A Power Wheels car, ever since its introduction in 1984, has done extremely well to capture the interests of young ones. These days, almost every child (under seven) dreams of owning a Power Wheels car.
Truth be told—you canʼt blame them really. After all, Power Wheels toy cars are extremely attractive with their realistic designs and alluring features such as the doors, power-lock brakes, hoods, and reverse and forward switches.
The fact that Power Wheels cars look similar to the adult vehicles they’re supposed to mimic also adds to their charm. No wonder kids simply canʼt get enough of their Power Wheels vehicles.
Now, imagine the following scenario.
Suppose your child has misplaced the charger for his Power Wheels car. However, he still wants to go out for a ride with his friends.
So, what do you do on such short notice? Is there any way you can charge the electric vehicle and stop the pestering or silent treatment from your child?
Well, youʼre in luck as there are several ways you can charge a Power Wheels battery without a Power Wheels battery charger, and these don’t include using a laptop charger!
However, be advised that it isnʼt recommended that you charge your Power Wheels without a charger all the time. It is fine if you do it once or twice.
Do it often and your Power Wheels battery will no longer function optimally. The following solutions are temporary.
If you have a defective charger or if your charger is lost, get a replacement charger as soon as you can.
With that said, letʼs see how you can play the hero in your childʼs life. Trust me—knowing how to charge a Power Wheels battery without the battery charger can prove to be extremely useful during crunch times.
To charge a ride-on vehicle without its Power Wheels charger, youʼll require some tools to help you get started.
To disconnect the battery and reconnect it back safely when fully charged, you will need a screwdriver, a wire cutting tool, alligator clamps, a multimeter to set the charge voltage, power plugs, and adaptors.
Disconnecting Your Power Wheels Battery
First things first, you need to disconnect the Power Wheels battery from the battery compartment. Thankfully, removing the battery from the Power Wheels car is super easy.
Since the Power Wheels batteries are clamped down to keep them secure during rides, youʼll require a screwdriver to remove the clamps.
After removing the clamps, disconnect the battery from its negative terminal first. Only after doing so should you disconnect the positive one.
Once youʼve unplugged the Power Wheels battery connector from the system, remove it from the battery holder, and keep it aside on a flat surface to prevent acid spillage. I’d recommend you place it on a towel.
Now, itʼs time for a little inspection. Examine the Power Wheels battery properly and see if itʼs free of cracks and flaws.
Remember that it can be dangerous to charge a damaged battery. Even if you find just a small crack, get a replacement battery immediately.
You should spare no expense when it comes to ensuring the safety of your child.
After checking the condition of the Power Wheels battery, it is now time for you to clean the battery terminals and prep it for a charge. The thing is, dirty battery terminals can prevent charging wires from connecting smoothly to the battery, thereby, preventing it from properly charging.
I would advise that you clean the terminals thoroughly with a wet cloth dipped in a baking soda solution. This solution is a proven method to get rid of stubborn grime and dirt.
Be careful not to touch the battery edges with your open hand during the cleanup though, especially if there is some sort of powder on them.
The powder is actually dried sulfuric battery acid, and it can burn your skin. So, proceed with caution or, better yet, wear safety gloves.
If everything’s okay, you can finally proceed to charging your Power Wheels battery without the Power Wheels charger.
Various Ways to Charge a Power Wheels Battery Without a Power Wheels Charger
In todayʼs text, we’ll discuss four different ways you can charge a Power Wheels battery without the Power Wheels charger. Without wasting precious time, letʼs get started on the first method.
First Method: Charge Power Wheels Battery Using a Car Battery as the Power Supply
It is possible for you to recharge your Power Wheels battery with a car charger.
You can do it with the assistance of alligator clamps. However, you must first make sure that your car battery has enough juice to get the job done.
It’s common knowledge that most Power Wheels cars are powered by batteries with a voltage of 6V or 12V.
Thankfully, car batteries operate on 15V. This means that they can easily charge the Power Wheels battery.
To start charging the Power Wheels toy car battery, connect the positive terminals of the Power Wheels battery and your car battery. Then, complete the circuit by connecting the negative terminals.
Use a voltmeter, and turn the dial to the voltage DC portion and check to see if there is a functional power supply. You need to know if the current is flowing towards the Power Wheels battery as it should.
You can also use a multimeter to set the required voltage reading and turn on the voltage potentiometer. To check the voltage reading, you need to identify and locate the positive and negative prongs of the Power Wheels battery first.
Your job is not quite done yet as you must check the battery voltage every couple of hours to prevent overcharging. If the 6V Power Wheels battery shows a voltage higher than 6V, it implies that it is fully charged.
Also, unplug the battery if it gets too hot or else you’ll be needing a new battery.
Second Method: Charge Power Wheels Battery Directly From a Power Source
Thankfully, charging the Power Wheels battery directly from a power port is also simple and straightforward. To do that, you need to plug on alligator clamps to attach the Power Wheels battery to the power cord.
Make sure the cord you’re using comes with adapter wires as only such a cord will enable you to safely control the currentʼs voltage to stop the battery from getting fried.
The positive alligator clamp should be attached to the positive terminal on the battery. Likewise, the negative alligator clamp must be connected to the negative terminal.
To keep abreast of the situation and prevent overcharging, use a voltmeter to test the current every now and then. Once youʼve determined that the battery has been fully charged, disconnect the negative terminals first before removing the positive ones.
During a power supply battery charge, it is essential that you stay vigilant at all times. It would be suicidal for you to take your eyes off the batteryʼs current, temperature, and voltage during the charging time.
It is best if your power supply has a current-limiting function and adjustable voltage.
