Pontoon boats are a dime a dozen and come in a lot of sizes. The weight of a pontoon boat depends on the size of it, along with all of the built-in features, such as furniture, navigation equipment, safety railings, etc.
Sticking with average weights between a fifteen-foot pontoon boat and a twenty-five-foot pontoon boat, they can weigh anywhere between 1,500lbs and 3,500lbs. The make, model, and materials play a role as well, but these averages are pretty close.
Much of the metal on a pontoon boat is made of aluminum, with fiberglass decking and aluminum safety rails. These are all pretty lightweight materials. In some pontoons, treated wood is prevalent, and the motor(s) is a consideration too.
Different Pontoon Boat Sizes and Weights
Pontoons aren’t manufactured in a single, uniform size. They’re party boats, but some are for bigger parties than others. Plus, you have to throw in the weight of the motor, the gasoline tank, the anchor, and the furniture that comes with it.
Little “cruiser” pontoons are about 18’ long and weigh about 1,350lbs dry weight. Dry weight is kind of like a dry weight on a vehicle. It just means the weight of the pontoon, as soon as it comes off the assembly line, with nothing extra thrown on it.
But length isn’t always the deciding factor. For instance, the Avalon Venture Fish is only 14’ long and weighs 1,382lbs, 32lbs heavier than a standard, eighteen-footer.
Medium encompasses a few different lengths. Once you get above 18’, into the 20’ range, you’re getting into the medium pontoon sizes. The dry weight on a 20’ Lowe Boats Ultra 200 Cruise is 2020lbs.
A 24’ pontoon is on the high end of the medium boats. The Godfrey AquaPatio 235 SDB is a 24’ pontoon boat with a dry weight of 4,052lbs.
A 26’ pontoon and longer is definitely in the large range of pontoon boats. A 30’ Bennington Marine 30 QX SB weighs 6,800lbs in terms of dry weight. The smaller, 26’ JC Manufacturing Spoon weighs 3,742lbs in dry weight.
It’s another example of length not telling the entire tale. The JC Manufacturing Spoon weighs less than the shorter Godfrey AquaPatio. Some pontoon boats are almost 60’ long, making them practically houseboats, and they often weigh well north of 15,000lbs.
Dry Weight versus Loaded Weight
The above weights given for the various sizes were all dry weights or dry weight averages. Loaded weight is going to include anything and everything people bring on pontoon boats. Since they are party barges, you can expect small appliances, extra seating, coolers full of food and drinks, and much more.
A standard, aluminum pontoon boat has a weight capacity of a ton. That’s 2,000lbs of whatever you want to stock it with. Larger pontoons can easily hold a 40-gallon gas tank. The weight of a gallon of gas is 6lbs, so a 40-gallon tank will weigh 240lbs, all by itself.
The motor will weigh anywhere between 50 and 200lbs, depending on the size of the boat and what it needs. Plus, most pontoons will have an additional trolling motor, which will add 50lbs or so.
A solid anchor is 30lbs, and if you are fishing, you can add all the weight of your various rigs, tackle, and anything else you want to bring along. An angler isn’t likely to bring just a fishing rod.
People pile weight up quickly. A lot of pontoon boats only have a one-ton capacity. That includes people and everything else you bring along. So you can’t really bring 10 people, since you will probably overload it.
Pontoons come in a wide variety of sizes, so the weight disparity is pretty big. They’re like rafts, however, and they can hold a lot of stuff. If you’re looking to grill out and have a good time without going to the beach or the local swimming hole, a pontoon is a perfect option.
Knowing a pontoon’s weight is important, especially the weight capacity. You need to know the weight because you will have to haul the thing around, park it in your driveway, or store it during the winter.
In terms of capacity, you never want to flirt with what the boat and engine are rated for. Play it safe in all cases. You could destroy the stability of the boat or permanently damage it. At the end of the day, it’s supposed to be a party barge and not a money pit.
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