How do I figure out what size trolling motor I need?

How do I determine the size of a trolling motor I need? Do I need a mount first before I choose a trolling motor or what all comes into play here?


  • Measure the distance from the water to where you will mount it and add 20" is a general rule of thumb. This might be different for kayaks and paddle powered boats. I don't think you'd want a trolling prop hanging 20" below a kayak because they sit so shallow.

  • Hey @StevieRyder, when it comes to trolling motor sizing there are a few considerations to make. First you need to choose the proper thrust for your boat. Here is my go-to diagram from Minn Kota. This is going to determine how much thrust youll want, but also take into consideration the amount of voltage the different thrust powers require.

    When it comes to the voltage a trolling motor requires. You are going to need 1 battery for every 12 volts in your trolling motor.

    55 lbs of thrust or less is usually 12 volts - 1 battery

    68-80 lbs of thrust is usually 24 volts - 2 batteries

    100+ lbs of thrust is going to be 36 volts - 3 batteries.

    Once you have narrowed down the proper thrust you will need out of a trolling motor. Youll want to determine the shaft length of the trolling motor. This ensures your trolling motor is working as efficiently as possible in moving your vessel.

    For a bow mounted motor, you need to measure the distance from the top of your bow to the waterline and basically double that distance. If your bow to waterline is 22" you are going to want a 44" shaft length. If your shaft is too long, you may create turbulence in turn spooking any nearby fish. Hopefully this helps you figure out what size trolling motor you need.

  • @StevieRyder, if you're in a kayak or a SUP, you won't want anything more than a 25 lb trolling motor and thats max.

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