Some chargers are better than others. We recommend a summit 2 charger from lester; this is a bluetooth capable charger that has many charge profiles to choose from along with an “away/storage” mode that tends to the battery while the cart is in storage. This is perfect for people who do not use their cart on a daily basis.
You may not like the answer to this one. You must use your cart regularly or your batteries will die and may not be salvageable. However, there is a fix to this problem. When you don’t use your traditional Lead-Acid golf cart batteries for 1-month, they will lose up to 33% of their charge (substantial)! Meaning if your cart were to sit for just a few months, it would not work when you went to use it again. Lithium batteries on the other hand will only lose 2-3% of their charge per month when not being used. Meaning your cart could sit for an entire year and still have 75% of its battery left. If you plan to only use your cart half of the year, lithium is 100% the best way to go. To learn more about lithium batteries, click here.
Battery manufacturers recommend charging your batteries after each day of use. It's very important when charging your batteries, you allow your batteries to complete its charge cycle every time. Lead acid batteries tend to develop a memory overtime, so to avoid this, once or twice a month, try to drain your battery as much as possible by driving. (not to the point where the cart will not move) And then charge completely.
The lifespan of your batteries depends on maintenance, charge routine, and use. Well maintained and charged batteries have a life span of 3-5 years. Six and eight volt batteries typically have a life span of 4-5 years. Twelve volt batteries have a life span of 3-4 years. (AGM is the same) Lithium has a lifespan of 7-10 years, depending on use and battery manufacture.
Battery cost will depend on manufacture, size of battery and how many batteries your cart takes. 36volt carts take 6 batteries, the cost of these batteries from a leading deep cycle battery manufacturer will cost $900-$1000. 48volt carts take either (4) 12 volts or (6) 8 volts, the 4 x 12 volt battery cost is between $800-$900. The 6 x 8v will cost between $950-1050. Keep in mind this price does not include any core charges. Most companies will charge $30 per core. Labor to replace batteries will range depending on the number of batteries, time and travel. As well as if the batteries are replaced on site or if you bring your cart into a shop.
There are a few different types of golf cart batteries; Lead Acid, AGM, and Lithium. The leading suppliers of the golf cart industry are Trojan and US Battery. These are true deep cycle batteries. There are other battery brands on the market that are cheaper but they are not true deep cycle batteries and will not give you the same performance or longevity.
- Lead acid; lead acid batteries are the batteries your cart most likely came with from the manufacture. Your factory charger is programmed to charge this type of battery. The life of this battery depends on maintenance, cleaning, charge cycles, and use. There are many different manufacturers of lead acid batteries. Over the years we have tried many different manufactures and have come to rely on either trojan or US battery to be the best quality for our golf carts.With that said, factory chargers are programmed to charge the trojan battery so this is what we recommend. The charge profile is slightly different for a US battery. Some chargers have a selectable charge profile depending on the battery manufacturer.
- AGM; AGM batteries have the same performance of a lead acid battery. The benefit to AGM is that it is maintenance free. If you decide to purchase an AGM battery then you will have to buy a charger that is programmed to charge AGM or has the option to select the AGM profile. These batteries are available from most manufactures and the price will vary. Generally AGM batteries are around 50% more than lead acid batteries. We recommend either Trojan or Fullriver.
- Lithium; Lithium batteries have taken the golf cart world by storm in the last several years! Check out our blog post to learn more about lithium! We offer two different size lithium packs. We call them packs because they include an on board charging system and BMS (battery management system). The battery that we use is specifically designed for our carts. The battery pack intergrades with the control system of the cart. This eliminates the user mistakes that can cause battery damage, eliminating over charging and over discharging the battery. If the battery pack drops below 16% then the cart will drop into limp mode (cart will drive slow) to protect the battery. This will allow you to get the cart to an outlet to charge. All other lithium battery options will not give you a warning when the battery runs out, you will be completely stuck (not safe especially when driving on legal streets). We have tested many different lithium battery brands and the batteries we use are from HPEVS (high performance electric vehicles ). Cost is a major factor when choosing a battery. Don't let the cost of lithium batteries scare you. If you factor in the lifespan, cost of charging, and time for maintenance (no headaches), the cost of lithium batteries are less than lead acid or AGM overtime. The battery being maintenance free allows you to enjoy more of your cart with less headache from failing batteries.
Until you can gauge a general pattern of your water usage, we recommend that you inspect the water levels every four weeks. Don’t forget that the amount of water used can increase with frequent charging and hot weather.
One of the most common battery mistakes is overfilling batteries when performing maintenance. When a battery is overfilled, it will cause batteries to overflow while charging. This not only will damage the battery from loss of battery acid but also damage the garage floor, cause corrosion on your batteries, as well as damage the frame and battery tray of your golf cart. We have a complete guide and video on how to perform battery maintenance at home! (It is easier than you think) A few quick tips: Never remove battery acid from the battery, never add acid to your battery, use distilled water, eye protection and rubber gloves. Most battery manufactures have a visible fill line, sometimes this line is labeled. If you look down in the cell, you will see plastic that drops down into the cell, the fill line is at the bottom of the plastic. When the water starts to touch the plastic, stop filling. It's ok to stop just short of the plastic. The idea is to keep the batteries covered in water rather than the lead plates being exposed to air.
