Sun Tracker Boats make some of the most popular pontoons on the market. They’re not exactly the high end of the market in terms of quality but are considered good value for the money.
Some of the most common problems with Sun Tracker pontoons include improper welds, corrosion, bad wiring, and inconsistent build quality.
We’ve researched most of the issues reported and take a closer look at them in this article.
Let’s get started!
There were reports, with photos, of a relatively new Sun Tracker Sportfish with a weak weld between two sections of a pontoon log.
The weld failed completely and the boat almost sank.
It turns out that bulkheads are not seal welded, which makes pontoon logs fill with water.
Corrosion and Leaks
Any damage to the aluminum pontoon is dangerous, as it can let water in and make the boat sink.
Unfortunately, on some boats the aluminum corroded badly despite good maintenance (regular rinsing and antifouling).
Base Models Underpowered
Many of the pontoons come with a 20-hp outboard engine. This is way too little, offers not enough performance for the size of the boat.
It also makes you run the engine very hard, which decreases its lifespan.
For a 22 foot pontoon a much bigger, 75-hp outboard is recommended as a minimum, which is an expensive upgrade.
Outboard and Steering Problems
Some owners complained that steering on their pontoon gets too stiff too often. The issue is usually the steering cable, which could have kinks in it, and needs to be replaced.
Also, it seems some of the outboards were not properly installed before being delivered to a customer. For example, they wouldn’t go forward but just stay in neutral.
This is frustrating when happens on a new boat.
Water in the Fuel
The issue concerns especially the 20′ Fishing Barge and is caused by the bad design of the fuel tank location.
What happens is that underway the entire fuel tank becomes submerged and it’s very difficult to prevent getting water into the fuel system.
One way to fix the problem is to get a fuel/water separator, but it could have been easily avoided by raising the fuel tank a few inches.
We found many complaints about issues found on some boats, but not others, which suggests inconsistent manufacturing and assembly processes.
The problems included:
- Flimsy Furniture with weak hinges
- Low-quality Carpet
- Incorrect Decal, for example “24” on one side, “22” on the other side
- Poorly Aligned side rails and panel
- Rail paint not covering everything
- Seat padding too thin, with deep creases
- Missing nuts for captain chair
On some Sun Tracker boats, the original wiring under the pontoon was left completely exposed to water.
This could be one of the reasons why people experience problems with their outboards. For example, trim and engine indicators, such as tachometers, may stop working.
To fix the problem, it will be best to replace the old wiring and make new connections. Make sure you will solder rather than just twist the wires, and use silicon shrink wrap to waterproof them.
The main complaint concerns the trailer rails. They are made of wood and covered with carpet, and simply don’t last very long.
After 1-2 years of use, they tend to rot and have to be replaced.
Warranty & Service
Sun Tracker Boats provides a very good warranty service overall.
Although many pontoons had different issues, they were mostly very helpful and fixed them.
The biggest complaint here is the owners waiting for spare parts too long.
Having to wait and not being able to go out fishing can be very frustrating.
Sun Tracker pontoons can have issues, but the same can be said of other boat manufacturers.
Hopefully, the problems listed above are going to be less frequent, and the warranty service stays as good.
Sun Tracker Pontoon FAQ
Where are Sun Tracker pontoon boats made?
Sun Tracker pontoons are manufactured in Bolivar, Missouri. (USA)
Can Sun Tracker Pontoons Be Used in Saltwater?
Yes, they can, although there will be a higher risk of corrosion. Make sure you rinse your boat after every use to minimize the risk.