Five Things You Might Not Know About Golf Carts

  1. Do you know the history of your golf cart? The golf car (or cart) has been around since just after World War II. The firstdesign, by Merle Williams’ Marketeer Company, was originally intended for use by women doing grocery shopping. The first golf car was produced in 1951, in Redlands, California. Believe it or not, the original power train on golf cars was electric, powered by batteries designed to operate the wing flaps on B-17 bombers!
  2. Do you need to insure your golf cart? According to ICBC, golf carts need to be registered and insured when operated on or across roadways and public spaces. An example of this is when you need to cross a public street to get from one hole to another while golfing. Golf course parking lots, private residences, and campgrounds do not require insurance (check with your local authorities).
  3. Can you get a DUI (driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol) in a golf cart? In some states, where driving a cart on public roads is legal, drinking and driving is illegal, as your cart is classed as a motor vehicle. Most golf courses do not endorse drinking while driving a golf cart, but …
  4. Is overcharging golf cart batteries dangerous? Always. Aside from the risk of explosion or causing permanent damage to your golf cart batteries, if you charge your cart in an enclosed space, overcharging your batteries can cause a build-up of hydrogen gas, which will affect you the same way as carbon monoxide poisoning. Overcharging a battery usually means there is an issue with either the battery or the charger, causing the charging time to be more than the normal few hours.
  5. Stopping on an incline: brake or accelerator? Definitely brake! On an electric golf cart, the solenoid is a conduit for voltage, and the accelerator determines the amount of voltage that is going to the motor. When you use the accelerator to “stop” on an incline, you are opening and closing the solenoid, essentially turning it on and off, causing additional heat to build up. This can damage or shorten the life of your solenoid, or even cause a fire!
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