How to Start the Charger on a Dead Battery on a Golf Cart


Golf carts are 36- or 48-volt models that use series wiring of 6- or 12-volt batteries to obtain the final voltage. The batteries are connected together so they add additional voltage for each battery wired in the sequence. Six 6-volt batteries are in a 36-volt golf cart, and four 12-volt batteries are in a 48-volt cart. The batteries charge in a series with a golf cart battery charger.

Things You'll Need

  • Baking soda
  • Water
  • Cup
  • Paintbrush
  • Towel
  • Flat-head screwdriver
  • Distilled water
  • Turn the key to the "Off" position on the golf cart dashboard.

  • Pour about 1 cup of water into a disposable cup. Add 2 tablespoons of baking soda and mix it thoroughly. Dip a paintbrush into the mixture and apply it to all of the battery terminals in the golf cart. Let the solution bubble off any corrosion and wipe it off with a towel.

  • Place a flat-head screwdriver under the fill well cap of a battery. Push the screwdriver handle down to pry the cap off. Observe the level of fluid in the battery. Pour distilled water in the fill well to raise the level to cover the metal plates inside. Repeat this step to fill each battery in the golf cart.

  • Open the golf cart hood to gain access to the batteries. Place the charger on the ground near the hood. Squeeze the alligator clip on the black lead from the battery charger and place it around the rear negative post on the left side rear battery. Release the clip so it holds onto the post. Repeat this action to place the red alligator clip on the positive post on the rear left side battery.

  • Plug the power cord of the charger into the golf cart's DC power adapter port. Let the batteries charge until the charger turns off. Some chargers will have no lights illuminated when the charging cycle is complete, while others may have a green light to show the end of the cycle.

  • Grasp the power cord and pull it out of the power adapter port. Squeeze the red alligator clip and remove it from the battery. Squeeze the black alligator clip and remove it from the battery.

Tips & Warnings

  • Use a battery charger that is rated for golf carts in the same voltage as the cart. For example, use a 48-volt charger on a 48-volt golf cart.

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  • Photo Credit golf cart image by Earl Robbins from
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