A trolling motor is an essential part of your boat to keep going in the strong wind or water waves. The heavy-duty motor will lead to a powerful ride, and for that, the propeller, electric motor, and control system should be top-notch.
But most of the time, the trolling motor prop that comes with the machine isn’t actually balanced (not all but some). Don’t worry about this, though, because if it doesn’t come in the perfect evened way, you can still balance it!
All you have to know is how to balance a trolling motor prop, and trust us; it’s super simple and easy. You just have to manage some items and have patience while doing the task.
So let’s jump right into the fun part to make your work easier, shall we?
Why Do We Need to Balance the Trolling Motor Propeller?
Balancing your trolling motor blades is the first step before you make a decision to replace them. You can’t just throw away a prop just because they’re causing you some problem. Instead, you need to fix or balance them. But why do you need to do that? Because:
- A new balanced motor will work way faster than before
- It’ll make less noise while you’re using the vehicle
- The vibration and shaking part will be forever gone with the balanced trolling motor prop nut
- There’ll be no chance of other tools getting harmed because of the imbalanced prop
- Your trolling motor won’t get twisted with the weeds with a proper evened propeller
- The longevity of your boat, trolling motor, and prop will be stored and guaranteed
Reasons Behind Propeller Imbalance
Now you may ask what the exact reasons for your trolling motor vibration or imbalance are?
Well, first of all, all those shaking, vibration, noise happen for the mass imbalance. This means if the center of your prop’s gravity isn’t in the same position as your prop itself, that’s when the variance occurs.
Plus, it’s caused by the elimination of some materials on the blades to restore nicks or from the blade erosion.
You don’t need to worry about it as luckily, this issue can be easily solved by properly balancing them. You can also add the right indexing and blade track for further convenience!
How to Check Trolling Motor Propeller Balance?
You can check yourself if the prop is balanced or not. For example,
- You can turn on the engine to hear if there’s any noise (we mean loud noises)
- The vibration will be out of the hand once the propeller is imbalanced
- The blades won’t stop at the exact location.
Also, once you replace your old trolling motor propeller, it’s wise to get them balanced even though they’re not showing the imbalance signs. This way the tool won’t even get a chance to be uneven in the future!
Things We Need to Collect for Trolling Motor Props Balancing
There are some products you need to collect for the perfect prop balancing. They are,
- A prop balancer (obviously)
- An unbalanced propeller
- Sandpaper/ Hinge Tape (whatever you prefer)
- Razor Blade
How to Balance a Trolling Motor Prop
There are two types of balancing for your trolling motor propeller.
- Static Balancing
- Dynamic balancing
Well, static balancing is a process where the 1 blade of the prop isn’t heavier than the other blade.
On the other hand, dynamic balancing is often used by professional mechanics. It calculates the vibration of your entire prop when it’s still in operation.
Mostly a tachometer is used to calculate the engine RPM and the whole movement of your prop. The test is usually repeated until the propeller is perfectly balanced and the vibration isn’t too intense.
Now the thing is, if you’re attempting to do this balancing task on your own, we would suggest you go for a static one. It’s not as smart as the dynamic one, we agree, but the static balancing system would be a wise decision for the first time.
There’re 2-blades trolling motor propellers and 3-blades trolling motor propellers. Here we’re going to show you the balance of both of them step by step!
Balancing 2-Blades Propeller
This one’s super easy to perform,
Step 1: Get the prop on your prop balancer. You need to unscrew the hub holder’s one side and place the prop in the middle of it. Then screw it again. Remember to tighten the screw-like before so the prop can get attached perfectly.
Step 2: Place this in the prop balancer. Wait for a second to see where it moves. Then try to place it at 90 degrees and leave it. You’ll see one side will be uneven, and that’s when you’ll know that side is the heavier one and the prop is imbalanced.
You can turn it the other way once again, to be sure!
Step 3: Now it’s time to use either the sandpaper or the hinge tape.
- Sandpaper can be used to remove material from the heavier side
- Hinge tape can be used to add material to the lighter side
It’s really up to you what you want to do.
Step 4: For the tape thing, you need to add a small portion, cut it with the razor blade and add it to the button of your prop. Never add it to the top of the propeller as it may affect the wind. Add more tapes until both sides are balanced.
For the sandpaper, you need to sand off the material and keep noticing if the prop is balanced. Keep doing the removing task until the prop is perfectly evened!
Step 5: After balancing your prop, it’s time to fix it to the trolling motor and enjoy the vibration-free ride anytime!
Balancing 3-Blades Propeller
The three blades balancing is a little bit more tricky than the two blades one. Let’s see how you do it,
Step 1: Do the exact things of unscrewing of hub holders and attaching the prop in the middle of it just like we mentioned for the 2-blades prop.
Step 2: You need to check among the three blades, which one is the lightest, which one is in the middle, and which one’s the heaviest.
Usually, the blade that’ll stay in the bottom is considered the heaviest one. Then the blade in the top will be the light, and the one which is a little down from the top blade will be considered as the middle one.
Step 3: Now, you need to work on the middle one. Take sandpaper to remove excess material and keep doing it until the upper two blades are evened.
Step 4: After the top and middle one is balanced, you can work on the heaviest blade. Remove the extra material from that, and once the blades are properly balanced, three of them will remain the same no matter in which position you keep them.
Step 5: Once the work is done, fix it to your trolling motor and enjoy the new propeller!
There you go. Follow these steps to get a balanced propeller now!
When Do We Need to Replace The Propeller?
There’re actually some good reasons when you need to replace your trolling propeller. They include,
- If your prop starts to vibrate so much, that’s when you definitely need to change it. The broken one will cause damage to other parts of the trolling motor, and we believe you don’t want that.
- The propeller will start to get tangled in the weeds once it’s damaged. Rather than cutting through those weeds, if it starts to get twisted with them, it’ll be a lot of hassle for you.
- If the vehicle is making a lot of noise, that’s when the prop needs to be restored. This way, your ears will be in good condition (we’re serious!)
- The shaft damage is also leaded to the propeller replacement.
- Lastly, the flawed one will stop working, and that’s when you need to replace it completely!
We’ll give you advice about trying to balance it first but if you think the prop is totally damaged, never ever repair it. Try to get a new one!
Yes, a bent prop will cause a lot of vibration than you think. The best you can do is to replace it and attach a new good one.
If you want to secure your trolling motor, the importance of a lock is out of the world. The motor normally comes with a factory screw. All you need is to remove it with an excellent e-lock.
There’re three primary control types for trolling motors. They are:
Tiller for steering
That’s the end of our article. We hope now you know how to balance a trolling motor prop as we tried to elaborate the facts in a simple way. You need to be careful about the blades, though, because they can cause serious risk if not handled properly.
Therefore, try to balance the propeller at first and then think about the whole replacement process. It’ll be less costly.
All the best!