PRLog - Jan. 11, 2013 - As you know the price of gas is unstable and could spike out of control at any moment and the electric car is becoming more and more popular as many cities have installed charging stations along the highways and car manufactures are not hesitating in a race to see who can design the best one. There are also new laws that have been passed that will require gas stations to have charging stations for the accommodation of electric cars due to go into effect in the very near future. So why is the The State of Florida now making the gas golf cart street legal? We wanted to ask a few professionals how it might manipulate the market and how it could really change things in the Florida golf cart industry. In talking with Tony Colangelo, known as The Villages Golf Cart Man he enlighten me on the strain it has put on the local dealers and what it means for the people of The Villages. “Gas or Electric?” he says “That’s the first thing they ask me. Most of them have no idea what they want or need. Even the ones that think they know really don’t know except for what they are used to.” We spent quite a few minutes just talking about my needs and the types of usage that is typical in the everyday life of The Villagers. He explained the advantages and disadvantages of gas vs. electric and vise versa. Without a doubt there are differences and some of them might not be obvious. I was inclined to ask Tony “The Golf Cart Man” which one would he choose? He answered very canning by saying “both of them”. This might be the answer you would expect from a golf cart dealer trying to sell golf carts. However, he broke down the list of differences good vs. bad on each element of the units and I think I see what he means about owning one of each.
The Golf Cart Man in a 39 Roadster LSV
GAS GOLF CARTS: If you don’t like the smell of gasoline in your garage or the smell of burnt fuel fumes once in awhile depending on the wind direction as you drive. Then this kind of cart is not an option. The carts are hard to get started in cold weather and once running the fumes can be unbearable when you have your wind/rain enclosure down and sealed. On the positive side, the distance you can travel is unlimited as long as you have gasoline and it does take much because golf carts are known to get 60-80 mile per gallon. This is the main reason why avid golfers and people who use them for their main transportation really like gas over electric and they will greatly benefit from the new laws. Gas carts do take a lot more maintenance and there are many moving parts like an automobile such as starter and alternator. These components are known to wear out after a certain life expectancy. The over all advantage is just gas and go without any range anxiety that an electric car can give its driver and passengers.
ELECTRIC GOLF CARTS: There isn’t a smell of fuel. They run quietly and are smooth driving and cost next to nothing to operate and require much less maintenance than a gas golf cart. However the draw backs are important to know before you buy an electric cart. Such as limited distance and range, since most golf carts get 20-25 miles per charge you would need to get an extended range package to get farther distance. An electric golf carts range is based on temperature, terrain and speed. The hotter it is and the more hills in combination with how fast you go will determine the range and distance you can go on a single charge; which takes about 8-12 hours of charging to be fully charged. That is if your batteries have a good life left in them. They are only rated for a 4 year life and then you must replace them. However, there are many ways to extend the life of a set of golf cart batteries by taking care of them by using solar regeneration, electric trickle chargers in combination with the main charging unit and using battery filling systems to maintain the correct water levels. This could extend the life for as long as 7-8 years. Because golf carts use deep cycle batteries the water will evaporate when charging and being place under a load so they must have a certain water level maintained in the batteries to keep the life in them. Which can be somewhat dangerous if not being too careful since the water is also mixed in the battery with Sulfuric Acid. So get a filling system and maybe a solar panel with a trickle charger unit this might be your kind of cart. Just remember to charge it at when you’re done driving it.
The Villages Golf Cart Man has everything you need and will take as much time you need to explain all of the components and how they work for gas or electric. You can visit their web site www.VillagesGolfCartMan.com and find many pages of information about golf cart batteries and the accessories needed for making a golf carts street legal. Simple upgrades to your cart will be needed to meet these requirements that the DMV Department of Motor Vehicles requires. Now that any kind of cart can be street legal (LSV) all you need is a licensed Motor Vehicle Dealer like The Golf Cart Man to register and add the accessories. DMV requires a dealer to certify the application and they can apply for tag and title as long as you have LSV (low speed vehicle) insurance. Golf Cart Man’s web site has some links for insurance companies that can offer this policy. Many companies don’t cover LSV’s and many are just downright overpriced. Be selective and get many quotes.
LSV’s are setting our futures trends. Gasoline will soon be an alternative fuel once electric and solar regeneration claims even more technology as time moves forward. Finding a cart for you can be a lot easier if you know a little about them. I spent a short time with Tony Colangelo, The Golf Cart Man and got a quick lesson that was very informing and saw some beautiful custom carts at their showroom in The Villages on the historic side at 110 LaGrande Blvd, Lady Lake, Fl. 32159. After speaking with Tony, I am convinced that owning one of each, an electric golf cart and a gas golf cart is actually not a bad idea.