Buying a golf cart should be a fun and exciting time.
When you have narrowed down your selection to an electric golf cart, there are a few things you should be aware of.
Electric golf carts are very efficient and easy to operate and maintain.
Since your electric golf cart will have quite a long life span, you want to make sure that you choose one with quality features that will work for your needs.
Top 10 Things To Look For When Buying An Electric Golf Cart
1. Batteries- Condition & Age
If you are buying a new or used electric cart, it is essential to take into consideration the batteries.
If you are looking at a used cart, you need to check the age and the condition of the batteries.
Has anybody been taking care of them through the years?
Golf cart batteries have a life span, and if they are nearing the end of their life, they are not worth very much money.
If you see a good deal on a cart, it may be because the batteries are almost done.
Look for corrosion on the battery and any issues with the terminal itself.
If you see a lot of rusting and corrosion or even leaking battery acid, these batteries were likely not all that well cared for.
If you are purchasing a new cart, take a look and see the batteries included with the cart.
Is the brand of the battery a good brand?
Are the batteries 6, 8, or 12-volt batteries.
The higher voltage batteries will give you some extra speed.
Higher voltage batteries are also more expensive than the lower voltages.
It would help if you considered this when you purchase because, at some point, you will need to replace them.
If you can’t afford to replace the batteries, then you may want to consider a gas golf cart instead.
Keep in mind when you are purchasing an electric golf cart that the golf cart batteries are the most expensive part of the cart.
Another significant consideration of purchasing an electric golf cart is the tires.
There are quite a few options out there when it comes to tires.
For a new golf cart take a look at the performance of the tire, is this a tire built for off-roading or one made for riding around town.
Are the tires larger, or are they standard tires?
If you are purchasing a used golf cart, take a look at the tread on the tire to see what kind of shape it is in.
Golf cart tires start around $100 each to replace, and they go up from there.
If your cart is going to need new tires soon after purchasing, you need to factor this into your budget.
Depending on how much your golf cart is used, the tires will last you about 2-5 years before needing to be replaced.
There are three well-known golf cart manufacturers that you can choose from.
Each company has its positives and negatives, and for the most part, you will find that the carts made by all three are quite similar.
The most significant difference you find will be the features of the cart itself.
Each manufacturer has a different idea of what looks good, what feels good, and what performs as it should on a cart.
You may notice that some of the EZ Go carts are priced a bit lower than the Club Car models.
Club Car has become known for being the higher end more capable cart, but of course, that comes at a price.
The EZ-Go carts are usually a little more lightweight, and because of that, they don’t pull things quite as well.
However, EZ-Go carts are generally more affordable.
You will notice that EZ-Go and Club Car tend to go back and forth as far as their features and new releases are concerned.
Yamaha has always been a leader when it comes to the gas golf carts, but they are not becoming a leader in electric as well.
Yamaha makes some competent models with lots of customizations and features that could make it an excellent fit for you.
You can’t go wrong with any of the three main golf cart manufacturers.
Just make sure that the cart you choose can handle what it is you need it for.
4. Seating Capacity
Most electric golf carts are going to be two-seater models.
If you need something that seats more people, you will have several choices to make.
You can purchase a four-seater cart where all the seats face the same way.
You can also purchase a four-seater that has a rear seat attachment that folds down to allow for cargo space as well.
Either option functions quite well; it mostly depends on the purpose you will have for your cart.
In general, the seat attachments on the back will not be as comfortable or as large as the seats when you purchase a cart with four front-facing seats.
There are also golf carts that accommodate six people.
These usually have four forward-facing seats and then a rear flip seat that allows for the choice of cargo or space for people to sit.
If you are not sure how many seats you want, make sure to choose a cart that can be easily customized after the fact.
In addition to the number of people you need to carry, you must also consider how much gear you will have on the cart with you.
Are you taking the family to the beach a few times a week and bringing the paddleboard, the cooler and more?
Are you using your cart to play golf?
Or is your cart used to take an afternoon ride around the neighborhood?
You need to think about not just where people will sit but where they will put their belongings.
Most golf carts can add attachments that will hold coolers and other storage containers.
You will also notice that some carts come with storage compartments located throughout the golf cart.
When you are looking for an electric cart, don’t forget to consider where you will put your belongings and how they will stay in place while the cart is in motion.
There are more features available on golf carts today than we could possibly even list.
However, some of these features are important ones that you will want to consider before you purchase.
Here are a few of the features and things that you can look for when you purchase an electric cart.
- LED Lighting
- Bluetooth Capability for speakers
- Leather seats
- Cargo/Flip Down Seats
- Upgraded Hubcaps
- Cup Holders
- Phone Holders
- Windshields and Mirrors
- Cargo Carriers
- Golf bag attachment
If you don’t have the budget to add all of your most wanted features to a cart on the day you buy it, you can often customize the cart later on.
Luckily golf carts can be changed without a tremendous amount of effort.
