Why Trust Us
At Kayakfisherly, a team of veteran kayakers, saltwater fishermen, watercraft design engineers and market analysts work relentlessly to come up with the most reliable reviews and blogs on a myriad of fishing gear and equipment. For the most part of our lives, we’ve been working and toying with different types of watercrafts and fishing gear. Here, we combine our experience and research data to make recommendations for our readers.
The site was founded about 10 years back with an aim of becoming a name of trust for all fishing and kayaking communities around the world. Now that we receive numerous emails and letters of appreciation from our audience around the country, we feel honored and humbled. This is our driving force and we value it the most.
For us, the only mantra of success lies in hardworkd and integrity. We maintain distance from false product promotion and political jargons. Instead, we stick to the truth that we derive from rigorous field-tests of our reviewing items. Our mission is to provide our readers with all useful information regarding a product, so they can make an informed buying choice.
Our Product Selection Process
We took a scientific approach in order to find the best trolling motor batteries up for sale. We divided the sorting process into separate stages. It included market research, consumer report analysis, specs and feature analysis, product comparison, field-test, and re-evaluation of the final list in the light of experts’ insights and suggestions.
Initially, we spent more than 30 hours doing extensive online research looking for the most advanced deep-cycle batteries with the highest number of positive user feedback. That way, we extracted 20 of the top-rated models made by reliable manufacturers.
Once we’d managed all the battery units at our disposal, we conducted a series of testing on them. A group of community-based volunteers assisted us in carrying out our research over the next couple of weeks. We closely examined the battery technology, build quality, vibration resistance, recharge time, mountability, spill-protection, power output, number of recharge cycles they were capable of, versatility of use, and durability.
By the end of the examination we were able to find our ultimate 10 models. But the quest didn’t stop there. We also consulted with scientists doing their research on advanced Li-ion battery technology and other industry insiders. They gave us incredible insights into the subject. Based on our newfound knowledge and test data, we proceeded to write analytical and detailed reviews on each of the finalized models.
Our 10 Best Trolling Motor Battery List
After analyzing the top trolling motor batteries on our list, we categorized them by the factors you really need to consider as a buyer. This is to help you select the product that meets your needs and budget with ease.
The Usefulness of Trolling Motor Batteries
Think of the many functions of the car battery and you’ll know the usefulness of a trolling motor (often mistakenly called trolley motor) battery. The function of this battery is to supply the power for running your boat’s saltwater trolling motor. You may also use the battery to power other equipment on-board. But we’d suggest not to use a lawn mower battery as you might end up over-discharging them.
Having a trolling battery for your energy needs will keep your engine working even if your main power source fails. A trolling battery offers you the opportunity to run your trolling motor with efficiency while charging. In essence, this battery will enhance your comfort and convenience while in the boat. It helps you plan your routine as it can function as a reminder of the right time to close for the day.
If you’re on the water in the afternoon, you can charge your battery with the sun’s energy. You can charge your phone or power your radio while the battery is charging. You may need two batteries; one to power your appliances while the other is charging.
Worrying about your battery or engine failing is the last thing to come to your mind while you’re in your boat. To ensure that you enjoy a safe and thrilling ride, use only a top-quality battery for your trolling motor.
Trolling Motor Battery: Buying Guide
So, what is the best battery for a trolling motor? Well, that depends on several variables--type of the motor, type of the boat, how often you use the boat and under what circumstances. But to nail a great deal, you’ve got to have some basics first.
Unless you have a trolling motor with a built-in battery, you may face some difficulties when choosing good quality batteries. Although they’re all batteries, they’re different on multiple grounds. For this reason, you should do some research if you want to detect the best trolling motor batteries to avoid regrets. To help ease your work, here are some of the things you should consider.
The wet-cell is the cheapest trolling motor battery available on the market. It uses an electrolyte to energize the cells. They can withstand frequent charging, discharging, and even overcharging. Thus, they’ve become the perfect alternative power source for cars and trolling motors.
The major issue to worry in this battery is the need for frequent maintenance. If you’ve been using a wet-cell battery in your car, you know what I’m talking about. So, you’ll need to add some quantity of distilled water to the liquid acid to keep it in good condition. Besides adding water, you’ll need to test the concentration of the acid with a hydrometer.
Since wet-cell batteries are not sealed, the sulfuric acid could leak. This will result in corrosion further decay of the cells. Any of these will dull the performance of the battery.
