When you put your boat in the water, what is the first question you ask yourself? How many fish will I catch, will it rain, or what’s for lunch? For me, it is, did I put the boat plug in, but it should be, is my electrical system good to go?
There is a key component to every electrical system, whether it is your house or your boat, a breaker. In this article, we are going to tell you about breakers then we are going to give you a list of options that will work great in your boat.
Note: most links in this article are Amazon.com Affiliate links, see Affiliate Disclosure, thank you.
A breaker is a critical safety component of an electrical system that disconnects your power source when there is a problem in your system. Common problems include overcurrent draws or power going to ground for various reasons.
Without a Breaker, your system will be operating without over-current protection. A breaker can protect your electronics and also prevent serious damage to your electrical system, including fire.
How Does a Breaker Work?
When a circuit exceeds the amp rating of a breaker, the breaker will turn off, also known as “tripping”. When the breaker trips, the circuit is considered open, referring to an open gap between wires.
Most breakers work with two types of metal warping from heat at different rates depending on the amperage. When the metal warps to a certain point, the switch is released, turning the circuit off or tripping the breaker.
Once the metals have cooled, the breaker can be turned back on, or reset. However, each time the metal is warped, it is slightly altered and is permanently damaged. At some point, you will need to replace the breaker. Also, this is a sign of a bigger problem with your electrical system.
Trolling motor breakers usually comprise of two terminals, a switch, and a test button. One terminal is usually marked battery, line, or in for the incoming power wire. The other terminal is commonly marked Aux, load, or out to be connected to your trolling motor or other devices.
To test the switch, you can push the test button to manually trip the breaker, then simply move the switch to reset the switch. It is common for the breaker to have a flange with two holes for screws to mount the breaker.
There is another type of breaker that looks similar to an inline fuse. It is a long skinny barrel shape with a switch and button on the top. This type of breaker is an easy swap out for a traditional amplifier fuse.
Our Top Pick
The 60A Tocas breaker is an industry-standard design. Because of this, it will be easy to install or swap out as a replacement for repairs. Tocas breakers also have S.E.A. safety ratings, including a UL rating. Additionally, they are available in different amperage ratings and mount types.
- Compact but standard design
- Can be used with 12 volt, 24 volt, or 36 volt systems
- Easy to installation
- Operates from -25ºF to 180ºF
- push-button test serves as a disconnect switch
- Significant trip delay(15 seconds at 200% amperage)
The Tocas breaker performed as advertised and was very stable. We ran this breaker for many hours on a 24-volt MinnKota Terrova and had no issues. Our second test was a solar system that pushed the maximum amperage for about five hours. The breaker seemed to have a bit of heating but was working well. Finally, we took a 24-volt battery to ground through the breaker, and it instantly tripped.
Customer reviews were mixed, but there were very few bad reviews overall, and our experience is only people with issues write reviews. We currently have this unit as a system backup and would use it as a primary breaker.
The 50A inline fuse is designed to protect various electronic devices, such as audio/video systems and automotive, boat, and marine vehicle accessories, from damage by power surges. They’re built to be mounted on panels or firewalls.
- Wide range of applications in auxiliary and accessory circuits
- Can be used in DC sound amplifier systems and battery charges
- Easy to use
- Unique push-button reset serves as a kill switch
- available in many sizes
- Tends to fail as the ambient temperature rises
- Susceptible to water incursion
Customer reviews prove that this fuse truly deserves a spot among the best. Some have reported that it fits easily and does the job perfectly. You’ll also fall in love with the kill switch, which efficiently eliminates weed from the prop.
This 60A breaker from Wohhom is designed for automotive audio and video systems, buses, trucks, ATV Winches, and boats. This item is available in many different amperage ratings.
- A waterproof housing that protects the unit from short-circuiting
- Manual control for easy operation
- Can be mounted on a panel or firewall
- Alloy construction for good electrical conductivity, improving its efficiency
- Reset button you can use as a kill switch when pushed
- Rubber boots to prevent water incursion
- Inconsistent reviews(possibly user error)
Overall, this circuit breaker is excellent and meets your quality expectations. It’s easy to use and features accessible controls while keeping your cables protected inside the fuse box. Some customers describe it as trustworthy.
This fuse is designed for auxiliary and accessory circuits for trolling motors, caravans, trucks, tractors, and ATV applications.
- Can also be used as an on/off button switch for battery chargers or DC sound amplifier systems
- The manual reset button can be used as a master disconnect and a kill switch
- Plastic housing breaks easily
- Fragile and may break the circuit easily
In a nutshell, this fuse is easy to install and secure. Its design saves you the hassle of buying lugs to connect it, and the build quality is remarkable. It functions exactly as intended.
