Buying a new boat is an exciting, exhilarating event that most people never get to experience, and for most of us that are lucky to have achieved that goal, it’s a sign that we have succeeded in life. But people are often blinded by the final result of buying the boat, that they forget everything else that comes with boat ownership. And the first thing that comes to mind is storage. So in this article, we will discuss an average height of a pontoon boat because this is an essential aspect of boat storage and boat ownership.
Pontoon Boat Height Dimensions
Different aspects determine the height of a pontoon boat, most notably the size of the pontoons and how high the bimini top is (can it fold). On average, the bimini top will add about 3 feet to the overall height of the boat when fully erected.
As a general rule, the average pontoon boat height is 6 feet tall from the pontoon base to the top of folded bimini top. The boat’s height will increase to an average of 8’11’ with the bimini top raised, depending on the boat’s model. Most boats range between 8′ 6” and 9’1″ in height.
Pontoon Boat Deck Height
The height of the pontoon boat deck heavily depends on the size of the pontoon. Most decks are between 5 and 7 inches thick, depending on the model. If you add the average of the pontoons, which is 25 inches high, to the thickness on the deck, you can easily calculate that the average pontoon boat deck height is about 30 inches.
This is, of course, all relative, so the best thing to do is to contact your local boat dealer and ask for exact measures of the boat you are interested in.
How Tall is a Pontoon Boat Sitting on a Trailer?
The height of a pontoon boat sitting on a trailer is another aspect that you need to look at if you plan to store your boat inside a garage or backyard with some overhead structure. Buying a trailer with a high deck height can ruin your overall experience.
According to my research, the average height of a pontoon boat’s deck is 28″. You can find trailer decks that are as low as 26″ for smaller pontoon boats or as high as 31″ for large pontoons. The total pontoon boat height sitting on the trailer is 8’4″ on average if you consider that average ponton height is 6 feet tall.
How Tall is a Pontoon Boat Sitting in the Water?
This is a fairly simple calculation that not many people will consider, but that is important when I talk about low bridge clearance later on in this article. As I said before, the average diameter of a pontoon is 25 inches. Depending on the weight your boar is carrying, the depth of the pontoons will change. I can not give you the exact number here because it is almost impossible to calculate, but I will tell you that carrying a tape measure on your boat goes a long way.
Measure the distance between the water and the bottom of the deck, and you can easily figure out how tall your pontoon boat is when it is sitting in the water.
Will a Pontoon Boat Fit in a Garage
Ideally, you would want to store your pontoon boat in an enclosed space such as a garage if not in use. However, depending on how large your boat is, that might not always be an option. The standard dept of a garage is between 20 and 24 feet long, according to Worstroom.com.
If we do the math and take all the aspects into account, including the trailer, the maximum length of a pontoon boat you can store in a 24-foot garage will be 20 feet long.
How Tall Should Garage Door Be
Another aspect to consider if you want to store your boat in the garage is knowing how tall the garage door should be. According to Sam from my local dealership at Lakeview Marine from Webster, MA, the minimum height of the garage door should be 10 feet tall.
Considering we already determined that the average height of a pontoon sitting on the trailer is a few inches under 9 feet, this makes complete sense.
Pontoon Boat Bridge Clearance
Some people live in areas where there are low overhead bridges, and knowing this information is crucial. But to answer that question we have to understand what factors are in play. These factors include:
- height of the boat
- low clearance bridge information
- water level
- boat speed
We already talked about the boat’s height, so there is no need to repeat that information. Clearance of the underpass should be clearly marked on the bridge somewhere. This information may or may not be in the same location, depending on the state, but it should be displayed clearly.
Usually there is a water level indicator close by. Pay close attention to that to include in your calculation.
The last aspect is the speed you should be going while traveling under a low clearance bridge. If you talk to local boat owners, they will usually tell you to gun it to avoid any rogue waves that might lift your boat up and into the bridge. However, most state laws require low speed when traveling under the bridge. My suggestion is to use caution and go slow. The chances are you will not encounter that rogue wave, and if you to the damage to your bimini will be much lower than if you slam into it going full speed.