What is the Best Trolling Motor for a Pontoon Boat USA UK 2023?
Getting a trolling motor for your pontoon enhances the ability to stay on fish. Trolling motors are offered by various brands and in this blog, we will help you to determine how to select the best one.
Apart from the brand, there are also a few other factors that you need to keep in mind before actually purchasing one.
In this article, you will learn about the best trolling motor for your pontoon boat, as well as the things you must keep in mind before actually buying one.
So here is a step-by-step guide on installing a trolling motor on your pontoon boat.
Step 1: Selecting a brand
Most pontoon owners make up their minds about the brand of trolling motor based on a couple of experiences with brands, or through word of mouth by their fellow pontoon boat owners.
Before any of that, if you happen to have a fish finder, that could do the trick as most companies pool their resources to make both compatible with each other, technology-wise. So, if you do have a fish finder, it would be plausible to go for a trolling motor with GPS.
This is so because, with GPS, the fish finder can chart out plots for the trolling motor which gives you greater control and freedom to roam about your boat as you can handle the trolling motor with an on-fish finder control panel.
The two biggest brands for trolling motors are MotorGuide and MinnKota. They both are compatible with different fish finders, like if you have a Lowrance fishfinder, you may want to go ahead with MotorGuide trolling motor. Conversely, for a Hummingbird fish finder, MinnKota would be the more suitable option.
Step 2. Selecting the right model
Selecting the right trolling motor model depends on various factors.
- i) Location
You can mount the trolling motor on the bow, engine, or transom. It is advisable to mount the trolling motor on the bow, as it makes it easier to control the boat.
Now bear in mind, trolling motor installation can be tricky as many boats do not have a front lip on the front of the deck. As such, you have to modify the front gate in order to mount a trolling motor.
- ii) Trolling motor thrust
A trolling motor is really no good without the thrust of power. Pontoon boats differ from their counterparts in the sense they are quite large and do not have the hydrodynamics of a V-Hull boat.
Now, how to determine the power of such thrusters while purchasing a trolling motor?
It’s quite simple, all you need to do is divide the total weight of your boat in pounds by 100 and then multiply it by 2. So, for the traditional 22′ boat with gas, gear, and a couple of people would be around 3,000 pounds, which means that it would require a 60-pound thrust trolling motor.
Beyond the math, a 65-80 pound thrust motor with a 24-26v battery system should suffice for your pontoon boat.
The last on the list would be featured. Everybody loves a feature-loaded product, and a trolling motor for your pontoon boat is no different.
The two most innovative trolling motors, MinnKota Terrova and MotorGuide Xi5 offer remote control on a lanyard that you can use to control your vessel from anywhere on the boat. Pretty cool isn’t it?
Moreover, you can also control your pontoon boat with your fish finder (provided that it is compatible) or with the controls on the motor.
Step 3. Accessories and mounting options
As a fundamental difference between your pontoon boat’s engine and the trolling motor, the latter is powered by batteries and does not recharge by running the motor. As a result, you will have to charge the batteries before each trip. This is why there is a requirement for additional accessories.
Here are some of the top batteries that you can install to accompany your trolling motor:
- VMAXTANKS Marine AGM SLA
- Optima BlueTop Battery
- Mighty Max Battery
- ExpertPower battery
Bear in mind, the battery you are looking for is a deep cycle battery that is capable of withstanding longer battery drains.
With batteries, you would also need chargers. Here are a few chargers that we would personally recommend:
- NOCO Genius On-Board
- MinnKota On-Board
- ProMariner 43012 ProSport 12 Battery Charger
Now that you are all set on thrusters, batteries, and chargers, it is time to know the best trolling motors for your pontoon boat.
Best trolling motors for pontoon boats
Coming down to the crux of this blog, we have listed some of the most renowned trolling motors that are widely used among pontoon boat enthusiasts.
Each of these has an 80-pound thrust, 60-inch shaft, and a fish finder for Lowrance or Hummingbird.
- Minn Kota Terrova 80
This powerful trolling motor comes with an electric steer and an LCD screen. It has a maximum boat length of 25 feet.
- MotorGuide Xi5
One of the best trolling motors there is, MotorGuide Xi5 has 3 times the precision control with a corrosion-resistant body. It delivers 80-pound of grand thrust.
- Minn Kota Riptide 80 ST
This trolling motor comes with an indestructible composite shaft, a pre-installed i-Pilot, and a 2-year warranty.
So these were the things you should know before going for a trolling motor for your pontoon boat. These world-class trolling motors offer big-time functionality, power, and endurance for your fishing escapades on open waters. Enjoy the fishing spree!!