How to Mount a Fish Finder on Kayak (No Drilling Required)

by | Last updated Apr 2, 2024

How to Mount Fish Finder on Kayak

Kayak fishing has evolved into a sophisticated sport, combining the tranquility of paddling with the thrill of the catch. The fish finder is a critical tool in the modern kayak angler’s arsenal, revolutionizing the fishing game by providing incredible detail of the underwater world. However, the thought of mounting this precious piece of electronics often brings a dilemma: How can it be secured without compromising the integrity of the kayak? This article delves into how to mount fish finder on kayak without drilling, ensuring your vessel remains intact while you elevate your fishing game.

Understanding Fish Finders and Kayaks

Before we begin the mounting process, let’s understand the tools of the trade. Fish finders come in various models, from portable units designed for small boats to sophisticated systems like the Garmin or Lowrance. These systems offer CHIRP sonar technology for detailed imagery of fish, structures, and the bottom.

Conversely, Kayaks range from streamlined sit-in models to stable, spacious sit-on-top designs. Most kayaks offer limited space and different hull shapes, making installing a fish finder and its transducer without drilling challenging.

Why Avoid Drilling?

Drilling holes in your kayak risks water ingress and can void warranties and affect resale value. With innovative fishfinder mounts available, there’s no need to compromise. Adhesive mounts, suction cups, and clamp mounts offer secure, removable solutions that protect your kayak’s integrity.

fish finders

Tools and Materials Needed

The first step is gathering your materials. For a no-drill mount, consider:

  • Suction Cups: Ideal for smooth, flat surfaces.
  • Adhesive Mounts: Strong hold on flat areas, perfect for securing the fish finder display or battery box.
  • Clamp Mounts: Versatile for attaching a transducer arm or other accessories to the kayak’s side or existing rails.

A waterproof battery box and cable management accessories to keep your battery dry will also ensure a tidy setup.

Preparing Your Kayak

kayak fishing mount

Choosing the right spot on your kayak is crucial. It should be easily accessible yet out of the way of your paddling and fishing activities. Clean the area thoroughly before applying any mounts to ensure a secure fit.

Mounting Methods Explained

Suction Cup Mounts

Suction cup mounts are a quick solution for mounting your fish finder display. They can be easily repositioned or removed, making them perfect for anglers who use multiple kayaks.

Adhesive Mounts

For a more permanent solution, adhesive mounts offer a robust platform for your fish finder or battery box. Ensure the place is clean and dry before applying, and allow the adhesive to cure fully for maximum strength.

kayak fish finders

Clamp Mounts

Clamp mounts are the universal solution for attaching transducer arms or other accessories. They can be adjusted to fit most kayaks and provide a secure yet removable mounting option.

Wiring and Power Supply

Powering your fish finder without drilling can be achieved by housing the battery inside a waterproof battery box and routing the cables along the hull using adhesive cable clips. This setup keeps the battery dry and the wires tidy, preventing tripping hazards and damage.

kayak fish finders

Testing and Adjustments

Once installed, test your setup in calm water. Check for stability and ensure the transducer is submerged at the correct depth for accurate readings. Adjust the mount as necessary to avoid interference with your paddling or fishing.

Maintenance and Care

Regular check-ups are essential to ensure your mounts remain secure and your fish finder operates correctly. Seasonal adjustments may also be needed to accommodate different fishing conditions or storage requirements.

Advanced Tips and Tricks

To maximize the efficiency of your fish finder, keep the software updated and consider additional accessories that enhance performance, such as scupper mount transducers for sit-on-top kayaks.

kayak fish finder


Mounting a fish finder on your kayak without drilling is possible and advisable to preserve your kayak’s structure and warranty. Following these guidelines, you can enjoy the advantage of advanced sonar technology and a clutter-free kayak, ensuring a successful and enjoyable fishing adventure.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I install a fish finder on any kayak?

Yes, most units can be mounted on any kayak, whether a sit-on-top, sit-in, or inflatable model. The key is to choose the suitable mount and location that suits the shape and design of your kayak, ensuring the transducer has clear access to the water to send and receive signals effectively.

How do I ensure the fish finder’s screen is visible and secure while kayaking?

To keep the fish finder’s screen both visible and secure, install it within arm’s reach and where you can quickly glance at it without obstructing your paddling. Use a mount that clamps securely to the kayak, and consider adding foam or padding beneath the mount to reduce vibration and movement.

What’s the best way to mount the transducer for optimal signal quality?

The best way to mount the transducer for optimal signal quality is using a transducer arm or a scupper mount designed for kayaks. These methods allow the transducer to sit in the water directly below the kayak, providing clear, uninterrupted signals and details on the screen. Ensure the transducer is mounted away from paddle interference or the kayak’s hull shape.

Can I use glue to install any part of the fish finder system?

Use marine-grade glue or adhesive to secure your kayak’s fishfinder mounts or cable management accessories. However, ensure the surface is clean and dry before applying glue, and select a product designed for marine environments to withstand water exposure and temperature changes. This method is excellent for securing wires or small accessories without drilling.

How do I power my fish finder without compromising the kayak’s speed and stability?

To power your fish finder without affecting the kayak’s speed and stability, use a lightweight, waterproof battery box and place it inside the hull or in a secure hatch. Ensure the battery is dry and the wires are neatly arranged to avoid entanglement. This setup keeps the system powered while maintaining the kayak’s streamlined shape and balance.