At Isle Golf Cars, we get this question all the time. Unfortunately, it is one of the hardest to answer. The correct answer is: “It all depends on how you take care of them.” Why is this? Well, deep cycle battery packs require some basic maintenance which includes maintaining the correct electrolyte (water) levels while ensuring the battery pack is fully charged and never left in a discharged state (plugging it in after each use or a round of golf).
Aside from maintenance practices affecting the life span of golf cart batteries, usage becomes the next biggest factor. Battery packs in golf course fleet applications get much higher usage on average than a golf cart owned by a private owner. Fleet carts get used for 2-3 rounds of golf per day during the peak seasons while private carts tend to be 3-5 rounds of golf per week (sometimes more depending on the number of golfers using the cart). That all being said, properly maintained battery packs in fleet carts tend to last about 4-6 years while private owners tend to get about 6-10 years out of their battery packs.
Other major factors include the type of options on the cart that may increase the draw from the battery pack. Options such as headlights and taillights or an optional 19.2 mph speed code 4 can really affect the overall range, life span, and performance of deep cycle golf cart batteries.
If you live on or near the golf course in a golf course community and drive to and from the golf course, this also greatly affects the battery pack. In some instances, driving to the golf course, doing the round of golf, and then driving home is the equivalent to 2-3 rounds of golf for a fleet cart. Owners who use their cart in this manner tend to see shorter battery life spans.
You can always tell the age of your Trojan deep cycle battery by simply looking for the two digits on the negative post of the battery. The letter indicates the month it was produced in (A=Jan, B=Feb, C=Mar…) and the number indicates the year it was manufactured in (9=2009, 0=2010, 1=2011…). For example, a batter stamped A9 was manufactured in January of 2009.