Gone Outdoors

How to Wire Batteries in Series for a 36-Volt MotorGuide Trolling Motor

by Matthew Bores

A 36-volt trolling motor requires special wiring between three 12-volt batteries in order to run properly. Three 12-volt batteries wired in series will put out 36 volts while maintaining the capacity rating of one battery.

Place the three 12-volt batteries in your boat's battery compartment. Orient the batteries so that the negative terminal (-) on battery one is close to the positive terminal (+) on battery two, and the negative terminal (-) on battery two is close to the positive terminal (+) on battery three.

Attach a wire running from the negative (-) terminal of the first battery to the positive (+) terminal of the second battery.

Attach a wire running from the negative (-) terminal of the second battery to the positive (+) terminal of the third battery. The remaining two terminals should be the positive (+) on the first battery and the negative (-) on the third battery. These two terminals will now output 36 volts.

Attach wires to the two remaining terminals and to your 36-volt trolling motor's controls. Incorporate the appropriate fuses in your wiring as recommended by the MotorGuide schematic for your trolling motor.

Items you will need
  • Three 12-volt trolling motor batteries
  • Wire cutters
  • Wire eyelets
  • Wire

Tip

  • Cover all battery terminals with terminal covers after wiring, to help prevent corrosion and possible shortages.

Warning

  • When choosing wire, it is important to select the proper wire gauge for your application. Check the manufacturer's recommendation for proper wire size for the particular trolling motor you are using.

About the Author

Matthew Bores started professionally writing in 2010. He has written for Totalinsanity.net, a website that teaches the technical knowledge needed get started in robotics. Bores holds a Bachelor of Science in mechanical engineering from The Ohio State University.