How long do golf cart batteries last (+ maximization tips)

If your golf cart is not running as efficiently as it used to, maybe it’s time to lift the seat and check under it.

As a golf cart owner, I know how exhausting charging and recharging deep-cycle batteries can get.

A couple of years back, I went out of the country, leaving my cart in the garage for some days. Upon returning, when I tried to start it, it was dead, not picking up the charge at all. After a few tries, I gave up and decided to put it up on the Internet. In doing so, I came across a pro, and he gave me some tips on how to make the batteries last longer and even revive the dead ones. Since that day, I have significantly improved the lifespan of my golf cart’s batteries.

The question arises: How long do golf cart batteries last?

Typically, golf cart batteries last about 5-7 years. However, they may live up to 10 years with proper care and maintenance. The longevity of these batteries depends on various factors such as how well you take care of them, the battery type, usage frequency, and the quality of materials used.

When I first purchased my 36 Volt golf cart, I made the mistake of buying a random battery that only lasted for 3.5 years; it was frustrating but turned into more deep research for the perfect battery and then hopefully came across Amstron GC2 6 V AGM Deep Cycle Battery which is giving me pretty much incredible backup for 4 years now. Got the battery with the 2-year manufacturer guarantee and a powerful backup of 475 minutes on a single charge, allowing me to use my golf cart for multiple rounds of golf without needing to recharge frequently.

In this guide, I’ll delve into the average life span of golf cart batteries, the factors influencing them, and tips to make your batteries last much longer.

How long do golf cart batteries last?

How long do golf cart batteries last

When you own a golf cart, it is only natural to wonder how long should golf cart batteries last. Unluckily, there is no simple answer to it.

A golf cart’s battery life can be as short as a few months or may last up to a decade. However, to make it last a decade, you must put a lot of time and effort into its maintenance.

To be more specific, it depends upon the type of battery, its usage, its charging patterns, and how you care for it.

Being a cart owner, the million-dollar advice I offer is to never compromise on the quality of your battery. Always opt for an acclaimed battery over a cheaper one. While cheaper alternatives may seem tempting, they not only run out sooner but also mess up your cart system. Lithium batteries last 3-4 times longer than lead-acid ones.

How much you use a golf cart also determines its lifespan. Too much use is as detrimental as too little use. Striking a balance is necessary to increase the life expectancy of a battery. For instance, fleet carts used for 2-3 rounds of golf per day have almost half the life compared to privately owned carts used less frequently.

Leaving your cart uncharged for long periods decreases its life. If you are not planning to use it for long, charge it once a month at least so it doesn’t die down. Additionally, using a good quality charger of the right voltage is also essential. Charging it after every use and avoiding overcharging will help improve the lifespan.

Environmental factors also play a role in the battery’s longevity. Golf cart batteries deplete fast if left in a hot or wet environment for longer. Storing your cart in a cool and dry area and taking good care of it can help you avoid unnecessary wear. Additionally, regular maintenance tasks such as water level checks, cable inspections, trickle charging, and terminal lubrication to prevent corrosion are essential steps in caring for your battery.

Unveiling the Battery Type Factor: Decoding the Lifespan of Your Golf Cart Powerhouse

These days, the main argument when choosing a battery is lead-acid vs lithium-ion.

If we talk about lasting longer, generally, lead-acid batteries last up to 3-5 years. While lithium-ion ones last 6-10 years. However, it is not that simple. With proper maintenance, a lithium-ion battery might last long enough to incorporate the life span of two lead-acid batteries. So, I advise you to choose wisely.

Type of Battery Lifespan Maintenance Cost
Lead-Acid 3-5 years Maximum $
AGM (Absorbed Glass Mat) 3-8 years Less than lead-acid $$
Gel Lead-Acid 3-8 years Less than AGM $$$
Lithium-Ion 6-10+ years Minimal $$$$


Nobody should settle while choosing what’s best for their cart. Let’s take a look into different types of batteries available in the market and their life expectancy.

Lead-Acid batteries

lead acid battery

These batteries have been most popular among golfers for a long time due to the low upfront cost and widespread availability. They are well suited for high current output tasks such as starting the Golf cart motor. However, since the advancements in batteries, it is now recognized that lead-acid batteries are not as cost-effective as they seem since they don’t last that long.

One of the pitfalls of Lead-acid batteries is their limited lifespan of 3-7 years, only when you properly check and maintain them regularly.  Moreover, the performance can also degrade over a few years, resulting in shorter run times. They are heavier, need more maintenance, and possess the risk of leakage.

