Learn about the differences in pontoon trailers

Axles, Hubs and Bearings - Yes there is a difference

Our axles have #3500 carrying capacity. The way the capacity is determined is by the size of the hub (on the end of the steel axle shaft) and the size of the bearings. The photo below illustrates the difference between our hubs and bearings and another leading manufacturers. Bigger is better because it reduces friction and dissipates heat better.  


Pontoon trailer hub and bearings     pontoon trailer axle tag  
Our #3500 hub and bearings set is on the left. The set on the
right is from a leading pontoon trailer manufacturer.
Note the size of the bearing.
Some manufacturers attach a capacity tag to their axles. Larger trailer manufacturers often make their own axles and often the capacity is not noted on the axle itself.
Axles - spring suspension versus torsion axle

pontoon axle pontoon trailer torsion axle

In a spring axle, springs absorb road shock. In a torsion axle rubber cords inside the axle absorb shock.


Most pontoon boat trailer use a spring axle suspension. Manufacturers who use torsion axles pay a premium for this style of axle with a benefits of time and labor savings in assembling the axle to the frame. The reported benefit of torsion axles, beside the manufacturing time savings, is that they are claimed to give a better ride. Rubber “cords” inside the axle absorb road shock, while road shock is passed onto the springs on a spring axle pontoon trailer. There is controversy regarding which system is better for tandem axle pontoon trailers and the internet is full of pro and con postings. Over a lifetime of towing both styles we’re not sure the smoothness is much of a benefit. You might be able to recognize a difference on a smooth road with a small tow vehicle where vibration is easily transferred, but we’ve always towed with large vehicles. Our tandem axle pontoon trailer with spring axles has an equalizer bar between the two axles that reduces road shock from one axle to the other. On torsion axle pontoon trailers the axles are independent but both are bolted to the frame. When a torsion axle encounters a pothole, it “clocks” to absorb the shock, but the second tire and axle hits the pothole and the shock is again transferred through the frame. On a tandem axle spring axle pontoon trailer the equalizer bar raises the back axle when the front axle drops into a pot hole and the back tire “steps” over the pothole. Most knowledgeable people who tow agree that for rough roads the spring axle with equalizer bar will transfers less shock to the pontoon trailer frame. Wide axle pontoon trailers (many are 8’ wide) face another difficulty, if the outside wheel drops off the side of the road at high speed. Its easy to ruin the axle spindle and hub. This problem can occur with a spring or torsion axle pontoon trailer but with a spring axle you only need to replace the end unit or hub, $50+. in parts while the whole torsion axle usually must be replaced, for about $300+


To recap, if your towing on smooth roads with a smaller tow vehicle, a torsion axle system might offer some benefit. All of our trailers use the old fashion, tried and proven spring axle system and we believe it to be the best system and superior for wide axle tandem trailers.

pontoon trailer spring axle

Spring axle with equalizer bar transfers energy from one axle to the other.

pontoon trailer torsion axle

Torsion axles attached to a common frame, each axle reacts the same to shock
The back axle hits the hole with the same force as the front

 Not all fenders protect your pontoon tubes equally

The purpose of fenders is to keep stones & debris off of your pontoon tubes and the sides of your boat

pontoon trailer fenders
Single axle molder nylon fenderSteps-front &back as
well as on top Pontoon tube fully protected.
Tandem axle steel fender, steps front & back as well as top. Pontoon tube is protected from debris & stones.
Sharp looking modern appearance.
  NOT OURS, but those of a leading brand NOT OURS we don’t use cap fenders  
  pontoon trailer fender pontoon cap fender  
  Fenders are just caps above the tires, some plastic some steel.  
  Pontoon Trailer Tires
pontoon trailer tirepontoon trailer tire
Left to Right-13” 12” 10”
The larger the tire the less rotation while traveling and it runs cooler.   Heat is a tire’s worse enemy.  The pieces of rubber you see along the highway (usually from semi’s) are caused by overheating and tire failure.
load rating pontoon tire load rating pontoon trailer tire rating
                        12" D Range Tire 1245 Lbs/Tire                 13" C Range 1380 Lbs/Tire                13" D Range Tire 1610 Lbs/Tire
Our Tires (ratings shown above)
pontoon trailer tire ratings
The higher the letter, the more rubber (ply's) in the tire.  We use 12” D on Light Duty singles, 13” C on tandems & 13” D on HD singles For some heavy duty tandem models we use 4-13” D range. (instead of C’s)

The 12’C tire (we don’t use) is off a competitors trailer that is incorrectly rated for #2700. The 10”C tire (we don’t use) is off a competitors trailer that is correctly rated at only #1600.
To calculate tire carrying capacity, multiplying the load capacity of the tires, less the weight of the trailer. 2-#1610 tires on a trailer that weighs #700 gives you a carrying capacity of #2520. Before you buy a trailer, look at the rating of the tires.  Trailer weights are on the manufactures statement of origin (the title) Salesmen and literature can be mistaken about capacity, but the tire doesn’t lie. The bigger the tire the cooler the tire will run on hot pavement. The low profile 10” (fat-snowmobile style) is popular on some pontoon trailers to keep the towing profile low, but on a long run the wide tread can become hot. That’s one of the reasons this type of tire is primarily used on cold weather trailers.

Click here to learn about Pontoon Trailer Capacity

For Information Call

(877)294-3395 or (574)294-3386