It’s also advisable that you opt for a strategic location to secure the Power Wheels battery when charging it. Donʼt choose a location where thereʼs high traffic and your children are going back and forth.
And, as mentioned earlier, the battery should be kept on a flat surface, with a towel underneath.
Third Method: Charge Power Wheels Battery Using a Portable Battery Jump Starter
Thankfully, we live in an era where there are numerous products that help make our lives easier. With a portable battery jump starter, you can not only jump-start your car during the cold winters, but also charge your Power Wheels battery.
It also helps that portable jump starters commonly come equipped with alligator clips. Therefore, you’ll not require any additional tools for this method and to set up the positive and negative connectors.
Of course, if you wish to use a portable jump starter, you must first ensure that itʼs charged.
Fourth Method: Charge Power Wheels Battery Using Solar Panel as the Power Supply
Solar panels have grown by leaps and bounds over the years. They are not only inexpensive these days, but also quite accessible.
If you have a solar panel, you can use it to charge your Power Wheels battery. You see, solar panels do come with electric ports to help you charge your electronics.
To gain access to the power of solar panels, youʼll need to use them with a plug. The plug will enable you to connect the alligator clips directly to the positive and negative connections and, thereby, facilitate the Power Wheels battery charge.
Don’t forget to tighten the respective screw terminals once you’re done.
During the charging process, make sure you have a voltmeter ready as you’ll need to keep a watchful eye on the proceedings.
As mentioned earlier, youʼll need to pay attention to the Power Wheels batteryʼs current limit, temperature, and voltage to prevent overcharging and an explosion.
You wouldn’t want to pay for a new battery now, would you?
What can you do if your child keeps misplacing the battery charger over and over again? Well, if that happens, it is handy to have a replacement battery charger (safeAMP charger) or a replacement battery on standby.
Consider investing in an alternative charger and a replacement battery if you donʼt think itʼs convenient or safe for you to rely on temporary solutions anymore.
Things to Keep in Mind When Charging Power Wheels Batteries Without a Power Wheels Charger
Iʼm going to be honest here—there are some risks involved with charging a Power Wheels battery without a charger. However, if you take the right precautions, you can keep the risks to a minimum.
Iʼve taken the liberty to list certain things that you need to avoid doing i.e. if you donʼt want your Power Wheels battery to be damaged beyond repair.
Again, a battery that shows signs of cracks, flaws, and degradation is not suitable to charge without a battery charger. Such Power Wheels batteries can be extremely dangerous as they can explode while you’re charging them.
In such cases, get a replacement battery as soon as possible.
Iʼve mentioned this several times throughout this article—disconnect the anode first before disconnecting the positive one as doing so preserves the integrity of the battery. Going about things the other way around will cause a power surge that can completely destroy your battery.
The positive and negative terminals must be disconnected properly. If you can’t distinguish between the two (positive and negative terminals), look online for guidance.
You must keep a watchful eye on the proceedings at all times. In other words—donʼt ever leave the battery unattended while charging. Pay attention to the batteryʼs current, temperature, and voltage to prevent overcharging and an explosion.
The aforementioned methods are simply temporary solutions to charge your Power Wheels battery.
Donʼt be under the impression that you can use such methods all the time. Doing so will damage your battery in the long run.
I do not recommend using a laptop charger to charge your Power Wheels battery. This is because it’s quite complicated and requires some expertise, such as using a step-down converter module and cutting the adapter jack, as well as removing the laptop wire’s outer shield.
In order to reduce the battery charge time, many may be tempted to charge their Power Wheels battery with a high current. Donʼt be one of those people as doing so can destroy your toy car batteries completely.
Making a Power Wheels Battery Last Longer
I thought it would be a shame if I ended this article without leaving you with a few good tips to help prolong the life of your battery. Only when a battery is in pristine condition will your Power Wheels car be able to operate smoothly over extended periods.
Plus, you won’t have to recharge the battery so often.
Donʼt Leave Your Battery Overcharged or Undercharged
Overcharging or undercharging your battery can be extremely detrimental to your batteryʼs health. If you donʼt wish to shorten the battery life, it is best if you leave your 6-volt battery on an 18-hour charge and your Power Wheels 12V battery on a 14-hour charge.
Dealing With New Batteries
Experts recommend that you charge your new Power Wheels battery upgrade for a minimum of 18 hours before using it.
Storing a Battery
Unfortunately, very little is said about the importance of storing a battery properly for longer battery life. If you want your battery to stand the test of time, it is essential that you store it in a dry, cool area.
Also, remember to never store a battery when it is fully drained. A completely discharged battery simply wonʼt have the juice to last through the blistering cold days of winter.
Clean Your Battery
You can also prolong the life span of your battery by cleaning it regularly. So, the question arises, how do you clean it well?
Well, when speaking of cleaning the battery, you need to keep the charging points and battery posts clear of any corrosion.
However, be careful not to use water. Instead, wipe it with a slightly damp cloth to get the job done.
In summary, charging Power Wheels batteries without a battery charger during crisis moments is possible. And the easiest way to do it is by using a car battery and alligator clips.
However, donʼt make the mistake of thinking that these temporary solutions are a long-term solution. The solutions Iʼve provided you with are only suitable to use once or twice.
Donʼt try your luck with the solutions over and over again as doing so can ruin the integrity of the battery and considerably reduce its life span.
When you use these alternative methods, youʼll need to be vigilant at all times, and I’m sure you have more important things to do. So if you’ve lost your charger, it makes sense to get a replacement charger as soon as possible!
Now that you know how to charge a Power Wheels battery without the charger, it is time to spread the word and help other parents all over the world.