I am planning on driving two 12V DC motors using the "L293D" motor driver. For that I'm using a 12V battery for the motor supply, and a RaspberryPi to generate a PWM wave to regulate the power output. I am simply connecting both the RPI and the battery to the driver, using only a resistance to limit the current on the GPIO.

Is there anything that I should do or be aware to avoid damaging my RPI?

  • If you power L293D with 3V3, then Rpi GPIO pins need very little current to drive it, so there is no need for any current limiting resistance.
    – tlfong01
    Commented Jun 2, 2022 at 4:48

1 Answer 1


No, you should be good without adding any other components. In fact, the current-limiting resistors are unnecessary - they may even slow down the transition, but it's doubtful you'd see the difference.

You really should be reading the spec sheet on the L293D. You will note two things relevant to your question - and some suggestions that may improve the outcome of your project:

  1. Para 6.5 Electrical Characteristics:

    Note the high- & low-level logic input currents are <100uA - well within GPIO capabilities

  2. Para 8 Detailed Description:

    On the L293D, these [clamping] diodes are integrated to reduce system complexity and overall system size

    Also note the diffs in Figures 4 & 5 wrt the internal clamping diodes

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