How to Choose The Right Length of Pontoon Boats


Spring is in the air, the sun is shining, and the water is calling your name. Yes, you guessed it right, it/’s the perfect time to plan your summers on the water with family and friends. But before you do so, an essential part of boating is picking the perfect boat for you and your loved ones.

Pontoon boats are one the most popular choices for people who want to enjoy their time on the water. They are also known as party barges because they offer a great platform to celebrate and entertain with plenty of room for friends and family. Another great thing about pontoon boats is that they come in various sizes so that you can choose the perfect one for your needs.

But how do you know which size is the right one for you?

In this article, we will discuss Pontoon boat lengths and how to determine the best size for your needs.

What Should be the Average Length of a Pontoon Boat?


Pontoon boat sizes range from as little as eighteen feet to thirty feet in length. However, choosing the right size does not have to be an exact science. Many factors such as the number of people you will have on the boat, your storage space, and how often you plan to use the boat should be considered when making your decision.

Answering these questions can help you better understand what size pontoon boat is right for you.

Factors to consider when choosing the length of your pontoon boats for sale:

Carrying Capacity:

The length of your pontoon boat and the capacity onboard are directly related. The longer the pontoon boat, the more ability it will have. This is because a longer boat is heavier and displaces more water than a shorter one. This water displacement gives a pontoon boat its buoyancy and determines how much weight it can carry.

That said, when choosing the length of your pontoon boat, it is essential to consider how many people you regularly will have onboard. If you plan to entertain large groups of people or have a lot of families and friends, you will need a pontoon boat with a larger capacity. In which case, consider opting for a 21 to 28 feet long model. Conversely, if you only plan to use the boat for smaller groups or solo trips, you can get away with a smaller pontoon boat that is 18 to 20 feet long.

However, it is crucial to keep in mind that the weight capacity of a pontoon boat is not just limited to the number of people on board. It also includes the weight of all your gear and supplies. So if you are planning on bringing a lot of camping or fishing gear, make sure your pontoon boat has enough capacity to accommodate it.

Remember that pontoon boating is about having fun and enjoying the great outdoors in summer with family and friends. Choosing the right size pontoon boat will ensure plenty of room to relax and enjoy your time on the water.

Water Body:

The location where you will boat also plays a significant role in determining the ideal size of your pontoon boat. The surface of water you plan to use the boat will greatly impact its performance depending on its width and depth.

In general, smaller boats are preferable for small, calm bodies of water as they can navigate smoothly through shallow lakes and rivers. So, you don/’t want to be stuck on a small body of water with a massive pontoon boat that takes up the entire space and is hard to maneuver.

On the other hand, larger bodies of water will require a pontoon boat with more power and size to safely navigate through waves and chop. Therefore, if you live near the ocean or plan to use your pontoon boat in open waters, consider opting for a longer model 24 feet or more in length. It will ensure a smoother and more comfortable ride.

One more thing you need to consider is the horsepower of your pontoon boat. The longer the boat, the more HP is required to make it run. So, if you are opting for a larger pontoon boat, make sure your engine has enough power to handle it when used in open waters.

You may also want to check if there is a size restriction on the body of water you will be using your pontoon boat. Different states have different regulations on both length and engine size, be sure to check the pontoon boat safety rules and regulations before making your purchase.

Transport and Storing Space:

Before deciding on the length of your pontoon boat, it is essential to consider how much space you have to store it and how you will be transporting it.

At times buyers while shopping for their new pontoon boats, are so focused on the capacity of the boat and the number of people it can hold they forget to think about how much storage space they will need. It is way too disappointing to purchase a pontoon boat and realize it is too big for your dock or too long to fit in your trailer.

So for dock storage, measure both the dock itself and the space you have leading up to it. This will give you a good idea of how long a pontoon boat your dock can accommodate. When measuring a boat, remember to include the length of the outboard motor (approx. 2 to 3 feet) in your calculation.

As for transport, check the towing capacity of your vehicle. You don/’t want to purchase a pontoon boat that is too heavy for your tow vehicle and be left stranded on the side of the road. Also, measure the length of your trailer to make sure it can accommodate the size of the pontoon boat you are interested in.

Generally, to derive the max tow capacity on a vehicle, add the pontoon boat/’s weight to the trailer/’s weight and make sure that number is under the max tow capacity rating for your car. To ensure safe transport of your pontoon boat, always consult your vehicle/’s owner manual for specific towing information.

Water Activities:

The last thing you want to think about when choosing the length of your pontoon boat is the activities you will be participating in on the water. Different water sports and activities require different types of boats.

For example, if you plan on fishing a lot, you will want a boat with a lot of deck space to store all your gear. You might also consider adding a fish finder to your pontoon boat to up your fishing game.

However, if you plan on doing a lot of tubing or water skiing, you will want a pontoon boat that is long enough to provide a stable platform for these activities. A pontoon boat that is 24 feet or longer will provide the stability you need for these activities.

The Right Fit for You:

There is no perfect length for a pontoon boat. It all depends on the person/’s needs and the activities they plan on the water. But, if you are undecided on which length to choose, we recommend going with the longer boat you can afford and have room for. This will ensure that you have plenty of space for all your water activities and can accommodate as many people as possible.

Premier Watersports, the prime boat dealers in Knoxville, has a wide selection of both new and used pontoon boats for sale. So, if you are ready to purchase your new pontoon boat, give us a call or stop by our dealership, and we will help you find the perfect boat for all your watersport needs!

Happy Boating!