The battery meter should be placed in a convenient location where your child can see it without taking their eyes off the road. The meter comes with a small mounting bracket that’s attached to the dashboard. There are two connections on the back of the Battery Meter where you will connect your wires and batteries.
Wouldn’t it be awesome for your kid to know when their Power Wheels battery is about to require recharging? In this post, we will discuss battery monitors and how you can add one to your kid’s Power Wheels.
What is a Battery Indicator?
When it comes to Power Wheels, a battery indicator is an excellent accessory because it allows you to see how well the battery is performing.
The battery monitor will inform you of how well the Power Wheels battery is performing. With just a quick look it will show how much charge remains in the battery so you know when it is about time to recharge the battery.
Why Do You Need To Add a Battery Meter?
I believe it would be beneficial for your children to be aware of how much playtime they have left before their Power Wheels’ batteries run out of power. Add a Battery Monitor if you want to know how much energy is being consumed by the Power Wheel as well as how much energy is being produced.
To do this, you’ll need a battery monitor with an LCD screen that you can mount in your dashboard, such as the DROK-100V shown below.
How to Add a Battery Monitor on Power Wheels in 7 Steps
Tools To Mount A Battery Indicator On Power Wheels
Here is what you need to successfully add a battery monitor to the Power Wheel:
- Connecting wires (16 gauge )
- Insulating foam
- Soldering gun
- Battery meter ( for this DIY project we use DROK-100V Battery Monitor)
Step 1: Decide the Position of the Battery Indicator
If you have a battery monitor, it should be placed in a convenient location where your child can see it without having to take their eyes off the road.
This location should be above or on the dashboard, on the left-hand side, near the corner of the windshield, and is convenient. Of course, you can also mount the battery indicator on the right-hand side of the dashboard, underneath the dashboard.
Step 2: Drill the Location and Add the Battery Meter
The battery meter will come with a small mounting bracket that will need to be attached for the battery indicator to be installed. This is simply attached with the screws that are included.
Once the bracket is in place, you can then insert the battery monitor into the bracket and secure it.
Inline relays on the DROK 10-100V are designed to open and shut down the power to the wheel when the voltage falls below a predetermined level.
The low voltage battery indicator value that you can find online is approximately 16 volts, which is used as a safe zone cut out.
However, if you use the drill to run down a nearly dead battery until the protection circuit cuts the power, the voltage can reach around 13.5 volts.
There are Power Wheels with batteries available that can be depleted to their maximum battery indicator level before being recharged.
Step 3: Connect Wires to Battery Meter
There are two connections on the back of the Battery Meter where you will connect your wires and batteries. Make use of the 16 gauge wire and strip the end of the wire back to make the loop.
Make certain that the correct wires are connected to the positive and negative poles of the battery meter before proceeding.
The DROK 10-100V battery monitor allows you to determine how long it takes to charge a battery to its maximum capacity. The battery indicator is not bad, and it should take no more than 90 minutes to add the low-voltage cut out to the schematic circuit, according to the manufacturer.
Use the existing battery connectors and the lead to the battery monitor if you want to save money. However, you will need to make a few new whips to connect to and from the battery indicator module in the wiring.
You’ll need to make some modifications to the speed DROK-100V battery indicator so that the wire after the battery terminal is a different color than the wire after the positive lead.
Step 4: Identify and locate the wire harness
Removing the bottom of the dashboard will allow you to see where the wire harness is located. Towards the steering column, you should be able to see a tangle of wires emerging from the firewall.
With a multimeter, check each of these wires to see if there is a wire that has power to it even when the key is not turned on. The colors of these wires will usually be the same, but some manufacturers may use different colors.
Because Power Wheels use red as a positive lead, you can use red as a hot lead, which is a conventional color for a hot lead.
When the Battery meter is mounted in the dash, you can use black to clearly distinguish the output leads of the module for the sake of consistency and clarity.
For the terminal block and the low voltage module, you can drill a few holes into the top of the battery compartment and place a small piece of foam insulation below the module to help protect the solder points on the board from being damaged during the installation process.
You’ll want to mount your battery indicator switch on the terminal block that’s on the inside of your battery reservoir, right behind the battery indicator.
Step 5: Connect the Negative Wire
Get hold of the negative wire that comes from the battery monitor and secure it to a well-ground screw in the Power Wheel with a screwdriver. When at all possible, you should use the appropriate wire terminals.
In addition to making filled wiring cleaner, a crimped wire ferrule on the end of a lead prevents stray strands of wire from not being fully inserted into the terminal jaws of the connector.
Step 6: Connect the Positive Wire
Using one of the wires that you revealed in the wiring harness, cut the wire between the steering column and the connector in the dashboard. Connect the end of the cable that comes from the steering column to the battery-meter connector.
Take the piece of 16 gauge wire and connect it to the connector wire to complete the circuit. To connect the wires, a wire nut should be used.
You will need to make a few minor modifications because the cutout module must be connected to the circuit before the DROK-100V battery indicator can function.
For both of your battery leads to terminate together into one spot, the battery monitor makes use of smaller screw-type terminals, which are too small for the battery monitor.
As a result, you will add a small barrier terminal block and connect the battery meter in series with the battery.
Step 7: Verify and test all connections
It’s important to test everything after you’ve connected all of the wires to the battery and battery indicator to ensure that everything is working properly.
Check to see if the battery meter registers a reading after turning on the Power Wheel. If the battery gauge indicates that the battery is fully charged after you start the Power Wheel, your wires are properly connected.
What If The Battery Meter Is Not Reading?
In this case, you should check the voltage output of your charger as soon as you notice it because it is a common problem. For the unit to produce any voltage, you must first connect the charger to a working alternating current outlet.
Touch the positive probe to the positive side of the voltage meter and the negative probe to the negative side of the voltage meter. Once your voltage meter displays a reading, make a note of the reading.
Please keep in mind that it is possible that the reading will not be consistent; you will most likely notice that it fluctuates up and down slightly, this is normal and should be expected from any Power Wheels charger.
Troubleshooting Power Wheels Battery and Charger Issues
To ensure that the charger’s output is adequate, you will first check its output to ensure that it is. Your Power Wheels charger should have a voltage output of approximately 13.5 to 14.5 volts, depending on its manufacturer.
If your charger’s output voltage is significantly higher than this, or if it is producing less or zero volts, it is time to replace your Power Wheels charger.
It is possible that replacing this defective unit will also resolve the battery issue, depending on whether any damage to the battery was caused by the faulty charger which is not extremely common, but we do see it from time to time.
When we have determined that your Power Wheels charger is in good working order, we need to know what voltage your battery is currently operating at.
If The Battery Voltage Is Below 12 Volts
If the Battery Monitor indicates that the battery is below 12 volts after charging, the battery may have a dropping cell problem.
The dropping a cell problem is a common cause of failure in any lead acid-based battery, in which case there is a broken weld in the battery, resulting in a dead short or an extreme loss of power. If this is the case, it would be necessary to replace the Power Wheels battery.
Connecting the wires to the Battery Indicator is as simple as connecting them across the battery terminals. The battery meter must be wired in series with the battery on the negative side of the battery to function properly.
Alternatively, if your battery monitor has short wires, you can install the shunt inside the protective battery lid and extend the length of the LCD wires that connect to the dashboard to make them reach the dashboard.
When a battery meter is added to the Power Wheel, it becomes more enjoyable to play with than when it does not. Get one and do it yourself. It is fun.
This was originally added in an amazing project, check out the full article where LEDs were also added to the Power Wheels.
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