Golf carts are now being used more and more by farmers, both to move equipment around and to avoid those tiring and time-consuming long walks to a distant field. They can be used to carry light and medium loads around the farm unless modified, in which cases much heavier loads become viable.
They are an affordable alternative to standard farm equipment, and they're also surprisingly sturdy. Although they can't deal with very uneven surfaces or very wet conditions, they're perfectly functional on hard surfaces and mildly hilly grassland.
Generally, electric-powered golf carts are more for moving people, but they're also good for carrying small loads around. Petrol-powered golf carts can carry much more weight and are able to deal with more taxing terrain. Some petrol models also feature four-wheel drive and can pull weights of up to six hay bales or the equivalent.
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|Club car 2 seater golf cart, PRO939, petrol, club rack on rear 14hp, single cylinder petrol engine, roof and screen. Price; £2000 + VAT Groundcare|
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|Club car 2 seater golf cart, PH1322, Electric, club rack on rear 14hp, roof and screen. Price; £2000 + VAT Groundcare|
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Petrol carts work in very much the same way as a car does. However, in order to keep golf courses quiet, the engine will only run when the throttle is pressed. Lifting your foot off the gas will cut the power to the wheels. This is a standard feature of petrol carts and is not necessarily a disadvantage - it helps to save fuel and reduces carbon emissions.
Electric carts are battery-powered and so will need charging regularly from a mains electricity supply. Some newer models also have solar panels fitted to their roofs which can augment the battery power but can't replace it completely.
Standard carts consist of just two seats and a small luggage area. However, there are also plenty of modified carts on the market which can be used to carry three or four people or to move farm supplies around. As well as four-wheel drive, petrol-powered carts can also be fitted with bigger engines and reinforced suspensions so that they become more suited to rugged terrain.
In general, second-hand carts can be picked up fairly cheaply, and they tend to have been kept in pretty good condition.
A golf cart will never replace a pick-up truck or a Land Rover, but they are well suited to carrying smaller loads and for getting around larger farms more quickly. Battery-powered models are also particularly cheap to run.
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