Blog posts for February 2016

Lithium-ion batteries – The Future of Golf Carts?

We were to term it, “Lead Batteries vs. Lithium-ion Batteries.” We scrounged the internet for facts and case-studies.  Our preparation for this article convinced us, lithium-ion batteries are undeniably the future of Golf Carts! Read on, you’ll adore lithium afterwards.

So, lithium is some far off, high-tech technology of the future? No! It’s not in the future. Your smartphone has it, and your laptop too. Lithium batteries were first introduced in 1970s. Sony followed with a rechargeable version. Our batteries were not to be the same ever since. Below is your Stenten’s Crash Course into Lithium-ion Batteries and Lead Batteries.

Lithium-ion vs. Lead

Let’s start with lead. Lead-acid batteries came to discovery around 1859. They were good then, but are quite inefficient now. Among all the rechargeable batteries, lead-acid batteries store the least amount of energy for their size. They’re relatively inexpensive. And it is what you might find in your cart.

Lithium-ion Batteries came in a lot later, as you know, in 1970. It is the lightest metal. But much energy dense than a lead-acid battery. But, the revolution begin when their electrolyte chemistry was drastically improved, a few decades later. They are power efficient, light and friendly to the trees around you. Let us find out, exactly by what figures Lithium-ion batteries compare to Lead.

  • Lithium is 3 times lighter and smaller: Lithium-ion allows for faster golf carts. If you’d been going at 20 kmph before, you’d be going 30 kmph after. All that is because Lead batteries are almost 100 kg heavier (in golf carts). Lead is the heaviest non-radioactive metal. Lithium, the lightest.
  • Lithium lasts much longer: Lead batteries in your golf cart last 2-3 years. In comparison, lithium-ion lasts more than 12 years. When lead batteries last 500 to 600 charge cycles,  lithium-ion lasts 5000 (yes, five thousand). But you can significantly increase lead-acid batteries life by installing a de-sulfator.
  • Low maintenance: When you buy a lead batteries, you’ve to check the water levels. You’ve to be wary to not to leave it discharged. In-comparison, lithium-ion batteries are zero maintenance. Put them in your cart, and then forget about them for 10 years.
  • Lithium-ion charges faster: Lead-acid batteries take 8-10 hours to charge. Lithium-ion batteries charge on average between 1-2 hours. Lead batteries can be charged on-the-go, much like your smartphones. 
  • Lithium is pricey: Lithium-ions are 3 times pricier, and therefor, people are picky to buy them. What they don’t realize is: it pays for itself. It lasts 3 times more than lead batteries, charge almost 10 times faster, with zero maintenance. Not to forget, they're much lighter, which makes your golf cart much faster. 

Buying into Lithium-ion batteries is like buying into a better experience. These batteries are constantly spreading out from smartphones and laptops to other applications. They ask for up-front investment, but like LED headlights  pay for themselves. We do not endorse Lithium-ion batteries in anyway, the above are absolute facts. It’s turns out Lithium-ion batteries are better in almost every way. And more than likely, the future of Golf Carts.


Steve WilmerWritten by Steve Wilmer

Steve started with Stenten’s in October of 2011 and currently maintains Stenten’s digital footprint.  This includes contributing to our Blog, monitoring our technical Forum, and posting to our various social media outlets including Facebook, Twitter, & Pinterest.  Along with increasing Stenten’s digital market Steve also has knowledge on many performance parts for golf carts including controllers, motors, and tire & wheel combinations.


Are Propane Heaters Dangerous?

Are propane heaters dangerous for you?

We at Stenten's want your winters to be warm without worries. It's winter, and naturally, you wish to keep the chill out of your cart. Should you buy a propane heater or an electric. Unfortunately, propane heaters are not so safe - not at home, nor in your cart. The people at National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) say that 79-percent of home heating fire deaths were due to propane heaters (in 2010). They are dangerous in our home, now picture the same thing operating in our carts! We want you to know what you buy, when you buy propane heating. And we're not here to scare you if you own a propane heater. Here we've written some tips to be safe with the dangers. They might just save your life!

 

What are propane heaters anyway?

Reading our blog equips you with information (about your cart) that might not be offered at other places. And we just love explaining! Mainly there are two types of propane heaters used in cars and carts - radiant and catalytic. The radiant propane heaters heat up the metal (or a ceramic object) covering it, which in turn heats your cart through infrared heat. In a catalytic heater, things go a bit weird. It generates heat but there is no naked flame. Instead it relies on the incomplete catalytic combustion of oxygen and propane. It also consumes propane at a much slower rate than radiant heaters do, which is why some people prefer a catalytic propane heater.

 

  1. Carbon monoxide: Carbon monoxide is fatal. You never know as it creeps down your air pipe, attaches to your red blood cells, and knocks you unconscious. You wouldn't know. It's colorless, odorless and tasteless. It is not an issue in a normal golf cart. But the chances increase greatly if you use it in a golf cart with an enclosure. We'd recommend you buy a carbon monoxide detector.

 

  1. 2.      Fire hazards: Propane is highly flammable - more flammable than kerosene. The problem is not when you install small one pound tanks. But it is when you install a tank of 2 gallon (or perhaps more). Which seems plenty enough to convert a flare into fire hazard. A rule of thumb would be to never leave a propane heater unattended.

