trolling motor on a pedal boat

For sure, if you want to make your time on your little pedalo enjoyable and catch the best fish, then the best trolling motor for the pedal boat is worth your investment.

These invaluable devices eliminate the hassle of manually maneuvering your boat. Plus, they provide the advantage of stealthily approaching your desired location and precisely placing your bait or lure, resulting in optimal fishing opportunities.

Let’s explore more about how to install a pedal boat trolling motor and some of the best models based on my research.

Importance of Using trolling motor for pedal boat

trolling motor for pedal boat

While pedal boats are typically designed for human-powered propulsion, incorporating a trolling motor can offer significant benefits in various scenarios.

Beyond the very obvious (it reduces leg effort), there are several reasons which make trolling motors a must-have for pedal boats. For instance, the electric propulsion will provide a boost to your slow-moving pedalo.

Plus, the efficient motor would help you to outrun in case you encounter a storm (I never wish that).

Is a pedal boat trolling motor Really beneficial for fishing or Not?

Absolutely, unless the motor is of silent nature and could have the ability to make instant stops. After all, no one wants to reel in line while having their legs at work.

Though the motor I own isn’t much faster than propelling manually, of course, I don’t have to put in leg effort all the time. It is also important to mention that you might have to register your pedal boat if trolling motor is installed because some states require it.

Best Trolling Motor For Pedal Boat – Our Recommendations

Watersnake Tracer Trolling Motor

Watersnake Tracer Trolling Motor
Brand NameWatersnake
Speed Options5 forward and two reverse
Added Featuresextendable tiller
Customer Ratings⭐4.6
Weight17.08 Pounds
Mount TypeTransom / Bow
Check PriceAmazon

Our first pick, the watersnake tracing trolling motor, is among the best for multiple reasons. For instance, it features a 30-inch telescopic chrome-plated steel shaft, which is sturdy enough to ensure optimal performance.

Moreover, the two-blade propeller is designed to slice through the water smoothly. Meanwhile, the extendable tiller enhances your control.

In terms of setup, even a newbie who doesn’t know how to install a trolling motor can get it fit within a few moments. Even better, the variable speed option (five forwards and two reverse) allows you to have entire control over the movement of your pedal craft.

A Candid Look on Its Upsides

  • It is compatible with both transom and bow mount styles.
  • The model is applicable in fresh and saltwater as well.
  • This trolling motor is quite easy to install.

What We Don’t Like

  • It doesn’t provide much speed.

Our Verdict – Honest Assessment

If you want an option that’s versatile, durable, and delivers superior performance, the Watersnake tracer trolling motor can help. Its variety of speed options, weedless design, and sturdy construction make it a must-have for any pedal boating enthusiast.

MINN KOTA Edge Freshwater Trolling Motor:

MINN KOTA Edge Freshwater Trolling Motor:
Speed Options5-Speed Settings
Added FeatureHeel-Toe
Customer Ratings⭐4.3
Weight18 Pounds
Mount TypeTransom / Bow
Check PriceAmazon

Experience the ultimate power of the MINN KOTA Edge Freshwater Trolling Motor. With its unrivaled 45 lbs of thrust, this motor packs a punch that propels your pedal boat with exceptional force.

Crafted with meticulous attention to detail, the model is built to withstand the rigors of any fishing adventure. Plus, its sturdy construction ensures durability and longevity, making it a reliable companion for countless trips on the water.

On top of that, it operates with whisper-quiet precision, allowing you to navigate through even the most tranquil fishing spots without disturbing the peace. 

A Candid Look on Its Upsides

  • It does its job quietly, allowing me to fish in premium spots.
  • The weatherproof construction can withstand all types of elements.

What We Don’t Like

  • It comes at an expensive cost.

Our Verdict – Honest Assessment

If you’ve been looking for a hassle-free way to revolutionize the performance of your pedal boat, look no further than the game-changing MINN KOTA trolling motor. Better control awaits – order yours today!

How did we choose these Trolling Motors for Paddle/Pedal Boats (Both Models Are Personally Tested)

No doubt, the best trolling motor for paddle boat can be a major decider between a terrible and enjoyable experience. As there are countless options available in the market, you need to opt for one which provides good value for your investment.