If you are on a small vessel, be it an inflatable boat or an inflatable kayak or any other traditional boat, and head into some rocky areas in the water or bump into something hard, it may result in leakage or permanent damage to the battery. Thus, the battery casing should be able to withstand the shocks and absorb vibrations. Also, your battery compartment should have enough ventilation to ward off hydrogen gas which they release as part of internal chemical reactions.
Most anglers may prefer AGM (Absorbed Glass Mat) batteries to the wet-cell battery because they neither leak nor emit hydrogen gas. Since they’re sealed, you can mount them in any position. They’re mostly compact making them perfect for use in lightweight water vessels.
Also, AGM batteries will charge to full capacity within a short time. After a complete charge, it’ll take a long time to discharge, unlike a wet-cell. They’re lightweight, yet can store more power per area than wet-cells. Thus, they’re the perfect trolling battery for small kayaks and boats.
Another advantage of the AGM batteries is that you can charge and discharge them without needing to maintain. Besides, they can withstand vibrations and bad weather.
It is important to use a smart charger with an AGM battery to avoid overcharging. Also, it is damaging to expose it to extreme heat. You may have to look beyond the initial cost of buying an AGM battery and focus on its long term benefits. You can go for solar powered chargers as these batteries are more compatible with them.
The Lithium-ion battery is the latest among other trolling motor battery types. Some say that these are the best batteries for trolling motors. Increasingly, they’re getting more popular among anglers and hobbyists. This is because of their many benefits. The most outstanding feature of a lithium-ion battery is weight. This is because they’re lighter than both AGM and wet-cell batteries. Although they’re more expensive, they give the best performance.
Many manufacturers of electronic gadgets like smartphones and laptops rely on lithium-ion batteries. The reason is that they’re fast to charge and very slow to discharge. The Lithium-ion battery is more popular among sport anglers. This is because they charge fast, meaning you’ll spend less time waiting for its recovery. Also, being a lightweight trolling motor battery, your kayak will be light, fast, and easy to maneuver.
The only drawback with lithium-ion batteries is their tendency to catch fire when overheating. To avoid this, keep them away from direct heat sources.
2. Dual Purpose Batteries vs. Deep Cycle Batteries
You can either use a dual purpose or deep cycle battery (frequently mistaken as deep cell battery) to power your trolling motor. The design of these batteries allows them to discharge gradually until all the power is gone. A starting battery works differently in the sense that it’ll release a great percentage of its power only to trigger the engine to start. So, instead of a starting battery, you’ll need a dual purpose or deep cycle battery for your trolling motors.
Dual-purpose batteries can crank engines and power trolling motors too. So, dual-purpose batteries are used for both deep cycling and starting. If you desire to power your boat’s motors with a single battery, then a dual-purpose battery is perfect.
Deep cycle batteries will discharge more of their power gradually over time. When used in trolling motors, deep cycle batteries tend to last longer than dual-purpose batteries. If you need a battery that’ll power only your trolling motor, then a deep cycle battery is for you.
A deep cycle battery is designed to withstand all vibrations and shocks from the boat. Also, they’re not easily affected by heat. This makes them the right choice for kayaking in the sun.
3. Ampere Hours (Ah)
The energy rating for deep cycle batteries is Ampere hours. This is defined as the total charge in the battery when one ampere of current is discharged for an hour. This unit is a measurement of the capacity of the battery. It gives a clue to the quantity of energy that the battery can store.
Some of the smallest deep cycle batteries have 25 to 50Ah while larger batteries can be as high as 100Ah. Yet, there is no ideal ampere-hour rating for a trolling motor battery. You’ll buy a battery that’ll match your boat’s energy needs and fishing style.
So, if the Ah value is high, the battery can power the motor and other appliances a bit longer. You can expect higher thrust and propulsion out of it. Also, if your vessel is large, then you’ll need a battery with a higher Ah rating. Besides, this value will drop with continuous usage of the battery. So, try checking the Ah rating before paying for the product.
4. Cold Cranking Amps (CCA)
It’s important to know the CCA of the battery when buying the best marine battery for your trolling motor. Cold Cranking Amps gives the quantity of current that leaves the battery within the first 30 seconds. If you’re buying a starter battery, then you’ll need to know its CCA. This will help you know the initial large amount of power the starter battery can release.
While the CCA is only associated with a starter battery, the reserve capacity is for the trolling motor battery. The reserve capacity is given by the time it takes a battery to supply its energy before it runs out. You’ll only need the CCA if you’re getting a battery that will start your equipment and still run it.
5. Cycle Life
This rating is mostly between 2 to 4 years. But you’ll rarely see it in the product specification. If the manufacturer doesn’t state the cycle life, you’ll need to read the product’s review to get the information. Also make sure you have a look at the size chart of these batteries for solving compatibility issues with the motors.
