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Do you own a golf cart, and you’re wondering if you can jump-start your car with it? You’ve come to the right place, for we have researched this question, and we have the answer for you.
You can jump-start your car with a golf cart that uses a 12-volt car battery or batteries in series that generate 12 volts, in total. If the golf cart does not have a car battery or 12-volt capable batteries in series, then you cannot jump-start your car using that golf cart.
It might sound a little confusing, but the succeeding sections will clarify everything for you. Additionally, there is information below that can help you when you need to jumpstart your car with golf car batteries.
How to jump-start your car with a golf cart?
Let’s start with the first part of the answer above.
There are golf carts that run on gasoline, and there are ones that run on batteries. The sections below talk about their differences from a battery perspective and how they may or may not be able to jump-start your car.
Golf carts that run on gasoline
Some golf carts run on gasoline using a small gasoline engine to produce 10 to 12 horsepower.
Golf carts that run on gasoline use the same batteries as cars—the 12-volt kind. You can safely jump-start your car using this golf cart battery if it has enough charge to do so.
However, keep in mind that a gasoline golf cart quickly uses up most of the charge of its battery because it needs to start the golf cart many times in a course of a single golf game.
Gasoline golf carts turn off their engines as soon as your foot lets go of the gas pedal. The engine will start once more when you step on the gasoline pedal—draining the battery's charge.
This series of turning off and restarting the engine after brief moments quickly drains the charge of gasoline golf carts. Thus, it might not have enough charge in it to jump-start your car unless you charge it first.
Golf carts that run on battery
Golf carts that use a battery as the primary power source require very high voltages. Their engines use 48 volts to 72 volts and anywhere from 600 to 1,800 amperes.
They use several batteries in series to achieve the total voltage they need.
If a golf cart uses nine 8-volt batteries to achieve a total of 72 volts, then you will not be able to jump-start your car using that golf cart. There is no way you can get a total of 12 volts from a set of 8-volt batteries.
However, if a golf cart uses eight 6-volt batteries to get a total of 48 volts, then you will be able to connect two 6-volt batteries in a series to get a total of 12 volts. A golf cart with this battery configuration can be wired to jump-start your car if it has enough charge.
In some cases, the type of battery is also important. A gasoline golf cart uses a different kind of battery from an electric golf cart.
What are the types of batteries in golf carts?
There are two types of batteries in golf carts—the starter battery and the deep cycle battery.
These two types of batteries may have the same voltage and capacities, but they have different purposes. Thus, they are designed differently and perform differently as well.
What is a deep cycle battery?
Deep cycle batteries provide a steady stream of electrical energy over long periods. This is the type of battery that you’d find in electric golf carts and your cell phone.
These batteries drain slowly by providing small amounts of power over long periods. They don’t always have enough charge to provide the large surge of energy that a starter motor inside a car might need.
Thus, you might be able to put two or three batteries from an electric golf cart to get a total of 12 volts in a series, but this is not an assurance that they will have enough power to crank the starter motor in your car.
Additionally, this can damage the golf cart battery and reduce its expected life because it is not made to provide a surge of power.
What is a starter battery?
A starter battery is often called a car battery or an automotive battery. Some industries call them SLI batteries because their primary function is to provide power for startup, lights, and ignition.
Starter batteries are designed to provide a large surge of electrical energy at once so that the starter motor will be able to crank your engine during a cold start.
A car needs to start more than once a day when you’re going around town running errands. Similarly, the engine of a golf cart needs to start and stop several times in a single golf game.
In both of these cases, the starter battery needs to have an almost full charge to be able to start the engine of your car. Thus, a golf cart that just came from a game might not have enough power to jump-start your car even though they use the same type of battery.
How to wire a golf cart battery to jump-start your car?
Follow these simple steps to wire your golf cart battery to jump-start your car.
You can use this guide for either a gasoline or electric golf cart. This guide assumes that you have enough jumper cables to get two to three golf cart batteries in a series.
Energizer's heavy-duty automotive jumper cables are available on Amazon. Check it out through this link.
Preparing the car and the golf cart for the jump start
- Park your car and make sure to engage the parking brake. Park the golf cart close to your car. Make sure the two vehicles are close, but they are not touching.
- Turn off the engines of both the car and the golf cart.
- Open the hood of your car and open the battery compartment of the golf cart.
- Disconnect the number of golf cart batteries that you need. If the golf cart uses 6-volt batteries, you’ll need two. If it uses 4-volt batteries, you’ll need three.
- Follow steps number 6 to 8 only if you need to place two or more golf cart batteries in a series to achieve a total of 12 volts. If you’re using the battery from a gasoline golf cart, jump to step 1 of the next section, “Wiring the Batteries for the Jump Start.”
- Take one of the jumper cables and connect it to the positive terminal of one golf cart battery.
- Connect the opposite end of the jumper cable to the negative terminal of the second golf cart battery.
- If you need to connect a third golf cart battery, take another jumper cable, connect it to the positive terminal of the second golf cart battery and connect the opposite end of the jumper cable to the negative terminal of the third golf cart battery. Make sure that you can easily identify the positive and the negative terminals that are left open in the series.
Wiring the batteries for the jump start
- Take a red jumper cable and connect it to the positive terminal of the discharged battery.
- Connect the opposite end of the jumper cable to the open positive terminal of the golf cart battery series. If you’re using the battery from a gasoline golf cart, connect the opposite end of the jumper cable to the positive terminal.
- Take the black jumper cable and connect it to the open negative terminal of the golf cart battery series. If you’re using the battery from a gasoline golf cart, connect one end of the black jumper cable to the negative terminal of the battery.
- Connect the opposite end of the black jumper cable to any unpainted metal surface on your car. You can use any metal bolt or even the engine block to connect this end of the jumper cable.
- If you’re using a gasoline golf cart, start the golf cart. Do not start the golf cart if you’re using batteries from an electric golf cart. If you re-wired the golf cart batteries to get a total of 12 volts, you will not be able to start the electric golf cart.
- Start your car. Let your car run to charge your battery while doing the wrap-up in the next section.
Disconnecting the batteries
- Disconnect the black jumper cable from the metal bolt in your car. Set it down on the ground without touching anything.
- Disconnect the opposite end of the black jumper cable from the negative terminal of the golf cart battery series.
- Proceed to disconnect the red jumper cable from the positive terminal of the golf cart battery series.
- Disconnect the opposite end of the red cable from your car battery.
You can jumpstart a car with golf cart batteries if you can get a total of 12 volts and if the golf cart batteries have enough charge.
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