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Published Sep. 28, 2021

Choosing the best trolling motor battery comes down to more than just looks. A great battery will fish all day without complaint. The wrong battery could leave you dead in the water. To choose the best, we considered the batteries cost, construction, and performance under the toughest fishing conditions.

Best Overall: Optima OPT 8016

Best Overall

Key Features 

  • Weight: 43.5 pounds
  • Dimensions: 10 x 6.88 x 7.8 inches
  • Materials: Absorbent Glass Mat
  • 120-minute reserve capacity
  • 55 amp hours

Why It Made The Cut

Our pick for the best trolling motor battery overall, Optima batteries are the top choice for reliable power under the worst conditions, from professional racecar drivers to tournament anglers. That’s because Optima uses their special Spiralcell and Pureflow technology to improve power management. This construction also makes the battery 15-time more vibration resistant with three times more recharges than similar batteries. 

Pros

  • 15-times the vibration resistance
  • 3-times the number of recharges
  • 99-percent pure lead

Cons

  • Expensive

A dual-purpose marine battery has two jobs: start the boat motor and keep it running. Optima’s OPT 8016 battery is best at both tasks. 

The famous blue-top battery uses proprietary Spiralcell and Pureflow construction to improve the battery’s performance. Spiralcell uses stronger links between the battery’s cells to increase vibration resistance. For optimum power efficiency, Pureflow employs the highest-quality lead cells.

The Optima 8016 is completely sealed so that it can be mounted anywhere. The battery is also maintenance-free for years of reliable power. When it comes to deep-cycle marine batteries, AGM batteries, Optima 8016 is hard to beat.

Best Deep Cycle Trolling Motor Battery: BassPro Shops Pro Series X900

Best Deep Cycle

Key Features 

  • Weight: 60 pounds
  • Dimensions: 12.44 x 6.77 x 8.75 inches
  • Materials: Absorbent Glass Mat
  • 1080 amps at 10-hour capacity
  • Dual-purpose

Why It Made The Cut

No one knows batteries better than Bass Pro Shops. The Pro Series X900 is the top-of-the-line marine battery for storage, vibration resistance, and power. With 1080 amps at 10 hours capacity, the Pro Series X900 will last all day with 195 minutes of reserve capacity. The high-quality construction and components allow the Pro Series X900 to be stored for a year without losing capacity. 

Pros

  • One year storage
  • Excellent warranty
  • 195 minutes reserve capacity

Cons

  • Expensive

Bass Pro Shops X900 Pro is their top-of-the-line Group 27 deep cycle battery. With improved efficiency and storage, the Group 27 is rated to fish all day and take a beating. The X900 Pro has a higher cold cranking rating and longer reserve time than lower-priced models. 

Best Wet Cell Trolling Motor Battery: Bass Pro Shops Deep Cycle 12 volt

Best Wet Cell

Key Features 

  • Weight: 65 pounds
  • Dimensions: 6.75 x 9.375 x 10.75 inches
  • Materials: Lead Acid 
  • Dual starting and deep cycle 

Why It Made The Cut

A wet cell deep-cycle battery is less expensive than an AGM battery with similar power and size. The Bass Pro Shops Deep Cycle 12 Volt is tough and powerful with one of the best warranties. If the battery fails within the first 12 months, Bass Pro will replace it. Between a year and three years, they prorate a refund. That guarantees three years of service out of a great battery. 

Pros

  • Rugged construction
  • Best cold-cranking amps
  • Highest reserve capacity

Cons

  • Must be mounted level

A wet cell battery is less expensive but less powerful than a similar AGM battery. But the sacrifice in power may be worth the money if you don’t use the battery for extended periods of time. With 575 cold-cranking amps and 705 amps at 10 hours capacity. For a smaller trolling motor, the Bass Pro Shops Deep Cycle 12 Volt is a solid battery at a great price.

Best Lithium Trolling Motor Battery: Tracker Marine Super High Output

Best Lithium Battery

Key Features 

  • Weight: 29.8 pounds
  • Dimensions: 12.95 x 6.77 x 8.39 inches
  • Materials: Lithium iron phosphate
  • 5000 recharge cycles
  • Higher peak and continuous discharge

Why It Made The Cut

The latest trend for high-power and low weight is lithium batteries. Tracker Lithium has a higher output and longer run than other lithium batteries. To improve boat performance, the Tracker Lithium weighs 50-percent less than similar-sized lead-acid batteries.

Pros

  • Weighs 50-percent less
  • More recharge cycles
  • Continuous power output
  • Faster charge rate

Cons

  • Expensive

The Tracker Lithium Super High Output Battery is ready for action. Compared to a lead-acid battery with an average of 270 recharges, the Tracker Lithium can be powered over 5000 times. The battery also runs a steady output through its range, so it doesn’t lose power as the capacity goes down. Best of all, a lithium battery weighs almost half a similar lead-acid battery making it easier to handle and improving boat performance. 

