Earlier, pontoons were just meant to be sailing boats with lower horsepower engines, comfortable seats, and a speed of at most 15 mph. However, recent times have come up with many advanced models. Pontoon boats today are fast sailing decks with modern design and features used for leisure boating.
The engineers of the best brands have topped the game. It means you can now get fast production pontoons that are substitutes for many hull boats. For this reason, pontoon boats are now quite expensive.
So, are pontoon boats fast enough to give you that speed-thrill?
Usually, pontoon boats are not known for their speed. But water enthusiasts wish for more speed and the times also demand so. Pontoons are also used for many water sports such as tubing and waterskiing. The fastest pontoon boat can get up to 115mph, which is fast in anyone’s books.
How Fast Can Pontoon Boats Go?
On average, pontoons can travel at a speed of about 18 to 25 mph when fully loaded. In comparison, some speedier models can even run at over 50 mph.
The speed of pontoon boats depends on multiple things that are as follows:
- Size of the engine
- Number of tubes beneath the deck
- Load of the boat
How to Enhance the Performance of a Pontoon Boat?
You can always enhance the performance of your pontoon boats. Their performance has now become less of a secret and more of a feature people look forward to. Likewise, leisure enthusiasts won’t compromise on their sailing living room.
The following are some of the ways through which you can elevate the performance of your pontoon boat.
Add under skinning to reduce drag from the splashing water and lower the bimini cover to reduce wind resistance. When pontoon boats are clean under the waterline, movement of the boat becomes smooth through the water.
Moreover, try to keep up with the daily maintenance of your pontoon boat to its needs. This maximizes the performance of your boat.
Use of V-Toon Technology
The V-Toon technology provides you faster acceleration. This feature is designed to lift like a fiberglass boat to maintain the stability of your pontoon.
Add More Speed
The speed of a pontoon boat is affected due to multiple factors that are mentioned above in this article. If you’re looking to speed up your pontoon, keep scrolling to read on for the ways to speed your pontoon boat up.
10 Tips For Making Your Pontoon Boats Go Faster
Here are some tips through which you can maximize your pontoon’s speed and performance:
Trim Up the Engine
Trimming up your engine refers to tilting it physically to a higher angle with the boat’s hydraulic motor. This brings the front of the pontoon out of the water a bit. Without a doubt, trimming your engine up is the simplest fix to make the speed better.
Don’t Fill Up Completely on Fuel
A large gas tank can last for about a couple of days. A single tank can weigh heavily and reduce the performance of your boat. If you’re not planning a long boating trip, just fill the gas tank half.
This way, the pontoon’s weight reduces and it performs better in terms of speed.
Lighten Your Load
Never load your pontoon boat heavier if you want it faster. This is a no brainer, reduce the weight and go faster.
Distribute Weight Better
Always keep the weight load on the back of a pontoon boat. This way, the boat speeds up as this keeps the front of the pontoon from plowing.
Use of Booster Ball for Pulling Tubes and Skiers
Booster ball is a big ball-shaped inflatable that floats the tow rope out of the water. It works through the rope in the water that works as an anchor for a ski or tube. It pulls the skier towards the middle of the wake.
You get much enhanced results if you float the line above the water. This way, riders can roam like they can on a fast pontoon. Overall, this is the simplest yet cheapest fix if you are a skier.
Easy on the Groups
Don’t take a ride with a lot of passengers. There must not be more than five people at a time if you really want to get the ultimate ride.
Underskin Your Pontoon
Underskin refers to adding metal sheets underneath the boat so the water that splashes up hits the metal instead of metal studs. This brings you a smoother and faster ride.
Add a Third Pontoon (Tritoon)
Adding a tritoon makes the boat more quick-moving and it handles more passengers.
Fit Lifting Stakes
If your pontoon boat doesn’t have lifting strakes installed, I recommend you to get them installed. But what are those?
Briefly, lifting strakes are little strips of metal that help in creating lift in the water. Above all, they help the pontoon get up on the plane rather than just plowing. They provide you with a smooth ride along with speeding the boat up.
Upgrade Your Prop
Upgrading your prop is yet another fix you can try to speed up your pontoon boat. Not every prop produces the same results. However, choosing a prop with the right pitch may help you get on the plane faster.
How Fast Do You Really Need to Go?
Honestly, you don’t need to travel that fast on pontoons as you think you need. Many people want pontoons to be much faster due to their taste. However, pulling a skier requires a speed of about 20 mph and Slalom water skiing requires at least 28 to 36 mph.
Speed also varies as per the abilities and taste of pontoon riders. The following table shows the right range of average speed required for some water sports.
|Kneeboarding||around 13 to 20 mph|
|Tubing with very young kids||5 to 10 mph|
|Tubing with kids 8 –10 years old||15 to 20 mph|
|Tubing with adults & teenagers||18 to 22 mph|
|Water skiing with two skis||15 to 26 mph|
|Slalom skiing||16 to 32 mph|
|Wakeboarding||13 to 20 mph|
The speed for most of the water sport activities is about 22 mph. Besides, any model with a 90 hp motor can travel at this speed. Therefore, you don’t really need much speed, rather just a good pontoon boat.
What are the Fastest Pontoon Boats?
Pontoons differ in speed. Many of them are not as fast as people think they are. Having said that, there are some very fast models meant for leisure boating.
If you have a question, are pontoon boats fast? Here is the list of some fastest pontoon boats in the world:
- South Bay 925CR Tooned In
- Harris Crowne SL 250
- PlayCraft PowerToon Xtreme 3100
- SuperSport 925
- Premier 290
- Manitou X-Plode
- PlayCraft PowerToon Xtreme 2700
- Bennington QR27 10 Wide
To date, South Bay 925CR Tooned In tops the list of fastest pontoon boats in the world. It has three engines and can sail at up to 114 mph.
Our Pontoon Boats Fast? The Bottom Line
When you boil this all down, here’s the takeaway: Pontoon boats are fast enough for your needs. However, you don’t need to be too fast. Therefore, you must buy a bigger engine to make your pontoon’s speed range lengthy.
Multiple factors affect the performance of pontoons. However, the usage of maximum horsepowers is highly recommended to enhance the performance.
The speed of your pontoon boat operates in both the fluids; water and air. Thus, if you maximize the elements that interact with the fluids, you will improve the speed. This may include minimizing drag in the water, addressing weight issues of the boat, upgrading your prop, etc.
As a consequence, the above tips elevate your pontoon’s performance. This way you can eliminate all your pontoon’s issues and cruise with friends any time