Winter is nigh, and it’s time to pack away those summer toys. When it comes to Power Wheels, you can’t just drive it into the garage and say, “see you in March!” Unfortunately, it takes a bit more effort than that. But fortunately, The Backyartisan has it covered.
We’ve outlined the best way to prep your Power Wheels for storage. Properly stashing your kid’s ride-on car for winter or a long vacation is essential to ensure it stays safe and lasts a long time. In fact, it may just be the most important thing when caring for your Power Wheels!
With that in mind, let this be your all-in-one stop for how to prep your Power Wheels for storage. We’ve covered all the details and peppered in helpful tips and tricks to help you get the most out of your ride.
Ideal Storage Options for Power Wheels
Let’s line all the important details upfront. Here is the nitty-gritty of how to get your Power Wheels ready for storage:
- Clean your vehicle before storing
- Give the battery a full charge before storage
- Store your Power Wheels out of the elements
Before you start cleaning out a space in the garage to park your Power Wheels, there are a few chores you’ll want to get to first. You need to properly prepare your Power Wheels for storage before actually storing it.
This is especially important if you’ve got a rough-riding kiddo on your hands. Cars that are put away while they’re caked with mud and gunk do not make for a positive storage solution. Believe us. That layered-on grime can, at the least, compromise your Power Wheels decals and stickers and make it a pain when you fetch the car out of storage in the spring.
Get that car nice and shiny before you pack it away! Follow these cleaning steps to prepare your Power Wheels for storage:
Tip: while cleaning, avoid all wiring and electrical pieces.
- Firstly…disconnect and remove the battery. Before cleaning, and while your car is in storage, the battery needs to be removed.
- Exterior: use a damp cloth to wipe off debris from the outside and underside of the vehicle. You can use mild soap for tough mud, as well.
- Interior: if the interior of the car is dry, use a vacuum to remove any loose debris. Afterward, use a damp cloth to wipe down interior surfaces.
- Metal parts: if desired, apply a lubricating spray to metal pieces to keep rust at bay.
- Battery: your battery needs to be fully charged before you set it up for storage. See our “How Long Does a Power Wheels Battery Last for?” article for detailed tips on how to properly store your battery.
Where you decide to store your Power Wheels car is very important! You just spent the good part of an hour cleaning and preparing the vehicle; the last thing you want to do is park it outside to survive the winter out in the elements.
Let’s discuss how to store both the battery and the vehicle, as the two host different storage requirements.
The battery for your Power Wheels car has already been removed before your cleaning. After cleaning, you will not return it to the car! The battery must be stored in a specific environment to maintain its power.
A Power Wheels battery must be stored in a location between 55-75 degrees F. That might mean you cannot keep your battery in your garage if you live in a cold climate. You will also need to place it on a tray to protect whatever surface you store it on.
With the battery stored in a separate location, you have more options when placing your vehicle for the winter. Even in cold climates, you can keep your Power Wheels vehicle outside as long as it is well protected from the weather. Here are your location options when it comes to storing the car.
In your garage:
This is the most common place for owners to store their child’s ride-on toy. It’s probably where you keep it during use as well! In that case, you likely have a spot already carved out for it, among other boxes and garage tools.
Within the garage, you can park the car, mount it on the wall, or store it on an overhead shelf. Make sure it is a sturdy and secure location, as it will be spending a long time in one spot, and you don’t want it to be a fall hazard.
Where you choose to place the Power Wheels may depend on the available floor space, where you’ve kept it before, and what is less likely to cause an emotional breakdown when your child sees the toy and wants to ride it. If that can be avoided, all the better!
In an outdoor storage shed:
For those that don’t have a garage or have space in their garage, an outdoor storage shed can be a great option. If you don’t already have a shed in place, they are relatively easy to acquire from your local hardware store.
When you are looking to purchase a new shed, keep your timeline in mind with the winter. Areas prone to heavy snow need to have sheds before that fluffy stuff starts to fall.
Outdoor sheds come in all sizes. You might decide to get one that fits the Power Wheels and a few other kids’ toys. Your kids would probably like having their own mini garage!
The downside of utilizing an outdoor shed is that purchasing an entirely separate storage space for your Power Wheels will be the most expensive option. If the shed isn’t wired, it will also be difficult to manage interior temperature if your winter climate is very harsh.
Under a protective cover:
A protective cover for your vehicle is an easily accessible storage option for nearly any location. This works best if you also have a covered location, like a patio or porch, that can provide another layer of shelter when stored outdoors.
Besides being an independent form of storage, a protective cover is recommended for any other type of storage system you choose. Keeping the extra dust off your vehicle, even in the garage or a shed, means it’s one step closer to playtime when spring comes around.
In your basement:
Smaller and lighter Power Wheels cars will do well to be stored in your basement. As long as it isn’t too cumbersome to lug it down the stairs, you can keep your kid’s car well protected in your home’s storage area.
Like your garage storage solutions, you can also choose to hang the Power Wheels on the wall or a large utility shelf. When you need that garage space to host your winter toys, like sleds, snowshoes, and skis, making some extra room by moving your Power Wheels indoors can help keep the clutter minimal in all areas.
Inside your house:
When you have no outdoor storage option in sight, keeping your kiddo’s car inside your house might be your only choice. A fine idea for apartment dwellers or studio renters, storing your Power Wheels indoors will ensure it stays well protected from any weather conditions.
Do make sure that you clean it thoroughly before hiking it indoors. You don’t want to carry all that dust and debris from its riding days with it too! Find a good spot to stash it, like a large closet, mud room, or pantry. A well-cleaned Power Wheels with the battery removed also works great in the corner of your kid’s bedroom! They might light to pretend some dolls are going for a holiday spin.
Other Tips for Extending the Life of Your Power Wheels
- While prepping your Power Wheels for storage, use the opportunity to check for damage.
- If the tread on the wheels is very worn, you may wish to replace them before using the car again in the spring.
- Observe the car’s performance when it comes out of storage; if your battery has gone bad, you’ll need to replace it.
Where You Shouldn’t Store Your Power Wheels
Never store your Power Wheels outdoors for extended amounts of time. Even just between uses, you never know when it might rain or your neighbor’s sprinkler will give it a dousing!
Especially during extended periods of non-use, like winter or a long vacation, your Power Wheels must be stored properly to maintain its life and longevity. If you accidentally stored it outside, read our troubleshooting guide for tips on fixing it, and you might need to upgrade the Power Wheels battery.
Now that you know how to properly prepare and store your Power Wheels, you can finish the task before Jack Frost starts working his magic! With your well-maintained vehicle, your kids will be ready to get right back to riding when winter passes.