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An important part of maintaining your power wheels battery – and you must do that if you want it to give your youngster great service- is charging it properly.
And when we say charging it properly we mean charging it with the correct charger, at the right time, and for the precise number of hours.
This article will concentrate on the issue of charging duration and we particularly want to talk about how long to charge power wheels battery if you want it to keep going and going.
Let’s get into it..
How long to charge power wheels battery
The best way to be sure how long you should charge your power wheels battery is by going through the accompanying instructions sheet.
That is where you will find all the manufacturer’s recommendations about how you should take care of the battery including what power wheels battery charger should you use.
That said, below are some general guidelines about how long to charge power wheels battery (both 6v and 12v):
How long to charge power wheels battery first time
Be sure to charge the battery for 18 hours (at least) before operating your car with the battery for the first time.
In other words, your initial charging should be done for 18 hours.
So, what happens if you do not charge your Power Wheels battery for 18 hours before your first use?
The thing is you are unlikely to notice any damage immediately.
However, the battery is highly likely to not last the period it should if its first charging was not allowed to continue for 18 hours.
In fact, don’t be surprised if the battery dies out too soon.
How long to charge power wheels battery after each use
The next thing you need to make sure you do is charging the battery after each use- and this should typically be done for 14 hours.
This is very important and it really does not matter how long the battery has operated your kiddo’s power wheels.
We cannot emphasize this enough because some parents do not find the idea of charging the battery after each use sensible.
They find the requirement to recharge it before storage especially ridiculous when their kids have ridden the car for just a few minutes (They ask: why should I recharge it and he has only ridden his car for a few minutes so it still has some juice?)
Now, you cannot make that mistake.
Here is why:
Power wheels use lead acid batteries –and these type of batteries are prone to sulfation if stored when not at full charge.
For starters, sulfation occurs inside lead–acid batteries once the electrolyte begins to break down.
Put simply, if you want a great service life from the battery, ensure it is charged (for 14 hours) after every time your kid has been out riding.
How long to fully charge power wheels battery
As we have mentioned above, the battery should attain full charge after 18 hours (for the initial charge) and after 14 hours (after every use).
Never charge the battery for 30 hours (or more)
A power wheels battery should never be charged longer than thirty (30) hours.
Doing that will actually overcharge the battery.
You see, sealed lead-acid batteries like the one used on power wheels usually make electrolyte water start breaking into hydrogen and oxygen gas once charged excessively long.
The result is depleted electrolyte level in the battery.
This, in turn, has two outcomes.
First, the concentration of sulfuric acid (in the electrolyte) rises resulting in damage to your battery plates and decreased battery life.
Secondly, because of the drop in electrolyte level, a part of the plates will be exposed to air leading to plate oxidation and reduced battery capacity.
So you will probably be going back to the shop soon for a new battery if you left the battery charger plugged in for 30+ hours.
How long to charge power wheels 6v battery
The above instructions apply to both 12v and 6v power wheels battery.
A word on using battery chargers that can charge power wheels super fast
Now, there are these battery chargers that are marketed as capable of charging the battery super-fast while extending run time.
What is important to note is that while these charger upgrades can have the vehicle “ready-to-ride” in even less than two hours, it is still recommended to charge it regularly for 14-18 hours to get it fully charged.
It is also worth mentioning that the best charger to prevent overcharging is a charger with a trickle charge feature such as this.
Thanks to the feature, the charger will know when charging is complete and it will switch to trickle charge/float-mode to maintain optimum battery charge.
The battery tender works in a similar way and can be a good alternative if your original charger malfunctions.
How long to charge power wheels battery?-FAQs
Is it possible to over charge 12v batteries and kill them?
Yes, if you leave the battery on charge for days on end (supposedly to have it ready when your son/daughter wants to drive), then overcharging will occur and kill it.
So your daughter’s/son’s power wheels will die as soon as he/she steps on the pedal to test for acceleration because there is no power.
Unfortunately, if this occurs, your battery needs to be replaced.
I got a new battery but it doesn’t charge
Well, if this is happening to a new battery you just bought, then the battery could be stone cold dead.
That said, your best chance to bring it back is to leave it on the charger for 24 hours and see if you get any improvement in the voltage.
Both undercharging and overcharging lead acid batteries leads to battery life degradation so you should follow the above power wheels battery charging instructions.
Don’t forget to top off the battery charge (every couple of weeks) for 14 hours if the battery is being stored for a lengthy period of time.