Electric golf carts, or golf buggies, are motorized vehicles that are small in size and are basically used by golfers to transport them and their equipment around the golf course from one hole to another. It is a huge timesaver and is actually a big help for incapacitated folks and older people so they can still revel in their favorite pastime and sport.
Nowadays, aside from being a sought-after golf gear, it’s also used by people for short-range transport purposes in areas like event locations, gardening, farming and others. People who want to buy this particular kind of vehicle must know about the differing types of golf cart buggies and its features. They must learn about the things they need to know about buying a new golf cart or secondhand golf buggy.
This article will further discuss buying tips plus troubleshooting advice about electricity-powered golf carts. Read these articles for information about the manual push and pull golf trolleys or electric push golf carts.
Gas vs Electric Golf Carts
Golf carts comes in two types and they are the gas and electric-generated models. The electricity-generated kind is the top choice on plenty of golf courses but some prefer the gas-generated ones too. The latter is mainly employed for transport and activities unrelated to golfing. It can be bought new or purchased secondhand.
The electric golf buggy runs on rechargeable batteries while the gas type runs on ordinary unleaded gasoline. The former features 3-5 horsepower while the latter has an average of 10-12. The gas golf buggy can run longer than the electric type by means of a tank of gasoline, and because it has better horsepower, it can operate faster than its electricity-generated counterpart.
The electricity-powered cart’s battery requires charging every 2 days, and it also relies on the size of the battery and regularity of usage. And because it runs on batteries, it is a lot safer for the environment as compared with gas carts. Users also save up on fuel and it won’t emit hazardous emissions that will contaminate your surroundings, the clean air of the golf course and won’t annoy your golf buddies when they stand nearby the exhaust.
Another disadvantage of the gas golf buggy is the noise it releases once used. The electric golf carts operates with minimal noise and it also costs less when it comes to maintenance as compared with the gas-powered carts.
If you need a motorized vehicle for golf use that’s environmental-friendly and low-maintenance, then most definitely the electric golf cart is for you. There are plenty models of the cart available, some even have up-to-date batteries that can last for 2 golf rounds with just a single charge. Written below are more tips that you must put in mind before a big cart purchase.
More Purchasing Tips
If you plan on buying a golf buggy for yourself, you have to first consider its features. Think of how many passengers you are going to take along. There are models which can seat as many as 6 people but more common are the 2 seaters or the 4 seaters. Also you have to keep in mind that several models don’t come with canopies on them to shelter you from the rain or falling debris.
There are golf buggy models with built-in canopies and several are designed with windshields. Some even have doors installed on them. Customers can decide on the features that will provide them comfort like air conditioning and heating elements, real leather seats, golf GPS, integrated fridges or radios.
If a golf buggy model is packed with features, expect that the price for that particular model is steep. Thus, customers must decide on the feature or features that they feel they need the most in order to get their money’s worth.
In addition, and this is very important as well, inspect the safety features of each model. There are golf carts equipped with roll bars to safeguard passengers if ever the vehicle is knocked over. A number of models also feature headlights, seatbelts and speed restrictors on them.
Used Golf Carts: Are They Really Worth It?
It’s a lot like buying a car; buyers also have the option to purchase either a new golf cart or a secondhand golf buggy. A brand-new golf cart comes complete with a warranty which guarantees that each and every component within the vehicle are in excellent working conditions. A secondhand model meanwhile does have a more affordable price point but expect that it can have defective or nearly worn-out components.
If you have chanced upon a secondhand model which is a year old, chances are it will still run and perform like a brand new cart.
With a new golf buggy model, customers can easily decide on features and accessories that they need. Customers are assured that all components of the model are new, will operate efficiently as expected and must last for a time. When it comes to secondhand carts, a customer should inquire about the model’s proprietorship and how it was maintained so the he or she will know whether the cart was taken care of by its owner.
Newer models as expected often look better in terms of appearance. Customers who intend to use the cart for an extended time must invest on a new model. Cost-cutting folks or buyers who intend on using the golf cart once in a while will benefit from purchasing a secondhand item.
Secondhand Electric Golf Cart Buying Tips
First and foremost, purchasers must know how to check a secondhand model to guarantee that it’s still in tip-top condition. Buyers will most often end up spending more over repairs and upgrades if they have mistakenly bought a secondhand model with faulty parts.
Try hunting for secondhand golf buggies produced by brands with good reputation. Highly-esteemed brands will guarantee customers that the models were effectively and efficiently designed and manufactured to begin with. In addition, by being made aware of the brand and style, customers can easily find the price of that certain model when it was in mint condition.
Customers can have an awareness of the amount they are going to save up on by purchasing that model instead of the brand-new one. However, if the price variance is not that significant, it might be worth a shot buying the newer model instead.
