Best Pontoon Trailer Guides (2021)

Pontoon trailer guides or guide-ons make it easy for you to load and offload your pontoon boat on the trailer frame.

Guide-ons make life easier when loading your pontoon boat to the trailer when you are done for the day at the lake. With outstanding white PVC pipes, you no longer have to guess where the trailer frame is in the water. 

The choice of the best pontoon trailer guides, however, is huge, and not everyone knows what’s best for his or her watercraft.

So, we have dug our own and found five high-quality, high-performing guide-ons that you can buy today.   

Top Pick

Extreme Max Heavy-Duty Pontoon Trailer Guides are our top pick. This set of two makes loading and offloading easier and improves stability during transportation. They feature industrial-grade steel construction that is zinc-coated for use in freshwater. 

Here are Our Best Pontoon Trailer Guides Reviews:

  1. Extreme Max Heavy-Duty Pontoon Trailer Guides – Our Top Pick 
  2. CE Smith 2’ Short Bunk Trailer Guides
  3. Tie Down Pontoon Trailer Guides
  4. CE Smith 27670 Pontoon Trailer Guides
  5. Tie Down Engineering High-Impact Pontoon Trailer Guide 

Extreme Max Heavy-Duty Pontoon Trailer Guides

These heavy-duty trailer guides offer the ultimate best assistance when getting your pontoon boat on and off the trailer.   

Key Features :

  • Heavy-duty hardware 
  • Freshwater use only 
  • 2 by 3-inch trailer frame 
  • Mount directly to the trailer frame 
  • 30-inch overall height 

These upright pontoon trailer guides mount directly to the trailer frame, which is great because they effortlessly help guide your vessel on and off the bunks.

Each guide is coated with a non-marking PVC that ensures it doesn’t dent or damage your boat. 

The direct-to-frame mounting is highly user-friendly. You don’t need to drill holes or cut anything, which makes repositioning super easy and quick if needed.

You’ve got a standard hardware kit that’s compatible with trailer frames up to two inches wide and three inches tall. If you have a larger framed trailer, you can always get an extra hardware kit.

You can mount one set of these trailer guides for enhanced loading and stability, or you can mount two sets (one at the back and another at the front) for the easiest loading experience.

A second set also ensures that your pontoon boat never sits crooked or turned sideways on the trailer bunks. 

Pros :

  • The mounting hardware is highly corrosion resistant 
  • The guides mount directly to the trailer frame 
  • Suitable for trailer frames up to 2 inches wide and 3 inches tall 
  • Offer a direct to frame mounting system 
  • Easily mounted two sets for the best results 

Cons :

  • Designed mainly for freshwater use
  • Some models may come with weak welds that break easily

Verdict :

These heavy-duty pontoon trailer guides will most certainly simplify loading. They also help keep your pontoon safe and centered. You can also mount two sets for added versatility and convenience. 

Overall Rating: 4.6

CE Smith 2’ Short Bunk Trailer Guides 

These uniquely designed two-foot short bunk trailer guides provide the perfect center loading of your pontoon boat even in side-current or wind conditions.   

Key Features :

  • Pre-galvanized uprights 
  • High-grade marine carpet boards 
  • Adjust outward to 13 inches 
  • 21-inch overall height 
  • Up to 3-inch by 4-1/4-inch frames 

These short bunk trailer guides will help keep your small pontoon boat centered during the loading and off-loading process. They will help you despite any wind or waves that could cause problems. 

The 21-inch heigh uprights are made up of pre-galvanized steel, which is great because this material is strong and doesn’t bend easily when knocked by your boat.

But the thing is, the pre-galvanized steel has a very thin coating that can easily be oxidized and expose the metal to rust and corrosion.

As such, you will need to paint or prime the pre-galvanized parts for added durability.   

The uprights are attached to 2 by 4 by 24-inch boards that tilt at an angle to hug the hull of your boat. The boards are covered with high-quality marine carpet to prevent any damage to your boat. 

There are two ways you can mount the u-bolts into the brackets. First, you can mount them directly into the brackets in parallel to each other. Second, you can mount the u-bolts into the brackets in a criss-cross manner. 

Additionally, you have a thirteen-inch side adjustment that will accommodate different pontoon boat sizes. 

Pros :

  • They make loading easy even in strong waves 
  • Mounting the u-bolts is super easy and quick 
  • They are strong enough to take a kick when loading 
  • The side-boards tilt to hug the hull  
  • Mounting hardware for larger frames is available 

Cons :

  • Not completely resistant to rust and corrosion
  • Not ideal for bigger, taller boats

Verdict :

You no longer have to guess when loading your pontoon boat onto the trailer frame when you have these great trailer guides in your possession. 

Overall Rating: 4.6 

Tie Down Pontoon Trailer Guides 

Oftentimes when it comes to loading your pontoon boat onto the trailer frame, it can be a challenge due to strong winds and waves.

But you can make the process simple with these good quality trailer guides from Tie Down. 

Key Features :

  • 16-gauge galvanized steel 
  • Non-marking white PVC
  • 2-inch wide by 4-inch high 
  • 20-inch overall height 
  • Mounting hardware include 

The first impressive feature of these unique trailer guides is visibility.

The twenty-inch high non-marking white PVC pipes with an orange cap allow the truck driver to know the exact position of the trailer frame when submerged in the water. 

The evident orange caps allow you to load the boat with ease, whether in deep water or low visibility. The pipes will also not leave any dents or marks on your boat. 

The 16-gauge galvanized steel is incredibly strong and will hold up against any bumps with the boat. 

This model can easily mount on trailer frames with the following sizes, 2 by 2 inches, 2 by 3 inches, and 2 by 4 inches.

