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CLUB CAR CONTROLLERS AND TROUBLESHOOTING
A Club Car controller, also known as a speed controller, has the basic function of being the brain and speed control or power management system for the Club Car golf cart. When there is no controller, it means batteries drainage is at its peak, as motors can operate independently at their high speed, which would gradually increase stress on the mechanical and electrical components and let motors and batteries degrade quicker. This is what gives the motivation to design a reliable and yet sophisticated control system to ensure safe, smooth and durable Club Car operation. In the old days of golf carts, a series of solenoids were used which was not an efficient means for battery management.
As today’s technology does not use full-on DC Motors, instead there exist Brushless DC Motors and AC Motors by way of which operators have the option to drive the Club Car at varying speeds. In this way, today’s modern speed controller’s meters out the battery voltage and current to the Club Car motors on the basis of numerous input parameters such as; throttle, brakes and twist grips. Hence, the operator of the Club Car would be able to control the speed at which Club Car is moving by the way of acceleration and deceleration cycles. Following are some of the main functions of the controller, irrespective of the type of the motor:
- Limiting the current to the motor so that both motor and the controller could be protected in case of motor stalling and overloading.
- Limiting the current drawn from the battery so that battery could be protected from excessive discharging and damage to the cells of the battery.
- Battery health and status monitoring.
- Thermal protection to protect the controller from overheating.
- The Rate of acceleration to determine how fast would Club Car accelerate when full throttle is applied.
- Throttle mapping so as to set the response profile of the speed input.
- Device feedback support.
- Phase Advance Information so that in case of AC Motor is used, then higher speed feature of them could efficiently be used.
TYPES OF CLUB CAR CONTROLLERS
From the technical perspective, there are two broad categories in which controls could be categorized. If you are planning to modify your Club Car or planning to replace the controller of it, then following is the stuff you need to keep in mind while undergoing replacement of Club Car parts and controller:
200-300 AMP CONTROLLER
200-300 Amp controller would be the perfect one if you intend to use or using a Club Car for normal trips in your neighborhood or normal golf course trips. This controller is best suited for two passenger Club Cars. Salient features of this 200-300 Amp controller are as follows:
- This controller can easily be paired with small 2 HP or 5 HP motor.
- This controller is very common in the 36 Volt Club Cars.
300-600 AMP CONTROLLER
This controller is best suited for those Club Cars which have rear seats and the cargo bed. For the Club Cars to be used for the trips involving steep climb hills, 300-600 Amp controller is highly recommended. This controller is ideal for the Club Cars having four passenger capacity and to be used for carrying heavy loads or to climb a steep grade. Salient features of 300-600 Amp controller are as follows:
- 300-600 Amp controller can easily be paired with large motors ranging from 5 HP to 10 HP.
- 300-600 Amp controller is highly recommended and commonly used in both 36 V and 48 V Club Cars.
These controllers can easily be configured and programmed as per the requirements. The key advantage of this controller is that; programmable controllers produces 60% less heat than other controllers. Programmable controllers are epoxy potted or in other words Club Car controller troubleshooting, which let controller failure due to the vibration and water corrosion get easily eliminate.
WHICH CONTROLLER IS BETTER? ORIGINAL OR AFTERMARKET?
Club Car controllers are engineered for the purpose of durability and efficiency. This is the reason even Club Cars made in 70’s or 80’s is still working fine, provided proper maintenance and care is done. In a nutshell, both original and aftermarket controllers are fine with only one exception i.e. price difference. Generally, Club Cars are made with highly precise and quality ensured engineering practices, so you can easily trust the aftermarket controllers if you don’t want to spend much. As most of the Club Car parts are not changed much in a given model or year and it’s up to your buying capacity whether you want to buy the original OEM controller or an aftermarket model. Original controllers come with the warranty and this adds to their advantages. However, aftermarket controllers can come with a warranty depending on which one you buy. You may also buy a used controller, but be sure to inspect the maintenance history and the level of care while buying them. Be sure to carefully inspect a used controller if you are going to buy one. It is not our recommendation you do though as too consumers have ended up with a dud of a controller within the 1st year.
CLUB CAR CONTROLLER REPLACEMENT
There are numerous reasons for the Club Car controller repair and replacement including customization of Club Car, upgrade of motors or Club Car controller upgrade with respect to the needs. But, the key reason is the degradation or complete stalling of the controller. It is one of the prominent factors due to which controller needs to be replaced. As a controller in the Club Car or golf cart is made up of electrical and electronics components, it degrades gradually over time with the frequency of usage. But usage is not the only factor, controllers and the Club Car parts may also degrade in case of non-usage. For example, if a golf cart is left for no use for a longer period, then capacitors used in the golf cart controller tends to dry up which leads to a malfunction of the controller internally.
GOLF CART CONTROLLER TROUBLESHOOTING
Due to their expense, you want to be sure your controller is the major reason and problem with your Club Car. First off, if your controller is bad, your vehicle won’t run. However, there are other reasons that could lead to your vehicle not running. Here are a few quick troubleshooting tips.
- Make sure it isn’t your batteries! If your batteries are old and dead, then your golf cart will not operate. Charge them fully first and attempt to drive the unit.
- If your batteries are fully charged and your vehicle won’t run, when you press on the accelerator pedal, then you should hear a clicking sound which will indicate the solenoid is engaging and allowing power to flow to your controller. If there is no distinct clicking sound, then check your solenoid. Also, it could have to do with something in the accelerator device as well. But, we can eliminate the controller as being defective.
- If your batteries are fully charged and you get a clicking sound ensuring the solenoid is allowing power to flow to the controller, then you can begin inspecting the controller
- Check all the wiring and signs of disconnection or damage. Also, most controllers will have an operation light that will begin to flash a morse code that will unveil the secrets of the problem. If that is the case and all of the above have been eliminated, then you are getting closer to determining it is the controller.
If you do get a troubleshoot code off the controller, then we recommend finding the corresponding Club Car manual and identify the correct part number to find info for the manufacturer of the controller which will tell you what the morse code on the controller is indicating is wrong.
GOLF CART CONTROLLER REPLACEMENT
Alright, you have determined it is time to replace the controller. Before beginning, be sure to disconnect all power from the batteries. Next, be every careful to note which wire goes wire and also don’t allow them to touch! Power may be disconnected, however it is not worth the additional risk to fry a controller. Lastly, when tightening the wires back onto the controller, do not use power tools. Use hand tools so that you don’t over tighten and potentially strip the connection. A lot of controllers use a softer metal for better conductivity.
LASTLY, PLEASE BUY THE GOLF CART CONTROLLER FROM US!
We want to be as technical detailed as possible to help you repair your golf cart, but we will not survive as a business if we do not make sales. Therefore, if you valued this article and are looking to buy parts, then we hope you make the choice to purchase from us so that we can grow and serve you even better in the future.
The history and expertise of CartPros.com in the Club Car and golf carts/small electric vehicles dates back to 2007 and we have been serving our customers for a decade with reliable, durable and high-quality parts for their Club Cars. We are selling a wide variety of Club Car controllers with different specifications depending on the different models of Club Cars. Searching tool at the website of CartPros.com will navigate you to the exact controller you are looking for with the ease of just one click. You can find different Club Car controllers depending on your requirements and specifications.
Other than that, to save you from the hassle of hit and try method to find the relevant part for your Club Car, professional and competent team of CartPros.com have developed the CartFit searching tool. You just need to feed the model of Club Car, year and engine and CartFit will navigate you to the exact product that will work on your golf cart or utility unit.
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