?Making the Right Electrical Connections on your Boat Trolling Motor

The trolling motor is one of the most important devices on a motorboat. It is important that you keep the motor away from any imminent threat of water or electrical damage. It is a good idea to let a professional install the trolling motor on your boat. This way, you can ensure that the electrical connections do not pose a threat of short-circuiting.

If you are confused between choosing between the series and parallel connections on a trolling motor, this guide will help you figure out the best choices.

Making a Series Connection on the Motor

The series connection involves hooking up multiple batteries one after the other to the trolling motor. In this mode of wiring, the positive terminal of your trolling motor battery is connected to the negative terminal of the previous battery, and the negative terminal this battery is connected to the positive one of the next battery. Until the batteries run out, you connect them in a series like this.


Now, you take the connection from the negative terminal of the last battery to connect it with the trolling motor and connect the other battery terminals of the motor to the positive terminal of the first battery. Once the connections are successfully made, you will have a complete ring-like structure of batteries placed in series.

Benefits of a Series Connection

If you have a trolling motor that features a higher voltage compared to the batteries, you need to make a series connection. For example, a 24V motor will only run if you hook it up with one 24V battery or two 12V batteries connected in series. In case you try to connect the 12V batteries in parallel, the motor won’t run at all.

Making a Parallel Connection to the Motor

To make a parallel connection between the battery and motors, you need to connect the devices in one full ring. To do this, connect your first battery’s positive terminal to the positive terminal of the second battery. Same goes for the negative terminal. Do the same with every other battery that you add to the circuit. Now take a connection from the last battery in the circuit and connect the trolling motor to it. In this type of circuit, every terminal on every battery will feature two connections (except the first one). One of the connections go to the next battery, and one of them come from the previous battery.

trolling battery connection

Benefits of a Parallel Connection

The parallel connection by the batteries bumps up the amperage of the circuit. So, if you have a trolling motor that has a high CCA (Cold Cranking Amperage) compared to the batteries, you need a parallel connection. You can activate the starter motor on the trolling motor device only by making a parallel connection in such cases.

You need to be very careful while making the connections and switch off all the devices within the circuit. This way, you can prevent electrical short-circuiting in case you make a wrong connection by mistake.

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