The drive belt is one of the most important belts on your EZGO golf cart.
It helps to translate engine power into different gears and makes it possible to shift your cart, giving it the get up and go it needs to run.
However, there are times when this belt may be loose or damaged and you may want to tighten it.
Can you do this process on your own?
Or is it even possible to do this type of repair in any situation?
The information in this article is critical to understand because many people may try to do repairs that they shouldn’t based on information that they lack.
We understand the desire to “work out” any issue with your cart – DIY repairs are fun!
But they are only fun if you do them right and don’t make mistakes that you’ll regret.
How To Adjust the Drive Belt On An EZGO Golf Cart
Here’s something that many cart owners may not realize when they try to fix up their EZGO cart – you cannot adjust or tighten an EZGO drive belt once it has been installed.
Many people have tried and failed because the design of the belt makes this step impossible.
Why is this such an issue?
Well, the drive belt is designed to bit on the cart’s motor in a very specific way.
And it has to have a specific length to produce the tightness that is necessary for operating the engine properly.
As a result, designers don’t even allow the belt to be tightened or adjusted in the first place – this fact is true for just about ever cart on the market today.
And EZGO is no different – there are no screws, knobs, or any other type of adjustment item that you can use to tighten up your belt.
Once the belt is one, it has the same tightness and can only be changed if you swap the belt for another one either the proper length and width for your specific cart engine.
Do you have a friend who says that they can tighten a drive belt on an EZGO cart or who claims that they have done so in the past?
We don’t want to say that your friend is lying to you – but they may just be mistaken.
Don’t let them try to tighten up your belt in this situation – no matter what.
Even if your friend has already done repairs on your cart in the past or claims that they have tightened a belt, do NOT let anybody – not even mechanics – attempt this process on your cart.
That said, you can always replace your belt if it is too loose or if it doesn’t fit properly on your engine and you aren’t sure what to expect.
Many people can perform this type of repair, though it is best to get a mechanic to do it for you to ensure that you don’t make any mistake.
But what about those people who claim that they can tighten a drive belt – are they lying or are they simply doing something that may not be strictly appropriate for a cart but which might tighten the belt a little?
Why Do People Claim They Can Tighten a Golf Cart Drive Belt?
There are many reasons why somebody you know may claim that they can tighten a drive belt.
First of all, some amateur or fly-by-night mechanics may simply be trying to make money doing something that can’t be done – in other words, they’ll take your cash and give you back a cart with the same drive belt.
Though we can’t say for certain how common this type of action is with cart mechanics – hopefully not much – we are sad to report that such behavior may occur from time to time.
In other scenarios, a cart mechanic may simply be mistaken about whether or not they can tighten a drive belt.
It may be hard to believe but they may have never tried this step before and may believe it is possible.
But when they get your cart and try to tighten the belt, they’ll likely figure out quickly that they cannot.
Remember – carts have different designs and mechanics may not be intimately familiar with every model on the market and, therefore, be uncertain about these repairs.
Another situation may also occur that is quite frustrating – somebody attempting to tighten a belt using questionable methods.
What do we mean by this statement?
Somebody may try to cut a belt, remove a portion, and glue it back together as if nothing happened.
Or they may try to pull it tauter on its gears or even wrap it around the gears more tightly.
Such actions are ill-advised – a glued belt will snap very quickly and a more tightly wrapped belt may cause a malfunction on your cart that stops it from running.
So if you run into somebody who claims that they can tighten your belt or do any other repairs to a drive belt, you need to understand that they are mistaken.
What Can You Do When a Golf Cart Drive Belt is Loose?
When properly installed, a drive belt should never be too loose.
It should have an even amount of tautness that stays consistent as your cart drives.
And it should stay this way for years without any trouble.
However, a belt may work itself loose after several years or may even stretch due to excess wear and tear.
When this happens, your belt is going to be loose on your cart and you need to get repairs to fix this problem as soon as possible to avoid any complications.
Conversely, you may also end up with a belt that is too tight if it shrinks over the years and ends up putting more pressure on your engine.
This issue is just as problematic as a loose belt and can cause many types of damage to your cart.
Like with a loose belt, you need to take immediate steps to ensure that your cart doesn’t get damaged while running.
And like with a loose belt, there is usually only one repair that you can do to get your cart back in properly operating order – a belt replacement.
Belt replacement requires a mechanic to remove your current drive belt and throw it away or recycle it – it cannot be reused again in its current state.
Then, the mechanic finds a belt that is measured out properly for your engine.
Usually, they have to talk directly to the manufacturer of the cart to find these belts – using the model number or serial number can provide them with the information and details that they need to find a belt that works properly for a person’s EZGO golf cart.
In most cases, this type of belt installation should take no more than a few hours for a good mechanic to do – sometimes, they can do it in even less time.
When they’re done, you may drive your cart and notice that it doesn’t want to shift gears very well or that it is “squealing.”
This situation is very common but very frustrating for cart owners.
Many think that their cart repair expert cheated them and did poor repairs that leave them with little recourse or ability to run their cart any more.
Thankfully, this is not the case.
A new drive belt needs some time to “break in” and may be a little stiff unless you’ve driven it for awhile.
And you may hear a squeal for awhile, too, but that almost always goes away immediately or after a few trips.
If the squeal persists or gets worse when you ride your cart multiple times, it may be best for you to take your cart to a mechanic who can provide you with the upgrade that you need to keep your cart in proper running order for years to come.
Can Cart Owners Install a Drive Belt?
Many cart owners may want to swap out a drive belt themselves to save a little money.
If they want to do this step, they need to know how to diagnose what problem is occurring.
A belt that is too loose will cause a cart to lose maximum speed and acceleration.
This cart is likely to continually underperform and will only get worse as the cart ages.
Eventually, your cart may even develop a wobble when you shift, due to the differences between the proper belt tautness and the current looseness.
Conversely, a bet that is too tight will wear out faster and put more pressure on your clutch.
This fact doesn’t mean that your cart will drive faster – it will be limited by its engine size and its governor.
However, the extra wear and tear on the clutch may cause it to fail much more sooner than you may want.
Typically, you’ll notice excessive belt squeals or difficulty shifting – a “jitteriness” to each gear change – when your drive belt is too tight on its gears.
Thankfully, replacement is possible.
This process requires you to have a replacement belt – talk to your local EZGO dealer about this belt, bringing your cart’s details in to make this process easier – various tools – like socket wrenches with various socket options – a pair of gloves, some goggles, a flashlight, and another pair of hands to help.
Belt replacement is going to be a somewhat challenging scenario because you’re going to have to make sure that you don’t move the location of any parts on your cart’s motor.
Start by loosening the bracket holding the belt gear in place and then pull the drive belt off of the cart.
Throw it away or recycle it and then place the new belt in place.
You’ll need your socket wrench to perform these steps properly and a flashlight to give you extra visual on the inside of your cart’s engine.
Have your helper hold the different belt gears into place as you work and tighten their nuts back up.
Make sure that they are snug but not tight – a quick test drive should confirm issue if your cart shifts poorly or feels “jittery” while driving.
Talk to a professional if you need help.