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Power Wheels are some of the coolest toys for kids. They come in all shapes and sizes, but one issue is unanimous for many riders: they don’t go fast enough. Stock batteries typically aren’t big enough to handle constant usage and high speeds, so how can you upgrade your setup to improve its performance?
You can put a bigger battery in a Power Wheels to improve speed, handling, and inclines. If your Power Wheels comes with a 12V battery, you can replace it with an 18V battery to improve the battery life, too. Remove the old adapters, insert the new battery, plug it into the adapters, and secure it.
Throughout this article, you’ll also learn the following details about putting a bigger battery in a Power Wheels:
- Step-by-step instructions to safely install a new battery
- Several perks of upgrading a Power Wheels battery
- Safety tips to prevent electrical issues and improper installations
How to Upgrade a Power Wheels’ Battery Size
According to Money Rhythm, wheelchair batteries are an excellent alternative. You can put a bigger battery in a Power Wheels, whether you’re using a lawnmower battery or a Power Wheels brand replacement, it’s much easier to replace it than you might think. Grab some pliers, gloves, electrical tape, and get ready for a quick 15-minute installation.
Here’s the five-step process:
- Turn off the power and remove the female battery adapter. Make sure the Power Wheels is off, so you don’t get shocked. Use pliers to snip the female adapter with plenty of wire to use for the next battery. Keeping the female adapter allows you to use the new battery with the same charger you’re used to.
- Connect the wires to the new battery wires. White to white, red to red, and black to black. Power Wheels makes it easy to replace the battery since all of the wires are color-coated. Twist the exposed wires together, crimp them, or use splices to secure them to each other. Use electrical tape wherever it’s needed. Give them a light tug, then head to step three.
- Place the battery in the Power Wheels and secure it with a brace. The Power Wheels should already have a brace for the old battery, but it might be too small for the new battery. If that’s the case, you might have to remove or modify the brace for the new battery. Make sure you measure everything beforehand.
- Close the hood and lock it (unless there’s no lock, in which case you can make a DIY lock). There should be no way that anyone else can access the battery, especially your children. Fortunately, you can lock it. If not, consider getting a padlock to secure the hood while it’s being used.
- Test the performance before letting a child use it. Push the acceleration to test the Power Wheels. Most of them don’t have the weight capacity to handle over 100 to 150 pounds (45 to 68 kgs), so you may or may not be able to sit in the vehicle to test it. A light hand push of the pedal will show you if it’s too powerful, though.
As you can see, you can get it done relatively quickly. Unless you have to modify or replace the battery brace, you can complete the installation in under 15 minutes. Those who have experience with vehicle batteries can likely finish the replacement much quicker.
If you’re curious why so many people upgrade their Power Wheels battery, proceed to the next section.
Benefits of a Bigger Power Wheels Battery
Big batteries have countless perks and a couple of drawbacks. For example, they usually last longer, but the recharge time is a bit longer, too. However, you can recharge it overnight and won’t notice the difference. Below, we’ll explore four undeniable benefits of getting a bigger battery for Power Wheels.
- A bigger battery will make the Power Wheels faster. Perhaps the most obvious perk is that the Power Wheels will go quicker. Big batteries have more power, so the jolt is much stronger. Your kid can cruise up and down the block about 5 to 7 miles (8 to 11 km) faster without feeling limited by the old battery.
- It’ll be able to take on steeper hills for incline and decline driving. Since they’ll have more power under the hood, they can use the momentum to climb hills faster. It’s a huge benefit if you live on a steep street or near off-road areas. Some Power Wheels are designed for mud, so why not have a little more fun?
- Acceleration will significantly increase with a bigger battery. Popular Mechanics shows that a bigger battery can boost speed and acceleration up to 50%. If you want your Power Wheels to step it up to the next level, there’s no better solution. Stock batteries are often too slow for riveting fun, but a new big battery will be perfect.
- An efficient, large battery will last much longer than the stock model. Bigger batteries hold longer charges, which means they have to be recharged much less often than small stock batteries. If you’re tired of having to charge the Power Wheels all the time, then a bigger battery might be your best bet.
The list of benefits goes on and on. However, it’s crucial that you understand the safety precautions, too. As with all electrical devices, adequate knowledge is required to operate and maintain a bigger Power Wheels battery, especially since your child will use it. Read on for more information.
Safety Precautions When Upgrading a Power Wheels Battery
Safety should be the first thing that comes to mind. Don’t ruin the fun by worrying too much; almost all Power Wheels batteries can be upgraded. That being said, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Let’s break down three essential safety suggestions below.
- Connect the correct wires. Don’t move through the process too quickly, or you’ll mix the wires. You’ll end up causing sparks, frying the battery, or it simply might not work. It’s not worth the risk, so make sure you know where every piece goes before you start. It doesn’t hurt to draw a diagram to know where every wire is.
- Don’t overload the Power Wheels. Trying to use a battery designed for a 400HP car in a Power Wheels is a terrible idea. While the engine provides the horsepower, there’s no doubt that a big battery can be too much. Instructables explains that too big of a battery can ruin the gearbox. The last thing you want is to spend more money and ruin the vehicle.
- Secure the new battery. Even though your kid probably isn’t drifting through the streets like Fast and Furious, a loose battery can slip around and disconnect. It might cause sparks or randomly turn off the Power Wheels. Either way, it’s a safety hazard that can easily be avoided by securing everything before you shut the hood.
Practice the same safety suggestions as you would with your car, and you’ll be good to go.
Now that you know you can put a bigger battery in a Power Wheels and how to upgrade, it’s time to decide how big you want to go. An 18V battery typically does the trick. It improves speed, handling, and much more with a simple 15-minute installation process.
Here’s a quick recap of the post:
- Make sure you wire black to black and red to red (or white to white, depending on the model).
- Follow manufacturer recommendations if they disapprove of battery upgrades.
- A bigger battery can improve its longevity, charge time, and more.
- Test the results before letting your child use the upgraded Power Wheels battery.