If you have a Power Wheels and only one wheel spins, it may not be able to get traction and may not work as it should. Any time only one wheel is spinning, it’s a sign that there is a problem.
You don’t want your child to operate the Power Wheels car if it is not working as it should as it could cause more severe problems and even become a safety hazard.
Here are some tips to help you troubleshoot your ride-on toy so it can work as it should and entertain your children. And you can rest easy knowing there is no risk to their safety.
If the transmission is not working right, it could be causing the wheels to only spin on one side. The gearbox wiring could be messed up and it may not be sending electricity to all the wheels to get them to spin.
If only one wheel is getting the power, it will be the one that spins even though they all may seem connected.
Your toy’s transmission connections might not be tight. You can check them to see if they are secure or if there are issues that could be causing the problem with the car.
If the connections are damaged and the wires are not connected, or not working, you might need to replace them to get the wheel to spin.
Lug Nuts Need Tightening
The lug nuts help keep the wheels on the toy car and if the lug nuts become loose, it can prevent the wheels from spinning. The axle may turn with the motors but the wheels themselves may be too loose to move or make contact with the ground to gain traction.
Instead, the axle will just spin and it won’t propel the Power Wheels forward. This is an easy fix that you should be able to handle on your own.
You simply need to tighten up the lug nuts on each wheel. You’ll need to check each nut on each wheel to see which ones need tightening and which ones are good.
If any of the lug nuts are missing, you will need to order replacement lug nuts and install them back on the vehicle.
Axle Pin Problems
The axle pins are also what help connect the wheels to the vehicle. This small piece of metal looks like a thin metal rod that you simply insert into the hole on the wheels to keep them on the axle while the motor spins them.
These pins also spin with the wheels and can easily fall out and become lost. In some cases, a curious child may even remove the pins and not think anything of it.
If the pins are not in place, the wheels may not stay on the vehicle as they spin. They may not be tight enough to stay on the axles, the tires may spin too slowly, and there may be no traction.
Pins are easy to replace—you can order the replacements online or find them in a local shop that carries accessories for vehicles or toys for kids. You can also contact the manufacturer to see if they can send the pins to you.
The driveshaft helps spread power to the wheels, and if there is an issue with the driveshaft, each wheel may not be getting the full amount of power needed to spin. You can check the driveshaft underneath the ride-on.
You should be able to hear the driveshaft making a noise as it is moving the wheels when it goes forward or in reverse. It can be tough to find it and difficult to adjust to the correct position to move all the wheels.
You may need to check the gearbox as well to see if all the gears are moving with the driveshaft.
If you don’t hear power going to all the wheels, it could be a sign that the driveshaft is malfunctioning. This could be due to a short or damage to the actual driveshaft that stops the other wheel or wheels from moving.
Sometimes the Power Wheels doesn’t have enough speed to make all the wheels spin. In fact, only one wheel may spin if the Power Wheels is in the lowest gear and the motor isn’t moving the wheel.
Too much weight on one side of the vehicle could also prevent the other wheels from spinning. This only sends a small amount of power to the wheels which will only allow one of them to spin.
You can fix this problem by adjusting the speed to a higher level before your child gets on his/her ride-on. If there is something stopping the toy from going into the higher speed, this could be another issue.
It may be due to problems with the transmission, wires, or the pedal. You might need to troubleshoot the pedal to find out why the toy is stuck at a slow speed and the wheel won’t spin.
If your kids are rough on their toys and ride their cars with some force, or even if they accidentally hit or run over something hard or sharp, the wheels could get damaged. This might cause the wheel to loosen or even prevent it from spinning as it should.
If the spinning wheel is damaged and not spinning as it should, you need to inspect it and find out if it can be repaired.
Dirt, debris, or small rocks could be preventing the front or rear wheels from spinning. If the wheels are damaged too badly, you might need to buy replacement wheels and install them in the car so the wheel spins more easily.
Finding Replacement Parts
Anytime your Power Wheels cars stop working, you may find that you need to buy replacement parts. If you hear a grinding noise, or if a wheel spins at the wrong times, it might be a sign that you need to order new parts for your vehicle.
These can be ordered for the exact make and model of the toy you have. Ordering from the right place will ensure they fit on the toy properly.
Ordering the wrong parts that aren’t meant for the toy vehicle you have could cause more problems and even ruin the toy for your child.
Getting The Repairs Done
If you are handy and familiar with Power Wheels vehicles and their common problems, you may be able to handle the repairs yourself. If not, and it all seems a little overwhelming, it might be a better idea to hire a professional to do the job for you.
You can find more details about Power Wheels repairs online or in your community. Another option is to ship it back to the factory for repairs.
If you aren’t sure if you want to pay the hefty shipping fees, you may be better off attempting the repairs on your own. In this case, there are some very helpful tutorials online to help you.
Is It Worth Fixing?
Before you invest time and money into the repairs, you might be wondering if it’s worth it. You can price a new Power Wheels to see if you think it’s worth just buying a new one from the manufacturer or if you would rather just try to fix the one your child has.
If the Power Wheels is special to you or your child, or if you don’t have the money to buy a new one, your best option might be to fix the one you have.
But be aware that sometimes it might not be worth fixing, especially if the same problems keep occurring. Plus, there will also be some costs involved.
Keep in mind you will not just need to buy the parts, but the screws, connectors, wires, and other supplies that will allow you to work on the car effectively. You can also refer to the repair manual for tips to help you find a solution and power more than just the one wheel.
If the problems are severe and the cost of parts and repairs will be more than the value of the Power Wheels or the purchase price of a new car, it might be better to get a new toy. But there’s also a good chance it’s something small, and in that case, you can fix it yourself.
If only one wheel is spinning, you can use the above tips and ideas to help you resolve the problem and hopefully make the necessary repairs to your Power Wheels vehicle all on your own.