How to Seal Aluminum Pontoonsby Jason Knabl
A leaky aluminum pontoon can lose its buoyancy if damaged areas aren't repaired in a timely manner. Putting off a repair only makes things worse, and excessive delays can result in your boat being landlocked. Sealing an aluminum pontoon isn't hard, so there's no need to procrastinate. All you need is a bit of time, some tools and a dry space where you can work. Your aluminum pontoon will be as good as new, and you'll be sipping lemonade on the lake before you know it.
Seal the Leak
Inspect the pontoon for damage. Look for cracks, punctures or busted seams. Find the exact source of the leak.
Move the pontoon to a dry location. This repair involves applying adhesive material to the aluminum pontoon. The adhesive will not stick if the pontoon is wet.
Clean the area around the source of the leak with a rag. Sand the area using a coarse-grit sandpaper. This will flatten any surface inconsistencies and help the adhesive bond to the aluminum.
Obtain aluminum putty from your local marina or hardware store. Apply this to the damaged area of the pontoon. Be sure to cover the crack or hole entirely.
Sand the repaired surface with a fine-grit sandpaper once the putty has dried.
Prevent Future Leaks
Lightly sand the pontoon to rough up the surface. Wipe the surface with a rag to ensure no debris remains.
Apply a coat of waterproof epoxy sealant to the aluminum surface. This acts as an extra layer of protection against damage.
Apply a coat of metal polish to the pontoon's surface.
Allow the pontoon sufficient time to dry before putting it back in water.
- Wear gloves when working with putty, epoxy or polish. Chemicals of any kind can act as skin irritants.
- If you use a power sander, wear protective goggles. It's no fun to find an aluminum shard stuck in your eye.
Items you will need
- Cleaning rag
- Power sander
- Protective goggles
- Coarse-grit sandpaper
- Fine-grit sandpaper
- Aluminum putty
- Waterproof epoxy sealant
- Metal polish
- pontoon tour image by Thomas Tanner from Fotolia.com