Why Does My Golf Cart Squeal When I Accelerate and How to Fix it

In terms of problems that can happen with your golf cart, there are those that are inconvenient and those that are annoying. However, when you have a golf cart that squeals or squeaks anytime you accelerate, you have an issue that falls into both categories. 

A squealing noise when your golf cart accelerates could be due to bad bushings, rear springs, worn drive belts, wheels, or tires, or your breaks are slightly engaged. While there are many possible reasons for a squealing golf cart, none of them are good, and they all require repairs. 

If you have a squealing golf cart anytime you accelerate, it’s important to get to the root of your problem. In order to do that, you can either take your cart to a qualified mechanic or do the work yourself. If you want to do the latter and save yourself some money, you’ve come to the right place. 

6 Reasons Your Golf Cart Squeals When You Accelerate 

Drive Belts Cause your Golf Cart to Squeal

The main reason gas golf carts squeal is due to the drive belt. This will cause a squeal when starting up or accelerating. When drive belts get old or wet they are more prone to making noise. To determine if your belt is making noise, pull off the seat on your cart, next hit the gas to start it up but don’t move yet. If your cart is squeaking then it is your drive belt.

How to Fix a Squeaky Drive Belt on a Golf Cart

There are a few fixes for squeaky golf cart drive belts. Most of the time it is easier to just replace the belt instead of trying to troubleshoot. You can try tightening your belt to see if that helps, but most of the time they are old and cracking when they start to make noise so a replacement is necessary.

If the belt was just wet, such as after driving in a puddle or washing your cart, just wait for it to dry and the noise should go away.

Faulty Rubber Bushings Causing your Golf Cart to Squeal

The first possible reason for a squealing golf cart upon acceleration is because of faulty rubber bushings. As with other vehicles, golf carts have a number of bushings meant to protect various parts of the golf cart. They act as a barrier or cushion to keep parts from rubbing together. When a bushing starts giving out or loses its lubrication, it will make a squealing noise when the cart is moving. 

What to Do 

Bushings causing your golf cart to squeal are tricky because there are so many of them. Your best bet is to listen closely and determine roughly where the noise is coming from on your cart. Once you have the direction narrowed down, it will be much easier to find the squeaky bushing and lubricate or replace it. 

Front or Rear Spring Problems Can Cause a Golf Cart to Make Noise

The front and rear springs on your golf cart are like suspension systems for going over bumps and hills. They reduce the jostling and bouncing you feel after going over a bump. However, as with all springs, your golf cart’s rear and front springs are prone to rust, corrosion, and wear out. When this happens, your spring will squeal anytime it’s activated. 

What to Do

As with squeaky bushings, you’ll have to determine which spring is making the noise and repair or replace it. If the springs are in relatively good shape, you can grease or WD-40 them. However, if you have an older golf cart, replacing the spring with a new one is better. 

Brakes are Engaged Causing your Golf Cart to Squeal

Another possible explanation for your golf cart’s squealing noises is that the brakes are slightly engaged while you’re driving. Most golf carts have safeguards to protect against this, but it can still happen. For instance, if you have old golf cart brakes or if they aren’t aligned properly, they’re more likely to stick when you engage and release the brake pedal. 

What to Do 

If your brakes are sticking and causing a squealing noise when you accelerate, there are several things you can do. 

  1. If the brakes are not properly aligned, you can realign them, add some chain lube, and you should be good to go. 
  2. If your brakes are sticking because they’re old and rusty, you should replace them. 
  3. Thoroughly clean and wash the brakes and reinstall them after they’re dry. A good cleaning is sometimes enough to remove excess stickiness. 

Squeaking Wheels 

One of the more disconcerting reasons golf carts squeal when they accelerate is that you have loose wheels. Loose wheels aren’t dangerous as long as they’re tight enough to stay attached. However, the longer you drive a golf cart with loose wheels, the more they will loosen. Eventually, the wheel can fall off the golf cart while driving if you don’t repair it in time. 

It’s also possible that your wheel bearings have given out and parts of the wheel are rubbing together. 

What to Do 

First, go around to each tire and ensure it’s securely fastened to the golf cart. Next, check each of the wheel bearings to ensure they’re still intact. If they aren’t, that’s likely the source of your squealing problem. You’ll have to replace the bearing with a new one to eliminate the noise. 

Parts of Your Golf Cart are Rubbing Together 

Like all electric or motorized vehicles, golf carts have a lot of components and moving parts. The older your golf cart gets, the more likely it is that some of these components will get damaged and start rubbing against each other. This can happen with bushings, bearings, wheels, the chassis, the frame, and anything else on your cart. Loose parts rubbing together also indicates that you aren’t maintaining your cart correctly. 

What to Do 

First, you should perform regular service checks on your golf cart every three to six months. Properly maintaining your golf cart will ensure that it stays intact and parts don’t start rubbing together. 

However, if it’s too late for you and your cart is already squealing, you’ll have to find the source of the squeal and repair it. You’ll have to check everything from nuts and bolts to belts and the chassis to determine the issue. 

Why Does My Gas Golf Cart Squeal When I Accelerate? 

The most common reason that gas golf carts squeal when you accelerate is because of the drive belt. Drive belts are always used with gas carts, but they aren’t always utilized in electric ones. The more you use your gas golf cart, the more likely you are to have drive belt issues. There’s simply too much wear and tear that it undergoes with repeated use. 

When the components that rotate the belt start to wear out, or there’s improper tension between the drive belt and the rest of the system, your cart will squeal when you accelerate. 

Why is My Golf Cart Making a High-Pitched Noise? 

Just as the drive belt can make high-pitched noises when you accelerate, it can also make high-pitched noises when you first turn your golf cart on. The belt starts rotating as soon as the cart is activated, which means it can squeal even when you don’t accelerate if the tension is wrong. 

How Do I Reduce the Noise on My Golf Cart? 

Golf carts make many different noises, so it depends on what kind of noise you want to reduce. In most cases, your golf cart is louder than normal because of an underlying problem. The only way to reduce the noise of the golf cart is to find out what the problem is and repair it. 

For loud motor noises, you’ll have to install a larger muffler. Grinding noises are often because your cart has worn brakes or rotors. We just looked at the reasons and fixes for squealing and squeaking golf carts, so use the information in this article to solve those noise issues.