There are many battery manufacturers on the market. Cost of these batteries will vary depending on the brand. Generally with batteries, you get what you pay for. A few things to consider: Chargers are pre-programmed for a specific battery. There are three main types of batteries: Lead acid, AGM, and lithium. Some things to consider when choosing a battery:
- How much distance do you travel per charge?
- How much do you trust that you’re going to maintain batteries?
- Your budget
Parts & Maintenance
Yes, we encourage the customer to get familiar with battery maintenance. There are plenty of aspects of golf cart care that you can do yourself to keep it in tip-top shape. If you are to do any maintenance, don’t forget to wear protective gear and goggles, turn off the engine, and switch it into tow. Also, wrap your wrenches and tools in vinyl electrical tape, in order to avoid shorting your battery and, potentially, an explosion. When in doubt, please call a professional.
You may want to check if your charger has an “away mode” function. Most factory chargers do not. Depending on the amount of time that you’re away, charge the cart before you leave and charge the cart when you’re back. Like any battery, if a battery is not charged or discharged for an extended period of time, it will eventually drain the batteries dry. This is not an issue if your cart has a lithium battery system. Check out our blog post to learn more about the benefits of lithium.
Maintain the recommended pressure. Usually, 20-30 psi is recommended, but you can find this information on the inside wall of the tire or tire label on the cart. If your pressure is any lower or higher, it can affect your cart’s performance and even cause them to wear out more quickly. At least once a year, you should ensure your tires are rotated and aligned properly. You may want to have the alignment checked if you recently bumped into a hole or curb. Last but certainly not least, pay attention to tire wear.
Once a year, you should change the spark plug, air filter, and oil. We recommend that oil is changed every 80-100 hours of run time or every 6 months. A professional should also check your clutch every twelve months.
You should be able to find plastic/acrylic-friendly cleaners at any hardware or auto-shop. Do not use alcohol/ammonia-based cleaners!
Any degreaser or multi purpose cleaner works best to clean golf cart seats!
Purchasing a Cart
We are able to install the necessary requirements on the cart such as seat belts, turn signals, mirrors, ect. However we are not able to do any of the DMV paperwork for you. This is extremely important to know when shopping for a cart either on craigslist, facebook, or another dealership. When buying a cart through us, we do all the DMV paperwork and verification for you so the process is simple as possible.
For those wondering how to buy a golf cart, a good place to start is determining whether you will purchase a new or used cart. With a new cart, you are the first owner of the vehicle. However, with Sundance, there truly is no difference between our refurbished carts and those that are brand new. This is because all of our carts go through extensive testing before they make it to you. In some cases, this is even more testing than ones that come straight off the factory floor! If you do elect to purchase a used or refurbished or new cart, make sure that you receive a written warranty. Take the time to review what the warranty covers and what it does not cover and what potential costs you may incur during ownership. Another important takeaway for what to look for when buying a golf cart: It is necessary to learn how your dealer will service your cart should you have any problems. Sundance carts comes with the Sundance Promise warranty!
Every golf cart buying guide walks you through the next choice of a gas or electric cart. With gas carts, you get all-day use without the time needed to recharge, however, these are not generally street legal in California unless the cart is registered with emission stickers. Maintenance is more familiar to a traditional cart and needed on gas carts more often than electric. On the other hand, electric carts operate easily, silently, without exhaust fumes, and have smooth acceleration. No gas or annual tune-ups needed. Not only do they not emit damaging greenhouse gases, but electricity is also cheaper than gasoline. And used electric carts are less expensive than gas carts. The only time we recommend gas is when the cart is going to be run hours on end. However the new technology in lithium batteries allow carts to be driven twice as long as the standard electric cart.
Topping our golf cart guide is the illustrious “Big 3”: EZgo, Club Car & Yamaha. While there are other brands that work just fine, accessories and parts for the three aforementioned brands are most readily available. Although, of course, newer models will have an easier time finding accessories and parts than older carts. In our years of experience, we find that EZgo is the most reliable brand on the market.
There are a lot of factors that go into determining a cart’s cost, including the year, model, manufacturer, warranties, engine type, and accessories. Some of our best and most essential tips are to find a seller that will allow you to test drive several carts, has transparent specifications & pricing models, and warranties the cart. Street legal carts will cost you more than the standard golf cart.
Repairs & Services
It’s recommended that you get your brakes serviced and checked at least once every six months. (depending on use)
Discontinue use and call a professional to service your cart. If possible, disconnect your battery. For your safety, get it checked!
$79! This covers up to the first hour to do a diagnostic. If repairs can not be performed on-site and you would like us to pick up the cart to transport it back to our shop for an estimate, it will cost $100 total (a mileage fee may be applied if outside of San Diego). Once we calculate the repair cost, we will then send you an email estimate for your approval before any work is performed. If you choose not to do the repairs, the cart will be returned to you without any additional cost.
If you own a used cart that didn’t come with an authorized company repair manual, you can usually find a manual online (on the company’s website, often) or offline. Notably, for Club Car, you can’t download a copy. Instead, you would need to buy a copy from them, online vendors, or a local dealer.
For a gas cart, yes. For an electric, definitely not. This will most likely end up damaging your golf cart’s battery. If your cart is completely dead, call a professional.