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How to Determine If Your Golf Cart is Operating On a 36 Volt Or 48 Volt Battery System

This is a common question that you will need to have the answer before you can determine what is the correct battery charger for your golf cart. The easiest way to figure it out is to go take a look at the your golf cart.

Where is the battery bank?

You will find the battery bank for your golf cart directly under the drivers seat. In some cases the battery system is quite large and will most likely be continued under the front nose cone area of popular carts like Gem cars or other 4 or more passenger golf carts. The bigger the cart the more batteries the cart will usually have to power the larger engine required to propel the extra passengers.

What do you see there?

EZGO Golf Cart-Battery Bank-Ok, so you pull the seat back and what do you see? Here is an example of a popular golf cart.

This picture is of a older style club car with a 36 volt battery system. Which is easily determined because you will count (6) six batteries.

Count the batteries – and the \”fill holes\” (cells)

Each battery has a total of (3) three fill holes (also called cells) Each hole or cell will have a value of 2 volts. So in this case we will know that these batteries are 6 volt batteries. Hence – 6x 6 volt battery = 36 volt system.

This simple equation will work with any golf cart or even other older style EV or electric vehicles operating on traditional lead acid batteries.

Another example

Here is another example to make sure you got it.

How many volts are found in this battery system found in a late model motor coach waiting for new batteries to be installed?

Original Battery Bank - 6volt Golf Cart Batteries- BatteryPete

Again 1,2,3 = 6 volts (2 volts x 3)

1,2,3,4,5,6 = 6 volts batteries = 36 volts total (6 volts x 6 batteries)

Hey, You are getting good at this! Here is one more for you.

Our shop cart test

Our shop cart has 4 batteries under the seat but each battery has (6) six filler holes or cells on each battery. Would this be a 48 volt system?

Yes, It is a 48 volt system because you have 6 cells per battery and you have 4 batteries. (6 cells x 2 volts = 12 volts)  (4 x 12 volt batteries = 48 volts).

Learning more

If you would like to learn more about your golf cart battery system maybe you would like to read about doing a Battery installation performed by BatteryPete on a EZGO Medalist Golf Cart

Helpful? Not clear enough? Please ask a question or leave a comment

If you found this article helpful or would like to give us some feedback – leave a comment.

17 thoughts on “How to Determine If Your Golf Cart is Operating On a 36 Volt Or 48 Volt Battery System”

  1. But if the cart in question did not come with any batteries, how do I determine if it is a 36 or a 48 volt?


    1. Thank you for your inquiry. You can determine the operating system voltage of your golf cart several ways.

      1. Get the year , make and model number off a serial plate on cart.

      2. Look for the motor controller in the cart usually under the seat on a Ezgo or just behind the seat on a Yamaha or Club Car. It will have a sticker with specs on it.

      3. You can also locate the solenoids on the cart which sometimes have a number or two on them to distinguish.

      Pete’s team

      1. Hi, I have a 48 v system on my golf cart, can I isolate 1 battery to power low amp LED lights or do I need a 48 to 12 v reducer. Thanks.

        1. Don – The right way to go is a voltage reducer…. but some people will hook the lights to 12 volts…. though not an option if your cart has 6x 8 volt batteries…



      I bought a cart that didnt have any batteries. How do I tell which voltage batteries to buy? Its a 2004 club cart

  2. What type charger do I need for a 36 volt ez go golf cart that will charge batteries that are dead and keep them charged

    1. Donna – Thank you for your inquiry. You will want to look at the new Summit II Golf Cart Battery Charger from Lester it will do all you ever wanted a charger to do…. The are IP66 Rated ( Meaning water proof ) universal design allows for multiple applications. Learn more here about this all new charger.

      Though regardless of the charger used all will require voltage present to start a charge cycle. If the batteries in the golf cart are completely dead the charger will not turn on…. So maybe the charge you have now is not actually bad , just does not know it is plugged into the golf cart to start a charge cycle because the batteries are completely dead… Here check out this how to article to learn how to get some energy back into the batteries.

      Hope this was helpful…
      Power On…

  3. Hi i have a 95 western golf cart and it came with 2 different size batteries. 2 3cell and 3 4cell batteries. Is this normal or should they be all tje same size. Thank u

    1. Jeff – You are correct they should all be the same. But someone obviously was trying to get the cart running or save a few bucks on batteries…. Though some western Golf Carts are 42 volt systems all the batteries will be the same size. Just more of them.

