If you’re relatively new to the world of owning a pontoon boat, then transporting it might feel intimidating to say the least. Even if you’ve owned other watercraft before, towing your pontoon boat can still be a lot to get used to.
Pontoon boats are less aerodynamic than a classic V-hull, and typically weigh in over 2,200 pounds. Add a 1,200-pound trailer, and it’s important to know that you and your vehicle are equipped for the job!
Do Basic Maintenance
It’s absolutely essential that you always keep your boat, trailer, and vehicle well maintained. Check everything thoroughly before and after each trip, and especially take care to inspect these key areas:
- Tires & bearings
- Tail Lights
Secure Equipment & Bimini
Don’t leave anything in your boat that could potentially come loose and blow away. At high speeds, anything that isn’t secure can become a hazard. And don’t forget to fold up and tuck away the Bimini top!
Take a Test Drive
Once you’ve secured the boat and stowed all the equipment away, take a short test drive to make sure everything feels right. A small drive on the nearest highway will give you a feel for the weight distribution.
Beware of Drafting
Watch out for the drafts caused by big rigs and semis. Because pontoon boats have such a large frame, these winds can buffet you sideways into another lane if you’re not careful. Also, because pontoon boats are somewhat less than aerodynamic, fishtailing and buckling are definitely things to watch out for.
Check on Your Boat
Don’t just get on the highway and drive uninterrupted if you’re making a long trip. Pull over every few hours to inspect your rig for security. Check for overheating as well by placing your hands on the tires and hubs of the trailer.
Use the Right Cover
Not all pontoon boat covers are created equal! The cover you use while the boat is in storage may not be made for high-speed travel. Make sure whey you purchase a cover that you get one that’s made to hold up under highway speeds.
Know the Rules
Every state has its own laws and restrictions when it comes to trailering boats, including varying width limits. Be sure to know the regulations in advance, especially if you’re planning to cross state lines.
Use Your Mirrors
Sure, this is good advice for any driver under any circumstances. But when you’re towing a pontoon boat, it’s especially important to continually check your surroundings, and beware of your blind spots. If your vehicle doesn’t have dual side-view mirrors for towing, you can attach them in most cases.
Beware of Wide Turns
Adding a trailer and pontoon boat to your vehicle greatly widens your turns. Just another reason why it’s especially important to be aware of your surroundings, especially if you’re in a situation where there are lots of other vehicles around you.
Plan Your Route Ahead of Time
Don’t wing it! Don’t decide to take the scenic route! Plan out exactly where you’ll be going ahead of time, and know where the gas stations, rest areas, and turn-offs are located along the way.
Have more questions about trailering and towing your pontoon boat? Contact us today, and talk to our experts at Veranda Marine for all your pontoon boat needs!
Worried about transporting your pontoon boat? Learn the tips and tricks to safe trailering and transportation of your pontoon boat!
It’s easy to feel intimidated when you’re traveling with a pontoon boat for the first time. Put safety first with these expert transport tips!
Tips for Traveling with Your Pontoon Boat
Transporting a pontoon boat can be challenging, but a few simple tips and precautions will ensure that you get from A to B safely.