Pontoon vs. Tritoon

Do I need a tritoon or a pontoon for my lake?

If you live in Wisconsin or Illinois most lakes don't necessarily need a tritoon unless you're on Lake Winnebago or Lake Michigan regularly.  People have been using pontoons with 19" and 21" logs on big lakes for 40 years so why the tritoon trend? The biggest reason is so it can legally handle a larger horsepower engine. Traditional pontoons HP limits might be 115HP or 150HP and a tritoon will allow you to hang a larger HP engine like a 200HP, 250HP, 300HP. The other advantage of a tritoon is it will help if it's abnormally choppy at higher speeds.


A tritoon will range from $2,000-$8,000 more than a traditional pontoon depending on the tritoon tube package


A tritoon will reduce wave action compared to a pontoon. Maybe not by a significant amount but it is slightly noticeable. If your lake has regulations in place to reduce the wave action from ski boats, etc. than a pontoon might be perfect.


There's actually a little more drag with the middle toon on a tritoon so a tradional pontoons with the same HP engine has the advantage over the tritoon.

Sport PTS Toon:

A nice in-between option is a sport or 3/4 middle tritoon that runs from the front like the other tubes and runs 3/4 of the way back

Horsepower Capacity:

A full middle toon should allow you to increase your horsepower if you're looking for a pontoon with over a 200HP.

Watersports (Tubing, Wakeboarding, Skiing):

There's not really a difference here. The center tube is aluminum and fairly light so it doesn't provide any more wake. As far as speed goes, the 3rd tube doesn't really help you there.