Golfing can be all fun and games until your trusty cart runs out of battery, and you have to push it back to the clubhouse, along with hefty a golf bag full of clubs. Many people have wondered whether can you use a marine battery in a golf cart, and we’re about to reveal the answer in today’s article. Stay tuned!
Can You Use a Marine Battery in a Golf Cart?
Technically speaking, yes. But there are a few things to keep in mind before deciding to use a marine battery in a golf cart.
Most golf carts use electric batteries, which are standard lead-acid batteries. As for marine batteries, they often come in three chemical types: flooded, gel, and absorbed glass mat (AGM).
The most common type of marine batteries is AGM. It is also a type of lead-acid batteries; they’re sometimes used for certain vehicles, but very few cars have them due to the special charger needed to keep the battery loaded.
Even though the two batteries are basically the same, they do have some dissimilarities, which is why the manufacturers have categorized them differently for specific applications.
Plus, you’ll notice apparent disadvantages when using a marine battery instead of a regular 6-volt golf cart battery. The run times are significantly shorter, and it also requires faster replacement times.
Marine batteries are also prone to damages, especially the sensitive components. For example, if you get swamped, the batteries will stop working properly, and you’ll have to find your way to work around them because a high-voltage charger won’t be able to save the day in this case.
That being said, marine batteries should only be used as an alternative when you have no other choices. Lithium-ion batteries, on the other hand, make a better alternative for when your golf cart batteries are used up.
Why You Shouldn’t Use a Marine Battery in a Golf Cart?
In this part, we’ll get to the details of why you shouldn’t use a marine battery in an electric cart.
Depending on the capacity of your electric cart, you choose a suitable deep cycle battery, which can be 6-volt, 8-volt, or 12-volt. The most commonly used is 12-volt, and it is able to endure a higher temperature when being charged than most marine batteries.
In fact, there has been some research proving that marine batteries rarely are rarely charged when the temperature gets above 90℉. Golf carts can get a lot hotter than this rate, especially when being driven under the sun all day.
The temperature difference makes one reason why you shouldn’t use a marine battery in a golf cart. Not only does it proceed with a negative impact on the charge, but it also won’t last through 9 holes, if not full 18 holes.
Internal Parts Quality
Batteries that are made specifically for golf carts often have slightly better internal parts quality than marine batteries. They’re also sold at a lower price point as they need to appear viable in consumers’ eyes.
With this in mind, marine batteries don’t have the right built as those designed for golf cart applications. Using the right battery will make it last as long as advertised, this we can guarantee.
Inside every battery, you will find a plate to store energy, also known as the storage capacity of one battery. The larger the plate size is, the more energy it holds.
A regular 6-volt deep cycle battery holds more energy than a marine battery due to its larger plate size. The plate inside a marine battery is considerably smaller than some of the best golf cart batteries.
That being said, golf cart batteries are able to hold power over long periods, making a reasonable option for when you have to drive around a full, 18-hole course, which can take up to 2 to 3 hours.
Marine batteries and golf cart batteries also have different discharge rates, posing a problem when you want to use them interchangeably. To be more specific, some golf cart batteries can be discharged down to 80% of their capacity and has no problem charging back up. Marine batteries, on the other hand, has a discharge rate of 50%. This also explains the rapid decline of power when using a marine battery in a golf cart.
Maintenance for Golf Cart Batteries
To keep the lifespan of your golf cart batteries longer, crucial maintenance is needed.
- Maintain the right electrolyte level and water levels
- Only stay with one battery chemistry. Using different ones in a battery group can cause rapid power loss due to under- or over-charging as each type has specific charging voltages.
- Never discharged and plugged in for use during a round of golf if the golf cart battery is not fully charged
- Keep battery cool, clean, and dry
- Check terminal connectors often to avoid conductivity loss
- If you use a flooded lead-acid battery, it’s important to add distilled water every once in a while as there can be water loss from time to time.
- If there’s a sign of corrosion, use baking soda and water to clean. Gently scrub with an old toothbrush so as not to damage internal parts.
Can You Use a Marine Battery in a Golf Cart? – Final Verdict
We assume you must have the answer to this question if you have been reading this far. Technically speaking, you can use a marine battery in a golf cart; the engine will still be running, but there would be possible battery failure if you just trace back to the sections above.
Can you use a marine battery in a golf cart? Yes, but we do not recommend this, even though there is some logic to this swapping situation. It’s best to just stick with the flooded lead-acid battery you have been using this whole time and keep it fully charged for when you want to use it.