How To Bypass Solenoid On Golf Cart? [Complete Guide]

Understanding your golf cart’s mechanics, including the crucial solenoid, can save time and money. A common troubleshooting method involves bypassing the solenoid to diagnose potential issues. 

Bypassing process involves disconnecting the power, locating the solenoid’s terminals, and directly connecting the wires. This temporary bypass can determine if the solenoid is the problem source, but it’s a short-term solution. 

In this concise guide, we’ll delve into solenoids, why bypassing can be necessary, and provide a step-by-step guide to bypass your golf cart’s solenoid safely. Let’s journey into the world of golf cart mechanics together!

What Is The Solenoid On Your Golf Cart? 

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The solenoid in your golf cart is a small but powerful electromechanical device that plays a vital role in the cart’s operation. 

Acting as a type of high-current relay, the solenoid controls the flow of electricity from the battery to the motor when you start your cart or press the accelerator pedal.

It’s essentially a switch that is responsible for transmitting a high amount of electrical current to the motor, initiating the movement of your golf cart. 

Without the solenoid, the large current necessary for the motor to operate could potentially damage the starter due to overheating.

However, despite being a small device, the solenoid is complex and consists of several parts.

The inner workings involve a coil, an iron plunger, and springs that work together to open and close the electrical circuit. 

The functionality and importance of the solenoid within your golf cart’s system make it essential to maintain and troubleshoot if necessary.

Function of Solenoid

The solenoid serves as an electromagnetic switch in a golf cart. Its primary function is to control the flow of high current from the battery to the motor. 

When you turn the ignition key, the solenoid receives an electrical signal, which activates an internal coil.

This coil creates a magnetic field that pulls a plunger or contactor, allowing the high current to flow through the solenoid and into the motor. 

In essence, the solenoid acts as a gatekeeper for the electrical current, allowing it to reach the motor and power the golf cart.

Use of Solenoid In Golf Carts

The solenoid is essential for starting and running a golf cart. When you turn the key or press the accelerator pedal, the solenoid receives a signal from the control circuit to activate. 

This action completes the circuit and allows the high current from the battery to flow to the motor, initiating movement in the golf cart. Without a functioning solenoid, the golf cart will not start or move.

3 Symptoms of a Bad Golf Cart Solenoid

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When the solenoid malfunctions, it can cause several noticeable symptoms indicating a problem. Here are some common symptoms of a bad solenoid in a golf cart:

Golf cart is not starting

If you turn the key or press the accelerator pedal, but the golf cart fails to start, it could be due to a faulty solenoid.

The solenoid may not be activating or allowing the current to reach the motor, resulting in no response from the cart.

Cart suddenly stopping 

While driving the golf cart, if it suddenly stops without any warning or apparent reason, a bad solenoid could be to blame.

The solenoid may intermittently fail to maintain the current flow to the motor, causing the cart to stop abruptly.

Clicking noise with no movement

When you attempt to start the golf cart and hear a clicking noise coming from the solenoid, but the cart doesn’t move, it could indicate a problem with the solenoid. 

This clicking sound typically occurs when the solenoid is not engaging or allowing the current to pass through.

Why Do You Need To Bypass The Solenoid Of Your Golf Cart?

Sometimes, when you encounter issues with your golf cart, it can be helpful to bypass the solenoid as a troubleshooting step.

Bypassing the solenoid means temporarily connecting the wires that would typically go through the solenoid directly to each other.

This step can provide valuable information about whether the solenoid is the cause of the problem or if there might be another issue at play. 

Here’s why you might need to bypass the solenoid of your golf cart:

Testing the solenoid 

If your golf cart is not starting or showing signs of a bad solenoid, bypassing it can help determine whether the solenoid is the culprit. 

By connecting the wires directly, you can see if the cart starts and runs properly without the solenoid’s involvement. 

If the cart starts and operates normally with the solenoid bypassed, it suggests that the solenoid is likely faulty and needs to be replaced.

Checking for other issues

Bypassing the solenoid can also help rule out other potential problems in the electrical system of your golf cart.

Sometimes, issues like low battery charge, faulty wiring, or a malfunctioning controller can mimic solenoid problems. 

By bypassing the solenoid and observing how the cart behaves, you can gain insights into whether the solenoid is the main issue or if there might be another underlying electrical problem.

Time and cost savings

Bypassing the solenoid is a relatively simple procedure that can be done without much technical expertise or the need for specialized tools.

By performing this step, you can quickly determine if the solenoid is at fault. 

If the cart starts and runs fine with the solenoid bypassed, you can save time and money by focusing your efforts on replacing the solenoid rather than troubleshooting other potential causes.

How To Bypass Solenoid On Golf Cart? 

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A solenoid is a crucial component of your golf cart that acts as a high-current relay, controlling the flow of electricity from the battery to the motor.

Sometimes, due to issues, you might need to bypass it, and I’m here to guide you through this process!

Step 1: Safety First

Before you start, ensure you’re wearing protective gloves and disconnect the power supply from the cart. To do this, remove the key from the ignition and disconnect the battery.

This will help prevent any accidental shocks or mishaps while working on the cart.

Step 2: Locate the Solenoid 

The solenoid is typically located near the battery compartment of your golf cart. So, head over to that area and identify the solenoid. It usually has two large terminals.

Step 3: Bypass the Solenoid 

To bypass the solenoid, you need to provide a direct path for the current to reach the motor, bypassing the faulty solenoid.

To achieve this, use an insulated wire or a jumper cable to connect the two large terminals on the solenoid.

Remember, bypassing the solenoid should only be done as a last resort in an emergency situation. It’s a temporary fix and isn’t recommended as a long-term solution. 

You should aim to replace the malfunctioning solenoid as soon as possible to avoid potential damage to your golf cart’s electrical system. 


Now that you know everything about bypassing the solenoid of a golf cart, here are faq answers to clear your further doubts!

Can I permanently bypass the solenoid?

Bypassing the solenoid should only be a temporary fix. The solenoid is crucial for the proper functioning of your golf cart, and it’s recommended to replace it as soon as possible.

Does a clicking sound always indicate a bad solenoid?

No, a clicking sound doesn’t always indicate a bad solenoid. Issues like a drained battery or faulty wiring can also cause it. A proper diagnosis is necessary to determine the exact cause.

Can a bad solenoid drain my golf cart’s battery?

Yes, a malfunctioning solenoid can drain your golf cart’s battery. If the solenoid is not functioning properly, it may cause a continuous power draw, leading to a battery drain.

Final Words

Care for your golf cart by understanding its parts, like the solenoid. Learn to identify solenoid issues and bypass them temporarily.

Replace a faulty solenoid promptly. Use this guide to handle solenoid problems and get back to enjoying your ride.