Gone Outdoors

How to Install a Depth Finder on a Pontoon Boat

by Contributing Writer

Pontoon boats can give a boater many hours of enjoyable recreation. These boats can be used for sightseeing, fishing, cruising or as swim platforms. Their open floor plans allow an owner to carry numerous friends for an outing. Adding a depth finder is something that can and a measure of safety to the boating experience. Any owner can add the depth finder to their pontoon boat with a few tools and supplies from a home store.

Mount the transducer

Look at the rear of the pontoon boat. One of the pontoons will have a mounting rack attached. The depth finder transducer mounting bracket will mount to this rack.

Place the transducer mounting bracket against the base of the mounting rack. The transducer mounting bracket will have holes for the mounting screws. Use the pen in these holes to identify places to drill pilot holes for the screws.

Use a cordless drill and a 1/16" drill bit to drill pilot holes in the identified places. Use the provided screws and the appropriate screwdriver to mount the transducer mounting bracket on the mounting rack. Attach the transducer to the transducer mounting bracket by clicking it in place.

Mount and connect the depth finder

Identify a place in the boat cockpit that allows good visibility of the depth finder. Mount the depth finder mounting bracket in the cockpit using the screws provided and a screwdriver. Attach the depth finder to the mounting bracket.

Route the wire from the transducer through the pontoon platform pedestals to the cockpit. Use zip ties to connect any loose wire to the pontoon frame. Connect the transducer wire to the back of the depth finder.

Attach the positive and negative connections on the power cable to the boat battery. The positive wire will be red and the negative wire will be black. The connections on the battery will be identified with the plus and minus sign.

Route the power cable from the battery beside the other wires leading to the boat cockpit. Attach the power cable to the depth finder. Turn on the depth finder. If it does not activate, check all connections.

Items you will need
  • Depth finder
  • Depth finder mounting bracket
  • Transducer
  • Transducer mounting bracket
  • Permanent marking pen
  • Cordless drill
  • 1/16 inch drill bit
  • Flathead screwdriver
  • Phillips screwdriver
  • Adjustable wrench
  • Zip ties

Tip

  • If your pontoon boat does not have a mounting bracket for the transducer, use an aftermarket transducer bracket.