How to Paint a Golf Cart?

how to paint a golf cart

Your trusty golf cart, a loyal companion on many sunny afternoons, carries a lot of memories. You look at it and feel nostalgia mixed with a need for change. This is more than just a vehicle; it’s a part of your life’s joyful moments, a silent witness to laughter and friendly banter on the greens. Now, imagine reviving it, infusing it with new energy and a fresh, vibrant look. How, you ask? All you need to know is how to paint a golf cart and give it a new life.

Been through it myself, and let me tell you, it’s as exciting as scoring a hole-in-one. It’s not just about painting it; it’s about breathing new life into something you care about. There’s a sense of pride when you see the change. Your golf cart, reborn, turns into a canvas for your creativity and mirrors your personality.

How to Paint a Golf Cart Body?

Painting a golf cart can transform its look, giving it a fresh and personalized appearance. As someone who has taken on this task twice, I can share insights and tips to help you achieve great results.

Prepare the Necessities

This task is not like painting a golf club or a ball. Before you start painting, preparation is crucial. For my first project, I learned the hard way. I skipped some steps, leading to less-than-ideal results. Ensure the area you choose for painting is well-ventilated and free from dust. Gather the necessary materials. You will need:

  • Sandpaper (120 and 220 grit): Start by smoothing the surface of the golf cart. This step helps the paint adhere better.
  • Cleaner or Degreaser: Wipe down the entire cart to remove any dirt, grease, or other contaminants.
  • Masking Tape: Use masking tape to cover areas you don’t want to paint, such as headlights, wheels, and any decals.
  • Primer: Apply a thin layer of primer to create a smooth base for the paint.
  • Spray Paint: Choose a high-quality paint in the color of your choice. Consider using automotive spray paint for durability.
  • Clear Coat: Finish off with a clear coat to protect the paint and add a glossy finish.
  • Drop Cloth or Newspaper: Protect the surrounding area from overspray by covering it with a drop cloth or newspaper.

Clean the Surface:

Whether you paint golf balls or big things like carts, start by cleaning. Use a cleaner or degreaser to remove any built-up grime. A clean surface ensures better paint adhesion.

Sand the Surface:

Grab the 120-grit sandpaper and lightly sand the entire cart. Focus on rough or uneven areas to create a smooth surface for painting. Follow up with the finer 220-grit sandpaper for a polished finish.


Cover parts of the golf cart that you don’t want to paint using masking tape. This includes headlights, logos, and any other areas you want to preserve.

Apply Primer:

Spray a thin, even layer of primer on the entire golf cart. This step provides a solid foundation for the paint and helps it adhere uniformly.

Allow Drying Time:

Let the primer dry completely before moving on to the next step. This may take a few hours, depending on the weather conditions.

Paint Your Golf Cart: 

Shake the paint thoroughly before applying the first coat. If using the can, hold the can about 8-12 inches away from the surface and spray in smooth, sweeping motions. Start with a light coat to avoid drips.

Multiple Coats:

Apply multiple thin coats rather than one thick coat. This ensures an even finish and prevents the paint from running. Allow each coat to dry before applying the next.

Drying Time:

Patience is key. Allow the final coat of paint to dry completely before moving on to the next step. This may take a day or more, depending on the climate.

Protective Finish:

Once the paint is dry, apply a clear coat to protect the finish and add a glossy appearance. Hold the can at the same distance as when applying the paint and use smooth, even strokes.

Final Drying Period:

Let the clear coat dry thoroughly before using the golf cart. This final drying period ensures the paint job’s longevity and durability.

Remove Masking Tape:

After painting a golf cart, carefully remove the masking tape from the areas you covered before. This step ensures clean lines and a professional finish.

Inspect the Finish:

Take a close look at your newly painted golf cart. Inspect the finish for any imperfections or areas that may need touch-ups.

Dispose of Materials:

Properly dispose of used paint cans, masking tape, and any other materials following local regulations.

How to Paint a Golf Cart Roof?

Can you paint a golf cart? Well of course yes. First, choose a well-ventilated area. It should be free from dust and direct sunlight. Lay down drop cloths or newspapers to protect the floor. I usually work in my garage with the door open for ventilation. 

Then gather:

  • Sandpaper (fine grit)
  • Painter’s tape
  • Primer (suitable for the roof material)
  • Paint (choose between spray or brush-on)
  • Clear coat for protection
  • Gloves and safety glasses

Now follow these steps:

