A Guide to Buying a Trolling Motor for Your Boat

fish rods and a trolling motor

You were out with your canoe, ready to cast your lure and catch some fish, but then you realized how tiring it was to move from one spot to another by paddling. Then it’s time for you to buy a trolling motor. However, only the best trolling motor for canoe is worth your money. How do you get one?

Know the Thrust Power That You Need

The heavier and longer your canoe is, the more thrust power you will need from the motor. People often mistake this aspect as affecting the boat’s speed, but in real use, an adequate thrust power provides you with better stability. Remember that a canoe or kayak does not have hulls that can plane on the water at fast speed. Therefore, no matter how many trolling engines you have on your canoe or kayak, you can’t expect it to have increased speed. 

The general rules of thrust power are below:

  1. 17′ boats with 2,500 lbs weight require at least 50 pounds of thrust with 12 volts of power. 
  2. 18′ boats with 3,000 lbs weight require at least 70 pounds of thrust with 24 volts of power. 
  3. 20′ boats with 4,500 lbs weight require at least 90 pounds of thrust with 36 volts of power. 

More About the Power Voltage and Batteries

A 12-volt engine consists of one deep-cycle marine battery. Hence, it is the most affordable and the easiest to use. The 24-volt requires two batteries, and the 36-volt requires three. Therefore, you can stay on the water longer with these motors. Also, they are the most reliable when you need to put the boat in anchor mode against a strong current. 

Bow vs. Transom Motor

A bow motor is best suited for boats bigger and longer than canoes or kayaks. It has better stability because it is installed at the front of the hull, and it pulls the boat instead of pushing it like a transom. But you can still have a bow motor on your canoes or kayaks. However, you need to have a mounting bracket installed there as well. If you use a transom, it is as simple as clamping it at the backside of the hull, and you are ready to go. 

Hand or Foot Control?

fishing on a lakeAnother important factor when choosing a trolling motor is that whether you want to navigate it with your hands or your foot. A foot control motor needs more space on the boat for the pedals, but you can maneuver while still holding the fishing rod. Some users also reported that there is a delay between the push on the pedal with the actual response on the engine. A hand control motor, on the other hand, offers a real-time response. It also does not clutter the house with pedals. 

Think about the Length of the Motor Shaft

This aspect depends heavily on the types of water and the models of your boats. Short shaft motors are for shallow water. And they are also good for canoes and kayaks because their hulls make it possible for the propeller to submerge in the water easier. But for a deep V-shaped boat, an engine with an extended motor shaft is needed.