Be aware of the history of the cart
Customers must take heed to be absolute in their enquiry of a secondhand electric golf cart’s history. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Inquire about the credentials of all maintenances and overhauls the cart underwent. Check the battery if it’s practically new since batteries should be changed with new ones every 5 years.
In addition, you should also inspect the model’s serial number to guarantee the year, make and model.
Check the tires and see for signs of wear. Inspect the canopy and see if it’s still secured and unwavering. Examine the appearance; see if it lacks signs of damage like corrosion and dents. Normally, secondhand models will feature some tiny scratches here and there but nothing major that will weaken its soundness.
Put the model to the test
Ask the seller if you can take the cart for a test drive. A sound cart will perform efficiently for a good 30 minutes of driving. Don’t forget to test the brakes during the drive. Be certain that the brakes are quick to respond, watch how the brakes respond once they are forcibly stopped.
Check the feel of the model’s steers and handles. Also, if permitted, drive the model on slightly steeper terrain and other road situations that the vehicle will run into habitually. If you are testing an electric golf cart model, be sure that you check the battery’s life during the drive.
If you are buying online, make sure that you buy it from a proper business with a good history so you can ask specific questions about the model and get an honest answer. Read the specifications on the ad carefully. You should check out the details of the provided images as well and look for signs of wear or damage on the model.
Golf Carts and State Laws
Each and every state provides differing laws concerning cart operations and ownership. There are states who oblige owners to have their vehicles registered in the Department of Motor Vehicles or DMV. Others have new rules that oblige safety features in the vehicle.
Several of these rules also takes account of limiting a model’s speed and weight. Prior to buying one for yourself, be sure that you check with your local DMV branch to guarantee that the model you are planning to buy goes by all the laws governing golf carts.
Electric Golf Cart Motor Troubleshooting Tips
Now that you have the model you have planned on using for those long, pleasurable golf trips, maintenance and regular check-ups must be done on it so the vehicle will last for a longer time. The motor is always the remaining part of the model that could decline. If the batteries and its charger are working properly, you can now observe whether the motor still operates.
Examine the batteries
Make use of the voltmeter on the dashboard and check whether the battery is worn-out. Several models have batteries that will still take in a tiny quantity of electricity even when it’s not being operated. Current battery models should perceive small amounts of voltage to kickstart the charging process, so do not leave the vehicle disengaged for long periods of time because it will cause the battery voltage to drop further down.
Batteries will lose their juice in time so inspect the degree of electrolytes and water. To cover the battery’s conductive plates, it must have sufficient amounts of water but not excessive enough that it will load the battery to its cap. Remember that batteries have acid in them so wear safety gear and steer clear of drips and spills while doing this.
Remove corrosion from the battery’s terminals using a brush and a baking soda solution. Inspect the cables for worn or damaged wires. Prolong the battery’s life by charging them to its fullest following each use.
Examine the charger
Assess the charger’s outlet and inspect the connections. Look for traces of wear on the wires and corrosion. In addition, a power surge can trigger damage to the diodes or circuit breaker. If you think a power surge broke out, better inspect those mentioned parts.
Pay attention to the solenoid
Once you turn the key to set off the golf cart, the solenoid must produce a ticking or snapping sound. If the battery is charged to its fullest yet the starter does not function, then you have to change it.
Check on the potentiometer
The speed of an electric golf cart is controlled by something called the potentiometer, which is a tiny switch. Inspect whether the switch is not banged up or broken. Also, see if the connections are in place.
Re-tune the motor
With a screwdriver, locate and then uncover the motor. The reset button is usually red and located near the chief power supply. Push the button and put your cart back together. Hook up the cart to its charger and boost its batteries.
Try turning the vehicle once more. A motor that won’t rotate is burnt out and it needs to be replaced. Damaged motors are caused by factors like inadequate traction, among others. Remove the motor and examine whether it has faulty coils, damaged brushes or bearings.
If you saw damage on the bearings, brushes or coils, the items must be changed. However, if there were signs of damage on the housing or the armature of the motor, it’s better that you replace the entire motor assemblage since it can be quite difficult to fix those parts.
Golf Cart Tune-Ups
All models must be tuned-up once a year. Electric golf carts that are used regularly in places with warm weather are okay but those which are used only on certain seasons should be checked at every season’s end before it gets stored up again. Hence, if you don’t drive your golf buggy during winter season, fine-tuning it during fall is recommended.
Golf carts are still vehicles after all, and they need maintenance like any automobile out there. Taking care of it will make it work efficiently at all times and will extend their life. Make use of tune-up kits for this kind of vehicle, but you can also go for a full tune-up.
Electric golf buggies mainly need thorough inspection, battery care and lubrication.