Golf carts can be a great way to get around at the cottage without climbing into your truck or ATV. But there’s no reason to stick with an off-the-lot model. Here are 10 ways you can make your ride truly cottage-ready.
1. Get it ready for winter
Yup, you can use your golf cart during the winter if you have the right gear. From cloth and plastic enclosures with zip-up doors to windshield wipers to heaters, you can customize your cart so it’s reasonably comfortable even in colder weather. Heck, you can even mount a snow plow on your cart. (If you do, please send us a picture.)
2. Add some heavy-duty tires
If you’re going to be driving on pavement, street tires are probably best for your cart, because they’re more efficient and will use less power. However, if you’re going to be bumping up and down off-road paths, get a pair of off-road tires. Their deeper treads and larger size will help you tackle the tough stuff.
3. Jack up your rig
Especially if you’re going to install off-road tires, but even if you’re not, getting a lift kit (which usually give you between two and six inches of lift) can give your cart a more rugged appearance and improve your driving experience. There are different types of lift kits, so make sure you pick up the one that’s right for your vehicle.
4. Install extra seating
You can carry more passengers (or get extra room for hauling equipment) if you install extra seating. Kits are available that will provide a couple of rear-facing seats and, depending on the type of kit you pick, fold down to give you a flat surface for carrying stuff.
5. Include lights
Are you going to be bumping along trails or paths in the dark? Then consider installing lights, both front headlights and rear brake lights. They’ll help you see and, more importantly, will ensure that pedestrians and other vehicles will see you. If your area is really dark, super-bright LED headlights for golf carts are available.You can also get an interior dome light, should you need a little extra illumination when hunting around for your dropped keys.
6. Install fenders
If you’re going to be using your golf cart when it’s rainy, or if your paths get muddy, then fenders will help you and your passengers stay mud-free. Let’s face it: it’s fun to go splashing through puddles. It’s not so much fun to have to do laundry afterwards.
7. Pump up the volume
It’s always nice to listen to music while you’re driving, isn’t it? A set of Bluetooth speakers in your golf cart means you’ll be able to carry your tunes with you as you’re from place to place. The best kits are weather-proof and offer surprisingly good sound. And while you’re installing speakers, look for a phone mount as well—just to avoid having your tune source bounce out of the cart.
8. Boost your battery
Consider upping your battery voltage from 36V to 48V—this should give you more speed. Depending on what type of battery you have, you may also need a new controller, and you may require a new charger, but you’ll gain speed and torque with the boosted voltage.
9. Buy brush guards
Brush guards mount on the front of your cart to protect the body (or “cowl”) and give your cart a rugged, off-road look. For added customization, you can get matching rocker panels to make it easier for passengers to get in and out of your cart.
10. Keep your beverages cool
Don’t underestimate the pleasure of not having to haul a cooler with you to enjoy a cold drink—after all, space is limited and coolers can get heavy. Installing a beverage cooler in your golf cart will keep things icy without a cooler taking up valuable seating.
What are your recommended golf cart upgrades?