Gas vs Electric Trolling Motor: Which Is Better?

Gas vs Electric Trolling Motor

Anyone shopping for a boat or dinghy will often consider electric outboard motors. However, are they worth the price, given that they also have a high price tag? Or should boat owners consider purchasing different motors? Here are few pros and cons of gas vs electric trolling motor.

Boat owners may make a sound, cleaner decision with electric outboard motors. Electric outboards are more environmentally friendly than conventional combustion engines because they produce no fumes and don’t need gasoline. However, they initially cost more than other types of boat motors.

We’ll go into more detail about how electric outboards operate, their advantages and disadvantages compared to other motors, and some of the reasons why an electric outboard could be the best buy for you throughout this article.

What Makes Electric Outboards Better Than Other Motors?

Difference between gas vs electric trolling motor totally discussed in the article, keep reading: A gas-powered outboard is the most popular type of outboard motor available today. Gas-powered outboards have some disadvantages while being more affordable and widely accessible.

gas vs electric trolling motor are both greener and cleaner. Outboard motors that run on gas produce fumes and require fuel. They have accumulation in the carburetor as well. Two factors make electric outboards more environmentally friendly than gas-powered ones: Outboard motors driven by fossil fuels, such as gasoline, produce gases while they operate. Electric outboards don’t result in these issues because they use electricity instead.

These gas-powered outboard motors can pollute the water. One of the two main types of gas outboards are two-stroke engines, which can contaminate the water supply by discharging up to 25–30% of their unused gasoline and oil mixture into the water.

The other primary motor type, four-stroke motors, performs better than two-stroke motors because they release less than 3% of their wasted fuel and oil. Electric motors do not release oil and fuel because they don’t need them to run. Due to their power source, they also don’t emit any odors.


Gas-powered outboards require far more maintenance than electric ones do. They might develop various mechanical problems if they are not properly maintained. The build-up in the carburetors of outboard gas motors is one of the most prevalent problems. Electrical motors only have about 100 moving parts, whereas engines have thousands.

Fuel can accumulate in the motor’s carburetor as it evaporates, which can cause problems like decreased power or misfiring. Gas-powered outboards frequently experience mechanical problems as well, such as overheating. The outboard motor uses the water to cool down when you are operating your boat on the water. However, the water intake valve has the potential to become clogged quickly. The motor overheats because it cannot absorb moisture.


Due to the pollution issue, many lakes have started to forbid the use of gas-powered outboards. The usage of electric outboards is required for this push. However, even if your lake allows them, you can still run into problems due to the engines’ noise. 

Since there is no combustion inside the machine, electric outboards are much quieter than gas ones. An electric outboard motor will stop you from scaring fish away if you use your boat for fishing. Additionally, motors vibrate less, making for a more comfortable ride.

The Final Word on Gas Outboards

Due to their long-range availability and lower price, gas-powered outboards might be a worthwhile investment for boat owners. Still, they do have certain disadvantages when compared to electric outboards.

Compared to outboard motors driven by electricity, the two most significant drawbacks of gas-powered outboards are their environmental impact and maintenance needs.

Gas outboards are prone to issues like overheated engines without regular maintenance and discharge pollutants into the water and air. They are noisy and have been prohibited from several waterways. These problems are not present with electric outboards. However, electric outboards are not without flaws.

Pros and Cons of Electric Outboards

The main advantages of gas vs electric trolling motor are their reduced environmental effect, less noise, and lack of water contamination. Although they have numerous benefits over gas ones, they also have drawbacks.

High Prices

Cost is the main drawback of electric outboard motors. Some models can be bought for approximately $200, but they are often weaker and lack sufficient power for frequent boating. Most high-quality models cost around $1000 to start. However, the price of some other variants can double or triple.

Electric outboards will cost less in the long run, despite these higher upfront expenditures. Electric outboards don’t have this problem; however, gas outboards require much more maintenance to operate efficiently.

confined range

Their restricted range and the necessity to carry batteries around are additional problems they encounter. They require a lot of time to recharge as well. Model-specific charge periods vary, but for the most part, batteries recharge in about 10 hours or overnight.

The outboard’s performance primarily determines their range, although, with careful handling, they can travel up to 15 nautical miles. The amount of space you can boat in will be reduced by faster driving.

Older electric outboards can have heavy batteries that need to be lifted. On the other hand, modern outboard motors employ significantly lighter lithium batteries.

How Come Electric Outboards Cost So Much?

The technology required for their development and production is the primary cause of their high cost. Gas-powered outboards are more straightforward and less expensive, but electric outboards require more technology and are more costly due to their higher price.

Conclusions Regarding Electric Outboards

In many ways, electric outboard motors are superior to gas-powered ones. Still, they also have drawbacks—their price, which is higher initially than gas outboards, may be the most significant weakness. In addition, they have a shorter range than gas outboards and cannot be promptly refueled.

They require less ongoing maintenance and are cleaner than their gas-powered cousins. They are a desirable alternative and can only be available for your waterway.


gas vs electric trolling motor are a wise choice and outperform other outboards in many ways. They are quieter, less noisy, and need less maintenance because they are cleaner. However, they have a smaller range, are more expensive up front, and require batteries to be recharged in between usage. Furthermore, in some circumstances, they may be the only choice for a specific canal.

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