6. Vibration Resistance & Durability
Before you decide on the trolling motor battery to buy, you need to know its vibration resistance. This factor is very important in the lifespan of the battery. This is because your battery will experience shocks when kayaking across choppy areas of the water, although not as much as it would be caused by an outboard motor. The ability of your battery to withstand this impact will determine its durability.
Looking at the weight is very important when shopping for your ideal trolling motor battery. The battery’s weight shouldn’t exceed your boat’s weight limit. Most trolling motor batteries weigh between 20 to 60 pounds. The best batteries for kayak trolling motors should weigh about 30 pounds or less.
8. Design & Construction
The type of battery will determine its design and construction. For example, all AGM batteries are sealed. Although wet-cells contain liquid acids like AGM’s, they’re not completely air tight. Some of the best-rated trolling motor batteries come with thick bodies that insulate them. This feature helps to the life of the battery and prevent the need for its early replacement. These batteries are ideal for fishing kayaks.
One of the reasons you’ll prefer AGM batteries is their zero need for maintenance. Unlike for regular models, you wouldn’t have to invest money for buying distilled water regularly for AGM models. Also, AGM batteries are leak-proof making them easy to position or carry.
Some types are more convenient in terms of handling, installation, and maintenance.
Most batteries will only start the motor but won’t power other electrical equipment. So, the versatility of the battery is given by its number of applications in and outside the boat or canoe. Besides, your batteries should be used to power a motorcycle, wheelchair, alarm systems and much more.
Trolling Motor Battery Storing & Cleaning Tips
Even the best batteries for trolling motors require maintenance. They need your attention to keep functioning for long. If you maintain it well, it’ll perform at its best. Besides, you need to follow the safety standards for its storage to prevent damages. Here are the instructions for its storage and cleaning.
Storage & Charging Tips
- Recharge your battery once you’re back from fishing
- Don’t leave the battery dead for long
- Recharge the battery from time to time even if you’re not using it
- Store it in a cool and dry place
- Never mix used and new batteries together
- Extreme cold temperatures may damage your battery, and avoid it
- Don’t overcharge your battery
- Choose from 2-bank, 3-bank (also known as three or triple bank) or 4-bank chargers if you have multiple batteries
- Don’t always drain the battery dead
- Installing an inline fuse is always a good idea
- Don't forget to install a kill switch
- Remove dirt and dust from the surface of the battery
- If you notice any corrosion on the connectors, wipe it off
- Inspect your wet-cell battery and fill it with distilled water periodically
- Examine that the extension cable and the wiring don’t have any leakage
- Ensure the liquid in your battery doesn’t leak
- Test the acidity of the liquid with a hydrometer at least once in a while
Wrapping It Up
Having gone through the entire article, hopefully, you now know the best trolling motor batteries. We’ve shown how tricky it could be to detect one. There are a number of boxes to tick, details and categories to learn when it comes to ranking a battery to the top. Once you know the energy demand of your boat or the voltage of your trolling motor, it’ll be easy to choose a battery. We’ve also shown what other features you need to follow to get the model that will fit your needs.
However, it is important to know that your kayak may not need a bigger and heavier battery. Always think of the ability of your boat to bear the weight of the battery before making your choice. Always bear in mind the length of time you intend to sail on the water. Caution is the best prevention for any unexpected scenario. We’d also suggest that you carry an extra battery if your boat can support that.
Q: What is the best battery for a Minn Kota trolling motor?
Ans: Minn Kota trolling motors usually require 12-volt batteries. These are good with any deep cycle marine lead-acid battery. If you want to get the highest output, employ a deep cycle (marine) battery and make sure it is at least 110 Ah rating.
Q: What size battery do I need for a 55 lb thrust trolling motor?
Ans: A 55-pound thrust motor offers a 40 amps peak power draw. You will be needing a 120Ah battery load for your trolling motor if you run it at an average 50 percent load (at 20 amps) for 6 hours.
Q: How long should trolling motor batteries last?
Ans: Depending on the quality of your battery and its specs, the deep cycle batteries tend to last between 3 to 12 months.
Q: Can you use a regular battery for a trolling motor?
Ans: You can, in fact, use a regular battery for a trolling motor, but they won’t last even half of the duration of a deep cycle battery that is designed to boost a trolling motor for a longer period of time.
Q: How deep should a trolling motor be in the water?
Ans: We recommend you not to put the top of the motor more or less than 12 inches into the water. It’s the standard practice.