You finally decided to pull your golf car out of storage, and you’re excited! You jump in the seat and start the ignition, but nothing happens. So what do you do when your golf car won’t start? There’s a lot that can happen to a golf car when it sits dormant, but it’s possible that you could pinpoint it to a minor issue that’s easy to fix.
Whether you have a gas or electric golf car, below are a few professional tips to help get you rolling again:
Troubleshooting a Gas Golf Car
Check the Fuel Tank. If you left your golf car sitting for months without emptying the tank, there’s a good chance that the gasoline inside has gone bad. Remove the old gas and dispose of it using the procedures defined in state regulations. Then refill your tank with new gasoline and try to start your golf car again.
If you’re still going nowhere, the problem may reside in your battery. Here’s where things can get a little tricky. How you test a battery depends on what type of battery you’re using, and requires tools and devices most people don’t have on hand. Improper testing can lead to greater damage to the battery, so the best thing to do is to bring your golf car to your local golf car service and parts dealer. There, they can either revive the battery or replace it, depending on what state it is in.
Troubleshooting an Electric Golf Car
The simplest answer to a stranded electric golf car is that the battery has lost its charge. Most electric golf cars have a kill switch that should be initiated before leaving it dormant for long periods of time. If you don’t, the golf car’s battery will continue to communicate with the controller. This will cause it to discharge at a much faster rate, leaving your battery depleted when you pull it out of storage several months later.
You can plug it up, but if the battery is below a certain voltage an automatic charger may not come online to revive it. Keep in mind that many golf cars run on a six-volt lead acid cell core, which can develop a sulfur buildup as well when the battery is overdrawn.
The battery can be fully restored by flushing out the acid and cleaning the cells with a mixture of Epsom salt and water. You can then acquire an older, manual charger and use a pair of heavy duty alligator clamps as an adaptor to give your battery a boost of voltage high enough for the automatic charger to read.
Again, your local golf car service and parts dealer will be able to help you with this if you’re not comfortable doing it yourself. For anyone who is inexperienced in golf car mechanics, this is highly advised.
We recommend that you request a routine maintenance service be completed as well. This is important any time your golf car, or any vehicle, has remained dormant for an extended period of time. Consider it a golf car “checkup” so your vehicle can come out of storage with a clean bill of health.
General maintenance can save you hundreds of dollars in the long run and give you peace of mind before you hit the green again.