What Year Is My Yamaha Golf Cart?

Is your Yamaha golf cart from the 1990s? Or is it from the 2000s? Unfortunately, it can be difficult to tell what year your golf cart was manufactured. Luckily, with a bit of detective work and some patience, we can help you find out.

Yamaha golf carts have a serial number or primary ID number to determine the year and model. You can usually find the serial number under the seat, on the rear bumper, or in the glove compartment. The serial number will typically start with a letter followed by seven or eight numbers. You can then take this serial number and look it up online or call a Yamaha dealer to decipher it and determine the golf cart's year.

Knowing the year and model of your Yamaha golf cart is essential information. If you bought it used, it is good to know the year in case you need to buy aftermarket parts or replacement parts. In this article, we will take a closer look at how to find the year and model of your Yamaha golf cart. Without further ado, let's get into it!

Two golf carts stand on the path beside the ninth hole. What Year Is My Yamaha Golf Cart

What Year Is My Yamaha Golf Cart?

The Yamaha golf cart was first introduced to consumers back in 1975, and it quickly became popular around the world for its ease of use and affordability.

Owners can easily purchase used or even new aftermarket replacement parts for Yamaha golf carts since they are more affordable than brand new original equipment.

If you need parts, then you will want to know the year of your Yamaha golf cart. You will need the serial number to figure out your year and model, also known as the primary ID number. To find this, check in the following places: under the seat, rear bumper, or glove compartment.

The serial number will likely start with the letter "J" and will be followed by seven to eight numbers depending on what year it is.

You can then take the serial number and either check a Yamaha golf cart guide or call a Yamaha dealer and give them the serial number. The dealer then should look it up in their system and tell you the year and exact model.

Yamaha golf carts neatly lined up on the side of a concrete roadway

Do golf carts have keys?

Yes, Yamaha golf carts will typically come with a set of two or three keys. The newer models may even include the keyless entry remote, which is much more convenient. However, if you bought a used golf cart, it may only come with one key. 

Some golf cart keys are universal if they are the same brand. For example, you can use most Yamaha golf cart keys for each other. However, if you try to use a Yamaha key on a different brand, it probably won't work.

image of multiple golf carts parked in order.

Are all Yamaha golf cart keys the same?

No, not all Yamaha keys are the same, but a lot of them are universal. There are different types of golf cart keys that can confuse first-time buyers or people who have recently purchased used models.

The Yamaha golf cart has two different keys that go to specific models.

Depending on the brand and year, golf carts will have different types of keys. Here is a list of what type of key you may come across when looking for one:

Universal Key/Remote

This type of key will work with most Yamaha golf carts. So if you have a Yamaha cart and need a new key, then this is the one to get since it will most likely work on your cart model without any issues.


These keys come with different voltage ratings, so make sure not to purchase one that doesn't match up with your brand or model, as mentioned before.

Type Key/Remote

These keys can only be used on specific models. Make sure to double-check the model number before purchasing one, or you may end up buying a key that will not work with your cart because it is for another brand.

Model Key

These are also specific to Yamaha carts, and they come in different designs, so make sure to double-check the model number.

How do you start a Yamaha golf cart?

To start a Yamaha golf cart, follow these steps. Put the key in the ignition and turn it to the "Start" position until it starts up. If you have another key that is different than this one, then try using that as well.

Also, make sure your foot is on the brake before turning the key. If your cart does not start up, then there may be something wrong with it, so have a professional look at it to see what is going on.

Beautiful family portrait in a cart at the golf course

How do you start a Yamaha golf cart without a key?

If you cannot find the key or it was lost, then there is still a way to get your golf cart started without having one.

You can attempt to start your Yamaha golf cart without a key by using a screwdriver. Take the screwdriver and firmly put it into the ignition, and try turning it the same way you would with a key.

This won't always work, but it is possible. Instead of a screwdriver, you can also start the golf cart by using a picklock tool. These take a little more finesse, but it can be an option. 

Another way to start a Yamaha golf cart without a key is by hotwiring. This is a dangerous method and should not be tried by any means if you do not know what you are doing.

With that said, hotwiring can get your golf cart started, so it may be worth giving it a try before taking the cart to an auto shop or dealer for help.

To start this process, you must take off all of the panels on your cart to expose the wires. Once you have access to all of the wires, use some wire cutters or scissors and strip back about an inch of plastic coating on each wire to expose them.

After this step is complete, take a new key (make sure it fits in the ignition), move all three wires over to one side, and secure them with a wire tie. You will need to touch the exposed wires on both sides to see which combination gets your cart started.

Once you find two that work, make sure to write down what color of each wire goes where so you can always get it going if needed later on.

How do I keep my golf cart from being stolen?

It is always a good idea to make sure your golf cart is locked before leaving it alone. As we mentioned above, there are ways to start a golf cart even without the key.

To prevent it from being stolen, you should permanently attach a chain and lock to secure your cart. If that is not an option, then there are other things you can do, such as:

  • Parking it in a garage or somewhere with surveillance cameras. Not that surveillance cameras alone will keep someone from stealing it, but they serve as a great deterrent.
  • Another way is to use a steering wheel club (or some device), so nobody can drive away with it quickly.

You wouldn't think most people would try and steal a golf cart, but it is still better to be safe than sorry. Golf carts still hold value, and people could try and steal one to resell them.

This is another situation when it is good to know your serial number if it gets stolen. That way, when you report it is stolen, you can give that information to the police so they can identify it.

In Closing

Overall, there are benefits to knowing the year and model of your golf cart. You will be able to know what parts to get, and if it gets stolen, you can identify it.

Be sure to check in the glove compartment, under the seat, or on the rear bumper to find the serial number. Then you can match it to a golf cart guide or be able to contact the dealer.

If you enjoyed this article, you should also read:

Should A Car Be Sold With 2 Keys? [Inc. Used Car]

Does A Garage Protect A Car?

What To Do If You Find A Set Of Car Keys?

What kind of golf cart do you have? Leave us a comment below!

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