Why is My Trolling Motor Going Backwards: Things You Need to Know

Why is My Trolling Motor Going Backwards
Why is My Trolling Motor Going Backwards

A Trolling motor allows your boat to remain in place while fighting the wind or current without creating a natural anchor. You can easily get into inaccessible areas. But why is my trolling motor going backwards?

There are several reasons behind this. The trolling motor rotates backward when you feel the air being thrust in. Also, you can light an incense stick and bring it near the propeller. You must remove the smoke from the stick from your boat. If you do not push or suck under the vessel, the engine will move backward.

Moreover, there are many reasons behind moving a trolling motor backward. So, read till the end and find out the possible solutions to this problem.

Why Is My Trolling Motor Going Backwards?

A trolling motor may go to the wrong direction for several reasons. Let’s find a  few of them!

Problem 1# Misplacing the direction arrow

If it’s a foot-operated motor, someone might have removed the head and then misplaced the direction arrow. That’s why your trolling motor goes in the wrong direction. You can rotate the arrow 180 degrees and see what happens.

Problem 2# Connect the device with reversed magnets

If you place your motor with two reversed magnets on the coil, your trolling motor will move backward. So, try to put the magnet coils correctly. 

Problem 3# Wrong wiring

There is nothing in the motor and control panel. The wiring causes it to spin “backward” on impact. If you reverse the cables, then the two that run along the shaft in the head must be reversed.

Problem 4# Battery wires are set backward

You may have connected two batter cables to the back. For example, the negative motor connects to the positive battery, and the positive motor connects to the negative from the battery. If you connect a 12-volt trolling motor with two wires and connect it directly to the battery, it will work in reverse.

Problem 5# Trolling motors wire doesn’t fit the wire

The three cores of the trolling motor cable do not fit into the bow wiring. Switches like yours are generally not connected to the ground circuit. 

In fact, switches should never be placed in the earth circuit. If you don’t connect the bow wires properly, your trolling motor will run in the wrong direction.

How to Fix it

You may reinstall some parts or make some modifications to solve this problem. Let’s see how you will do it.

Solution 1#  Rotate the head and remove the bolt

Under the head, you will find a nut and bolt that prevent the head from turning on your shaft. Remove the bolt, rotate the head about 180 degrees, and replace the bolt.

Solution 2# Place a traction motor

You can place a traction motor mounted on a crossbar in the bow where you can get a ‘pull’ device for the base of the bow. By simply pulling the lever towards you, the propeller will point forward and push the boat backward when the forward gear is selected. Setting up the motor in the right direction will help the ‘pull’ button drive the vessel in the right way.

Solution 3# Alternate the magnetic coils

It is a bit of a hassle to put the magnetic coils back on and put the engine on the shaft simultaneously. Alternating 2 magnets on the motor housing solve the problem. 

Solution 4# Reassemble the motor parts

Remove the propeller, hull, and anchor. Then turn the wires on the brushes, put them back together, and hit the charge. After that, put the cables in their original position, put them back together, connect the cables to the battery, and it will work.

Solution 5# Restart the engine

Turn off the engine and start again. The engine will now run normally, and the shift lever will work properly. Surely you will scratch your head when this happens!

Solution 6# Connect the batteries correctly

You won’t have the correct connection if you connect two blacks. When connecting two blacks, it is impossible to have 12 and 24 volts simultaneously. By the way, there is nothing special about the power/load switch. 

If the system is connected as indicated, the orange to black or red to black indicator should show 12 volts. Your motor is not wired this way as it only uses red/black or orange/black for 24/12 volts, respectively. The engine does not use orange and red at the same time. 

The 24 volts require two batteries connected in series. The 12 volts require only one of the batteries to be selected or both in parallel. When the black color of both batteries is connected, you will not have a serial connection and your trolling motor will not move in the wrong direction.

Solution 7# Remove the armature in a trolling motor

Flip it over and use the weight of the armature to pull it down and out. When assembling all, the most difficult thing is to pull out the brushes when replacing the armature. 

The bearing at the end of the shaft on the brush assembly is tight. A cheap little puller broke on the first attempt to pull the direction out. You can send it back for a larger model with the bearing pulled to the end of the shaft. 

Install a small “nut” that is smaller than the diameter of the shaft and finally remove the bearing. Clean the derailleur and shaft end (where the bearing was pressed in) with fantastic wet/dry sandpaper until the new bearing begins to slip. 

Replace with new bearing, paper tube, clean brushes, new flange, o-ring, washers and back seal, bolt seals. Now, the motor will spin 5 forward and 3 back out of the water, and after putting the magnets and case back in the same position, the motor spins in the correct direction.

How Do You Fix The Directional Arrow On A Trolling Motor?

Misalignment occurs because some internal parts will lose due to the loosening of the screws. In this case, you must replace loose parts and tighten all loose screws.

Fixing it is as simple as lifting the shaft and twisting it the way you want to set it with the engine. They just spin around its internal gears. Then remove the three screws on the underside of the head, lift the cover, align the pointer with the bottom block, and reassemble them. 

Inspect all plastic drive shafts under the steering or the pinion gear on which the drive shaft is located for wear. You can replace those spare parts, and the issue may worsen if you force them to get in the right direction.

Which way should my trolling motor spin?

A propeller in the wrong direction will not help the canoe or kayak much in the water. The trolling motor propeller must rotate in a direction that lets the blade draw water close to it. 

Typically, the propeller of a trolling motor rotates counterclockwise. The propeller blades draw in water and push the boat forward.

There are various ways to check if you are unsure whether the propeller is turning in the correct direction. Generate smoke for airflow control by starting the trolling engine. Be careful if the smoke is pulled through the bracket and adjust support if necessary.

Final Thoughts

Trolling motor is an essential tool for a fishing boat. If it goes in the wrong direction or backward, you will not get the most out of fishing. Anyway, we’ve mentioned the problems and solutions above. 

I hope it will fill all your needs. Still, if you have any more problems, you can contact us directly. Happy trolling!

Anthony Jones
Anthony Jones

Anthony is an expert in fishing and trolling motor equipment, based in Austin. In his free time, he can often be found out on the water, perfecting his fishing techniques and testing out the latest gear.

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