Here are a few key factors to look at in order to determine the best trolling motor for pedal boat:


What’s the use of trolling motor when you can’t fit it in your boat? Sounds weird? It’s obvious to choose a trolling motor that is compatible with your watercraft.

You can puzzle out the compatibility of the trolling motor in a couple of ways. Either you should consider going through the manufacturer guide or make a call to customer support; the choice is yours.

Weight of Pedal Boat

Another crucial factor to keep in mind before purchasing a motor is the weight of your watercraft. A beginning rule of thumb is you need a minimum of two lbs of thrust for every 100 lbs (weight).

For instance, if you own a 500 lbs vessel, then the calculation is as follows:

(500/100) * 2 = 10 lbs of thrust.

Size of Pedal Boat

pedal boat trolling motor

Perhaps the most vital consideration in choosing an electric trolling motor is the size of your little vessel. Larger pedalos require more thrust to get them moving on water.

Thrust is a unit that refers to a way to measure the power of a motor. For instance, a 40 lb thrust trolling motor is functional on 10 or 12 feet watercraft.

Opting for the right size trolling motor ensures you get full use out of it. After all, the last thing you want is an underpowered motor struggling to propel your boat.

Mounting Options

Choosing the best trolling motor for a pedal boat relies on what style you are going to mount it.

Mounting styles are fairly simple. For those who have a clamp area, a transom-mounted motor may serve better. While the wallet-friendly nature makes it popular among small boat owners, you can’t ignore the limited power options.

On the flip side, if you own a swan-shaped narrow pedalo, a bow mount style is ideal for you. Though it’s straightforward to operate and offers precise steering, the style comes with a costly investment.

Control Mechanism

pedal boat trolling motor

Pedal boat trolling motors come with various control mechanisms. For a pedal boat, consider choosing a motor with hands-free control.

It will allow you to navigate the boat effortlessly while keeping your hands free to operate other equipment or engage in other activities like fishing.

Noise Level

It’s no secret that noisy vehicles are a great source of pollution, and trolling motors are no exception. Though my motor doesn’t make much noise, it’s all possible due to Sam, who helped me to choose the model of silent nature.

Plus, the noisier engine will alert fish, and they will run away, leaving nothing for you instead of dirty socks to catch.

Battery Size

The battery size heavily depends on how often you decide to utilize your little vessel. If you are like me, then you spend the whole weekend on the lake. In that case, a motor with longer battery life is probably the best option.

One particular demonstration is lithium-ion batteries. They offer the best possible performance and run time.

shaft length of trolling motor

Shaft Length

The shaft length should be long enough to allow the propeller to remain submerged at least 16 inches below the water’s surface.

Of course, it’s undesirable for a propeller to get out of choppy waters and stay in the air. Such a scenario will cause nothing but loss of power, noise, and reduced lifespan of the motor.

Motor Volts

Usually, the 12V trolling motor is a cheaper option in comparison to the 24V and 36V. However, it has a few potential drawbacks. For instance, the thrust rating (power) is relatively less.

The higher the voltage of the trolling motor, the more power it possesses. Therefore, you should opt for an option according to your needs.

Different Types of Pedal Boat Trolling Motor

There are four types of trolling motors based on the various steering mechanisms. Let’s get started with them:


The electric steering model offers greater control, characterized by a few innovative options such as remote and GPS positioning. These features can help you to get to your desired spot and focus on catching exclusive fish.

However, it is a bit more expensive than other manual (hand-steer) trolling motors.


An incredible product of technology, the hybrid steering model provides the best of both worlds – the responsive nature of the cable steer version and the convenience of the electric one.

trolling motor for pedal boat

For instance, the Minn Kota Ultrex and MotorGuide Tour Pro trolling motors allow you to utilize features that are exclusive to electric steer motors.


Like traditional indoor motors, it utilizes a tiller hand to steer directly. While being the most responsive type, it can make you feel worn out after a few moments of usage.

Also, hand steering motors are less expensive than other types.


These types of motors contain cable which is attached to the foot pedal. Through the means of this cable, the user can steer the motor.

They are more responsive and precise than electric models. However, you won’t be able to access GPS anchors and other advanced features.

Freshwater Trolling Motors Vs Saltwater Trolling Motors

Freshwater trolling motors cater specifically to the needs of navigating freshwater lakes and rivers. Unlike their saltwater counterparts, these motors are designed to operate in calmer conditions without the need to withstand strong waves and currents.

