the boat being a marine engineer by profession.
Sill I invest my next few weeks researching for the style of pontoon boat; its speed, price, length, accessories and how many people it can accommodate at a time. The last thing I looked for was its weight, deck length, fuel capacity, and other technical stuff.
Knowing the weight of your boat is important to pick the right pickup truck for your boat trailer. Let’s look into some of the most popular pontoons and their weight; before learning the importance of the boat weight.
51 Popular Pontoon Boat Weight Example
Dry Hull Weight (lbs)
Max Load Capacity (lbs)
Total Weight (lbs)
Lowe Ultra 162 Fish & Cruise
Lowe Ultra 160 Cruise
Sun Tracker Bass Buggy 16 DLX
Sun Tracker Bass Buggy 16 XL
Avalon Venture Fish16FT
Avalon Venture CRB/QL
Tahoe Sport CRB/QL
Starcraft LX 16R
Starcraft LX 18F
Starcraft EX Fish 18F
Starcraft EXS 1
Lowe Ultra 202 Fish & Cruise
Lowe Ultra 200 Cruise
Harris Cruiser LX 200
Sun Tracker Party Barge 18 DLX
Sun Tracker Bass Buggy 18 DLX
Harris Sunliner 210
Sun Tracker Bass Buggy 20 DLX
Starcraft SLS 1
Starcraft CX 21 C
Starcraft EX 22 C
Tahoe LTZ Cruise 22FT
Tahoe Cascade Platinum Cruise
Avalon LSZ Cruize 22FT
Avalon LS Quad Longer 22FT
Sun Tracker Party Barge 22 XP3
Sun Tracker Party Barge 22 RF DLX
Tahoe LTZ Cruise 24FT
Starcraft EX 24 R
Harris Grand Mariner 230
Harris Sunliner 250
Lowe Retreat 250 WT
Lowe SS250 Extenbded Walk Thru
Starcraft 25 R DC
Tahoe LTZ Cruise 26 FT
Sun Tracker Party Barge 24 XP3
Lowe Retreat 270 Extended WT
Lowe SS270 Extended Walk Thru
Tahoe Cascade Platinum Quad Longer
Harris Crowne DL 250
Harris Crowne SL 250 Twin Engine
Tahoe Vision Funship
Importance Of Boat Construction
Most modern pontoons consists of long hollow tubes or pontoons. A pontoon can have two or three of these aluminum tubes in parallel connected together with the help of aluminum cross members.
The deck is then bolted on top of them make most of thick marine grade plywood. On top, it has a fiberglass and other waterproofing material. Finally, it is covered with a nice marine-grade carpet.
The carpet is light, UV protected and mildew resistant; while the fiberglass itself is waterproof and light by design.
Further, the deck features aluminum rails, an outboard motor, deck fittings, and a bimini top. The pontoon weight typically includes its hull, rails, deck, fittings, rails and an outward motor.
Why Weight Matters?
Knowing the weight of your boat is important as it not just help you stay safe, improve performance but also tow your boat safely. Plus knowing the total weight capacity of a boat helps avoid overloading.
I knew you have just starting out and simply want to worry less about these technicalities.
But pay a little attention to it just for the sake of your car or truck; as towing a 4000 lbs boat with a Honda Civic is less promising and sometimes risky. Even when you need to invite your friends on the boat for a relaxing evening or a boat party; you better know your boat limit.
Further, there is a direct impact of weight on the speed of your boat. The heavier it is the slow it goes for the same power.
The thumb rule for calculating pontoon boat weight on the go; consider a 100 pounds for every foot of your boat length. At last, add the additional weights of fuel ( 6.2 lbs per gallon ), fire extinguisher, anchors and other heavy accessories.
Knowing your boat weight is not just important also understanding what that means. Here are the three weight capacity you will find for any boat type:
- Dry Hull Weight: The weight of your boat without engine, fuel, and nonessential deck accessories installed.
- Total Weight: It is the total weight of your boat with all the crew, passengers, fuel, engine, accessories and fittings.
- Combined / Tow Weight: Add the weight of your trailer to the total weight of your boat; you will get the combined or towing weight.
Towing Your Boat ( Tow Weight Capacity & Safety )
Now that you have learned and understand the importance of knowing your pontoon boat weight. It’s time to learn how to safely toe it. Afterall unless your boat is docked at the marina; you need to haul it on a trailer to the marina. Let’s go through a quick checklist to safely do it.
Towing your boat has always been challenging; especially if it’s your first time. It is not that towing a boat is hard; it requires just basic knowledge about your boat and a few safety tips to consider.
A standard pontoon boat trainer weighs around 1200 to 1400 pounds. While the average dry weight of pontoons is 2200 pounds. Now when you add both you get a combined weight of around 3400 to 3600 pounds.
Then add another 1400 pounds for motor and accessories with an additional 500 pounds as a safety cap. Now you get a net towing capacity need for 5500 pounds.
Thus as a general rule of thumb, a towing capacity between 5500 to 6000 pounds is considered sufficient.
- Drive slow taking only wide turns.
- Ensure a healthy grip and traction in between tires and the ground of both trailer and your vehicle.
- Make sure you have a good braking system.
- Brake wire your trailer to the truck or SUV.
- Stay sharp and careful while you drive.
- Centralize your weight as much as practically possible.
- Use at least 4 straps to secure bow, transom, and gunwale.
- If possible cover your pontoon to keep the dust-out.
- Make sure you use a vehicle with a towing capacity larger than its total weight.
- Ideally use a vehicle with a towing capacity larger than 5500 pounds for additional safety.
Whether you are planning to buy a pontoon or you already have one; knowing your pontoon boat weight is a must. Learning how to drive a boat is important, and so does knowing about its specs.
But one should also know at the of paperwork; whether your boat weighs 100 pounds or a ton.
Ultimately knowing the dry and total weight of your boat helps with hauling the boat. As having a vehicle with adequate towing capacity ensures your’s and public safety at road.
At last, it is better to be sure of your pontoon boat weight than to do a lot of guessing or a last moment google search.
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