These guide-ons are very easy to put on and take off. The only tools required are your simple ratchet in a fourteen millimeters long socket. You’ve got two u-bolts to mount on the bracket for each side. 

Pros :

  • The 16-gauge steel is very resistant to bending 
  • The white PVC pipes with orange caps provide superior visibility 
  • The pipes are non-marking, so they will not damage your boat 
  • The u-bolts are easy to install on the frame
  • All the necessary mounting gear comes with the kit 

Cons :

  • Could be better if the uprights were round instead of square in shape
  • Painting of the steel is necessary to prevent rusting

Verdict :

One of the best features of this model is the unparalleled visibility when you are backing down the trailer frame into the water. 

Overall Rating: 4.4

CE Smith 27670 Pontoon Trailer Guides

These guide-ons are going to help you with lining up your pontoon boat correctly when loading it up on your trailer at the end of the day on the water.  

Key Features :

  • 3-inch wide by 4-1/4-inch tall 
  • 60-inch overall height 
  • 2-3/8-inch PVC pipe 
  • 39-7/8-inch tall by a 1-1/2-inch wide steel post 
  • Easy and quick installation 

These uniquely designed guide-ons provide a visual target to help center your pontoon boat in between during loading. They adjust outwards about thirteen inches to accommodate a wide variety of pontoon boat sizes. 

The uprights are made out of 16-gauge pre-galvanized steel that is recommended for freshwater use only. This type of steel can easily rust and corrode. So, it is advisable to paint them for added durability.

The kit comes with white PVC pipes that slide effortlessly over the steel uprights. The pipes make the submerged trailer visible. 

Installation of these guide-ons is easy. The brackets are uniquely designed for mounting on both narrow and wide frames. 

On a narrow frame, mount the U-bolts in a criss-cross, but you can mount them parallel to each other on a wide frame.

The uprights slide easily into the brackets. Adjust the uprights so that you have a one-inch clearance between your boat and the pipes. 

Pros :

  • They are extremely easy to mount on trailer frames 
  • The guides are sixty-inch tall for superior versatility 
  • White PVC pipes make the frame visible underwater
  • The 16-gauge steel is super strong and will not bend easily 
  • They can adjust outwards up to 13 inches for different boat sizes

Cons :

  • The pre-galvanized steel rust and oxidize quickly 
  • May come with poor quality installation hardware 

Verdict :

These trailer guides mount easily to the rear part of your trailer frame, and the white PVC pipes make them highly visible underwater. 

Overall Rating: 4.3

Tie Down Engineering High-Impact Pontoon Trailer Guide 

If you are looking for high-impact pontoon boat trailer guides, look no further than this good quality model from Tie Down Engineering. 

Key Features :

  • 13-gauge steel 
  • Two-inch wide cross members 
  • 30-inch overall height 
  • Hot-dip galvanized steel tubing 
  • Mounting hardware included 

The uprights are made of hot-dip galvanized metal, which is good because the coating is permanently bonded for toughness and long-lasting durability.

The 13-gauge steel is strong enough to resist bending when knocked by the boat. 

Unlike the traditional trailer guides mounted outside the pontoons, this model is installed between the pontoons. They can be effectively mounted to cross members up to two inches wide by two inches high.

The molded PVC, on the other hand, is high-impact and non-marking. 

One set of these trailer guides will make loading easy, but the boat could drift to one side. So, for the best results, we recommend at least two sets.

They will make loading much easier and prevent your boat from drifting.  

Pros :

  • The uprights are strong and durable 
  • The molded PVC is high-impact and non-marking 
  • They can be installed to cross members up to 2 by 2 inches 
  • They are easy and quick to install 

Cons :

  • Some models may arrive bent or damaged 
  • Returning this product may not be possible 

Verdict :

These trailer guides are sturdy, strong, and easy to install. But you must make sure that you don’t receive bent guides. 

Overall Rating: 4.2

Things to Consider When Looking for Pontoon Trailer Guides 

Here are the key factors to consider during your search:

High-Quality Materials 

When choosing the materials, your main concern should be whether you will be using the guide-ons in saltwater or freshwater.

Most galvanized, and pre-galvanized steel used in making pontoon trailer guides are highly vulnerable to rust and corrosion. But the corrosion-resistance of such materials is improved with coating.

Choose guides with the highest quality coating for long-lasting durability. Make sure the pipes for the uprights are made of non-marking material, such as PVC. 

Mounting and Sizing 

The performance of pontoon trailer guides depends greatly on sizing and mounting. You must choose a size that is compatible with your trailer frame.

The brackets and u-bolts must fit snugly whether installing them the traditional way or in a criss-cross manner. The sizes and position of the holes have to be precise for the perfect installation.

Horizontal adjustability is critical. You need to be able to adjust the guide-ons to allow the boat to go through without bumps. 

You also need to decide between guide-ons that fit in between the pontoons or outside the pontoons. You have to choose the most versatile type of installation for the best results. 

Final Thoughts 

For this roundup, the winner is Extreme Max Heavy-Duty Pontoon Trailer Guides. This trailer guide-on system offers the ultimate best performance when getting your pontoon boat on and off the trailer frame.

It offers the best loading and offloading performance even in the presence of heavy water currents or windy conditions. 

The guides are made of durable and freshwater corrosion-resistant steel. The zinc-coating of the metal, however, is not recommended for use in saltwater.

You’ve direct to frame mounting that is super easy to do on your own. You can even install two sets for the best results and maximum stability during trailering.


Hi. I’m Alex. I have a big passion for water sport. I am a water sports athlete with ten years of experience in the field.

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