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Everything You Need To Know About Golf Cart Batteries

Author Photo: Christian Attlesey

Author: Christian Attlesey

Read Time: 3-5 Minutes

 

 

 

At Golf Cart Stuff, we are a certified Trojan® golf cart battery and were one of the first online retailers to sell the UNO® Lithium golf cart battery.

We take batteries seriously and pride ourselves in providing our customers with top-notch service.

Golf Cart Battery Frequently Asked Questions

Battery Photo Example

This article will discuss some of the most frequently asked questions about golf cart batteries.

We will cover topics such as when you need to replace your golf cart's batteries as well as some of the benefits of Lithium batteries. If you want to skip to a specific section, use the list below as a guide. With that out of the way, let's jump right in!

Article Structure

  1. How do you know if you need new golf cart batteries?
  2. Should I put lithium batteries in my golf cart?
  3. How much does it cost to replace golf cart batteries?
  4. Is it OK to replace just one golf cart battery?
  5. What is the life expectancy of golf cart batteries?
  6. Should you charge golf cart batteries every day?
  7. How many amp-hour batteries do I need for a golf cart?
  8. How cold is too cold for golf cart batteries?
  9. How hot is too hot for golf cart batteries?
  10. How often do you add water to golf cart batteries?

 

How do you know if you need new golf cart batteries?

  • Diminished Output: One of the first things to indicate needing new batteries is diminished power output. If your golf cart can't go nearly as far as it used to on a single charge, that's a sign that your golf cart's batteries need replacement.
  • Decreased Acceleration: Another indication of failing golf cart batteries is a decrease in your golf cart's acceleration. Golf carts are low-speed vehicles, so they aren't doing 0-60 anytime soon, but you should still be able to feel a bit of a punch as soon as you hit the accelerator.
  • Longer Charge Time: If you used to be able to charge your batteries overnight without issue, but now your batteries won't top off, that is a sign of battery wear. Old and worn batteries have a more challenging time accepting and keeping a charge, which indicates that they will need to be replaced soon.
  • Rusty and Corroded: Lastly, if your golf cart batteries are severely corroded and have a lot of build-up, it's time to replace them!

Should I put lithium batteries in my golf cart?

Lithium on the periodic table

When it comes to golf cart batteries, lithium-ion is the new king. From increased range, less maintenance, and faster battery recharging, there are few downsides to upgrading to lithium.

The one thing to consider with Lithium batteries is the higher upfront costs. Lithium batteries are often more expensive than standard lead-acid batteries, but when you look at the total lifetime cost, lithium batteries are still cheaper in the long run.

Are lithium golf cart batteries worth the money?

The short answer: Lithium golf cart batteries are worth the money as they provide significantly more benefits than lead-acid. 

  • Faster charge time: Lithium batteries can be fully charged in as little as 2.5 hours compared to lead-acid batteries, which can take up to 10 hours to reach full charge.
  • Extended range: For example, our UNO® lithium battery can provide up to 60 miles of drive range compared to Trojan lead-acid batteries, which will get you approximately 15-25 miles.
  • No maintenance: You don't have to worry about maintenance or upkeep with lithium batteries. Get them installed on your cart and be on your way. Lead-acid batteries, by comparison, will require regular maintenance to keep them in shape.
  • Reduced cart weight: An often overlooked benefit of lithium batteries is reducing the overall weight of your golf cart. A single lithium battery can weigh as little as 48 lbs and fully power your cart, while a complete set of lead-acid batteries can weigh anywhere between 350-450 lbs! 

How much does it cost to replace golf cart batteries?

  • Lead Acid: Replacing flooded deep-cycle lead acid batteries will cost approximately $200-$500 for a single battery and $1200-$1600 for a complete set (4-6 batteries). 
  • Lithium: To replace lithium golf cart batteries, you can spend anywhere from $2000 to $6000.

Is it OK to replace just one golf cart battery?

