Pontoon boats are highly susceptible to damage, especially at a dock as they’re likely to move a lot due to the motion of the waves and that might lead them to bump into other objects. Some of us may also dent the corners of our pontoon boat accidentally as you approach the dock. Finding the best pontoon bumpers and fenders for your boat is super important.
There are four main types of bumpers to protect your boat and a handful of additional accessories to choose from. The most important pontoon bumpers and fenders include side fenders, fence saver fenders, corner bumpers, and replacement dock bumpers and fenders. In addition, you may need bumper cleats, bungee cords, and dock cleats. Here, our guide to replacement bumpers and fenders will dig into these categories, their high-rated options, and additional necessary pontoon accessories.
Best 5 Inflatable Side Bumpers and Fenders
Your first line of defense when coming in hot is side bumpers. These are typically inflatable, although some are padded, hang by a rope, and will last you a long time – unless you lose them. I like to tie-up my boat to others while at the sand bar and prefer the inflatable tubular kind made of rubber. They last long and are very easy to put right where you want them. In general, shoot for 3 bumpers on each side of your boat and one at the fore and one at the aft.
1. Hyperlite HL Boat Bumpers
2. X-Haibei Dock Bumper Ball
3. Extreme Max Inflatable Fender
4. VINGLI Ribbed Boat Fender
5. Taylor Made Products Super Gard Inflatable Vinyl Boat Fender
Best 3 Padded Side Bumpers and Fenders
Padded bumpers are very light and versatile but will not last as long as the inflatable bumpers. You may have the perfect long term use for them though.
1. Extreme Max Contour Fender
2. Norestar Contour Boat Fender/Bumper
3. Norestar Modular Flat EVA Boat Fender/Bumper
Best 3 Pontoon Fence Saving Fenders
Fence savers look great and typically stay in place easier. As the name suggests, these protect your fence a bit better than the typical side bumpers.
1. AKUA Pontoon Boat Fender
2. Dock Edge ‘Toon Fender
3. Taylor Made Products Pontoon Boat Fence Fender Saver
I bought this fender for my 2005 tri-toon 22′ pontoon boat since the marina’s dock fenders did not prevent the bimini frame from hitting a dock post. Once I read the instructions and learned how it fastened; adjusted to different boats, and decided where it would attach, it took no more than 60 seconds to secure it. Now the bimini top frame clears the dock post and I am very happy.-AKUA Fender Reviewer
Best 5 Pontoon Corner Bumpers and Caps
Outfitting the four corners of your pontoon with rubber bumpers will reduce the damage done by pumping into the dock or another boat. Corners bumpers are featured in two styles: one with more of a square-cornered fashion, while the other is for roundly-shaped boats.
Check out the Taylor Made Pontoon Corner Bumper. These corner bumpers are featured in a silvery color that matches aluminum decks and the package includes stainless fasteners as well.
1. Attwood White Corner Dock Fender
2. Taylor Made Pontoon Corner Bumper
3. Taylor Made Products 90 Degree Vinyl Dock Corner Bumper
4. Taylor Made Products Pontoon Boat Fender
5. Omix-Ada Bumper End Cap
Best 5 Boat Dock Bumpers and Fenders
Dock bumpers are just as important as your pontoon bumpers. Here you will consider both inflatable, corner, and straight fenders. We typically add protection on both the wood dock and the stanchion posts holding up the dock. These dock edge boat savers will give you a ton of peace of mind when coming in hot.
1. Dockmate Dock Bumper Fender White
2. MISSION Boat Gear Sentry Boat Dock Fender Bumper
3. Dockmate Corner Dock Bumper Fender
4. Attwood White 93531-1 Corner Dock Fender
5. HULL HUGR Marina Bumper
I do think these will protect the boat more than any other fender out there. We have them on my Mastercraft Inboard but I am going to buy them for my pontoon as well. I did have an issue a few years ago during a storm where my pontoon was damaged (and one side sank) as the sausage fenders flipped on top of the dock during the waves which allowed the pontoon to hit the dock poles and cut a hole in the pontoon. The shape of the sentrys will help keep them in place and prevent issues like that.-Mission Fender User
Pontoon Bumper and Fender Accessories
We want to remind you of these rope and other hanging accessories that might be necessary when purchasing your the best pontoon bumpers and fenders mentioned above.
Best 5 Fender Cleats
1. Marine & RV Direct Stainless Steel Boat Fender Cleats, Set of 4
2. 316s Stainless Steel Boat Fender Cleats
3. Shoreline Marine Adjustable Pontoon Fender Cleat
4. Taylor Made Products Pontoon Boat Rail Fender Hanger / Adjuster, Pack of 4
5. Extreme Max BoatTector Pontoon Rail Fender Hanger/Adjuster – Pack of 4
Best 5 Anchor Bungees
We like the Airhead Dockline bungees below. They absorb shock to boats, cleats, docks, pylons and other hardware. The bungee cord is hidden inside the rope and acts as a built-in snubber. In addition, the two foam floats protect the boat from chafing and the sliding adjustment at both ends is for quick docking. These are recommended for docking boats and PWC’s up to 4,000 pounds. The tensile strength is 2,150 pounds and is 4 feet in length and stretches to 5 1/2 feet.
1. AIRHEAD Bungee Dock Line
2. Chirsfly Bungee Dock Line
3. Abeauty 2X Bungee Dock Line Dockline Mooring Rope
4. Obcursco PWC Bungee Dock Line Stretchable Bungee
5. Skog Å Kust Premium PWC Bungee Dock Line
Best 5 Dock Cleats
1. Simplified Living 6″ Dock Cleats
2. CIPA CS100 Cleat Seat Dock Cleat
3. MIZUGIWA Nylon Cleat 6-1/2″ Black Pack of 4
4. Dock Edge + Polished Aluminum Flip-Up Dock Cleat, 6-Inch
5. MIZUGIWA Nylon Cleat 6-1/2″ Black Pack of 2
Make sure to look for cleats that are made of marine-grade stainless steel.
In conclusion, shopping for pontoon bumpers, fenders and accessories is pretty straight forward. It’s easy for these to go missing (i.e. left behind on someone else’s boat) so no need to spend more than you need to.