Can I Use 3 12V Batteries in a Golf Cart? An Overview

In numerous beach towns and retirement communities, observing individuals operating electric golf carts is a frequent sight. Can I use 3 12v batteries in a Golf Cart? These carts are widely employed as maintenance vehicles in resorts, zoos, and parks. It is particularly beneficial for vacationers who prefer not to inhale fumes or be subjected to the noise produced by conventional gas-powered vehicles.

Golf carts can be temperamental machines, and frequently, their owners seek methods to enhance their power, speed, and overall performance. One approach to achieve this is by replacing the batteries.

It is possible to utilize three 12V batteries in a 36V golf cart. However, it is essential to note that this may hurt the cart’s performance and the battery lifespan. The outcome will largely be influenced by the specific batteries chosen for installation and whether they possess comparable power to the current 6V setup.

Understanding the Golf Cart batteries

Electric golf motors typically operate at 36 or 48 volts and draw 50-70 amps of current while cruising at 15 miles per hour. The current draw is higher during acceleration or when going uphill. To get stranded, golf cart batteries must provide a steady flow of high current for extended periods.

Golf cart batteries undergo complete charge and discharge cycles daily. It is essential to avoid draining the batteries below 50% as this can harm their lifespan and performance. Golf cart batteries are designed as deep-cycle batteries with enhanced durability to withstand continuous current draw and frequent deep discharging. They are available in 6, 8, and 12-volt configurations, which can be connected in series to achieve the desired voltage. For instance, a series connection of six 6-volt batteries would result in 36 volts, while using four 12-volt batteries would provide 48 volts. Of 36 volts golf carts, four 12-volt batteries would provide 48 volts golf carts.

Can You Replace 6 Volt Batteries With 12 Volt Batteries?

No, replacing 6-volt batteries with 12-volt batteries without adjusting the electrical system is not recommended. The voltage requirements differ, and mismatched storms can damage the equipment or cause safety hazards. Always use batteries specified by the manufacturer for optimal performance and safety.

6-volt batteries cannot be used interchangeably with 12-volt batteries. They serve different purposes and have unique characteristics that make them incompatible. 6-volt batteries are smaller and often used in flashlights or remote controls. They have lower capacity and cannot provide the same power as 12-volt batteries. Therefore, they are unsuitable for applications requiring higher voltage power, such as starting a car engine. 12-volt batteries are larger and heavier than 6-volt batteries.

Can I use 3 12v Batteries in a Golf Cart? 


Using three 12-volt batteries in a golf cart is possible, but ensuring the batteries are correctly connected is crucial to achieving the desired voltage and capacity. 

Confirm that the voltage matches the golf cart’s specifications and that the batteries are wired in series or parallel as needed. 

Consult the golf cart manual or seek professional advice to optimize performance and avoid potential damage to the electrical system. Always follow manufacturer recommendations for battery configuration.

Whether 36V or 48V, it is equipped with batteries with 6V, 8V, or 12V voltage options. To determine the configuration, you must open the battery compartment and examine the batteries. 

Please take note of the voltage indicated on each battery and calculate the total voltage by multiplying it by the number of batteries present. This calculation will reveal whether your golf cart operates at 36 or 48 volts. For instance, if you possess four 12-volt batteries, multiply four by 12, resulting in 48 volts, indicating a 48-volt golf cart. Your golf cart operates at 36 or 48 volts. For instance, if you possess four 12-volt batteries, multiply four by 12, resulting in 48 volts, indicating a 48-volt golf cart.

What is a golf cart battery’s capacity, measured in amp-hours?

The amp-hours measurement for DC is comparable to the batteries found in home solar-powered systems. Amp-hours (AH) indicate the battery’s capacity to provide power within one hour.

When deciding to switch from 6V batteries to 12V, it is crucial to consider this additional factor. It is essential to ensure that the 12V batteries have an equal or greater Ampere-hour (AH) rating than the 6V batteries. Please do so to provide sufficient power and endurance for your cart.

The amp-hour rating of a golf cart battery varies, but typical values range from around 150 to 250 amp-hours, depending on the specific battery model and type. It reflects the battery’s capacity to provide a certain amount of current over a specified time, which is crucial for determining the overall performance and runtime of the golf cart.

What types of Batteries do Golf Carts use?

Consider installing 12V batteries in a 36V cart. In that case, it is crucial to ensure that the specifications of the batteries are the same or similar to the ones sold initially with your coach.

There are four types of batteries that golf carts can use.

  1. AGM Lead Acid Batteries 
  2. Flooded Lead Acid – FLA batteries
  3. Lithium-Ion Golf Cart Batteries
  4. Gel Lead Acid Batteries 

The FLA batteries, similar to the ones found in older cars, are unsealed and need periodic topping up to ensure they continue to perform effectively.

The AGM and Gel Batteries are typically sealed and are generally preferred over FLA batteries due to their longer lifespan and maintenance-free nature. AGM batteries offer superior performance compared to Gel or FLA batteries.