While technically, it's OK to change just one of your golf cart batteries, that is not the best practice. Having one functioning battery while the rest are working poorly can damage your new battery and set you back to square one. We recommend switching out all of your batteries at the same time.

What is the life expectancy of golf cart batteries?

Standard lead acid golf cart batteries that are properly maintained will last 3-4 years. Lithium golf cart batteries have a life expectancy of over ten years.

Should you charge golf cart batteries every day?

Yes, to help keep your batteries in tip-top shape, you should fully charge your batteries after each use. This is for lead-acid batteries; for lithium batteries, you do not need to charge them daily (one more reason to switch to lithium!)

(Indent) How often should you charge golf cart batteries when not in use?

If you don't use your golf cart all the time and are curious about how often you should charge them when you are not using them (think storage or other extended periods of not being used), a general rule of thumb is to keep them as close to fully charged as possible.

You don't want to keep your batteries hooked up to a charger at all times (if you have a smart charger that can read the battery levels, you have more flexibility in this area).

Still, you want to start their period of disuse on a full charge, and it is best practice to check on them periodically.

How many amp-hour batteries do I need for a golf cart?

The main thing you need to know about golf cart batteries is the voltage, not the amp hours. That being said, here is some information you can use in determining a golf cart battery's amp-hours; we will use Trojan 6V and 8V batteries and the UNO® in this comparison:

  • Trojan® T-875 (8V) batteries: 170ah @ 20-hr
  • Trojan® T-105 (6V) batteries: 225ah @ 20-hr
  • UNO® Lithium 48-volt battery: 90-ah

It is important to note that although lithium may have smaller amp-hours, they have much better peak capacity.

A good analogy would be your cell phone. Your cell phone works just as well when the battery is 100% and when the battery is at 2%.

This ability to function at all charge levels is exactly how lithium batteries work. On the other hand, lead-acid batteries have a much smaller peak capacity window. As their charge level goes down, so does their performance.

How cold is too cold for golf cart batteries?

Lead-acid golf cart batteries can freeze if the temperature drops below 32 degrees. 

This is especially true if the batteries are not fully charged, so if you plan on storing your batteries in cold temperatures, the batteries must be fully charged and checked on regularly. 

Generally, for every 15-20° that the temperature drops below 80 degrees Fahrenheit, a battery will lose 10% of its capacity.

Lithium batteries, on the other hand, can easily handle extreme temperatures. Don't believe us? Check out the video below by UNO® Battery, where they freeze their battery overnight and hook it into their golf cart with no problems!

How hot is too hot for golf cart batteries?

Not only are low temperatures a problem for golf cart batteries, but so are excessively high temperatures.

The reason that high heat is a problem is because as the temperature of a battery increases, so does it's chemical activity (for lead-acid batteries). This increased chemical activity can damage the batteries and reduce their lifespan.

In general, every 18°F increase above 77°F will reduce a battery's service life at a rate of 50%.

For example, if a battery is designed for 8 years of use at 77 degrees but is regularly used at a temperature of 95 degrees, its service life will only be approximately four years.

How often do you add water to golf cart batteries?

Regarding the water levels on golf cart batteries, a typical schedule is to fill the water levels about once every 30 days if you regularly use your cart. If you use your golf cart infrequently, check your water levels periodically or at least before each round of heavy cart use.

If you have more questions about Golf Cart batteries, check out our Ultimate battery guide! Or as always, you can drop your questions in the comments below or reach out to us directly and we would be glad to help! See you next time!

Author Photo: Christian Attlesey
Christian Attlesey is the Marketing Manager here at Golf Cart Stuff™, and, in addition to the marketing department, he oversees our website and advertising responsibilities.

...You probably know him as the humorous & relatable host of our YouTube channel!

Prior to taking on marketing, however, Christian honed his industry knowledge as our Customer Service Manager. Fast-forward to present day: it’s his mission to deliver the best and most current products, resources, and overall expertise to Golf Cart owners everywhere.