  • Remove the Roof: Before you start painting a golf cart roof, carefully detach the roof. This step makes painting easier and prevents damage to the rest of the cart. I use basic tools like a screwdriver and keep all screws in a safe place. 
  • Clean the Roof: Wash the roof thoroughly. Remove all dirt, grease, and old paint flakes. I use mild soap and water, then let it dry completely.
  • Sand the Surface: Use fine-grit sandpaper to lightly sand the roof. This process helps the new paint adhere better. After sanding, I wipe the roof with a damp cloth to remove dust.
  • Tape-Off Areas: Apply painter’s tape to areas you don’t want to paint. This step ensures clean lines and a professional look. I always take my time with this step for the best results.
  • Apply Primer: Spray or brush the primer onto the roof. Make sure it’s a primer designed for the roof’s material. I use a light coat and let it dry as per the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Painting the Roof: Now, apply the paint. Whether using spray or brush, apply thin, even coats. Let each coat dry before applying the next. I usually use two to three coats for full coverage.
  • Applying the Clear Coat: Once the final paint coat is dry, apply a clear coat. This layer protects the paint from scratches and UV damage. I apply two coats of clear coat for extra durability.
  • Reattach the Roof: After the clear coat dries, carefully reattach the roof to the golf cart. Make sure all screws are secure. I double-check to ensure everything is back in place properly.
  • Maintenance Tips: To keep the golf cart makeover just like you want, clean the roof regularly. Use mild soap and avoid abrasive cleaners. Waxing the roof can also protect the paint and add shine.

Now go to your favorite course and play golf in the wind with your fresh new cart.

How to Paint a Golf Cart With Spray Cans?

Can you spray-paint a golf cart? Obviously yes. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you paint your golf cart using spray cans.

1. Prep Your Cart Surface

Start by cleaning the surface thoroughly with mild soap and water. Remove any dirt, grease, or existing paint that might hinder the new paint’s adhesion. A clean canvas sets the stage for a smoother and longer-lasting finish.

2. Sanding for Success

Grab a fine-grit sandpaper and lightly sand the entire surface of the cart. This step helps the new paint adhere better and ensures a more even finish. Pay special attention to any rough spots or peeling paint from previous layers. After sanding, wipe down the cart again to remove any lingering dust.

3. Primer Time

Apply a primer specifically designed for metal surfaces. Primer acts as a base coat, enhancing the adhesion of the paint and providing extra protection against the elements. Spray the primer evenly, holding the can about 8-10 inches away from the cart. A thin, consistent coat is key to a successful paint job. It will save you from repainting a golf cart in short intervals.

4. Choose Your Colors

There is no best way to paint a golf cart as it is all about your creativity. Consider the overall aesthetic you want for your golf cart, whether it’s a vibrant color that stands out or a classic look that blends in. Remember, different brands may offer varying shades, so test a small area first to ensure it’s the color you envision.

5. Painting Process

Now, onto the main event –painting a golf cart body! Hold the spray can at a slight angle, about 45 degrees, and apply the paint in smooth, sweeping motions. Keep the can in constant motion to avoid drips and uneven coverage. It’s better to apply multiple thin coats rather than one thick coat, allowing each layer to dry before applying the next.

6. Detailing with Stencils (Optional)

If you want to add a personal touch or some flair to your golf cart, consider using stencils. Create custom designs or patterns by securing the stencil in place and spraying it with a contrasting color. This step can turn your golf cart into a unique masterpiece that reflects your personality.

7. Seal the Deal with Clear Coat

To protect your newly painted golf cart and ensure longevity, finish the job with a clear coat. The clear coat acts as a protective barrier against UV rays, weather elements, and potential scratches. Apply it like you did with the primer and paint, maintaining a consistent and even coverage.

8. Let It Dry

After all your hard work, patience is key. Allow the paint to dry completely before taking your golf cart out for a spin. This process can take a day or two, depending on the weather conditions. Avoid rushing this step to prevent any smudges or imperfections. Once it’s dried, trust me, the refreshed appearance will make it feel like a whole new entity. Who knows, someone might even be willing to pay above the standard golf cart prices for it.

What Kind of Paint Do You Use On a Golf Cart?

Although patience and attention to detail are your best tools in achieving a professional-looking paint job, it is important to select the right paint for your cart. After all, considering that golf carts are often exposed to varying weather conditions, the paint must be resilient and long-lasting.

1. Automotive Spray Paint

Automotive spray paint is a popular choice for golf carts due to its durability and wide range of color options. It provides a smooth and even finish when applied correctly. I opted for automotive spray paint when painting my golf cart; the results were impressive. The paint adheres to the surface, offering a sleek and polished appearance.

2. Acrylic Enamel Paint

Acrylic enamel paint is known for its high gloss and durability. It forms a hard shell when dried, making it resistant to scratches and fading. This type of paint is suitable for golf carts that are frequently used and exposed to the elements. I observed a friend’s golf cart painted with acrylic enamel, and the shine and resilience were noteworthy even after months of use.

3. Rust-Oleum Paint

Rust-Oleum paint is recognized for its protective properties against rust and corrosion. It is an excellent choice if your golf cart has metal components that need additional protection. A fellow golfer used Rust-Oleum paint on the frame of his golf cart, and it not only added a vibrant color but also served as a reliable barrier against rust.

4. Vinyl Wrap

While not technically paint, vinyl wrap is worth mentioning as an alternative. It offers a unique way to change the appearance of your golf cart. Vinyl wraps come in various colors and patterns, allowing for creative customization. Although I haven’t personally used a vinyl wrap, I’ve seen golf carts with eye-catching designs achieved through this method.

Exciting Golf Paint Ideas for Your Golfing Cart

Golf carts are not just vehicles; they represent your style and personality. A fresh coat of paint can revitalize your golf cart, making it the talk of the course. Here are some ideas to inspire your next project.

