What are Golf Cart Lift Kits?
Golf cart lift kits are fitted to many custom carts for sale that you will find advertized in our classified ads. But what does a lift kit do?
A lift kit raises the ride height allowing more ground clearance below the floor. This makes it easier to drive over rough terrain or obstacles such as rocks. A lifting kit also gives increased clearance that allows larger wheels and tires to be fitted, which is a very popular upgrade for many owners who want their cart to sport a custom look. Larger wheels and tires may also be necessary for driving off-road as all-terrain tires tend to be a larger fitment size than stock tires.
Why do I need to fit a lift kit?
There are many different situations as to why you would need to install a lift kit to your cart depending on how you intend to use it. The amount of additional suspension lift, and therefore ride height, provided by the lift kit you fit will also depend on the intended application.
- Fitting larger wheels & tires – This is one of the most popular reasons to fit a lift kit. Many owners like the look of larger alloy wheels fitted to a cart, especially if it’s a street legal cart. If a suspension lifting kit is not fitted, the larger wheels would allow the tires to rub and catch on the fenders or body work when encountering a bump. Over time this would damage the tires and eventually result in a puncture. The suspension kit would “lift” the chassis further above the axle line allowing the larger wheels and tires to clear the bodywork. The amount of lift required would depend on the size of wheels installed and the expected suspension travel that is likely to be encountered when the cart is driven.
- Using the cart off-road – Many owners use their cart for recreational purposes, such as hunting or fishing, and as such are likely to be driving out in the wilderness on dirt tracks. To better cope with dirt tracks fitment of a lifting kit is advisable so that any ruts, undulations, rocks or other obstacles can be driven over without damaging the underside of the vehicle. It is always advisable to fit all-terrain tires for off-road driving as they have chunky treads which provide improved traction in slippery or muddy conditions.
- Carrying heavy loads – If you have fitted a rear cargo bed for carrying equipment or supplies then the additional weight will drop the rear drive height, possibly causing the rear of the cart to ground-out when driving. To negate the drop in ride height when heavily loaded a lifting kit will raise the suspension height allowing heavy loads to be carried without any issues. If your use a utility vehicle on a golf course, on a farm or ranch, or in an industrial plant then it is likely that it will carry heavy loads and require some sort of suspension lift.
- Carrying passengers and luggage – Many golf carts are used in a commercial setting to transport several passengers around airports, hotel complexes and golf resorts. Four, six or more passengers along with their luggage is a huge amount of additional weight that has to be handled by the stock cart suspension. All this additional weight is likely to dramatically lower the ride height and with little suspension movement available a poor ride will be encountered by the passengers. A correctly specified amount of suspension lift will provide enough ride height to avoid any grounding issues and give your passengers a smooth ride when fully loaded.
A lift kit is an extremely popular custom cart modification that is optional for many owners to give a more aggressive look, but is necessary for other carts that are used to transport equipment or people. These kits are available for all makes and models from E-Z-Go, Club Car and Yamaha. Fitment of a lift kit can be done by any home mechanic or if you are not confident with a wrench, any auto mechanic will find the installation straightforward. The following video shows basic information about lift kits and what you should consider when choosing one.