Tips for Driving Pontoon Boats

Pontoon boats are a very popular option when it comes to boat rentals or ownership, and there are some good reasons for this popularity. Pontoon boats are extremely versatile. They can be used for watersports, fishing or just lounging around the lake on a hot summer afternoon. They are perfect for families looking to have an adventure on the water together. Pontoon boats come in all sorts of sizes and shapes, so there’s bound to be a pontoon boat perfect for your activity and needs.

Pontoon Boats

Another reason why pontoon boats are popular is because they are relatively easy to drive. They are good boats for beginners to learn how to drive a boat. They handle well at slower speeds and give the driver a good vantage point and view of the water because they sit relatively high off the water for their size.

If you are getting ready to set off on a new adventure involving pontoon boats, here are some tips for driving them:

  • Remember that boats don’t have brakes: This is one of the hardest things for people new to driving boats to remember. It is important to reduce your speed prior to turning and in areas with more traffic because boats don’t have brakes like cars.
  • Watch the wind: Because pontoon boats sit high off the water, they are susceptible to being pushed around a bit by the wind. It is important to factor in the wind as you decide what speed to drive and while you are turning the boat.
  • Turning takes some practice: It is important to speed up smoothly to keep the propeller in the water. If you hear howling sounds, that means the propeller is sucking air. Always look around the boat before beginning a turn and remember that turning will also change the angle of the boat.

5 thoughts on “Tips for Driving Pontoon Boats

  1. Big thanks to Suzanne for posting these tips! We’re going on a holiday with my family and I thought it would be nice to rent a pontoon boat somewhere. I’ve never drove one so your advice is probably going to be very helpful. Is it possible to sleep the night in a pontoon boat or is it better to bunk onshore?

    • Thanks Milo for your input and question. Everything is appreciated. The answer I will give is-it is totally dependent upon the boat you have. If it has sleeping quarters or a cabin, yes. Most Pontoons do not. Be sure to ask when you inquire regarding the rentals. Thanks again Milo.

  2. My husband just got his boat driver’s license, and he wants to use it on our upcoming boat trip. Thanks for the reminder that my husband should be careful about the wind because it might affect his speed while driving. I’ll share this with my husband so that we can decide which type of boat should we rent and what itinerary should we choose for him to condition himself before the vacation.

    • It is always a great idea to be familiar with a boat or at leasting boating before taking the responsibility of other people on. Boats are not complicated and as I tell all of our customers, Be Careful, Cautious and Courteous and you cannot go wrong. Thank you for reading!

  3. Thank you for informing me that pontoons are great for all kinds of activities: including fishing and watersports. My father loves being on the water; it is so calming for him. I wonder if I should look into pontoon boats that he could purchase so that he could have that relaxation all of the time.

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