If you purchase a cart and later on want to lift it and add other features, a local golf cart repair shop should be able to help you.
There are two key features that you will want to consider that are a bit harder to upgrade.
The first is speed, and the other is the distance the golf cart can travel before needing to be recharged.
The golf cart batteries of today are much better and higher functioning than they were several years ago.
However, with electric golf carts, your cart is only going to be as good as the batteries.
If you purchase a large cart and fill it with smaller underpowered batteries, you may end up having a very slow ride.
What is sometimes worse than speed is the longevity of your ride.
There is nothing worse than traveling just a few miles and then needed a recharge.
This will probably leave you to need quite a few tows.
If you plan on taking your golf cart on long-distance rides, make sure you find a cart with a good range.
Gas carts tend to go quite a bit further than the electric, and you may find that electric is not the right choice.
When you are buying a used cart, your chances of a warranty will probably be pretty slim.
However, when you purchase a new golf cart, there should be some warranty options.
Certain items will be covered under a standard warranty, but you usually have an option for an extended warranty as well.
If you are not good at fixing golf cart issues on your own, you may want to look into the extended warranty plan.
Little things come up on a golf cart quite often; there could be a cable or a fuse or even just a battery that needs a little cleaning.
IF you are not going to do these things yourself and adequately maintain your cart, you should look into the warranty options available that will help you keep the cart in great shape.
Golf carts hold their value pretty well.
You will want to take care of your cart so that when you sell it, you still have some value left and can put the money towards a new golf cart.
8. Used Cart-Maintenance Records
When purchasing a used golf cart, you will want to see any maintenance records that the previous owner may have.
If you purchase a cart that has not been well cared for, it could end up costing you quite a bit of money.
Electric golf carts are not hard to take care of, but they do require monthly checks of the batteries.
If these have not been handled and distilled water has not been added to the batteries, you may end up having to replace them shortly after purchasing.
Try to find out the original installation date of the batteries and how often the cart has been used.
If the cart is only used once a week, the batteries may still have a lot of life left in them.
If it’s a cart that plays 36 holes every day and the batteries are five years old, the value on this cart should be a bit lower.
Golf cart safety is of the utmost importance.
When you purchase an electric golf cart, you are going to be responsible for keeping you and your passengers safe.
There are some key safety features that you should be paying attention to.
Does the cart have seat belts?
You may be surprised to hear this, but most people do not wear seat belts when they are on the golf cart.
Some golf carts have seat belts installed, and others will need them to put in after the fact.
You must have seat belts for younger passengers on your cart.
When you purchase a cart with the larger voltage batteries, you will end up getting quite a bit of speed, and that could cause some serious injuries.
Golf carts are often driven on the road with other vehicles.
Think about trying to drive your car without the help of any mirrors.
This would not be safe, and it could cause serious accidents.
Driving a golf cart is no different.
It is essential to have good mirrors on a golf cart, both rearview and side mirrors.
If your electric cart does not have them, you could always add them after the fact.
If you are buying a new golf cart, it should come with mirrors, make sure they are good quality and not just stickers that will peel over time.
Lights and Indicators
Even if you plan on driving your golf cart mostly during the day, it’s a good idea to make sure the lights are capable and functioning.
You never know when you might need the cart at night, and the lights are an essential feature.
Another thing to look for is an indicator.
While driving your golf cart, you want to make sure that other golf cart owners, other drivers, and people know what your intentions are as you are moving from one place to another.
A grab bar is a bar on the back seat of a golf cart that helps the back seat passengers have more stability.
Riding in the back seat of the cart facing the opposite way of travel can get a bit bumpy.
If you have a lot of passengers riding on the back of your cart, a grab bar is a good idea.
Some carts will come standard with these safety features, and others will need to put it on.
The grab bar does add a bit of weight to the cart but not enough to slow down overall performance.
10. Purpose/Use of The Golf Cart
When you are buying an electric golf cart, you must know precisely what you are going to use it for.
Some people use golf carts as a way to get around town, others use them as maintenance vehicles, and some use them for golf.
Whatever it is that you intend to use your golf cart for, you must make sure that the cart is capable of this.
If you purchase an EZ Go Cart that has all the features needed to play on a golf course, but you plan to take it out hunting, you could do some damage.
Usually, an off-road cart needs to be lifted not to cause any damage or get the cart stuck.
Before you buy your golf cart, make sure you write down a list of things you plan to use it for.
When you check the features and capabilities of the individual cart that you pick out, you should be able to quickly decide which carts will and won’t work for you.
Electric golf carts can make life more fun.
They are good for the environment, convenient for a variety of activities, and relatively easy to maintain.
Making sure that the electric golf cart you purchase is a good fit for you and your family is very important.
If you are purchasing a used golf cart, pay very close attention to the batteries you are getting with your cart.
For new golf carts, make sure that you get all the features you want for the price you pay.
Since you are buying new, you should make sure it is as custom as you want it before leaving the showroom.