Golf Car Maintenance & Care in Arizona
Normal golf car maintenance service of your vehicle is very important to care for the brakes, front end parts, lubrication points and other issues common to the wear and tear of your golf car.
Rule of thumb: Maintenance service should be performed at least once a year. If you use the car more than 3 times a week most weeks of the year you need to have it serviced twice a year and consider picking up an additional hobby. 🙂
Golf Cars of Arizona offers the most extensive experience and technical know-how in Southern Arizona and stands ready to provide for all your service, repair and accessory needs. If you have any questions or need your car serviced please feel free to contact our teams at Golf Cars of Arizona 520-GOLF-CAR
Terry Hill Operations Manager / Technical Advisor Golf Cars of Arizona (520) 465-3227
Washing with soap and water is normally all that is required. Some of the tougher stains can be removed with Simple Green or Orange clean but may require scrubbing. Waxing the car occasionally with a carnauba wax will extend the paint finish life.
Mild dish soap and water with a soft towel is all that should be used. Again stains can usually be removed with Simple Green or the equivalent. Some stains cannot be removed. NEVER use chemicals as they will stain the vinyl and damage the plastic windows. Don’t use Windex or ammonia-based cleaners on the windows as they will cause murkiness and loss of clarity. When putting the enclosures up for storage it is best to roll the units up instead of folding them. Try to avoid folding the plastic windows as they will crease. If you do get a crease, sometimes a blow dryer will remove them but be very cautious as a melted window is also hard to see through.
Never wipe dry dirt or dust off your windshield (or the vinyl windows) as they will scratch easily and there is no easy way to remove the scratches once there. Wet the windshield first than use a soft rag and mild dish soap and water. Never use Windex or ammonia-based cleaners as the plexiglass reacts to the cleaner and permanent damage can occur. There are some good plexiglass cleaners and polishes available if needed but none will restore a scarred windshield.
Golf car tires leak! As with the tires on your automobile, your golf car tires will lose air pressure over time. Unlike your automobile, it may not be noticeable. The low weight load and construction of these tires are such that they will stay on the rim and not appear flat even with very low air pressure. A low tire can cause significant drag resulting in high power draw and poor handling. It is a good practice to check the tires (or have them checked) every 6 months. Most tires will have a pressure rating printed on the side wall. Standard tires will call for 22 psi max and should run 18-20 psi. Low profile tires (usually on fancy rims) will run 30psi though you do need to check to be sure of the recommended pressure. It is a bad idea to run standard (18-8.50×8) tires at 30 psi as it causes the tires to lose traction on grass and wet roads and causes excessive wearing of the center tread.
Gas and oil:
If you have a gas powered golf car, regular gas is fine and premium is of no benefit, however, it may be easiest to use in your golf car whatever you use in your automobile (fill both your car and gas can at the same time). Because of the high temps here in the desert 10w-40 or 15w-40 oil is recommended. The spec for the oil from the manufacturer doesn’t account for using the car in desert heat. Oil changes should be done once a year or every 50-60 engine hrs. depending on how often you use the car. Be careful to not over-fill your engine crankcase. Over-filling can result in oil getting into the air filter area causing flooding, fouling, and fire. Many dipsticks used in golf cars engines are inaccurate. Depending on your engine brand it may be necessary to fill the crankcase with the exact proper amount of oil and mark your dipstick appropriately. Ezgo and Yamaha dipsticks are particularly prone to being inaccurate. Air filters are of concern in the desert because of dust issues. Keeping your air filter clean will keep the dirt out of your engine leading to better life expectancy.
Charging and battery care:
Batteries should be charged after 30-40 minutes of actual driving. This is approximately the time needed to drive an 18 hole golf course, not counting the distance or time between your home and the course. When a golf car is used for neighborhood transportation this becomes more important as over-charging is as bad on batteries as under-charging. Most newer battery chargers are automatic shut-off chargers. These chargers turn off when the batteries are charged, however, most will not turn on without disconnecting the charger from the car and require restarting the charger to recharge. The batteries should be charged every 2 to 3 weeks even if the car is not used.
Watering batteries should be done as needed. Checking the batteries for water level once a month is generally sufficient for maintaining proper water levels. The water level should be maintained ½ way between the plates and the bottom of the fill level indicator. See picture on rear page. Filling batteries full to the fill level indicator will result in acid coming out of the battery caps during charging resulting in excessive corrosion and loss of electrolyte, causing damage to the vehicle and reduction in battery life. As per the picture, ¼ inch of water over the plates is the minimum amount of water acceptable in the batteries. Note: If you have a single point watering system it is important to check the valve function periodically(6 months to a year) to ensure proper valve function. If the valve ceases to function correctly the water level will be too high or too low. When checking monthly for proper water level look at the top of the batteries for moisture or dirt. If either is observed it is time to wash off the batteries. This can be done with a garden hose. Baking soda in solution with water can be used to neutralize excess acid if needed. Once corrosion is observed on the battery posts, cables, or hold down rods water, with or without baking soda, is probably not sufficient to remove the corrosion. The affected parts will need to be removed and replaced or thoroughly cleaned and reinstalled. It is important to check the battery cable nuts for proper torquing whenever you water the batteries. A loose cable nut will result in the over-heating of the cable and battery lug leading to melt-down and destruction of the battery lug requiring replacement of the battery. Proper watering, cleaning, and charging will provide the most possible life out of your batteries.
Long-term storage: Gas cars: If leaving your gas powered golf car for extended periods of time it is a good idea to put a gas stabilizer in the fuel. (Sta-Bil is an excellent product widely available) You will need to put the stabilizer in the fuel and run the car some time to ensure its presence throughout the fuel system. If there are accessories on the car that drain the battery you will need to disconnect the negative battery post. Electric cars: The best alternative for long-term storage is to have someone check the water level and charge the batteries every month during your absence. The best alternative, if no one can check the water while you are gone, is to obtain a micro-processing maintenance charger and leave it attached to the car. Many newer chargers claim to have a maintenance function but most will charge in such a way as to use excessive water during the storage time. The maintenance chargers are designed to maintain the charge with low amperage so as to reduce water consumption. A good charger should maintain your batteries for 6 months without using all the water above the plates. It is important to fill your batteries completely (up to the fill indicator) before storing with the maintenance charger for long periods (3 or more months). If you have a single point filling system on your battery pack it will NOT allow sufficient water to be in the batteries and removal of the caps and manual filling will be necessary. This is the only time you will fill batteries to that level.
The tires on your car will lose air during your absence so make sure you fill them to proper pressure before you leave and before using the car on your return.