How to Choose a Pontoon Trailer

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Pontoon boats allow some of the best leisurely lake boating. If you own a pontoon boat, you know how difficult it can get moving it back and forth to the lake. You really can't have a pontoon boat unless you also own a quality trailer. Pontoon trailers, however, come in many different types and sizes. Just like anything else, the quality varies from trailer to trailer. Learn what to look for in a quality pontoon trailer and make your next trip to the lake safe and trouble-free.

Step 1

Match the size of the trailer to the size of your boat. For instance, you must size the length of the trailer to the tube length of the pontoon boat. If the tubes measure 28 feet, your trailer should measure at least 28 feet.

Step 2

Match the trailer's number of axles to your boat's weight. The number of axles on a pontoon trailer indicates how much weight it can carry. A single-axle trailer carries small 14-foot to 20-foot boats that weigh up to 2,250 pounds. Dual-axle trailers carry mid-range 20-foot to 28-foot boats that weigh 2,250 to 4,800 pounds. Triple-axle trailers carry large 28-foot to 34-foot boats that weigh 4,800 to 6,000 pounds.

Step 3

Match the tire type to the type of terrain that you drive on. For instance, you can select from radial and non-radial, ply tires. Radial tires wear longer, but ply tires work better for rough terrain. If you choose a ply tire, choose a multi-ply. A "ply" consists of one layer within the tire. Multi-ply tires support heavier loads than single-ply tires.

Step 4

Choose a wide-diameter tire. Diameter indicates tire height from top to bottom. Tires with large diameters cover more ground per revolution than a smaller-diameter tire. Consequently, they suffer less wear and tear than small-diameter tires.

Step 5

Match the trailer material with your truck's towing capability. For instance, manufacturers make pontoon trailers out of galvanized steel or aircraft-grade aluminum. Aluminum weighs less, so it requires less towing power. Aluminum trailers, however, only work with smaller boats. Galvanized steel works better for larger, heavier boats.

Step 6

Inspect the electrical cords. For instance, you must hook your trailer to your truck's blinker system. Test all blinkers and lights and ensure they work properly. Look for signs of brittleness in the rubber wires.

Step 7

Make sure the trailer fits your budget. New trailers cost $1,700 to $4,000. Used trailers cost almost the same at a range of $800 to $3,000.