How To Make Your Golf Cart Go Faster (Speed Hacks Guide)

Whether new or old, a golf cart offer may only offer up to 15 mph speed. While this speed may be great for most golfers, sometimes the golf cart may develop problems with some key components and become sluggish.

Also, the 15 mph will be too slow for those on the open road, necessitating the need to amp it up.

This guide will take you through the various tips on making your golf cart go faster.

Read on.

fast golf cart in speed chase on road
A faster golf cart can help you out in many situations.

Upgrade To a Higher Voltage Motor

Voltage is directly correlated to speed. That means replacing the existing motor with a higher voltage motor can increase the speed of your golf cart.

However, it’s important to note that an increase in the motor voltage may compromise the number of amps in the motor, limiting its torque.

Assume a situation where a 7 hp motor is attempting to draw 650 amps to itself, and you have the 400 amps controller in your golf cart. In that case, the controller won’t allow for current passage beyond 400 amps.

To avoid the bottleneck situation, you should upgrade the motor and the high-speed controller simultaneously, as shown in the following examples, to upgrade the speed and the torque.

Motor horsepower (HP)Adjustable Controller size (amps)
3.5 to 4.9400 amps
5 to 7 hp550 
7 and more650

Work For Higher Torque

If you are experiencing low speeds in rough and steep terrains, it could be because your ride is not powerful enough to overcome the challenging terrain at the standard speed.

That may take increasing the number of revolutions your golf cart motor can make in a minute (RPM), as it would translate to more power for tackling challenging terrains at an incredible speed.

You can increase the RPMs in your golf cart by:

  1. installing a motor with a higher RPM rating.
  2. Supplying more current to your existing motor by changing the speed controller.

Change The Speed Sensor

A speed sensor is a small device that detects your driving speed and then relays the information to the high-speed controller.

The speed controller, in turn, detects and adjusts the power you need to maintain your driving speed.

When faulty, this device may read at a slower speed and send low power to the motor, slowing the cart down.

The failure of the speed sensor may come from:

  • The speed magnet: A defective speed magnet may not keep up with speed, and the chances of slowing your ride are high
  • Accumulation of dirt and mud:  Though made strong, the sensor may not work efficiently if it’s covered with excess dirt and mud 
  • Age-related problems: Like many other parts, the speed sensor is not immune to wear and tear 

To reclaim your golf cart speed, you need to inspect it to correct any of the above issues or replace the entire speed sensor.

We have written about the fastest golf cart on the planet if you want to check out the article.

Charge or Replace Your Batteries

Is your golf cart slowing down?

Perhaps, its motor is not receiving enough juice from the batteries. And the problem is likely to result if the batteries are low or have low voltage issues.

To diagnose whether a low battery is an issue:

  • Use a voltmeter to test continuity in all battery connections
  • If the connections to the battery are okay, test the juice level in your golf cart battery
  • Turn on the golf cart. And switch it to neutral to avoid running over something or someone during the tests
  • Hold the voltmeter on a battery and ask a friend to press the accelerator to test its power output
  • Repeat the process on all the batteries in the battery pack to get the total voltage (this should either be 36 or 48 volts depending on your golf cart model).
  • Any reading deviating from the two voltages above may indicate a problem with the power output.
  • If the battery level is reading low or out of charge, you might need to charge the batteries and test their voltage after setting them.

Replace the batteries if they cannot hold power anymore.

💡 Golfible Tip: When it comes to replacing the entire battery pack, we advocate going for higher-voltage batteries to increase the output of your golf cart motor.

You need to confirm the golf cart voltage requirements before upgrading your battery voltage.

You can find information about the voltage of the golf cart on the battery sticker, golf cart motor, user manual, or even calculate the voltage on your own.

💡 Golfible Tip: We recommend upgrading the voltage using batteries made exclusively for golf carts, as they feature the best safety features and power holding capacity.

To change the batteries:

  • Slide the front seat of your golf cart to access the battery pack
  • Open the battery bank and study the connections before disconnecting them (you can take a snap of the battery connections to avoid a wrong connection. 
  • Disconnect all connections leading to the battery for their easy removal
  • Remove all the existing batteries and replace them with the new ones
  • Reconnect all the wire harnesses to the batteries and close the battery bank
  • Replace your seat with its position

We recommend you change all the golf batteries if one of them has failed to avoid issues like battery imbalance. We also wrote about how long cart batteries last which is available through the link.

Replace the Forward/ Reverse Switch

Another reason your golf cart might become sluggish is a faulty forward and reverse switch. A forward/reverse switch is responsible for switching the golf cart to move forward or backward.

