How to Hook Up a 24 Volt Trolling Motor

by David Machado
Temporary connections can lead to trouble.

Temporary connections can lead to trouble.

Wiring for a 24 volt trolling motor requires basic electrical skills and tools. Understanding the theory of wiring in series and parallel is helpful, but not necessary. A 24 volt system will need two additional 12 volt batteries and extra equipment to keep them fully charged. A cut off switch should be installed so the batteries can be easily separated for charging. The average weekend mechanic can perform the installation in about an hour.

Put on the safety glasses. Place two new or fully charged 12 volt batteries next to the existing 12 volt battery or as close to the trolling motor as possible. Do not make any connections to the existing charging system; use a solar or a manual charger as needed.

Mount the cut off switch on the positive terminal of either new battery. Connect a cable from the "On" terminal of the cut off switch to the "Negative" terminal of the other new battery.

Connect the positive test lead from the volt meter to the vacant positive terminal on the first battery using its alligator clip. Connect the negative volt meter lead to the vacant negative terminal on the other battery in the same manner. Check that the volt meter read out is 24 volts with the battery mounted cut off switch in the "On" position and zero volts with it in the "Off" position.

Connect the positive lead from the trolling motor to the vacant positive terminal on the first battery. Connect the negative lead from the trolling motor to the vacant negative lead on the other battery.

Check all connections and test run the trolling motor. Turn the battery mounted cut off switch to the "Off" position and test that the trolling motor will not operate. Charge the batteries one at a time as needed with the battery mounted cut off switch in the "Off" position.

Items you will need

  • Safety glasses
  • Gloves
  • Wrench kit
  • 1 12 volt cut off switch
  • 2 Battery clamps
  • 1 Battery cable or strap
  • 2 12 volt batteries
  • Volt meter

Tip

  • Do not try to use jumper cables, make all connections permanent.

Warning

  • Do not charge the batteries with the cut off switch on.

About the Author

David Machado has written technical and home improvement articles since 2008. He received his education in electronics and computer technology from Bell Labs. After retiring from Bell South in 1989, he attended Midlands Technical College. He received his Residential Builders License from the state of South Carolina in 1991.

Photo Credits

  • closeup of jumper cables image by Katrina Miller from Fotolia.com