How to Install a Fishfinder on Pontoon Boat USA UK 2023
Many boaters today want to know how to install a fishfinder on a pontoon boat. One can find many online tutorials, just like this one here.
Installing a fishfinder on a pontoon boat is an easy task that can be done with just a prior bit of research. What online tutorials might not tell you, is that fish finders have different ways to be installed on different boats!
In this guide, we have covered that and much more on how to install a fishfinder on a pontoon boat.
To start with, select a fishfinder that is suitable to your requirements. Make sure that your fish finder has a transducer along with it, as not all fish finders come with transducers.
Here is a guide on how to install fishfinders on a pontoon boat:
- Position the transducer right
The transducer is a device that changes electric pulses to sound waves. Transducers collect data and reflect it on the monitor, which helps ascertain what is underwater!
Ideally, transducers are positioned on the bottom of the brackets by the rear side of a pontoon tube. Keep in mind that a cord runs from the transducer to the monitor, so if the captain’s chair is on the right side (starboard) of the boat, then that is where your transducer should be placed.
Ensure that no wire or Livewell pumps are near the transducer, as they may cause electrical interference with the equipment.
Most fish finders come with a 20′ cord and you can purchase extension cables if necessary.
- Place the monitor right
This may not sound challenging, but trust us, it is! Some consoles do have ample space for fishfinder monitors while others may not.
If you are lacking the space, try to place the monitor so that it is visible but does not cover the dash.
Make sure you ascertain the screen size of the monitor as well for easy mounting. Check under the console and keep your gauges and wires away from the cord of the fish finder monitor.
Also, check if the transducer cable is long enough to run to the back of the boat and towards the console.
- Purchase installation kits
Fishfinders generally consist of all the tools one needs to install them on a boat with a V-shaped hull, but they fall short when it comes to pontoon boats.
For installation of a fish finder on a pontoon boat, you may find yourself in need of the following additional materials:
- 0.6mm bolts and nuts to fit the bolt.
- Rubber washers
- 20′ of the electrical shroud to cover the transducer wire in its entirety.
- Metal washers
- Silicon tubes
- 2 power connectors to be used on the fuse box of the pontoon boat.
Remember to purchase all of the materials above in stainless steel quality to prevent rust.
- Installing the transducer
Installing a transducer mount is the easy bit! Simply drill two holes in the bracket and attach your transducer through those 2 holes, securing them with nuts and bolts.
You may also consider putting the transducer cord into the electrical cord for protection. You can then extend it up to the captain’s console.
- Fish the wire through
For this part, you need to fish the wire through the sides of the pontoon. Just unscrew the 10 bolts attached to the side of your pontoon boat and the cover will flip open.
Check the starboard side of the back of the boat for the place where the cords are snaked.
Once you place the wire along the side of the boat, wrap the transducer wire with the plastic conduit and bring it up to the captain’s console. This is to protect the wire from sharp cutting spurs as your boats rocks up and down.
- Mounting the monitor
Next, you need to mount the monitor on the console. This part is tricky because you have to drill holes in your console.
To ascertain where to punch in the holes, place your monitor bracket exactly where you want it to be and mark the 4 corners with a pencil.
It’s now time to drill!
Subsequently, put rubber washers between the fiberglass and mount to prevent rattling and scratching as your boat surges forward.
Now put the bracket on the dash and place the bolts through the hole. Remember to place a metal washer under each bolt and secure it with a nut for equal weight distribution.
Lastly, drill additional holes for your transducer cord and power cord to slip through.
- Get it powered up
Fishfinders often come with a 5′ cord that connects the power source and the fishfinder. And yet, if you have to tie the power onto the battery, which is usually at the end of the boat, it would obviously fall short!
So get yourself marine-grade 20′ electrical cords for positive and negative, and string the wires from the back to the front of the boat (to the console). The negative wire goes on the black spot of the battery and the positive on the red.
Alternatively, you can power up the fishfinder via the fuse box right under the console. For this, you need connector plugs.
There you go! Once you put your boat back together and power everything up, your fishfinder is ready to take you fishing.
Don’t worry if your fish finder takes a few minutes in synchronizing the GPS upon the first-time usage. It will get better as you fish along, we mean to go along!