      Power On…

  4. David Shkurhan

    I have an older Yamaha golf cart with an older charger and with a 48 volt system. Also have 4 year old Trojan batteries. Whiling charging…what does it mean when there is a red light on showing charging and a red light on showing an….”abnormal cycle”…??? Is there something wrong with the a battery or batteries…or is there something wrong with the charger…???

    1. David – good questions… One which will require a little diagnostics. Get a digital volt meter… Charge it once… let it go thru the whole charge cycle. Now check voltage in the bank as a whole. Note it. Check voltage on each individual battery. Note it. Go use it… ( Attach DVM wires to the battery bank again and put in the seat to see the read out. Run it ( or floor it and see where the voltage drops … fully charged 48 volt system will be around 50-51 volts… in a 48v cart initial acceleration will make the bank drop into the low 40v range but should recover quite quickly 43, 44, 45, 46 etc… as the cart accelerates and over comes rolling resistance… If it does not recover or goes into the 30v range batteries are toast. ) if it passes that test. Run the batteries down say 30-40% . Check voltage. Note it. Then plug in battery charger and after a few minutes it will cycle, check the battery bank voltage again while charging. Note it. Note the time. let it run… come back and check it every 2 hours or so and re-test the voltage on the bank and the individual batteries. Note it. Also while in this process the hand touch test to each battery case will give you clues… Old batteries that have sulfation will get hotter than others due to the resistance in the battery. ( Where there is resistance there will be heat generation. ) After thought I will assume after the batteries are fully charged the first time you have checked the water (electrolyte levels) to ensure they are above the lead plates? This is something done say monthly and check and fill only after the batteries are fully charged.

      Also if you do find a battery that is bad at 4 years old it is recommended to change them all. ( If within a year you can get away with replacing just one battery. Otherwise should always do them all as the charging systems does not know specifics on each battery only as a bank and looks for voltage as it goes thru a charge cycle. Otherwise is you mix match batteries and age they will charge at different rates, hence some will be either over charged and others under charged… causing the performance to be lack luster and will also severely limit the life of the bank.

      Power On…

  5. Chad Montgomery

    I have a 2006 Ezgo TXT 36V with (6) 6V x 75AH
    batteries installed, I want to convert to lithium batteries but does the Amp Hours really affect the motor? I know run time would be lower with lower amp hour ratting but how about performance? Allied Battery has (3) 12V x 60AH, or 80AH that they say will handle the cart well. They guarantee 60AH batteries will last 35-40 miles per charge does this sound accurate (I’ll only be on flat roads)

    1. Chad – Thank you for your inquiry. The operating voltage is the same yes and technically the cart should operate just fine granted you do not have anything over stock components. As for range Ha… I doubt it – If they claim that they should willing to back that up – If it does not perform as suggested you can get your money back and they get their batteries back. Which I doubt they will order. Let’s face it you are dropping the capacity of the battery bank by over 60% ( 60-75Ah vs 225Ah ) I doubt a fully charged onld school 36v cart would do 35-40 miles with the 6x 6v batteries…. Surely not with 60-75Ah…

      Power On…

  6. I have read the above blog and great information has ben shared.

    My question is regarding a Club Car…Model number AQ0620

    I have replaced batteries and 3 of the 4, 12 volt batteries were connected in series (36 volts) and another battery was connected in parallel. Was this parallel connected battery a mistake or was someone trying to get more amp hours out of a 36 volt battery bank?

    Then do we have an issue with the 48 volt battery maintainer/charger with this system voltage. The maintainer has charged/maintained the batteries with now overload issues…as far as I know….
    Please give me some guidance…….

    1. Thank you for your inquiry…. Yes it sounds like the batteries are not connected correctly…. they should all be in series… positive, negative, positive, negative and so on… leaving one positive terminal open and one negative terminal…. which will give you 48v…. the system you have in your club car will not operate on 36v as it is a 48v system…

      Pete’s team

  7. I was told that you should never park an electric golf cart over top of a grass area , always park on concrete. Is this true or what?

    1. Bruce – Gas and electric golf carts where designed specifically to drive and park on a grass course for golf. Never an issue. Even now that other uses are becoming popular for the golf cart…

      Pete’s team

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