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Understanding Golf Cart Battery Basics

Batteries Plus Blog - Power - by Bryan Veldboom - updated on 2/19/2021

Golf cart on grass

Spring is only a few months away, which means that golf cart season is getting closer. Whether you're an avid golfer prepping their cart for the sunny months ahead or a retirement community resident who uses golf carts for getting around campus, Batteries Plus has the solutions you need to keep them powered up and ready to go. Today we'll be discussing the basics of golf cart batteries, including life expectancy, replacement options and a few maintenance tips to help you maximize your cart's performance.

How Long Do Golf Cart Batteries Last?

A golf cart battery will typically last between four to six years if you charge it regularly and keep it stored properly. If you find that it's taking noticeably longer to charge or that it's having trouble holding a charge for the full length of the course, it might be time to consider replacing it.

If you're having doubts about your golf battery's performance, take note of your battery's typical voltage and run time. The experts at your local Batteries Plus can compare this to the performance statistics of a new battery and help you determine if there's still some life left in it or if it's time for a replacement.

What is the Best Golf Cart Battery Replacement?

If your old battery is dead, now might be the perfect opportunity to upgrade to a better battery. Today we'll be discussing two basic types of batteries used in golf carts: flooded and AGM. Flooded batteries are the more affordable of the two, however, they require regular maintenance in order to keep them functioning properly. Specifically, this means topping off the electrolyte solution inside them with distilled water.

If you're looking for a battery option that you won't have to "water" you'll want an AGM battery. AGM (Absorbed Glass Mat) batteries are 100% sealed and completely spill-proof, which can be a real asset on a bumpy course. They also last longer, charge faster and perform better in extreme temperatures, making it a great fit for carts used in retirement communities. If you're looking for the ideal option, an AGM battery is your best bet.

One thing to note, most carts will be compatible with different types of batteries provided that they match the voltage of the original battery. It's a good idea though to check your user's manual to be absolutely certain.

Keep Your Golf Cart Battery Charged

The single most important thing you can do to maintain your battery is to keep it charged to the proper voltage. If you allow the charge to drop too low, you can damage your battery and shorten its overall lifespan significantly. A good rule of thumb is to charge your battery every time it drops to 50% of its total capacity.

The Schauer 36V Charger is the perfect option for 6-volt batteries, while the 48V Charger is designed for 8-volt batteries. Best of all, both chargers have a float stage to prevent overcharging. This makes them perfect for off-season storage, allowing you to connect your battery for a significant stretch of time without having to monitor it closely.

Maintain Your Battery's Electrolyte

If you have a flooded battery, it's very important that you regularly top off the electrolyte inside it with distilled water. If the liquid drops below the tops of the plates it can cause irreparable harm to your battery. You should also be sure not to overfill the battery as this can dilute the electrolytes, hurting your battery's performance. Ideally, you'l want to keep the fluid level at around 1/4 inch above the top of the plates and check the electrolyte levels of your battery about once a month.

Keep Your Battery Terminals Clean

Another thing you'll want to do is keep an eye on your battery's terminals. If you start to notice a build-up of corrosion, clean it off right away using a mixture of baking soda and water. A battery terminal brush is another handy tool for getting rid of corrosion. When the terminals are clean again, you can help keep them that way with an anti-corrosion spray or by covering them up with a pair of terminal protectors.

Batteries Plus is your golf cart battery headquarters. Visit us online, where you can shop for the right battery for your particular brand and model golf cart or stop in to any one of our locations and have your questions answered face to face.

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