A pontoon boat is a great thing. But it can be better. A boat enclosure can make a dramatic difference in how much enjoyment you get from your pontoon, providing shelter during rain showers, protecting you from the sun on hot days, and even keeping insects and bugs away. It also offers some much-needed privacy, letting you relax without worrying about the prying eyes of other boaters. If you’re keen to get your hands on an enclosure, you’ll find no shortage of options on the market. But which are the best? Find out with our guide to the five best pontoon boat enclosures money can buy.
1. Westland Extend The Shade
Available in four sizes so you can perfectly match the enclosure to the size of your pontoon, Westland’s Extend The Shade enclosure is an outstanding option for anyone looking to add an extra level of protection to their pontoon. Thanks to its choice of WeatherMax 3D fabric, it can block a hefty 99% of harmful UV rays – perfect for those sunny days on the water. It’s also highly fade-resistant, meaning you don’t have to worry about it turning dingy or faded with continued use. Installation is a breeze, and can easily be managed by just one person. The positioning is up to you: install at the back of the pontoon if you’re relaxing, or at the front if you’re partaking in a spot of fishing. The enclosure comes in a choice of three different fabric options. The Sharkskin Plus option is made from 100% Acrylic Coated Polyester, comes with a 5-year limited warranty, and is available in a choice of 10 color options, including black, white, royal blue, forest green, red, and sharkskin blue. The Sharkskin Supreme option is made from 100% solution-dyed polyester, comes with a 7-year limited warranty, and is offered in a choice of black, Caribbean blue, seagull gray, sand, or navy. Lastly, the Sunbrella Brand Fabric Ultimate is made from 100% solution-dyed acrylic, comes with a 10-year limited warranty, and is available in 20 shades, including pacific blue, jet black, logo red, royal blue tweed, and linen.
2. Sun Tracker Full Enclosure
Sun Tracker enjoys an outstanding reputation for its pontoons, and it’s not letting the side down when it comes to their enclosures either. Its range covers a number of options (including the Bow Bimini Top, the Windbreak, and the Mooring Cover) all perfectly designed to suit the different requirements of the boating community. For customers looking for the maximum amount of protection and privacy possible, the Sun Tracker Full Enclosure makes a natural choice. Featuring a QUICKLIFT® deployment system for easy installation (one person should be able to manage the process easily enough on their own), it completely encapsulates the boat, offering all the privacy you could possibly want. By providing complete protection from the elements, it also makes an ideal option for those looking to turn their boat into a water camper. As an added benefit, you don’t need to ‘overwinter’ the enclosure in the way you would with a partial enclosure, making it a great choice for all-year-round boaters.
3. SummerSet 600 Denier Bimini 4 Bow Pontoon Canvas Top
If you’re looking for an enclosure that’s easy to install, offers excellent protection against the elements, and superb durability, you may well have found your match in the SummerSet 600 Denier Bimini 4 Bow Pontoon Canvas Top. Made from 10 oz. polyester/cotton marine acrylic fabric coated with 600 Denier, it stands up to UV rays like a pro. As an added benefit, it also provides an excellent windbreak in gusty weather. Waterproof, resistant to mold and mildew, and reinforced in the areas most prone to wear, it has all the qualities you’d want from a high-end enclosure. Available in a choice of 12 fade-resistant colors, it’s as attractive as it is functional. If you needed any more incentive to buy, a 5-year warranty comes as standard, guaranteeing peace of mind and years of happy boating.
4. Easy-Up Gazebo Shade Top by Taylor Made Products
Easy-Up Gazebo Shade Top by Taylor Made Products offers an excellent level of shade to protect you from any harsh UV rays. Capable of accommodating both 96″ and 102″ wide boats, it extends out to 8′ of coverage, providing the perfect balance of shade, privacy, and visibility (although bear in mind the enclosure should only be put up while the boat’s stationery. Leaving it up while you’re traveling at speed is asking for trouble). The shock absorbent fiberglass pole framework allows for easy installation and even easier storage, while the marine grade polyester fabric is surprisingly durable, despite its lightweight content. The sizeable inner radius, meanwhile, provides plenty of headroom, no matter how tall you or your passengers are. Color options are vast, and include cranberry, white, teal, sand, black, navy, grey, hunter green, and pacific blue.
5. Leader Accessories 3 Bow Bimini Top
Available in a super-durable marine-grade 600D polyester and offered in a huge selection of colors (there’s even a stripe option if you feel so inclined), the Leader Accessories 3 Bow Bimini Top makes a great, reasonably priced solution to your enclosure needs. The widths of 54″ to 84″ can accommodate a range of pontoons, while those looking for a more sizable option can upgrade to the 4 bow boat bimini, which measures 8 foot 54″ in height and come in widths of between 54″ and 96″. Offering excellent shade and protection from the elements, they also allow an unobstructed view and plenty of on-board air circulation. Installation and assembly are breathtakingly easy, while the rear poles provide an excellent level of stability and support while its in use. All in all, an excellent option for boaters looking for a decent level of protection without going to the extent of investing in a much pricier enclosure option.