HomeKayak 101How to register a Kayak with a Trolling Motor?

How to register a Kayak with a Trolling Motor?

The Comprehensive Guide to Registering Your Kayak with a Trolling Motor


How to register a Kayak with a Trolling Motor – Kayaking is a popular pastime for many, and adding a trolling motor can make the experience even more enjoyable. However, if you’ve recently purchased a trolling motor for your kayak, you might be wondering about the registration process. This comprehensive guide will walk you through everything you need to know about registering your motorized kayak.

Understanding the Need for Registration

Registering a kayak with a trolling motor is not just a formality—it’s a legal requirement in many states. This process helps ensure that all watercrafts are operated safely and responsibly. If you fail to register your motorized kayak, you could face legal implications, including fines and penalties.

The Registration Process Explained

The process of registering a kayak with a trolling motor varies by state, but there are some common steps:

  1. Gather the necessary documents: This typically includes a Bill of Sale or Title form, which serves as proof of ownership. You may also need the Manufacturer’s Statement of Origin (MSO).
  2. Visit the appropriate registration agency: Depending on your state, this could be the Department of Motor Vehicles, the Department of Natural Resources, or another agency.
  3. Complete the registration form: Provide all requested information, including the Hull Identification Number (HIN) of your kayak.
  4. Pay the registration fee: The amount will depend on your state’s regulations.
  5. Display the registration number: Once you’ve registered, you’ll receive a registration number. This must be displayed on the top front of your kayak on both sides.

State-Specific Registration Rules

Each state has its own rules and regulations for boat registration. For example, in South Carolina, you do not need to register a motor if it’s less than 5 horsepower. It’s important to check the specific requirements for your state. You can find this information on your state’s government website or at the local registration agency.

Registering Used Kayaks and Trolling Motors

If you’ve purchased a used kayak or trolling motor, the registration process is slightly different. You’ll still need to provide proof of ownership, but this might be a sales receipt instead of a Bill of Sale or Title form. Additionally, you’ll need to ensure that the previous owner has properly transferred the ownership to you.

Registering Different Types of Boats with Trolling Motors

While this guide focuses on kayaks, it’s important to note that all types of boats with trolling motors need to be registered. This includes inflatable boats and canoes. The registration process is similar, but there may be additional requirements depending on the type of boat.

Understanding Hull Identification Numbers (HIN)

The Hull Identification Number (HIN) is a unique identifier for your kayak. It’s usually found on the right side of the stern, just under the top seam. This number is important for the registration process, as it helps identify your specific kayak.

The Importance of Registration Numbers

Once your kayak is registered, you’ll receive a registration number. This number must be displayed on your kayak in a location that is easily visible from the water. The numbers should be 3 inches high and a contrasting color to your kayak. Most boat supply stores sell registration numbers that meet these requirements.

The Consequences of Not Registering Your Kayak

Failing to register your motorized kayak can result in significant fines and penalties. These can range from $160 to over $1000, depending on the state and the level of offense. To avoid these penalties, it’s crucial to register your kayak before you take it out on the water.


Registering your kayak with a trolling motor is an important step to ensure you’re following state laws and regulations# The Comprehensive Guide to Registering Your Kayak with a Trolling Motor

Leave a reply

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here


Popular posts

My favorites

I'm social