AGM (Absorbed Glass Mat) Batteries:

AGM batteries are a sealed-shut version of lead-acid batteries, eliminating the need to refill electrolytes and hence are leak-free. AGM batteries need lesser maintenance and last longer for 3-8 years than conventional lead-acid batteries, so are on the pricey side. However, the amount of increased capacity does not justify that high a price.

Gel Lead-Acid Batteries:

Gel Batteries are another variation of lead-acid batteries. They also encompass less maintenance and spill-free qualities. Gel lead-acid batteries can bear hot weather conditions because they transfer heat to the outside. Hence, they last longer for 3-8 years and are more expensive.

Lithium-Ion Golf Cart Batteries:

Lithium-ion batteries are no doubt revolutionizing the world of cart batteries and the ones with the longest life span of 10 years or more. They are lighter than lead-acid batteries making the overall cart weight lighter too and deliver a stable current output making them best for electric carts.

Lithium-Ion Golf Cart Batteries

The best aspect of lithium-ion batteries is that they do not lose power when their voltage dips, and also, recharge way faster. The only drawback one sees is their higher cost which is not as high if you consider the overall cost-effectiveness.

Key factors Influencing Golf Cart battery lifespan

While focusing on the longevity of a golf cart, keep the following factors in mind;

  • Quality – always choose a branded company while looking for a battery. Make sure to check customer reviews beforehand.
  • Usage – appropriate and balanced use of a cart guarantees a long run.
  • Charger – use a fast charger that synchronizes with your battery type for efficient charging and a longer lifespan.
  • Frequent charging – charging at all times and overnight keeps your battery alive and assures prolonged running.
  • Storage – batteries lose charge in hot temperatures and become slower in freezing ones. Storing the cart in a dry and cool place ensures the durability of the batteries.

Secrets to Prolonging the Lifespan of Your Golf Cart Battery

The battery is the life force of your Cart, powering your adventures on the green. Taking easy yet effective measures to prolong the battery life is essential, ensuring that it can keep you on the fairway for years and save on battery replacement costs.

Use Distilled water

If you own a lead acid battery, check your battery’s fluid level once a week. If it’s below the plates, refill with distilled water only. Avoid using tap water. Make sure that you put enough water to submerge the plates completely. Do not overfill it, or else it will leak.

Avoid overcharging

Overcharging heats the battery and decreases its life span. If you plan to put in the charger for longer times, opt for a smart auto shut-off charger, like the NOCO GENIUS1 that I recently purchased is designed for 6v/12v of any battery type.

Trickle charging

Trickle charging is the slow continuous charging which allows your battery to not lose power when it’s unused. This setting is best off-season or when you’re planning a trip.

Avoid accessories

golf cart

When longevity is the main focus, avoid carts with all the extra features like whistles, bells, headlights, fog lights, horns, etc.

Individual charging

If your batteries are not responding, try charging them individually for some time until they pick up the current.

Reduce strain

If you want your batteries to last longer, drive on flat surfaces. Avoid hills and slopes.

Prevention from damage

The inner parts of a battery can be damaged by acid. Apply anti-corrosive lubricants occasionally to prevent damage. Moreover, try covering your battery and putting your cart under the shade or in the garage to avoid heat and excess moisture.


Q) How do you know when golf cart batteries are dying?

A) A few signs of a dying golf cart battery are, slower charging, decreased power and acceleration, acid leakage, and corrosion of parts.

Q) How far can an electric golf cart go on a full charge?

A) The range of a cart depends upon its battery’s age, health, and maintenance. An average range can be between 25-40 miles.

Q) How long should a golf cart run on a full battery?

A) A golf cart can run anywhere between 45 and 90 minutes on a full battery.

Q) Should I charge my golf cart after every use?

A) Yes, charging the cart after every use is advisable. Even if you used the cart for 5-10 minutes only. It keeps your cart running and prevents it from getting cold. Also, you will not have to worry about charging the next time you decide on golfing.

Q) How long will 12-volt batteries last in a golf cart?

A) In a lead-acid type battery, they will last about 3-5 years. While in a lithium-ion type, 6-10 years.

Wrapping it up

Choosing the right batteries for your cart is an important decision to make. It is one of the most costly aspects of the game.

cart battery life

The best way to go about this is to consult an expert who can access your cart needs and suggest what works best for you. But whichever battery you get, and curious about how long do golf cart batteries last, its lifespan will ultimately depend upon how you care for it.

Almost all batteries last about 5-7 years but with proper maintenance, you can pull off 10 years with the same set of batteries.

Make sure you choose wisely and follow these tips to prolong your battery life. Have fun golfing!