Best Budget Trolling Motor Battery: VMAX MR127

Best on a Budget

Key Features 

  • Weight: 68 pounds
  • Dimensions: 12.1 x 6.7 x 8.2 inches
  • Materials: AGM Lead Acid
  • 100 amp hours

Why It Made The Cut

For less money than other deep-cycle batteries, you can get the same features with the VMAX MR127. At 100 amp hours, the Group 27 deep cycle battery can power a trolling motor all day. The electrolyte suspension system absorbs electrolytes without contaminants for pure power transfer. Heavy-duty, tin-alloy cells improve performance in floating or cyclical charging. 

Pros

  • Improved power
  • Rugged construction
  • Lower cost

Cons

  • Heavy

The VMAX MR127 has the power, performance, and construction found in more expensive AGM batteries at a lower cost. The AGM has the same recharge and discharge rate and cold-cranking amps as similar batteries. With 200 minutes reserve capacity, the VMAX has plenty of power for trolling motor, electronics, and starting.

Methodology 

To determine the best battery for trolling motor, we looked at construction, performance, and cost. Bouncing around in a boat and rolling through waves, a marine battery takes a lot of abuse. A deep cycle battery with beefy lead cells and a sturdy case will avoid damage and corrosion. We also compared batteries from many manufactures for the longest reserve capacity, highest cold-cranking amps, and best recharging profile. You’ll be pleasantly surprised that the best trolling motor battery isn’t the most expensive. Many of the best features are available at a great value. You’ll appreciate our picks for the best battery for trolling motor when you are fishing all day.

Things to Consider Before Buying the Best Trolling Motor Battery

To power a trolling motor, first choose a 12-volt deep-cycle battery. A deep cycle battery will hold a charge longer and discharge power consistently until it is almost dead. This makes a deep-cycle battery perfect for running a trolling motor at the same power all day.

Deep-cycle trolling motor batteries fall into three categories: flooded wet-cell, absorbent glass mat (AGM), or lithium-iron-phosphate. Each has advantages and disadvantages. 

Flooded wet-cell batteries are less expensive, but they don’t perform as well as the other choices. Wet cell batteries can spill acid, so they don’t stand up to vibration well and have to be mounted in a level position.

AGM batteries are similar to flooded, except they use a fiberglass mat to hold the liquid in place. This allows the best AGM battery to be sealed against leaks. AGM batteries also have more mounting options, and they can take a beating. Performance is better, too. In fact, the best AGM battery discharges power more efficiently than a flooded wet-cell battery.

The latest and greatest trolling motor batteries are made of lithium-iron-phosphate. Unlike heavy, bulky lead-acid batteries, lithium is lighter and more compact. The compound also handles power more efficiently and lasts considerably longer with a greater tolerance for recharging. The downside is lithium batteries cost three times as much as a lead-acid battery. For serious anglers, the cost is worth the payoff.

To choose the best trolling motor battery, think about how you will use it. For a low-power trolling motor on a small boat, a wet-cell battery should get you around. The AGM battery is the best choice on a larger boat that will experience rolling and pounding. A bank of lithium-iron-phosphate batteries is the way to go for anglers running multiple batteries to power a full bevy of electronics and a trolling motor.

FAQs

Q: What is the best battery type for trolling motors?

Powering a trolling motor requires a 12-volt deep-cycle marine battery that discharges over a longer period without losing power. Furthermore, a deep cycle battery is designed to recharge regularly. There are three types of deep cell batteries for trolling motors: flooded we-cell, AGM, and lithium-iron-phosphate. 

Flooded cell batteries are less expensive but they can spill acid. AGM batteries are sealed to prevent leaks and provide more power over a longer period. A lithium-iron battery is three times as expensive as a lead-acid battery, but it is half the weight and lasts much longer. To choose the best battery, consider how you use your battery and how much money you have to spend.

Q: What’s the difference between a marine battery and a deep cycle battery?

Boaters use a deep-cycle marine battery to start and run outboard motors or to power a trolling motor. Any deep-cycle battery will power a trolling motor, but a marine battery tends to be built tougher for use on a boat.

Q: How long will a deep cycle battery last with a trolling motor?

The trick to rigging a boat with the best trolling motor battery is ensuring the system will last for a long day of fishing. Follow the trolling motor manufacturer’s instructions for the amp-hours, group, and the number of deep cycle batteries required to power the motors all day. Then, be sure to fully charge the batteries between each use.

Final Thoughts

Balancing performance, construction, and cost, the Optima OPT 8016 takes the prize for the best trolling motor battery. Look under the hood and in the hatch of many of the top professional drivers and anglers, and you’ll find one or more of these iconic batteries. With the beefiest construction and best performance, the Optima OPT 8016 provides reliable performance as the best trolling motor battery.

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