Golf cart maintenance should be as regular as that of your personal vehicle. General check-ups every week and a good tuneup every few months extend a golf cart's life and keep it in good working condition. Some items that need regular care are the cart's brake system, engine, tires and suspension.
Batteries are an electric cart's energy source, so their maintenance is crucial. Inspect the battery first for dirt, grass and spilled battery acid, which can lead to poor or disconnected cable connections. A crusty white powder on the connectors is an indicator of battery corrosion. The cables keep the batteries working together so they must remain clean. If you find a connector damaged, you can replace it yourself following the owner's manual instructions or take it to a professional.
Washing off the top of the batteries every week will keep them working at peak performance and extend the life of the batteries. A solution of about 2 tablespoons of baking soda per gallon of water will neutralize the acid, but it does not clean the batteries. Drippings from improperly washed batteries can stain finished concrete surfaces. Hose down between the batteries, all sides of the battery racks and the body panel's walls, especially if they are metal. Use an old paintbrush to scrape away the residual scum.
After the batteries are cleaned, check the water levels. The electrolyte water levels in each battery cells is important to generating power. If the leaded plates inside the battery are not submerged, use distilled water to bring it back to an appropriate level. This level should be just below the cell collar, or about an inch beneath the top of the battery. Overfilling this cell is a common mistake that shortens a battery's life, spills acid everywhere and causes more maintenance problems.
Maintain tire pressure at about 20 to 25 PSI. Tire repair foam from an aerosol can will not permanently fix a slow-leaking tire. Have a professional plug the leak, which costs about $5. The tire tread's wear should be uniform across the tire's width. If the center is over worn, the tire is probably overinflated. If the tire's outer edges are worn, the sidewalls may be cracked or air is leaking from a hole caused by a nail or golf tee. Your golf cart may need a front-end inspection and alignment if one tire shows more wear than another.