As a result, these types of trolling motors are generally less robust in terms of power. However, they compensate for this by offering a wider range of built-in sonar capabilities.

On the other hand, manufacturers design saltwater trolling motors specifically for deployment in saltwater environments like the ocean. These motors contain corrosion-resistant materials, which enable them to endure the corrosive nature of the salty environment.

If you intend to use your trolling motor in both saltwater and freshwater, it’s essential to choose a motor designed for both environments. This way, you won’t risk damaging your motor or voiding the warranty.

Benefits of Pedal Boat Trolling Motors for Fishing

Trolling motors provide several benefits for fishing:

trolling motor for pedal boat
  • Maneuverability: Trolling motors offer precise control, allowing anglers to navigate tight spaces and shallow waters.

  • Silent Operation: These motors operate quietly, minimizing disturbances that could scare away fish.

  • Speed Control: Anglers can adjust the speed of the trolling motor for trolling techniques and maintain a consistent pace.

  • Position Holding: Some trolling motors have GPS features that hold the motor in place, even in challenging conditions.

  • Energy Efficiency: Trolling motors are designed to be energy-efficient, maximizing battery life for longer fishing trips.

  • Integrated Sonar: Many models have built-in sonar capabilities, providing you with valuable underwater information.

Key Features to Look for in a Trolling Motor

Here is a quick rundown of the most useful features that roams around trolling motors these days:

  • Built-in fish finder, GPS, and trolling mode
  • Corrosion-resistant features
  • Variable speed controller
  • Autopilot, lift-assist, and deploy features
  • Breakaway mount
  • Built-in Mega Imaging

To get the best out of your hefty investment, I recommend you get a trolling motor with the above features. After all, no one wants to spend their money on something that doesn’t measure up.  

Frequently Asked Questions – (FAQs)

What are the speed capabilities of a trolling motor for a paddle boat?

Typical trolling motors for paddle boats range from 5 to 30 lbs of thrust. This can enable speeds from 5 mph to 10 mph depending on the size and weight of the pedal boat.

What are thrust requirements based on average boat size and weight?

Thrust requirements depend on the boat’s size, weight, and shape. Heavier and larger boats need higher thrust motors, often around 1 lb of thrust for every 10-20 lbs of boat weight.

Which type is best for my pedal boat?

Either a bow or transom mount trolling motor could work for a pedal boat. Consider the boat’s size, weight, and space to select the best style for your watercraft.

How much sound does it generally produce? 

Trolling motors are generally pretty quiet, around 60-70 decibels, similar to average conversation levels.

How fast can a trolling motor push a pedal boat?

If you’re looking for how fast can pedal boat can go without trolling motor then it is 4-6 mph. But, if you’re using a trolling pedal boat then it depends on the size and weight of the pedal boat as well as the power and thrust of the motor, but typically 5 to 10 mph.

What Battery Size to Choose?

You should choose a battery size based on the thrust needs of the motor and desired run time. Larger and more powerful motors require larger battery capacities.

Does more thrust mean more speed?

Yes, in general, a trolling motor with higher thrust will be able to push a boat at higher speeds. More thrust provides more force to overcome the boat’s drag and resistance from the water, allowing it to move faster. However, other factors like the boat’s weight and shape will also impact its top speed.

Does a trolling motor have a reverse?

Many trolling motors have reverse functionality that allows the motor to push the boat in the opposite direction. This can be useful for docking, navigating tight spaces, and avoiding obstacles.

Do trolling motors come with batteries?

Some trolling motor models come with the battery included, while others are sold separately. Lead-acid batteries are typically included with cheaper models, whereas lithium battery packs are more common with higher-end motors.

Wrapping Up – trolling motor for pedal/paddle boat

To sum up, if you’re looking to upgrade your pedal boat, powering it with a compact trolling motor is a no-brainer. I only wish I’d done it sooner. But if you intend to make the pedal boat faster even without installing the pedal boat then still possible. All you have to do is to make some changes and maintain your pedal boat in tip-top condition.

The precision steering and ability to slowly motor into perfect fishing spots have completely changed the way I utilize this little vessel.

If you’re feeling handy and tight on budget, you can craft your own trolling motor for the pedal boat as well. Reach out to our guide for more information.

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