How to make 12v power wheels faster

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We are still looking at how to make power wheels faster and after seeing how to make 6v power wheels faster, we will now turn our attention to making a 12v power wheels go faster.

So to proceed with our series about how to make a ride on car faster, below is how to make 12v power wheels faster:

How to make 12v power wheels faster

This project will we will be looking at how to upgrade to 18v (we will be doing a 12v power wheels to 24v upgrade in the next article so keep it here).


  1. Batteries

For this 12 volt power wheel conversion, you must upgrade the battery.

Here are the after-market batteries (we prefer them as they are inexpensive) you will need:

  • One 6v batteryThis 6V, 12.0 AH SLA rechargeable battery comes at a much lower cost than the power wheels branded version.
  • One 12v batteryThis is its counterpart (12V, 12.0 AH) and should work well (the price is fair too).

Important: Whatever batteries you pick, make sure they have equal Ah(amp hour) ratings. That way, the two will discharge evenly.

If possible, select batteries that fit the provided battery space in your power wheels.

But that should not worry you if not possible since you can modify the compartment to accommodate the batteries (more later)


  1. 12v power wheels motor upgrade

For your 12v power wheels to 18v upgrade, you definitely need to swap out the stock motors too. Otherwise, they will burn out due to stepped-up voltage (the original motors windings are likely to be overwhelmed at some point).

I cannot tell for sure what motors will fit as I don’t have your Power Wheels here but there are great choices out there (you need two).

I would suggest you try the RS-550s 18v DC motor- it’s a very popular choice for Power Wheels 18v upgrade.

If you want a different option, this 775s motor feeds off 16.8 Volts and runs on 18v upgraded power wheels with no issues (and they give it way more torque/speed than stock motors).

This is important:

Be sure to get the right gear depending on the motor shaft size – The above motors generally need new pinions to fit the larger/thicker motor shafts so you’ll need to know the pinion tooth count to be able to order the correct pinion gear (You can search for them on Amazon as well).

Don’t worry about fitting the gear- With basic modifications to your power wheels gearbox, you should make it fit.

In addition to the correct pinion gear for the motor shaft size, you might need some extra components to install these properly into your Power Wheels gearboxes.

These include:

  1. Machine screws (for mounting)– these should be longer than stock motor screws
  2. Washers for the machine screws– these are needed to space the motors in the gearboxes to set pinion gear depth. They should match your machine screw size. For example, if you go for 4mm machine screws, you need same size washers.


Other accessories needed:

  • Inline fuse– This is absolutely critical for the safety of your kid. You will put it on the positive side of your upgraded battery. Here is one (with 40Amp Fuse).
  • Crimp connectors- You need a couple of these too


Tools you will need


How to make 12 volt power wheels faster- step by step

Removing the stock motors

  1. Flip your power wheels upside down
  2. Remove the wheels. They should slide off without problems. Now you should access the gearboxes and the motors are attached.
  3. Next disconnect the wires then slide off the gearboxes.
  4. Loosen the screws securing the motors to the gearbox – you have a set of screwdrivers so pick an appropriate one and use it here.
  5. Next, get the motors out. For the most part, the motor should come out once wiggled a bit.


Installing the new motors

Install the pinion (just slip it over the shaft). For the best results, set your pinion gears as deep(on the shaft) as the tiny set screw allows.

You should then use washers to space your motors against the gearboxes- remember you want to set pinion depth correctly.

Now you can insert the new motors into the gearbox then put the holding screws back in using the appropriate screwdriver.

All that remains now is connecting the wires to the motor leads – stripping the wires then putting them into the connectors and finally crimping the connection is perhaps the easiest way of doing the motor wiring (be sure to wrap the connection in electrical tape).


Wiring the battery

Wire the Batteries in series (not parallel- that way, you will combine the voltage to get 18v which results in a massive speed boost).

How can I make my 12 volt power wheels faster?

As you can see above, you connect the batteries as follows:

  • 12v +ve (red) goes to 6v –ve (black).
  • The 6v +ve (red) is connected to the existing factory wiring.
  • The 12v –ve (black) goes to the existing factory wiring.
  • The fuse is added to the red (positive) side- you can have the fuse holder either between your two batteries or just after the batteries.

You simply use your wire crimper to make the required terminal as well as all needed terminal fittings.

Depending on the power wheels you have, you can have a jumper wire go between the batteries (a ring terminal will be on one end while a spade terminal- female- is on the other).

For the car connections, you will be using the bullet connectors (if you take this route).

Put the batteries in and wire them to the vehicle

Put your two batteries in the battery space- you can cut it out a little to create enough room for the batteries if they don’t fit right in.

Once they are in place (you can add a strap to help hold them more firmly), connect them to the existing factory wiring as indicated above.

All that remains now is charging the batteries – and you can do that by connecting the leads to a charger such as Noco Genius G4.


How to make 12v power wheels faster – bonus tips

Test the vehicle first

Before trying to ride the car, you can test if everything was installed fine by pressing the pedal once the charger is hooked up (wait for the batteries to acquire enough charge to start the vehicle).

Side Note: If you find one wheel rotating backward, switch the wires between motor terminals. Inter-changing the wires is the most common cause of the problem.


Add heat sinks on the motors

Upgrading from 12volts to 18 volts can increase the heat generated by the motors to a point of risking burning them up.

Adding heat sinks will keep your motors cooler.

These fit right on the 550 motors for power wheels and are super cheap.


Wrap up

So, that is how to make 12v power wheels faster.

Try it and see if your power wheels will get the amazing speed your little one has been craving for!

Let the fun begin.



Power wheels 12v battery alternative





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