Regenerative braking

I understand the concept of regenerative braking as applied to hybrids and am wondering in a GEM if it’s functional and truly recharges the battery or just used as a braking assist and simply bleeds off any generated current against some resistance somewhere.


Hi, Al. I have BattSix system installed in my 2007 E2 and it does show an increase after braking. Barry:-)

Thanks for confirming that.

How do you like your Battsix system? I’ve looked at them but they seem pretty pricey to me for what they do. Thoughts?

First of all the BattSix System company is great to work with. They will bend over backwards to help you with any instillation questions you might have. As far as the price. If you contact them on their web site and tell them that you are a member of this forum the will give a fellow member discount to you. Even with that said, it is well worth the peace of mind that it will give about the state of your batteries. I hear that they may be dealing with Polaris to install them in the new GEMs. Why did I install the BattSix System? The dreaded turtle showed up one day. The Polaris dealer had no idea why. So it was up to me to figure it out. The BattSix System Shows the voltage of each of the batteries to a 10th volt. It also shows the total state of charge of the whole battery pack so you really know how much battery charge you have left (or how much you have used:-)). I don’t have that dreaded thought of wether I have enough charge to get home or not. I had a bad battery and the system showed it where the dealer couldn’t find it. Oh, and buy the way I don’t work for the BattSix System Company. I just like the product. I hope this has helped. I have learned tons by belonging to this forum. Barry. P.S. It works on all types of batteries.:slight_smile:

Thanks for the insight.

I can see why knowing the state of charge for the system is important. But the GEM battery display does that at least roughly speaking though certainly not to the same degree of precision nor for each individual battery.

I did have one battery fail suddenly after roughly two years and found it by testing each battery for specific gravity using a hydrometer. I’m now doing that regularly as part of my monthly battery water check maintenance process. In the end I replaced the entire array with Trojan batteries after 1st trying to cheap it out by replacing the one failed Interstate. THAT wasn’t a successful strategy! Certainly for the first few months w/ new batteries it would be nice to know if you are having premature failure on a single battery but at some point, it’s prudent to replace them all I think.

I called BattSix and for the module w/ built-in display (don’t own either an Android or iPhone) it was something around $475. I decided I could use a disk brake upgrade on my 2001 E825 more than a new battery display. Still something to think about after all my other upgrades are done (front disk brakes, HID/LED lighting, LiFEPo4 batteries, doors, etc).

Thanks again; always appreciate real-world input from another enthusiast.


Hi again. Since I live in a small town, Chico, CA, there isn’t any one in town that has the proper equiptment (including the Polaris dealer) to test gel batteries. So hence the BattSix System. I also have a stake back on my GEM E2 that is heavy and makes it hard to test the individual rear batteries. The BattSix does that for me. Barry

I hear you! I too live in a small town outside of Cleveland, OH. There is a Polaris dealer BUT it’s a $90 pickup/dropoff charge AND I suspect GEM is only a niche market for them so they don’t emphasis the product (I think there’s only one GEM mechanic and he’d rather work on bikes and watercraft) and their support is pretty much limited to “new” models and “basic” maintenance.

Given I want to “hot rod” my GEM (7.5hp R4F motor; reprogrammed controller; replace front drums w/ disk brakes, etc and it’s a 2001 E825 (also with stake bed) to begin with, they aren’t very tuned in I’m afraid. After a couple of trips to the dealer I decided if I was going to have something other than a “new/basic” GEM, I’d have to do the bulk of the work myself. And that’s when I found this forum which has been very helpful.


Rather than start a new thread I thought I’d tack my query on to this one.

I just noticed this yesterday while driving. The little green led over the battery icon, indicating regenerative braking, comes on about every 10 seconds for about 3 seconds. It cycled like this for the 4 mile return trip from town.

Does anyone else experience this and if so, what’s up?:confused:

My Trojan T1275 batteries are all about 6 months old, fully charged and the car runs great.

Any thoughts as to why the light comes on like this?

Thanks for your time.


Just a crazy, I don’t know anything thought. Could your brakes be hanging up a little bit? Barry, Chico CA


Yes I thought of that and checked them, I did replace the front right a few months ago, but they look and feel OK. I checked the brake drum temps with an IR sensor and they’re all within 8 degrees F of each other I feel that’s OK.

It comes on almost like it’s on a timer, every 10 seconds for 3 seconds, it’s not random. I would think that if it were a brake hanging it would be random and for a longer period of time. Oh well, back to the drawing board.

Thanks for your response.


Couple of thoughts:

Don’t know what year/controller you have in your GEM or how it’s programmed, so take with a grain of salt.

  1. Is this something that just started or has it been there since you’ve owned the vehicle? I don’t have this light on my 2001 E825 AFAIK so perhaps it’s always been there and it’s a simple “notification” that you have regen braking available? If it’s just started then either you haven’t noticed it before (seems unlikely) or there’s some other explanation.

  2. If you’re going “downhill” AND regen braking is engaged OR you’ve exceeded the max speed and it brakes automatically(?), perhaps the light comes on at that point to let you know? OTOH, if it’s like a “timer” then again I don’t know what it might be.

Maybe you should call Polaris and ask to talk to the GEM tech. HA HA HA HA HA! To bad Polaris killed GEM because that was how simple it was in the old days, before The Evil Empire took over. Now if you call they will tell you to call your dealer. The dealer doesn’t know any thing. Barry.