Even when you’ve installed the best trolling motor on your boat, canoe, or kayak, the kind of performance you will get from it comes down to the battery powering it. To get the most out of your trolling motor, you need to get one of the best trolling motor batteries that will perform well even in harsh conditions and resist vibrations to serve you for a long time.
To help you find the right deep cycle battery for a trolling motor so you can cruise and fish for as long as you want without issue, our trolling motor battery reviews break down the best deep cycle batteries out there while the buying guide talks about the characteristics of deep cycle batteries to consider when deciding what battery for trolling motor to get.
How To Choose A Trolling Motor Battery – Buying Guide
Types of Trolling Motor Batteries
AGM batteries are the best trolling motor batteries. They use Absorbed Glass Mat technology, which makes them extremely resistant to shocks and vibrations. They are also completely sealed and spill-free so you can mount them in any position. This is very convenient if you have a kayak, canoe, or small boat where space is at a premium.
Another benefit of absorbed glass mat batteries being sealed is that they won’t emit harmful substances. Furthermore, they charge almost twice as fast as wet-cell batteries and have double the lifespan. The downside is that AGM batteries are more expensive than the other types. However, absorbed glass batteries are still the best trolling motor batteries when you consider value for money, as they have a very long service life.
While wet-cell batteries are the cheapest batteries you can use on trolling motors, they are more demanding when it comes to maintenance. Also, they are not sealed and can leak battery acid leading to corrosion.
Finally, lithium-ion batteries can also be used to power trolling motors. Lithium marine trolling batteries are very good for trolling motors because they charge fast and last a long time while out on the water. They are also much lighter compared to wet-cell and AGM batteries but are the most durable of the three types of batteries. However, lithium-ion batteries are the most expensive by far.
Like with any other battery, the marine deep cycle batteries used for trolling motors decline in capacity over time. This is because of the heating and chemical processes that occur inside the trolling motor’s batteries while charging and discharging. The lifespan of a deep cycle marine battery mainly depends on the type of battery cells used.
Lithium-ion batteries are the best batteries for trolling motors when it comes to durability as they have the longest lifespan and can last up to 10 years. A trolling motor battery AGM can last from two to four years on average, while wet cell batteries can last from one to two years. Of course, you can extend the battery life span with proper care and maintenance.
When it comes to the durability of a marine trolling motor battery, the most important thing is that it should be resistant to shocks and vibrations. This is because a battery trolling motor is exposed to a lot of vibrations, which can damage it. The best deep cycle trolling motor batteries utilize AGM battery technology, which gives them superior resistance to shocks and vibrations. For this reason, make sure the best trolling motor battery you get incorporates AGM technology.
Size and Weight
Since you have limited space on a boat, kayak, or canoe, what size battery for a trolling motor is a very important consideration when choosing a battery for a trolling motor. You should opt for a deep cycle battery trolling motor size that will fit in the space you have inside your vessel. In terms of amperage, what size battery for trolling motor comes down to the weight rating of your trolling motor. Since your watercraft has a weight limit, be sure to consider the weight of the battery and trolling motor with the battery as well. For reference, the best marine trolling motor batteries usually weigh between 20 and 70 pounds.
Convenience and Ease of Use
The deep cell marine battery you buy should be convenient for you, of course. You should be able to install the battery and connect everything without trouble. Sealed batteries incorporating AGM technology are the most convenient batteries because they can be mounted in any position and are completely maintenance-free.
If you will be using your trolling battery to charge other things onboard your watercraft (not just to power the trolling motor), it’s a good idea to buy a versatile battery that can do more than just power a trolling motor. For example, the number one trolling motor battery review above features the Optima D34M, which is both a deep cycle and starting battery.
Q: How To Charge These Types Of Batteries While On the Lake?
While on the lake, you can use a conventional charger or a solar panel charger to keep your trolling motor topped off. However, you should be careful when charging AGM batteries as fast-charging them can destroy their cells. Always use low ampere chargers to charge these types of batteries.
Q: How To Wire A Trolling Motor To The Batteries?
Battery manufacturers recommend using a 6-gauge wire to wire a trolling motor to the batteries. It's also advisable to install a manual reset circuit breaker. Before connecting the battery system to the motor, make sure all the switches are off.
If you’re using a 12V battery, you should wire it as follows:
- Connect the red lead from the motor to the + (positive) battery terminal. Use the circuit breaker on this connection.
- Complete the connection by connecting the black lead from the motor power cable to the – (negative) battery terminal.
If you have a 24V trolling motor, you can power it using two 12V batteries. Here's how to connect a trolling motor to two batteries:
- Connect the black lead cable from the motor to the – (negative) on the second battery.
- Connect the red lead from the motor to the + (positive) battery terminal on the first battery. The circuit breaker should be on this connection.
- Finally, use a jumper cable to connect the two batteries with the – being on the first battery and the + on the second. The jumper wire should have the same gauge as the rest.
Q: How Long Should This Type of Batteries Last?
When talking about lifespan, the best marine battery trolling motor can last anywhere from 1 to 10 years. As for run time, it depends on the battery amp hour rating and the power your trolling motor draws.
If your trolling motor is drawing 10 amps per hour going at medium speed, and your battery capacity is 50 amp hours, you can expect a running time of 5 hours before the battery is completely drained.
If the motor draws less power and you have a high capacity battery, you can expect long periods on the water. If you're running the motor at full speed or if your boat is heavy, on the other hand, the battery will drain faster.
Globo Surf Overview
The battery is one of the most important components of a trolling motor. We hope our trolling motor battery reviews and buying guide has made things clear and you now know what to look for when buying the best deep cycle battery trolling motor. By choosing a top rated trolling motor battery and paying attention to the factors we’ve outlined above, you’re sure to end up with the best trolling motor battery for your needs.
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Have you tried a battery that made it onto our list? How durable and efficient was it in powering your trolling motor? Let us know in the comment section below.