Will three 12-volt batteries be as good as six 6-volt batteries in my golf cart?

The amount of amp hours the batteries have will be the determining factor.

Here is a unique example:

To increase the total amp hours in your 36-volt cart, you can switch out your current 6-volt 225 amp hour (ah) batteries with 12-volt 150-ah batteries.

To determine the new amount of total amp hours, follow this calculation:

By replacing six 6-volt 225 ah batteries, you will have 36 volts with 225 amp hours.

When using three 12-volt 150 ampere-hour batteries, the resulting voltage will be 36 volts with a capacity of 150 ampere-hours. Opting for the 6-volt option would provide better distance coverage than the 12-volt option. However, choosing the cheaper 12-volt option may be more sensible if you only require it for short distances.

The cost for six 6-volt batteries would amount to $1,026, providing a total amp-hour capacity of 225. On the other hand, opting for three 12-volt batteries would cost $810 but only yield a power of 150 amp hours. 

Although the prices are relatively similar, choosing the 6-volt option will result in a 50% increase in capacity.

5 Steps to Replace 6V Batteries with 12v Batteries

Once you have acquired your new set of 12V batteries, it is the appropriate time to uninstall the existing 6V batteries and substitute them with the three 12V batteries. Here is a step-by-step guide on how to accomplish this task.

1: Please open the battery compartment and inspect the wiring.

Please open the battery compartment and inspect the wiring of the batteries. Typically, they are connected in series, meaning that the negative cable from the first battery is connected to the positive terminal of the second battery, and so on.

Next, connect the positive cable from the golf cart to the positive terminal of the first battery and the negative cable from the golf cart to the negative terminal of the last connected battery.

2: Disconnect and Remove the 6V Batteries

To disconnect the batteries, use a spanner or pliers to loosen the nuts that secure the wires. It is essential to do this in sequence, starting with the first battery and then moving on to the second, third, and so on until all batteries are disconnected. 

Once detached, you can place the six 6V batteries on the ground or store them away.

3: Please insert and arrange the three 12V batteries.

Next, position the fresh 12V batteries in the designated battery compartment. It is essential to ensure adequate spacing between them, allowing for the connection of both the battery cables and golf cart cables to the terminals of the batteries.

4: Assign Battery Numbers and Connect 

To label each new battery, use a Sharpie to mark them as #1, #2, and #3. Connect the batteries in the following manner:

Connect the negative terminal of battery #1 to battery #2, and then connect the negative terminal of battery #2 to the positive terminal of battery #3.

5: Attach the batteries to the golf cart.

Next, attach the positive cable of the golf cart to the positive terminal of battery #1 and connect the negative cable of the golf cart to the negative terminal of battery #3.

This action finalizes the circuit, allowing power to flow from the golf cart’s power system through the batteries and back. Your newly configured 12V battery setup is now operational.

How many batteries do I need for a 36 Volt Golf Cart?

The quantity of batteries required for a 36-volt golf cart is contingent upon the specific make and model and its intended usage. To illustrate, in the case of a 48-volt coach primarily utilized for traversing hilly terrain. It may necessitate six 8-volt batteries.

If you own a 36-volt cart mostly used for driving on flat land. It should be enough to have four 12-volt batteries. However, seeking advice from the manufacturer or a knowledgeable golf cart dealer is recommended to determine the exact number of batteries.

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People also ask to know.

How long will an EZGO golf cart last?

In response to the primary inquiry, the average life expectancy of an electric golf cart accelerator generally ranges from 20 to 40 years. Similar to any other vehicle, this duration can vary depending on external influences. The level of maintenance and care provided.

What are the disadvantages of electric golf carts?

While electric golf carts offer eco-friendly and quiet transportation, they come with disadvantages. 

  • There are notable drawbacks of limited range per charge. Longer refueling time compared to gas carts, and the initial cost of purchasing electric models. 
  • The dependence on charging infrastructure and the environmental impact of battery production and disposal are factors to consider.
  • Despite these challenges, ongoing advancements in battery technology aim to address some of these issues and improve the overall appeal of electric golf carts.

How many 12-volt batteries for a golf cart?

If your cart is compatible with twelve-volt batteries, you will require three for a 36-volt coach. On the other hand, a 48-volt cart can be powered by either six-volt, eight-volt, or twelve-volt batteries. In the case of a 48-volt cart, you will need either eight six-volt batteries, six eight-volt batteries, or four twelve-volt batteries.

Final Note

Instead of six 6V batteries, a 36V golf cart can be equipped with three 12V batteries. This modification will result in a more affordable and powerful golf cart. 

We own a more mature EZGO electric golf cart. Recently, we received information that instead of the usual six 6-volt batteries, we could use three deep-cycle 12-volt batteries. Can anyone confirm if this is accurate and provide any additional details? However, there are drawbacks to consider. The range of the golf cart will be diminished, and it may achieve a different speed than a golf cart powered by six 6V batteries.

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