We often get asked by customers for advice on how to look after their Motocaddy Lithium battery. Thankfully Lithium batteries are not only a lot lighter, smaller and quicker to charge than traditional Lead-acid options, but also much more reliable with a significantly longer lifespan.
Why do Lithium batteries last longer than Lead-acid?
The nature of Lithium and the integrated Battery Management System (BMS), allow Lithium batteries to last five times longer than Lead-acid.
If you opened the casing (which we definitely don't recommend!), you would see that a Lithium battery consists of a number of individual power cells which are joined together to offer the required capacity (number of holes you can play). The Battery Management system is a really clever piece of kit (think of it as a mini computer), which performs a vital role in keeping the battery components safe, while allowing each power cell to discharge at an even rate. This system spreads the 'load' on the cells and reduces cell damage to maintain capacity for as long as possible. You can read more about the BMS in the section titled "Battery Management System" below.
Can I top-up my battery between rounds?
Another benefit of Lithium batteries is that they can take a 'top-up' charge. What does this mean? In practical terms, it means that it does not need a full charging cycle to 'top-up' the capacity (number of holes you can play). A common scenario would be a golfer who is playing 36 holes in a single day and decides to put their battery on charge between rounds. The capacity will be topped up for as long as the battery is on charge, which might come in VERY handy after a long and tiring day out on the links! This is very different from a traditional Lead-acid battery, which is only worth charging for a full cycle - that's a minimum of eight hours! In addition to this, a Motocaddy Lithium battery takes a speedy 4-5 hours to fully charge from empty - that's got to be good for your electricity bill!
Should I leave my battery on charge all the time?
No is the simple answer, because you really don't need to and it is always safer (plus greener) to leave appliances unplugged if possible!
Don't worry though - your Motocaddy Lithium battery and its dedicated charger are designed to 'switch off' once fully-charged to reduce the risk of continual charging and the potential for overheating. We therefore recommend waiting for the charger light to change from red to green, before switching off at the wall and unplugging the battery from the charger. This doesn't damage the battery and the battery will hold its charge until you next play.
How should I store my battery if I am not playing for a while?
If you are not planning on playing golf for a number of weeks, it is advised to store the battery half charged. To do this, simply use the battery for a round of golf as usual and charge it for 1.5 hours at the end of the round. Before the battery is used again, recharge it (top it up) prior to use. If it is not possible to leave the battery half charged (for example, during an unplanned break), storing it fully charged would be the next best option. It is not recommended to leave an uncharged battery for extended periods as this may reduce the potential maximum capacity. For further information, please read the "Recommendations for hibernation of Lithium Batteries" section below.
Read on for other hints, tips and guidelines to help you to look after your battery....
Caring for your Lithium Battery
All batteries must be charged as soon as possible after each use. Leaving batteries discharged for long periods of time will affect the battery life.
Please ensure that only batteries supplied by Motocaddy are charged with Motocaddy chargers. Cyclic battery chargers are designed specifically in accordance with the battery manufacturer’s requirements. The Lithium battery charger MUST NOT be used to charge any other battery and is designed for use with Motocaddy Lithium batteries only.
The charger should only be connected to an earthed socket outlet; the battery charger should only be opened and maintained by authorised personnel. Unauthorised opening will invalidate your warranty.
The battery must be stored and charged on a dry non-carpeted surface and charged at temperatures ranging between 10°C and 30°C. Charging above or below these temperatures is not recommended as it can reduce the battery capacity.
When connecting your battery to the trolley, please ensure that the connections match up black to black and colour (red/blue/grey) to colour.
- Try to avoid getting the battery too wet (i.e. do not submerge the battery, avoid deep puddles and do not clean your trolley whilst the battery is still in the battery tray)
- Dropping the battery may cause damage to the internal cells
- Do not lift or carry the battery by the cable
- Use a damp cloth to clean off any dirt
Recommendations for hibernation of Lithium Batteries
If for any reason your Lithium battery is not going to be used for lengthy periods, e.g. several weeks over the winter, it is advised to store the battery half charged. To do this, simply use the battery for a round of golf as usual and charge it for 1.5 hours at the end of the round. Before the battery is used again, recharge it (top it up) prior to use.
We recognise that extended absences are not always planned in advance, however when it is likely that you will not be using your battery for a period of time it is good practice to follow these steps to extend the life of your Lithium battery.
If it is not possible to leave the battery half charged (for example, during an unplanned absence from golf), storing it fully charged would be the next best option. It is not recommended to leave an uncharged battery for extended periods of time as this may reduce the potential maximum capacity. Please ensure that the charger is ALWAYS disconnected from the battery after charging.
Battery Management System (BMS)
Motocaddy Lithium batteries are fitted with a comprehensive battery management system (BMS) to protect the battery from excessive abuse, high currents, deep discharge and overcharge. When the battery is delivered there may be no output as the BMS is designed to maximize safety whilst shipping. Please ensure that the battery is fully charged prior to connecting it to your trolley as this will activate the BMS and effectively ‘switch-on’ the battery. From time to time, at deep discharge or long term storage the BMS may switch-off the battery. A full battery charge will rectify this problem.
Motocaddy golf trolleys are designed to work with the BMS system installed in the Lithium batteries and the voltage meter is also synchronised to work in conjunction with the battery. If for any reason the voltage on the battery falls below the low battery warning on the trolley, then the BMS may disable the battery to protect it. Again if this occurs please recharge fully. Please be aware that Lithium batteries tend to ‘drop off’ quickly at the end of the cycle so it is not advisable to attempt to play excessive holes as the BMS will activate for protection purposes.