Yes. Only the Follow the Contour feature of i-Pilot Link requires a LakeMaster chip. All other features of i-Pilot Link are functional even without a LakeMaster chip.
No. Minn Kota's on-board chargers float the battery voltage between 13.2V and 13.5V in the "maintenance" stage (3rd stage). This will allow you to keep your battery charger plugged in for long periods of time without "boiling the battery dry."
GPS signal strength is impacted by many influencers, including: i-Pilot Link controller having a clear view of the sky (especially to the southern sky), boat being located alongside a high bank, and your geographic location.
This is normal and does not affect your batteries. It is simply a function of the Precision charging ensuring the charger is disconnected prior to terminating the charge cycle.
Each boats sits differently in the water, and has varying amounts of draft (hull under the water line).
Minn Kota’s patented AutoPilot system (available on Terrova and PowerDrive trolling motors) keeps you headed in the right direction by intelligently and automatically steering your boat.