Designed for auxiliary and accessory circuits, this breaker works on devices rated 12 volts, 24 volts, and 42 volts, making it a versatile option. There are also multiple amperages available.
- Comes with a push-button reset that you can use as a kill switch
- available in a wide range of amperages
- Easy to operate – you simply click the red button
- A wide range of applications, such as trucks, battery charges, sound systems, and marine vehicle
- Heats up fast, breaking the circuit at lower than the rated amperage
This circuit breaker is easy to secure in place. It accepts all wire sizes and comes with an attractive, small profile. As one customer states, you get a device that allows you to interrupt the power supply during maintenance and protect your trolling motor from overload in one package.
This circuit breaker is a standard unit that prevents power surges from damaging your trolling motor. This unit is just a bit narrower than average, and it might be an advantage in some confined areas.
- Easy to operate – simply tap the button
- Easy to disconnect
- Mounts on panel or firewall
- Works on all 12 volt and 24 volt appliances
- Causes voltage drop after prolonged use, mostly after 1 year of continuous use
- Terminals are too close and too short
This circuit breaker is arguably an excellent fan for the money. It’s easy to install, and you can trip it to de-energize the circuit once you’re through with your fishing excursions.
This fuse protects your trolling motor from excessive current and power surge damage. It features ignition protection and can be used in marine, caravan, and boat applications.
- A distinctive yellow manual reset lever that shows when the circuit is open
- A push-button reset that works as a kill switch
- Available in many different amperages
- Waterproof cover
- Tends to trip at lower amperages
Users describe this fuse as powerful, easy to install, and an excellent product that works great. This inline fuse is undoubtedly built to deliver stunning performance.
Typically used in buses, trucks, and marine applications, this inline breaker comes in handy when you need to protect a 24-volt electric trolling motor.
- Available in two form factors and many amperages
- Waterproof housing for enhanced protection
- High-current circuit breaker
- Comes with a manual reset arm, making it easy to operate
- Push-button reset that can be used as a kill switch
- Flexible mounting – you can install it on a panel or firewall
- The reset button is highly sensitive
- The grommets do not fit a 4 gauge wire
This inline fuse works perfectly, as you can trip it by hand, a feature that comes in handy when you need to prevent your converter from draining your trolling motor’s battery. You can also reset it when it trips, so you don’t have to replace the fuse, making this a worthwhile purchase.
This fuse is designed to protect all 12-volt to 48-volt systems from damage by excess current or power surges. The design is a dashboard or portal mount type. The 30 amp size limit it to special use case only.
- Easy to use, thanks to its manual reset button
- Compact and lightweight
- Manual reset lever that shows open condition
- panel or dashboard mount style
- High-quality housing with thermoplastic construction
- Water and dustproof
- 30 amp
Users describe this circuit breaker as the best quality product. The Heart Horse inline fuse is arguably the perfect replacement for your standard fuse.
This high-current circuit breaker is designed to protect your trolling motor from damage by excess current and power surges. However, it is 100 amp, so you would need to upsize your wiring to handle this amperage. It is a square hole dash mount or square port, so it is great for recessing in high-impact areas.
- Waterproof housing IP67
- Easy to operate, thanks to the manual reset arm
- You can mount it on a panel or firewall
- Push-button reset also acts as a kill switch
- Easy to install
- Available in surface form factor at other amperages
- Doesn’t come with instructions
If you’re looking for an inline fuse that can take a beating from the elements, you’ll never go wrong with this option. Users have reported that it can withstand dust, rain, and extreme temperatures, making it a worthwhile companion to your trolling motor throughout the seasons. Many users are using this as a secondary breaker for the purpose of a manual on/off switch. We don’t recommend using a breaker in this manner, but it was a comment on a popular forum.
To get more information about circuit breakers, read our article All You Need to Know About Circuit Breakers for Your Electric Trolling Motor.
A breaker is great insurance for protecting your trolling motor from damage by excess current.
A circuit breaker is designed to trip when the amperage exceeds a certain level, breaking the circuit, and preventing overheating and damaging electrical devices.
Therefore, it’s a worthwhile addition to your installation to avoid the hassle that comes with buying a new motor each time the previous one gets damaged.
When buying a breaker, choose the one with an amperage trip point 10 percent higher than the amperage draw of your trolling motor at maximum speed, but lower than the maximum amperage capacity of your wires.