Batteries blow fuses with upgraded motors: Sometimes when you upgrade your motors your car starts blowing fuses. It's easy to think it must be the fault of the new motors but that's not so. Electric motors have only 2 options: work or fail. When they fail then no amount of power will make them move and they create an open circuit so the fuse doesn't blow. Think of volts and amps as being a highway system. Voltage is the number of cars driving and amperage is the speed they move. Your motors are a sports stadium and your battery is the residents. When you use faster motors (build a bigger arena) you increase the traffic flow (amp flow) going to it. If at any point along your highway (wiring) there is an inefficient area the amperage overflows and the fuse pops. Like having a section of road that narrows on a busy highway. This most commonly occurs in places electricity has to make a "turn": shifter and foot pedal switches. It can also occur in any connection you've added into the system. In good condition a Power Wheel's wiring can easily handle 24 volts of power and 775 size motors. As the switches age there ability to handle increased loads lessens. Fortunately shifter switches and foot pedal switches are cheap and easy to replace so don't sweat it. Also, if you bolted your motors in using a power drill you may be squeezing the gearboxes too tight which also causes an amp backup. Loosen the screws and re-tighten by hand with fresh threadlock. So what to try: 1. If the shifter handle feels loose then replace the shifter switches. 2. Inspect the bottom of the foot plunger switch. If there's green or black then clean the connectors and replace the switch. If the copper wire looks black you'll need to replace that section of wire harness. 3. If you spliced wires for any reason take the splice apart the splice and make sure it is done right. Soldering is best. 4. If you tightened the motors using a power drill take them back out, put threadlock on the screws, and hand tighten the motors. 5. Check your rear axle for even the slightest bend. Roll it on a flat surface. This problem can also shred final gears, third gears, and gearbox housings. 6. If the batteries are old replace them. If you're using stock Power Wheels brand batteries be aware that they have a 30 amp breaker built in. As they age they handle less and less amperage. If you replace with aftermarket batteries (ours or your own) go up to 40 amps. 7. If you're running rubber tires take them off. The spinning wheel is the cars only clutch. Without that you will blow fuses, gears, motors, and your wallet.
Motors overheated/failed shortly after installation: 1. Are you using the right battery? Stock motors are designed for up to 12v SLA. Performance 550's up to 18v SLA. Performance 775's up to 24v SLA. Do not use lithium batteries in a ride-on. They have a discharge rating 5x higher then SLA batteries. With no clutch to absorb all of that extra punch motors have no choice but to cook or gears to strip. 2. Did you break the motors in? Performance motors need the motor brushes "seated" to the commutator under a very small load. This is done by raising the back of the car in the air and running it in low speed for the time listed on the manufacturer's instruction sheet. Failure to break them in causes excessive arching/sparking in the motor and will crack a motor brush. There's no repairing this damage. 3. Is the pinion gear the right tooth count and pitch for the gearbox? The only gearbox that can change tooth counts is the 7R. The range your 7R gearbox can take is printed on the gearbox housing. Using a pinion gear too big will cause the mesh to be too tight which puts a strain on the motor. Either the motor will fail or the first gear will strip/melt. The pitch basically indicates the shape of the tooth and can not be changed. 4. Modified tires will overheat motors. The spinning tire is the closest thing your car has to a clutch. Adding rubber/traction puts a ton of strain on the motors and gears. Changing to a larger diameter tire changes the final drive gear ratio of the car and can also overheat motors. Larger diameter tires need to be countered with a smaller pinion. Adding heavier tires also creates more strain for the motors and should be countered with smaller pinions.
Car won't move at all, no sound from gears: 1. Check your battery with a volt meter. It should have at least 10 volts when dead, up to 14 when charged. 2. Make sure your charger is plugged into an outlet that has power to it! 3. Check the switch under the gas pedal. Most foot board assemblies are press-fit into place and can be "popped" free with a straight-head screwdriver. Corrosion under the foot board is usually obvious to the eye. If the wire harness is corroded we have replacement sections in our Stock Parts section. 4. Check the wires to the motors. There's 2 wires going to each motor. Make sure they haven't come off. If they have they can not be repaired. You'll need to replace the motors.
Car has No Reverse and Only 1 Forward Speed: 1. Check the wires to the motors. One motor may have lost a wire. If so they can not be repaired. You'll need to replace the motors. 2. If you have a shifter assembly then one of the switches has possibly gone bad. If you have dashboard switches then it may be on of them gone bad. They are inexpensive and available at Authorized Power Wheels Service Centers.
Car has No Hi Speed Forward: 1. Most vehicles have a Hi-Speed lockout so younger riders don't go too fast. If your vehicle has a shifter assembly then remove the screw or pin at the base of the shifter handle for Hi Speed. If you have dashboard shifting switches then look under the dash for a disconnected white connector. Plug that in for Hi Speed. 2. If you have a shifter assembly then one of the switches has possibly gone bad. If you have dashboard switches then it may be on of them gone bad. They are inexpensive and available at Authorized Power Wheels Service Centers.
Car is making a grinding noise: 1. That is a stripped gear or one of the wheel drivers. Easy to diagnose- take off the tire on the side you hear the noise. Open the gearcase and take a look, it's obvious. Nothing will spring apart at you opening a gearcase. (Hint: If one gear case is stripped the other isn't far behind. Replace them both.) Gearboxes normally fail because of an external influence. If you don't fix the cause then you may just strip the next gearbox again. Here's some common ways we see 7R gearboxes get damaged (in no particular order): A. Melted gearbox housing behind the final drive gear - This is caused by an uneven pressure or too much pressure pushing against the final drive gear. 3 major causes area bent axle (no matter how slight), modified tires, or damage to the frame where the axle mounts. B. Melted gearbox housing at the first gear shaft - This is caused by the spinning first gear heating up the shaft. Causes are - lack of grease on the shaft, debris or old grease in the gearbox. Our steel first gear is the best solution for this as it spins on ball bearings so there is no heat build-up. C. Stripped first gear - This is the weakest link in the gearbox so the first thing to let go typically when adding more power. If the teeth are stripped on an angle it means the motor wasn't bolted tight and even to the gearbox. If half of each tooth is stripped the pinion gear wasn't centered over the first gear. If just a few teeth are removed it means there was a sudden jolt to the gearbox. If they're all removed it could be any of the above. If you don't want to deal with this ever again then replace it with a hardened steel first gear and hardened steel pinions. A brake reduction module is also helpful to the gears. D. Broken teeth on 2nd, 3rd, or final drive gear - Caused by a sudden jolt to the gearbox. Most typically from changing vehicle direction without stopping first or from hitting a non-moveable object. These gears can handle 775 motors at 24 volts when driven properly. E. Pinion gear stripped - Most commonly caused by being the wrong material or shape. If you're using a hardened steel first gear you must use a hardened steel pinion, not just metal. With the stock first gear the material does not matter. The pitch of the gear is the distance between the peak of each tooth and must be 32. The shape of the pinion's tooth is also important to proper mesh with stock and modified first gears. There's no standard measurement or name for this and it varies greatly among brands. Best thing we can tell you is that ours are the correct shape.
Car shuts off then restarts in 30 seconds: 1. This happens when stock Power Wheels batteries get old or have an increased amp draw either from modified motors or a binding drivetrain. The internal 30amp circuit breaker pops then resets. Make sure the rear axle is perfectly straight and the wheels turn freely. Lighten the vehicle load. Avoid tall grass. Or switch to our batteries which use a 40amp fuse and run 30% longer. Often needed with 24 volt systems or 775 motors.