When defective, it can slow down your cart as it becomes confused as to which direction you want it to move.

To test whether your switch is defective:

  • Test all the wire harnesses with a multimeter to the switch to ensure they have continuity 
  • With the brakes on, turn on the cart and switch the forward/reverse switch in the forward position.
  • Press the go pedal on your golf cart and test the full voltage in your voltmeter

A full voltage at forwarding mode means that your switch is operating optimally.

Otherwise, you need to replace the switch.

Upgrade The Golf Cart Tires

If you still have the 8-inch golf cart tires on your ride, you are missing a great deal of golf cart speed.

The good news is that you can change the smaller wheels for larger ones of 20 to 24 inches in diameter and increase your golf cart speed.

The installation process is pretty simple.

All you need is to remove the existing wheels with a wrench, jack, and other tools and then replace them with the new larger-diameter wheels.

Sometimes, the new wheels may be too large to allow sufficient space for suspension in the fender opening.

In that case, you have to install a lift kit to give enough allowance for the suspension and rotation.

For best results, you should keep the newly installed tires properly inflated to ensure good traction and easy handling.

Don’t know how much pressure a tire should hold?

Check the sidewall of your new wheels for the inflation level.

📢 Need To Know: Using too heavy tires may weigh down your golf cart. Ensure you stick to the recommended tire weight. If you must use heavy wheels, ensure you also upgrade the motor so that it can spin at the same or higher RPM.

Work On the Golf Cart Weight

When using your golf cart, its underside may accumulate mud, caked-on particles, and stones, among other particles.

If you are not keen on cleaning these materials, they may become weighty and slow your ride with time.

One of the efficient ways of cleaning a golf cart’s undersides is to use the nozzle of a powerful pressure washer to clean off the mud and other accumulated debris after every three days of use.

Do this also in other hard-to-reach areas in your cart.

Besides cleaning, you need to declutter your golf cart to give it a healthy weight.

Before you set out for any trip, check out your golf cart carriage, the top cover, and other spaces for anything that you may not need and is likely to add weight to your ride.

The lightweight will allow the motor to rotate the transmission system, allowing for more speed.

The Don’ts of Upgrading a Golf Cart

Below are several things you should avoid when upgrading your golf cart speed.

Don’t Try Something You Are Unsure Of

Upgrading the golf cart’s speed should not be a try-and-error process.

Some parts like the motor are so delicate to be handled by an amateur.

If you don’t know the how of a given process, you better call an expert to do it for you.

After all, working with an expert will cost less than the cost of replacing a component you may damage with your trial-and-error techniques.

Don’t Buy Replacement Parts from An Unreliable Seller

When you go out shopping, make sure you only buy products from reliable sellers.

One way of gauging the reliability of a given seller is checking their online reviews. Alternatively, you can visit the social media pages and ask for insights from previous customers.

Go for brands with the highest number of positive reviews.

Frequently Asked Questions About Increasing the Golf Cart Speed

Can I Make My Golf Cart Go Faster Without Upgrading?

Yes. You can make your sluggish golf cart go faster by:
– Ensuring continuity of the batteries
– Maintaining them clean and clutter-free
– Refilling the battery water
– Maintaining optimal tire pressure
– Charging your batteries, etc.

Is 30 Mph Fast For A Golf Cart?

It depends on your speed needs. Typically, most golf carts hit up to 15 mph. However, you can increase your golf cart speed to 30mph or more by adhering to the guidelines we have outlined in the article.

What Does A Speed Controller Do On A Golf Cart?

A speed controller in your golf cart regulates the amount of current that reaches the motor from the batteries. Adjusting the controller with the motor helps avoid conflicting situations of speed and torque that could result if you upgrade the motor alone.

How Much Does It Cost To Make A Golf Cart Go Faster?

The most significant change you can effect to improve your golf cart speed is upgrading the motor with a high torque/speed electric motor. And the entire job can cost you up to $1000, including labor.

How Fast Can A 48 Golf Cart Go?

A 48v golf cart can do up to 14 mph. However, you can amp its speed up to 24mph by following the guidelines we have outlined in the guide.

Why Is My Electric Golf Cart So Slow?

Typically, most electric golf carts will slow down if their motors are not receiving enough power supply from the batteries.

The low power problem could emanate from faulty sensors, high-speed controllers, lack of continuity in the batteries, low batteries, etc. Your golf cart is not immune to these problems.

Your golf cart may also slow if its forward/ reverse switch is defective.

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Charl is a full-time writer who has been with Golfible since 2019. He is an avid golfer and tech enthusiast. When not writing, he tries to squeeze in a round of golf or escape to the mountains.

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