Classic Two-Tone Elegance

One timeless paint idea that adds a touch of sophistication is the classic two-tone color scheme. I painted my golf balls like this. Those colored golf balls were appreciated by at least 100 people I know. You just have to choose two complementary colors for the body and roof of your golf cart. This simple yet elegant design provides a clean and polished look, reminiscent of vintage cars. My golf cart sports a combination of navy blue and cream, creating a stylish and classic vibe.

Racing Stripes for a Sporty Touch

Inject a bit of sportiness into your golf cart by adding racing stripes. Opt for bold, contrasting colors to make the stripes pop. Placing the stripes along the sides or hood of the cart gives it a dynamic and energetic appearance. My friend took this approach with his golf cart, incorporating vibrant red racing stripes on a sleek black background, giving it a sporty edge that turns heads on the golf course.

Camouflage for the Outdoorsy Look

For those who enjoy the great outdoors, a camouflage paint job can bring a rugged and adventurous feel to your golf cart. Choose earthy tones like green and brown to blend seamlessly with the natural surroundings. I experienced this firsthand during a golf outing in a wooded course. A fellow golfer had a camouflage-painted golf cart that perfectly complemented the lush greenery, creating an outdoorsy vibe that resonated with the surroundings.

Retro Vibes with Vintage Accents

If you’re a fan of retro aesthetics, consider giving your golf cart a vintage makeover. Choose colors like pastel blue, mint green, or soft pink to evoke a sense of nostalgia. Adding retro-inspired decals or pinstripes can further enhance the vintage look. I witnessed a golf cart at a classic car show that had a 1950s-inspired design, complete with chrome accents and a pastel blue finish, transporting me back in time with its charming allure. 

Team Spirit with Custom Logos

For sports enthusiasts, expressing your team spirit through your golf cart is a unique way to showcase your passion. My father loves customizing old used golf balls and clubs by adding custom logos to them. You can also incorporate custom logos or decals of your favorite sports team on the body or doors of the cart. It not only adds a personal touch but also sparks conversations with fellow golfers who share your team’s allegiance. I recall a golf tournament where one participant had decked out his cart with the logo of his favorite baseball team, instantly creating camaraderie among fans.

Tropical Paradise with Beachy Hues

Bring the beach vibes to the golf course by choosing a tropical color palette. Think vibrant blues, sunny yellows, and palm tree greens. This paint idea transforms your golf cart into a mobile tropical paradise, perfect for those sunny summer days on the green. I saw a golf cart with a sunset-inspired paint job—shades of orange, pink, and purple—that instantly transported me to a beachside retreat.

Personalized Artwork for a Unique Touch

If you’re feeling particularly artistic, consider turning your golf cart into a canvas for personalized artwork. Paint landscapes, abstract designs, or even your favorite golf-related imagery. This approach allows you to express your individuality and showcase your artistic flair. At a golf club event, I encountered a golf cart adorned with hand-painted golf balls and clubs, creating a whimsical and unique masterpiece.

Transform Your Golf Cart with Colors

By now I believe you have complete knowledge about How To Paint A Golf Cart and fresh ideas to do that. When selecting colors, stay true to your personality, creating a cart that reflects your style on the green. Seek inspiration from surroundings; nature often provides timeless color palettes. 

Most importantly, share your finished piece with fellow golfers, friends, parents, etc. Your unique cart might just inspire others to start their creative endeavors. So, grab your paintbrush and start painting a golf cart! Remember to share your results and tag us at Golf Ace Nation. Keep following us for more fun golf tips and tricks!


Q. Is it cheaper to wrap or paint a golf cart?

Wrapping your golf cart involves applying a vinyl cover to it, which can protect the original paint job and add a unique design. It tends to be less expensive than painting golf carts, but the cost will depend on the size and design of your cart. Additionally, the vinyl may need to be replaced every few years, which can add to the long-term cost.

Q. How much paint does it take to paint a golf cart?

The amount of paint needed depends on the size of the golf cart and whether you’re doing a full or partial paint job. On average, a single golf cart may require 4-6 cans of spray paint for a complete makeover. Purchasing extra cans for touch-ups and additional coats is advisable if needed.

Q. Can you paint golf cart plastic?

Yes, you can paint golf cart plastic. However, it’s crucial to use a paint formulated for plastic surfaces to ensure proper adhesion and longevity. Additionally, preparing the plastic surface by cleaning and, if applicable, sanding it will contribute to a more durable and professional-looking finish.

Q. Can I paint plastic without sanding?

While it’s possible to paint plastic without sanding, it’s highly recommended to sand the surface lightly before painting. Sanding helps the paint adhere better and promotes a smoother finish. If you skip this step, the paint may not bond well with the plastic, leading to peeling or uneven coverage over time.

Q. How many cans of spray paint do I need to cover a golf cart?

The number of spray paint cans required depends on factors such as the size of the golf cart, the color you choose, and whether you’re painting the entire cart or specific parts. On average, for a complete paint job, plan on purchasing 4-6 cans of spray paint. However, it’s advisable to buy a few extra cans for touch-ups and to account for variations in coverage.

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