 

  1. No Gasoline!: We're not claiming that you're stupid enough to put gasoline in a propane heater. But if you do - it could result in an explosion. There is also a more possible probability at your home - and also includes kerosene heaters. So at home (in your garage) keep propane and gasoline very far off.

 

Go electric?

Going electric might seem like the best precaution of all. Electric heaters come with their fair share of prices in home heating. But when heating something as small as your cart - there are virtually zero arguments about the prices.

If you're the one ditching propane and switching electric - you might as well check our heaters. You'll love them; and they're just a click away. http://www.stenten.com/heater

 


LEDs vs. Halogens

It seems that LEDs are taking over, while the Halogens fade away. You might've thought about upgrading to LEDs, only to sit back and think if they were worth it. We here at Stenten's have an article that you just might've been waiting for! Below starting from why they're different we jump right into pluses and minuses you get with each of them. 

How are Halogens and LEDs different

Halogens are very easy for you to differentiate from an LED because of their yellow-ish glare. And this difference comes because under the surface... they're completely different! Halogen lights shine, as you might've heard, because of something called a tungsten filament. Your cart batteries heat it up to a temperature of 2500 degree Celsius, resulting in light, that you observe. In comparison, LEDs come with a much complex architecture. Negatively charged electron jump into positively charged holes, this process is done million of times on a large scale, resulting in light. So when you buy an halogen, what is it that you buy into?

Benefits of Halogens

They're cheap: As a matter of fact, halogens are cheap. This is one of the fundamental reason of their triumph throughout the years. And this is why most of the lights you see are halogens. But as newer and more efficient technologies like LEDs become cost effective, halogens seems to be becoming a second option.
Versatility: They come anywhere from small to big. And like LEDs, they're dimmable. You might say that's not a big advantage, but you could just try comparing it to non dimmable xenon lights.

Disadvantages of Halogens

Shorter lifespan: An average halogen headlight lasts 5 times less than an LED would. Which cuts any benefit that it might have of being cheap. Considering that you will be replacing 5 halogens in a life span of 1 LED.
They waste energy: In the process of generating light, it also generates a lot of heat. And burning consistently at a temperature of 2500 degrees Celsius requires a lot of energy.

So these are Halogens. Now let us see if LEDs can give them a run for their money. 

Benefits of LEDs

They shine brighter (and whiter): LEDs shine brighter than Halogens do. They make you see things crisper, because they generate white light unlike the yellow of Halogens. 
They last longer: As you might have read above, they last 5 times longer than Halogens do. Yes, they do ask for a little investment. But it all pays up. 
Much more efficient: The lighting process of LEDs generate negligible heat. In comparison to Halogens, LEDs consume up to 75-percent less energy.

Which one should you buy?

I will not cover the disadvantages of LEDs, simply because it's only one (a bit expensive). LEDs score higher in every test you could put it through. Whether it's shining brighter (and whiter) or consuming a miniscule amount of energy - LEDs are your way to go. They do ask a bit from pocket, but not as often as Halogens do.

If you think LEDs are the best, and own a Yamaha DRIVE, you're in luck. We've put right below the link of Stenten's basic package of LEDs for Yamaha DRIVE.

http://www.stenten.com/LED_Light_Kit_Yamaha_Drive


Steve WilmerWritten by Steve Wilmer

Steve started with Stenten’s in October of 2011 and currently maintains Stenten’s digital footprint.  This includes contributing to our Blog, monitoring our technical Forum, and posting to our various social media outlets including Facebook, Twitter, & Pinterest.  Along with increasing Stenten’s digital market Steve also has knowledge on many performance parts for golf carts including controllers, motors, and tire & wheel combinations.


Everyone should know the value of seatbelts
Great things being done by the Sun City West, Ariz. Sheriff’s Office

Seatbelts save lives.

That statement is a known fact that is engrained in us when we are young.  You see the advertisements everywhere; on billboards, on the T.V., on the radio, all over the Internet.  They even have catchy slogans such as “Click it, or Ticket”.  With all of this awareness people sometimes forget that this applies to all types of motorized vehicles not just automobiles.  With the many advances in the electric golf carts these days reaching speeds of 25-30mph is not as uncommon as it may seem.  Even though these vehicles may be classified as LSV or Low Speed Vehicle you can still get seriously injured or even killed if you don’ respect the situation you put yourself in when operating a motorized vehicle.

As golf cart dealers you should always recommend adding additional safety features to carts you are customizing or maintaining.  Even if the cart is not required to go through inspection it is a must to make sure that your customers stay safe while operating their recreational vehicles.

The Sun City West Sheriff’s Office is conducting a FREE event to install 120 seatbelts on golf carts from 8am – noon on a first come first served basis.  This is a great event to raise awareness on the important of seatbelt safety on golf carts.  If you would like more information on the event please follow this link.  The event is scheduled for Tues. Jan. 12th.

Stenten’s offers various safety options for your golf cart including our Standard Lap Belt, a Retractable Seat Belt, and our New 3 Point Seat Belt System.

If you know of any other great events like this please feel free to let us know at Contact@Stenten.com

 


Steve WilmerWritten by Steve Wilmer

Steve started with Stenten’s in October of 2011 and currently maintains Stenten’s digital footprint.  This includes contributing to our Blog, monitoring our technical Forum, and posting to our various social media outlets including Facebook, Twitter, & Pinterest.  Along with increasing Stenten’s digital market Steve also has knowledge on many performance parts for golf carts including controllers, motors, and tire & wheel combinations.