Power wheels provide children with a fun and exciting way to explore their surroundings. But like any other mechanical device, they can experience issues that affect their functionality, including steering issues. These problems can be frustrating for parents and children, but you can address them. Read below about how to fix issues with power wheels’ steering so you can get your kid back behind the wheel to have fun.
Why Proper Steering on a Power Wheel Is Important
Steering problems on motorized cars for kids can significantly impact the overall driving performance of these toys and your child’s safety. A steering system that is not functioning correctly can cause the toy car to not respond to the child’s control inputs.
This could lead to the toy car colliding with objects or people, potentially causing damage or injury. It could also place your child in a potentially dangerous situation if they use the toy car near roadways or other hazardous areas.
Apart from safety concerns, steering issues can be frustrating for your child. A power wheel with poor steering control will not provide the fun and enjoyment that it normally would. No kid enjoys a toy that doesn’t work, including power wheels. A malfunctioning toy car can deter the child from using it, which defeats the purpose of having a power wheel in the first place.
Therefore, to ensure maximum safety and enjoyment for your kid, you should know how to promptly address and fix any steering issues in a power wheel. Continue reading to learn how to do so.
Fixing a Broken Steering Column
One issue that your child may have with their power wheel is a broken steering column. This component connects the steering wheel to the linkage in the front axle. However, if the column suffers dents or becomes bent over time, the vehicle will become harder to steer or may not work at all.
Fortunately, you can fix a damaged steering column yourself with the right approach. After you switch the power wheel off and unplug it from any power source, get a screwdriver and a set of pliers. After you detach the steering wheel from the vehicle, set the toy car on its side.
Next, take the old steering column out of the vehicle. You should be able to order a replacement column, but make sure it will fit the model of your child’s power wheel. Otherwise, you could end up with a part that doesn’t work, wasting time and money.
When you get the new steering column, you should attach it to the steering linkage. Afterward, test the steering to make sure it’s working properly; doing this helps ensure your child’s safety when they begin using their toy car again.
By following these steps, you can fix a broken steering column in a power wheel and return the joy of driving to your child. However, the reason your child’s power wheel isn’t steering correctly might have to do with an alignment issue instead of a broken steering column.
Fixing Front-End Alignment Issues
The front-end alignment is another common source of issues with power wheel steering. Misaligned wheels can cause the toy to pull to one side, making it difficult for your child to control it. Luckily, correcting front-end alignment issues in a power wheel isn’t as difficult as it might sound.
How To Tell if You Have Alignment Issues
One way to tell you have front-end alignment issues is by looking at the vehicle’s wheels themselves. If they seem out of alignment or are positioned in an outward direction, the vehicle’s steering linkage is likely broken.
You should also look at the bar that connects the wheels at the front axle to see if it has suffered any damage. You can also check the bracket that attaches the wheels to the steering linkage. Fortunately, like with your steering column, you can buy replacements for these parts and not have to purchase a whole new vehicle for your child.
How To Remove the Wheels
When you need to check the steering linkage in your child’s power wheel, you should begin by taking off the wheels. As you do this, you will likely have to remove the hubcaps on the outside of the wheels, as well as the bushings and washers affixing the wheels to the front axle. Use a screwdriver for these tasks.
During this process, you may notice that the wheels have experienced damage. If this is the case, you can order replacements. Even though damaged wheels won’t be the culprit behind poor steering, they can still negatively impact your child’s driving experience.
How To Check the Steering Linkage
After you get the wheels off, you will need to remove the current steering linkage, which attaches to the steering column. A cordless drill can be very helpful in taking out the screws that secure the linkage to the frame. You will probably also need a hammer to extract certain parts.
When you finally get to the linkage, examine it for any damage. If necessary, order a replacement so you can get your child back to having fun in their vehicle with a steering system that works properly.
Build Your Own Assembly Linkage
If you’re feeling handy and trust your skills, you can even try building a steering system yourself. If you plan to build a metal one, make sure you have the key supplies, such as an aluminum plate and measuring tools.
As you build it, make sure the connections are secure and allow for movement. A well-assembled linkage system will ensure smooth and responsive steering control, enhancing the overall driving experience for your child.
Steering issues with power wheels can be frustrating, but with the right knowledge, skills, and approach, you can easily fix them for your child. However, if the issue is beyond repair, you might be better off replacing your kid’s toy entirely. If you want to buy a new power wheel for your child, contact Elegant Electronix today. We offer various vehicles to fit a range of ages, including ones with a parental remote feature that lets you control the speed and direction of your child’s power wheel.