Why Won’t My Golf Cart Go Forward or Reverse? Here’s the Easy Fix!

Golf carts are not only used in golf courses but are also quite popular in hotels and luxury resorts. They are also fun to drive around. But, sometimes, these carts suffer from some problems, and one such issue is your cart not going forward or reverse. So, you can start to think why won’t my golf cart go forward or reverse.

The most common causes of forward and reverse problems include problematic microswitches, defective controllers, and malfunctioning batteries. All these problems are not that difficult to fix, and you can do them quite easily.

So, our guide is for you if your golf cart is having trouble going forward or reverse. Today we will discuss all the reasons for this issue and their fixes.

why won’t my golf cart go forward or reverse?

Golf carts usually do not go bad, but over time, some components can start to malfunction.

These issues can lead to problems like your golf cart not going forward or reverse. Down below we will list down these reasons. 

Problematic Microswitch


If your run or tow switch is broken, your cart won’t move forward or backward. The main function of this switch is to convert the operational mode of your cart from regular operation to higher power for pulling.

So, in order for your cart to go forward and backward, you will need to make sure the switches are not jammed in the middle. Hence, if they are stuck, push the switch and make sure it’s not stuck anymore.

Additionally, the directional switch withstands extra strain every time you turn your cart from forward to reverse.

This extra strain slowly reduces the longevity of the switch, and you will need to replace it when it is broken.

Faulty Controllers

Another common fault in your golf cart could be faulty controllers. There are two types of direction controllers: forward and reverse.

If there are problems with the controllers, the cart will move ahead but not backward 

Fixing the controller is a bit difficult, and it is recommended that you take help from a professional maintenance specialist to fix this.

Malfunctioning Batteries

Malfunctioning Batteries
Malfunctioning Batteries

The battery is the main powerhouse for electric golf carts, and when this goes bad, your cart can suffer from many different issues.

Thus, to ensure proper working of the batteries, you will need to charge them regularly.  

After you have properly charged the batteries you should check the voltage using an ammeter to see if the battery is working properly.

If the voltage drop is less than the required value, your battery has gone bad, and you will need to replace it.

Sometimes the battery can malfunction due to acid deposits and corrosion on the terminals.

To fix this you will need to open the battery and clean it using baking soda and a soft brush to rub away all the corrosion. 

When the battery is out of the water it can also start to malfunction and lead to forward and reverse issues in your golf cart. So make sure to check if there is enough water on the battery and refill it if needed.

Damaged Spark plugs

Damaged Spark plugs

If you have a golf cart that is powered by gas, then a damaged spark plug can be the reason for causing a direction issue. For a gas golf cart, your spark plugs are a crucial component. 

Golf carts usually have one or two spark plugs to aid in the usual starting and operation of your engine. However, the  spark plugs are more likely to rust, corrode, or wear out as it ages.

So when the spark plugs get damaged, they cannot be repaired, and you will need to replace them with new ones.

Problematic Accelerator

Problematic Accelerator

Problematic accelerators are another common problem in gas-operated golf carts. Therefore, if it begins to malfunction, it may affect how well your cart can turn around. The golf cart will struggle to go forward or backward.

It is very easy to detect a faulty accelerator; turn on the engine of your cart and try to turn it forward and backward.

If you feel a weird vibration or sudden stopping of your golf cart, then there is a high chance the accelerator has gone bad and needs to be replaced.


This section is all about FAQs related to our today’s discussion. We believe all your confusion will be further cleared after reading this section.

How do I know my Golf Cart motor is bad?

The golf cart’s engine is malfunctioning when you turn the key in the ignition, and it won’t start.
Additionally, there will be significant acceleration reductions and other technical issues like excessive motor heating, among others.

What are the signs of problematic solenoids in a golf cart?

The starter is failing to connect, preventing the engine from starting, and a series of pointless tapping noises are the most typical symptoms of a failed solenoid. Unusual vibrations could also be felt underneath the hood.

Why is my golf cart not moving forward?

The golf cart will only go forward or backward if the motor is receiving input from the battery system. There are a few elements between the two that must be examined in such circumstances.

Why does my Golf cart beep but not move?

Due to dust gathering within the battery ports, a golf cart may begin to beep but not move. If that’s the case, you can tell by opening the battery ports and looking for any dirt buildup.


Golf carts are fun to drive around, but when they show trouble moving forward and backward things get annoying.

Hence, you will need to fix this issue asap. This problem can happen for many reasons, and we believe you already know the reasons by now.

However, you must have a proper idea about the internals of the golf cart before you go into fixing them.

Additionally, you can take help from your golf cart manual if you are having hard time finding any internal components.

If you are still unable to fix your Golf cart despite trying all the fixes we have mentioned in our guide then the only option left for you is to visit a service center.

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