You no longer only see them on the greens. Golf carts are being appropriated for all sorts of uses. They’re the get-around-the-neighborhood solution for retirement communities, and even a way for salespeople to get prospects over a short distance to check out a model home or even a big Class-A RV that’s not so easy to move.
They’re certainly not as complicated as a car, but you do have to perform a certain amount of preventative maintenance on them to keep a golf cart running smoothly. Here’s what to keep in mind.
Electric or Gas?
Golf carts come in two different flavors: gasoline or electric. Today’s gas-powered golf cars use what’s known as a start-stop technology. It’s a highly simplified version of what’s found on a growing number of standard cars and trucks, where the engine starts when you step on the gas pedal, and shuts off when you remove your foot. This can dramatically reduce emissions. The smaller engine is already much kinder in the gas mileage department.
If you’ve got an electric golf cart, it’s important to know that you’re not dealing with the same kind of battery you’ll find in the average car or truck. Those are shallow-cycle batteries, meaning that they’re mainly only needed only to start the engine. These batteries produce a strong electrical current for a short period of time.
The batteries in your golf cart might look just like what’s in your car, but they are made differently and have a higher need for maintenance. They’re known as deep-cycle batteries. These batteries contain lead, acid, and water. The three elements act to produce an electrical current that is sustained for long periods of time to power the golf cart’s motor. They consume a lot of water.
Deep-cycle and shallow-cycle batteries are not interchangeable. You won’t be able to use a shallow-cycle battery in your golf cart.
A new golf cart battery should provide good service for about 6–10 years if properly maintained. The most important elements of this maintenance are checking the water levels, and regular charging.
One of the easiest mistakes people make is not giving thought to proper ventilation when storing and charging their golf cart. During the charging cycle, the batteries release hydrogen gas, as well as water and small acid droplets into the air. These discharges eventually find their way onto the surface of the golf cart, as well as anything nearby.
Is one of the things nearby your car?
Space to Grow
Protect all of your investments by upgrading your garage. We offer a wide variety of prefabricated building kits that provide ample room for your vehicles and any additional things – like a golf cart – that also needs to be protected. Our modular design means you can customize it to your dimensions, so it’s the right size for your property and for your needs. Check out our gallery for inspiration.