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Email: sales@golfcartstuff.com
Phone: 574-333-2494
Text: 574-612-5195
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Comments

Golf Cart Stuff Customer Service - July 10, 2023

(Replying to Tracy’s comment below ↓↓)

Tracy,

That sounds extremely frustrating! Hopefully, we can help point you in the right direction and get you some answers!

Although we don’t know what model golf cart you have, what lithium batteries you have installed, or how many, here are some thoughts about what might be going on.

Usually, with Lithium batteries, if your golf cart just dies all of a sudden, that usually indicates a communication problem with either the batteries themselves or the batteries and the golf cart. Unlike lead-acid batteries, Lithium batteries will actually turn on and off. Obviously, this is only supposed to happen when the golf cart is not being used for an extended period of time, not during normal driving. That is not to say that is 100% what is happening, but that is a good place to start. Here is how we would recommend diagnosing this issue:

1. When the golf cart dies, lift open the seat compartment area and check the batteries. Are the batteries off? If so, that could indicate a few things:
a. You have a faulty battery (or multiple) that just dies after a few minutes of
use. This would be rare, but it’s possible. Reach out to your battery
manufacturer or wherever you purchased your batteries for a warranty.
b. If your cart is a newer model and has regenerative braking, you could be
sending too much power back to the cart’s controller and the batteries
resulting in them turning off as a safety mechanism. For instance, with
Trojan lithium batteries, EZGO RXV carts with regenerative braking
require a minimum of 3 lithium batteries (48V, 90Ah) in order to handle the
extra load that comes from the regeneration. We learned this the hard way
because we had a customer whose batteries turned off whenever he was
going downhill. Turns out it was his regenerative braking sending too much
load back to the batteries and had to diagnose this issue through Trojan. If
you do have regenerative braking, confirm with your battery manufacturer
or supplier that your battery set-up can handle that extra load.

2. If the batteries are not off, but the cart just doesn’t work, check the following:
a. Are all the wires connected and secured? Sometimes it’s the simple things
that we overlook that can cause an issue. If you aren’t getting a secure
connection and the vibration of the cart while you are driving causes the
connection to pop on and off, your cart won’t drive properly.

In this case, your best bet is going to be to reach out to wherever you purchased your lithium batteries from. Hopefully, however, this has given you a better idea of where to start. Thank you!

Tracy - July 10, 2023

We converted our acid batteries in our golf cart to Ion Lithium . After charging the batteries , battery gauge says 100% we get 10 minutes out of it and it dies, leaving us to have to push it back to our campsite. Replaced the battery gauge twice. What could be the problem? It does get above 85 degrees here in Maryland.
Any insight would be appreciated.

Golf Cart Stuff Customer Service - June 22, 2023

Dave,

Thank you for your question! Although we don’t know with 100% certainty where EZGO, Club Car, and Yamaha are getting their batteries, almost all Lithium golf cart batteries are from China. In fact, the only American Lithium battery that we are aware of is the UNO battery that we sell. Please let us know if you have any further questions or if we can help you in any way. Thank you!

Dave Trotter - June 22, 2023

Where are the major golf cart manufacturers (Yamaha, Club Car and EZ-GO) sourcing there lithium batteries from,. I have read that Yamaha is using RoyPow a China company.

GCS Customer Service - March 8, 2023

Victoria,

Thank you for reaching out. You do not need to add water to lithium batteries (that’s one of the many great things about making the switch to Lithium).
All you need is an existing 48-volt system, and you’re good to go. You can find our lithium battery collection here: https://golfcartstuff.com/collections/golf-cart-batteries

Let us know if you have additional questions!

Thanks again!
GCS

Victoria Rhodes - March 8, 2023

Do you have to add water to Lithium batteries? Where are you located? I have a Columbia Par Car. I have used gel batteries for 10 years. After only 2 years, my golf cart is dying and Battery Power would not sell me new batteries. Help!

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